Swiss Hospital Chain, EOC, Brings the First Rancher-based Service into Production in Less than a Month

Location: Bellinzona, Switzerland

Industry: technology

Company Size: 5,000

The Highlights

  • Eliminated VM configuration as an ask to Ops teams
  • Allowed quick deployment of new services from 30 days/project
  • Integrated with Barracuda application tools
  • Improved scalability and the freedom to develop distinct pieces in various program languages

The Customer

As a modern chain of hospitals, Ente Ospedaliero Cantonale (EOC) is a huge business group with 5,000 employees and revenues of $750 million (USD) per year. EOC also has a rather large and complex hardware infrastructure. The enterprise moved towards virtualization relatively early, using virtual machines to abstract software and network operations.

As it evolved, EOC pursued many of the common goals of modern healthcare organizations: using agile systems to provide patient information, direct communications, assist clinical workflows, and streamline and deliver many other vital healthcare services.

The Challenge

Many of EOC’s challenges before implementing a strong container program had to do with resources and top-heavy services: monitoring took effort; zero-downtime maintenance was a challenge, and teams worked to resolve dependency issues.

EOC needed automation and flexibility. Rancher and container deployments helped to streamline vital processes like configuring hundreds of VMs with zero-downtime.

“The first benefit of Rancher is the flexibility that container orchestration brings. With this type of infrastructure, we are able to move the applications across our virtual machines in a simple way.”

Elia Oggian, Configuration Manager

The Results

EOC chose Rancher to achieve a specific architecture that put containers inside of virtual machines, which is now a somewhat popular way for the company to dynamically move containers across the VMs and decouple the application from the VM without completely dismantling virtual-machine and hypervisor systems.

It took the company only a month to bring the first Rancher-based service into production. The team quickly saw that Rancher could greatly enhance their containerization initiative. EOC started migrating legacy applications and renovating their infrastructure with Rancher features like host evacuation, load balancers and the interface’s global view of hardware environments. Rancher provided management of container resources, a flexible choice in container orchestration, and insight and tools into their virtual machine resources.

“It’s really quick to be up and running with services in Rancher. It took us more or less one month to bring the first service into production.”

Elia Oggian, Configuration Manager