German component manufacturer Würth Elektronik eiSos GmbH & Co. KG (eiSos – emc and inductive Solutions) promises its customers outstanding service. Equally, this company, based in Baden-Württemberg, demands nothing less than the highest standards from its central private cloud – and this naturally includes security. To protect its virtualized servers and desktops, the manufacturer relies on Deep Security from Trend Micro.
"More than you expect!" – this is what Würth Elektronik promises to deliver to its customers. Würth Elektronik is Europe's largest manufacturer of passive electronic and electromechanical components, including EMC components, transformers, EMC shielding materials and LEDs, as well as board-to-board, wire-to-board and input/output connectors.
In this market, which is largely dominated by Japanese manufacturers, the battle for competitive advantage cannot be won on price alone. So how can this German company guarantee its customers an outstanding level of service? The company ensures that all products listed in its catalog are available from stock and samples are delivered within a maximum of 48 hours. In addition, the technical consultants provide design-in support, and ultimately customers can choose between standard and innovative, tailor-made solutions. Würth Elektronik actively sells its products in 50 countries worldwide and guarantees fast delivery thanks to its 13 manufacturing plants around the globe.
The company's goal is to exceed customer expectations and its global staff of 5,000 employees, strive to provide the best possible service in the electronics market. However, without IT to provide top-quality, effective support for business processes, Würth would be unable to deliver innovative developments and short response times. The company ensures that this kind of support is in place by operating a central data center at its HQ in Waldenburg in Baden-Württemberg.
This data center hosts the applications required by all sites and also stores the data in a private cloud. All the employees from Würth's many international subsidiaries access the applications in the central cloud via the Internet. The IT department faces a huge challenge to not only ensure that this access is always stable and consistently performing at optimal levels, but also that the applications are accessible at all times, and that the environment is protected by a high level of security.
Werner Mallon, IT Manager at Würth Elektronik, and his team use VMware ESX for the virtualized environment. They had already used Trend Micro OfficeScan to ensure the security of the physical and virtual application servers and desktops.
"In 2011, we had to revisit the issue of security for these environments as a result of various changes and enhancements in our virtualized server landscape", reports the IT Manager. "As part of this reorganization, we wanted to enhance the OfficeScan solution, which gave us great all-round protection, with security software specifically designed for virtual environments."
The team was searching for a solution that could offer stability and a high level of security, while minimizing administration and avoiding a negative impact on system performance. "OfficeScan continues to be our security software of choice for the physical servers and, as we were already familiar with the high quality standards of Trend Micro products, it was a natural choice to test Trend Micro Deep Security as a possible enhancement," explains the IT expert. Werner Mallon is keen to point out that the team was "not disappointed in our expectations," and adds that no other vendor offers a product with comparable functionality.
Deep Security is designed for virtual environments, and can be seamlessly integrated with the VMware solution. The first product with which it was integrated at Würth was VMware vShield Endpoint API to protect virtual machines from viruses, spyware, Trojan horses, and other malware. A dedicated virtual security appliance communicates with the virtual machines, and no agents are required on the individual VMs for security checks or to monitor active, new and reactivated VMs.
At Würth Elektronik, the Trend Micro solution provides security for the virtualized application servers and desktops, including all administrative data and all network traffic. "We use XenApp servers and XenDesktop virtual desktops provisioned with a central image in the private cloud," Mallon explains. This is where all of the benefits of an agentless architecture can be put to full use. Each new server is provisioned with the central image or cloned and started automatically. In the past, a virus scanner and virus patterns had to exist locally on the machine, which meant that the image had to be updated every day.
The IT Manager emphasizes that Deep Security, with its agentless approach, eliminates the need for this procedure, and, as a result, significantly reduces system load. The continuous high performance and high level of protection when accessing the VMs is a great advantage for the users and the IT department also benefits from using the solution thanks to its stability and the degree to which it has reduced administration workload in the environment. This is brought vividly into perspective by the IT Manager, who points out that: "We now have 90 XenApp servers and 300 XenDesktop virtual desktops to manage. Having to install patches on these on a regular basis would be unthinkable!"
Mallon also highlights the ease with which the security software can be integrated with the vCenter VMware administration platform. This facilitates device administration, for example, as the latest information is always available. When a new device is used, the defense policies can be added automatically, and then immediately included in the scan.
In conclusion, the IT Manager acknowledges that: "Trend Micro Deep Security is the best solution for effective protection of virtual machines, and we plan to expand our use of this software when we extend our server farm."