Modern Middle Manager
Primarily my musings on the practical application of technology and management principles at a financial services company.
Real World Open Source Solutions

Friday, January 03, 2003  

I was reading an article (that I subsequently misplaced) mentioning that open source needs more high-profile corporate projects to demonstrate its acceptance. OK, let me describe our existing major open source project.

Every day between 5,000 to 10,000 wires representating $1 to $2 billion moves across our network. We send notifications to our clients letting them know when a wire has been received as well as reports throughout the day to speed up their balancing process. Because of this our four goals were:

1. Reliability
2. Accuracy
3. Performance
4. Scalability

We use an application service provider to handle the actual Federal Reserve connection. For each wire transaction a file is generated by our ASP. The file is received by a Debian Linux server running ProFTP. Those files are written to a Network Appliance F820 cluster using using Samba. Another Debian server runs several custom Perl scripts, scheduled via cron, that process and manipulate these files, turning them into notifications and reports. Those are sent via e-mail using the Exim SMTP server.

Our solution has been in place for over a year. It has fulfilled our four goals admirably well. We actually started with a Windows 2000-based FTP server but the lack of reliability with its FTP services and Task Scheduler forced us to abandon it within a week. This is the advantage I expect to see with our future projects.

posted by Henry Jenkins | 1/03/2003 08:14:00 PM

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