No Time for Downtime: Leading Healthcare Group Experiences the Power of IBM XIV Hyper-Scale Mobility

IBM XIV allowed this customer to triple usable information systems storage with zero system downtime.

A large healthcare group with multiple hospitals in Florida was facing a large-scale upgrade of their existing storage arrays. Their small IT team had the daunting task of migrating 320 terabytes of data from two storage arrays—zoned to two different SAN fabric infrastructures—to two new storage arrays, while at the same time:

  • never taking a host offline,
  • work on the migration during peak business hours,
  • utilize a team of just two storage admins,
  • and complete it in less than a month with ZERO downtime.

We upgraded this customer from two fully populated IBM XIV Gen3 model 114s to two new IBM XIV model 214s. We also replaced their aging HP SAN fabric infrastructure to a new Cisco Nexus SAN fabric—all without a single minute of downtime.

IBM XIV Hyper-Scale Volume Mobility allowed us to seamlessly migrate data from one XIV Gen3 to another without the hosts ever being shut down or experience loss of storage connectivity. Through the use of XIV Hyper-Scale and host IO multi-path technology, we were able to perform the migration without ever breaking IO activity from the host to its volumes. Typically, this would require some sort of storage virtualization controller (SVC)—but with XIV—it is a built-in, free of charge feature that is included with XIV licensing.

Once the data was moved, XIV’s host attachment kit severed old communication paths and created new paths to the new storage array. This process occurred with no storage loss at the host level and allowed our customer to rebalance storage between their XIVs in real time.

The entire migration was completed in 28 days—an impressive timeline considering storage migrations typically take months, not weeks.

IBM XIV Gen 3 storage system is a powerful solution for organizations that need to be operational 24/7 and can’t afford any downtime. This customer was beyond impressed with the power of XIV and now experiences:

  • 3x the storage capacity
  • 485 TB packed into a single floor tile
  • a load-balanced storage array



  • IBM XIV Storage (Gen3)
  • IBM Hyper-Scale
  • Cisco Nexus SAN fabric


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