System News
Transamerican Life Canada Success Story
Sun Fire Servers Reduce Batch Run Times by 73 Percent
February 25, 2002,
Volume 48, Issue 4

Transamerica Life Canada, one of Canada's leading life insurance companies, installed a Sun FireTM 4800 Server to boost the performance of mission-critical actuarial applications and keep pace with the fast growth of its business.

The server reduced batch run times by 73 percent. Then they deployed a Sun FireTM 6800 Server for another application in policy administration, increasing the number of SolarisTM Operating Environment (Solaris OE) servers in the organization to nineteen.

Transamerica Life Canada offers Canadian customers a wide range of wealth protection and management solutions including term and tax-sheltered universal life policies and segregated funds. A network of 18,000 independent distributors across Canada supports their distribution capability.

The company's Corporate Actuarial Department has run an APL valuation and analytics application on Sun platforms for many years. When they outgrew their Sun EnterpriseTM 450 Server, they contacted Sun to learn about platforms based on the new UltraSPARCTM III microprocessor.

"Because of the binary compatibility that results from Sun's use of a single operating system for its entire product line, the Solaris OE, we felt that a smooth migration to any new Sun platform was likely," said Boon Chew, Team Leader, Technical Services for Transamerica Life Canada. "Therefore, there was no question in our minds about whether to stick with Sun for our new platform. The only question was technology. Even though we were hitting the limits of the platform in place, we decided to wait and now we are very glad we did."

In July 2001 Transamerica Life Canada became one of the first companies to take delivery of a new Sun Fire 4800 Server with eight 750 MHz processors and eight GB of RAM. Sun installed it quickly, and within two weeks it became fully operational. "Our new Sun Fire 4800 Server running on the Solaris 8 OE is about 3.5 times faster than the old server running the APL application," reported Chew.

Transamerica Life Canada installed a second Sun Fire Server, a two-domain Sun FireTM 6800 Server, for policy administration applications. "Run times were over seven hours before we introduced the Sun Fire 4800 Server, and now they're down to about two," concluded Joe Marko, AVP of the Corporate Actuarial Department for Transamerica Life Canada.

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