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Meeting Evolving Business Needs with Advanced Solutions

By Brad Impey, CTO, SunGard

Meeting Evolving Business Needs with Advanced Solutions

Brad Impey, CTO, SunGard

Evaluating Microsoft Servers Constantly

In an environment that is made up of high trading volumes and the growing prevalence of automated electronic trading where  microseconds count—performance is key. Firms need to reliably process large numbers of transactions and execute each with the lowest possible latency (end-to-end transaction time). 

"Choosing the right database platform can have a big impact on not only performance but also the ability of a vendor to evolve its solutions"

The need to achieve this in a cost effective way has led SunGard to  focus its technical partnerships with those vendors and platform providers that deliver the most value. SunGard’s  relationship with Microsoft dates back more than a decade Meeting Evolving Business Needs with Advanced Solutions and, in  working closely with them as a development partner, we have successfully stayed at the forefront in terms of performance,  functionality and the low cost of ownership that is important to our customers. 

We constantly evaluate upcoming releases of  the Microsoft server platform and Microsoft SQL Server and with the input from Microsoft’s team of experts we are able to  tune our software to take full advantage of new features and performance improvements. 

With a mission critical trading  application such as SunGard Front Arena, an advanced trading platform for financial institutions, system up-time and resilience to failure are critical to our customers. To meet these needs and those of  maximum system performance we regularly conduct deep-dive workshops with Microsoft in a ‘lab-style’ environment to determine  the best configuration in terms of hardware, networking, our software and the Microsoft platform/product stack against  various benchmark requirements. To be successful in our market we need to optimize across the whole system and we rely on  Microsoft to ensure that we get the best out of the whole end-to-end environment.

Leveraging Innovation to Advance Products

Whilst lab benchmarking is indeed valuable we have then been able to take our engagement with Microsoft further by extending  this model out to some of our key customers. With our expert knowledge of our solutions and Microsoft’s expert knowledge of  their platform and how to best to optimize and tune it we have been able to deliver some very impressive performance  improvements and material cost savings.

Like many software solutions the database lies at the heart of our solution. Choosing the right database platform can have a  big impact on not only performance but also the ability of a vendor to evolve its solutions. We have been very impressed by  the innovation Microsoft delivers with each  new release of Microsoft SQL Serverand we have been able to leverage this  innovation to advance our product solutions. We have been particularly pleased by the ease of adoption. The fact that we have been able to incorporate these benefits without major code rewrites or re-architecting is a testament to Microsoft’s  attention to the needs of existing users.