Target Virtualizes Operations Systems With Microsoft
Target Corp. has switched its business-critical workloads for all its retail stores – including inventory, point-of-sale, supply-chain management, asset protection, and in-store digital media – to 15,000 virtual machines to give its IT department greater agility and economies of scale.
The retailer is using Microsoft virtualization and management technologies, on Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V and Microsoft System Center.
“Target’s investment in Hyper-V is a result of the strong technology partnership between our two companies,” said Jeff Mader, VP, Target Technology Services. “With Hyper-V, Target can reduce our stores’ server footprints without sacrificing the mission-critical application performance that contributes to a superior retail experience for our guests.”
Minneapolis, Minn.-based Target Corp. operates 1,755 stores in 49 states and as well as 37 national distribution centers. Earlier this year, it scaled its deployment of Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V to every U.S. store in the chain. As a result, applications, ranging from Microsoft SQL Server 2008 SP1, SharePoint 2007 and Exchange 2007 to third-party, line-of-business software, can now be deployed and managed more quickly, with 8,650 fewer physical servers to maintain, power, and refresh, according to Microsoft.
Target has also implemented the Microsoft System Center management platform to manage and patch more than 300,000 endpoints, ranging from servers and PCs to mobile inventory devices and point-of-sale registers. System Center provides the automation, insight and data aimed at enabling Target guests to quickly find the products they need at the lowest possible cost and check out without delay.
“Target is just one example of the kind of large-scale deployments we’re seeing with Microsoft Hyper-V and Microsoft System Center,” said Brad Anderson, corporate VP, Management and Security division at Microsoft. “Particularly as organizations are contemplating cloud computing, they find comfort in knowing the Microsoft platform can virtualize and manage all kinds of applications — Microsoft’s, a third party’s or home-grown — on a massive scale.”