District reclaims server space with file compression software

The Antelope Valley Union High School District has reclaimed 30 to 40 percent of its primary storage -- previously consumed by Microsoft Office and JPEG files -- by adopting a file optimization solution that reduces the school district’s file bloat while generating reports detailing how storage was being used and the immediate savings obtained by optimizing files.

The Antelope Valley Union High School District covers an area from the Los Angeles Forest in the south, to the Kern county line in the north, and from the Ventura/Kern county lines in the west, to the San Bernardino county line in the east. Over 23,600 high school students are educated in eight comprehensive and four continuation high schools, with additional educational opportunities offered by a Regional Occupation Program (ROP) and Adult Education campuses.

The district manages twelve file servers across its fifteen locations and it was finding that substantial server space was consumed by large Microsoft Office and JPEG files. Teachers and students were creating more and more documents, presentations and images every day. As a result, the data growth was increasing storage management requirements and affecting the school district’s backup window.

“Backups were taking up to six hours at some of our sites,” said Dan Stewart, director of information systems, Antelope Valley Union High School District. “Even with hardware being upgraded every two years, we were unable to keep up with demand. We knew that if we continued down the same path, we might lose control of our data growth.”

That’s when the district began searching for new ways to reclaim storage, reduce backup windows and keep data growth in check. Antelope initially deployed ten licenses of Neuxpower’s NXPowerLite Desktop Edition to batch and optimize files on their servers. Once NXPowerLite for File Servers became available, the district quickly implemented the system. The software continues to run transparently on district servers on a monthly basis, optimizing any new files and reporting on current storage usage to keep data growth in check.

“NXPowerLite gives us smaller, optimized files that not only save on storage space, but are more usable and easier to email than the originals,” said Stewart. “We have also been very happy with the visual quality of the optimized files and our users have been unable to tell the difference between the original and the optimized version.”