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Infrastructure upgrade now live! – Hurrah

by on October 26, 2009

Hurrah we’re live, if everything looks and works the same as it did on Friday we’ve been successful.

The idea of this stage of our biggest I.T change since we launched in 2002 was not to rock your world but to stabilise ours.

Many months of work between the Portal team and our technical partners IBM, Adobe and others has delivered a new technical infrastructure (Hardware and Software platform) and hosting environment for the Portal.

The service embraces newer, greener, technologies to deliver scalable and resilient services that will provide greater flexibility to meet future opportunities in support of the e-Planning agenda and futures changes and upgrades to Portal services. We anticipate saving more than 30% on power consumption alone.

The new service also paves the way for application software upgrades and enhanced content management tools to improve the presentation of information to Portal users.
The countdown to Portal 2.0 begins now….

Thanks to everybody involved.

If you want to know all the techie stuff

Under a Infrastructure Refreshment strategy, the Planning Portal solution will be implementing a hosting solution using virtual images for each of its environments (Production, Pre Production and Test) across two separate IBM Blade H Chassis.
The BladeCenters contains blades to support the Portal environments with each environment isolated from the others using virtual firewalls. Additionally spare capacity is included to remove any future procurement lead time for hosting new virtual images.

VMWare Infrastructure Enterprise, is being used to provide the virtual images to execute through its VMWare HA component, that allows an image of a core Portal component to be restarted on a different blade in event of failure and the ability to share each of thee blades between environments.

The IT architecture is primarily based on open standards— HTTP(s) front end connection protocol, TCP/IP networking, J2EE based software and middleware components, user interface built upon XHTML, CSS and Javascript technologies, XML based Web Services (where appropriate) including SOAP and WSDL for interface to downstream current systems and XML based form technology.

The Middleware components comprise:
• IBM Websphere Application and Portal Server version 6.1;
• IBM DB2 Universal Database Enterprise Server Version 9.5;
• Adobe LiveCycle Forms Version 8.0

Content is being managed through IBM Lotus Web Content Management System to allow Editorial Teams to create, approve, deploy (publish) and remove content. All content is based on pre-defined templates.

  1. iamadonut permalink


    I’m sure this will be an improvement for customers. However, what some of your stakeholders now have is a whole load of broken deep links to the portal. That’s not a nice prospect when we’re about to undergo our annual SOCITM annual survey.

    A warning would have been appreciated.

    web content manager
    North Devon Council

  2. PortalDirector permalink

    Hi Pete,
    I’m really sorry if this has inconvenienced you.
    We have been trailing this for quite some time on this blog, at meetings and in other comms.
    It is probably the case that most of this comms was aimed at LPA planners rather than the content guys which is clearly something we need to pick up.
    Let me know if we can help in any way.

    • iamadonut permalink


      Thanks. It inconveniences our customers, which a greater concern.

      Sorry, I’ve not come across this blog until tonight. I only heard about the problem through the Twitterati.

      Without being unkind to my planning colleagues, unless you told them “the links will break and you need to get your content guy involved” they wouldn’t realise it was a problem.

      I’ll drop you a line when I get back to work, which won’t be until 9 November. This is important because it makes sense for us to point our customers to the portal for planning advice.


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