Cloud proves winner for MetService

Weather office upgrades to Iconz Versa S2 cloud service

A request from an Australian client in the media sector for faster provision of weather data from New Zealand prompted the MetService to look at options for providing the service via the cloud, and led to a decision by the weather office to upgrade to Iconz’s Versa S2 cloud service.

MetService CIO Alistair Vickers says the client was getting the data via a MetService FTP server in New Zealand and that his predecessor as CIO, Russell Turner, became aware that the delivery mechanism for the data could be improved.

“The decision was made to see if we could go into the cloud,” Vickers says.

The client wanted the data to be delivered from a node that was closer to it than the New Zealand one, so the MetService looked at locally-based cloud providers and, after a selection process involving several, decided to use Iconz’s Versa 2, because it allowed the data to be delivered via Iconz’s Australian datacentre.

“We signed up at the end of 2010, and my tech guys built a virtual machine and tested it, so that the Australian customer could test it in January,” Vickers says.

Versa S2 is delivered via Iconz’s Australian datacentre and was a good option for providing weather data to the Australian client “because we need high bandwidth but not hugely fast disk.

“The client uses data in real-time and doesn’t need super-fast disk pulling data from archives.”

MetService does, however, archive the data for the client, on a MetService storage-area network.

“That option minimises the cost to the customer.”

There is potential for the cloud-based delivery of weather data to be expanded to Asian MetService clients, via Iconz’s Singapore and Kuala Lumpur datacentres, Vickers says.

Versa 2 isn’t the first cloud-based offering MetService has used; it is also an Amazon EC2 user.

MetService is planning another significant cloud-based initiative in the near future, Vickers says.

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