When Asia’s oldest stock exchange looked to improve performance and cut costs in its IT environment, it turned to the powerful capabilities of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server. By deploying a highly virtualized SUSE solution, BSE has gained a stable, flexible platform for running its critical business systems, while slashing operating costs by 50 percent.


Founded in 1875, BSE Ltd. (formerly known as Bombay Stock Exchange Ltd.) is the oldest stock exchange in Asia. With more than 5,000 listed companies and a total market capitalization of more than US$1.32 trillion, BSE ranks as one of India’s leading exchange groups. The organization provides a market for trading in equity, debt instruments, derivatives and mutual funds, and operates a platform for trading in equities of small- and medium-size enterprises.

The Challenge

In the high-stakes world of stock trading, agility and accuracy are of critical importance. With more than 40 million trades executed on a monthly basis, BSE must maintain top performance and round-the- clock availability for the business systems that underpin its trading activity. In an always-on environment, the IT team needs to react quickly when changes are requested, without impacting production—something that BSE was unable to guarantee with its previously inflexible one-application-per-server model.

“Our IT infrastructure has to be extremely dynamic in nature,” said Kersi Tavadia, CIO, BSE. “Almost every day, we receive requests for enhancements to existing IT applications. This was extremely challenging with our old computing environment, as every change had to be made while keeping in mind the impact on our integrated IT systems.”

As BSE continued to expand its trading operations, the number of physical servers grew steadily, resulting in rising costs and complexity.

“Deploying SUSE Linux
Enterprise Server and moving to a virtualized environment has reduced our operational costs by an estimated 50 percent, which is a huge saving.”

SUSE Solution

BSE determined that moving to a virtualized environment would help it to tackle these challenges and improve flexibility without sacrificing performance or availability. The next step was to find a new server operating system capable of supporting a broad range of virtualization technologies, for maximum agility.

The organization quickly honed in on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server—a robust operating system based on an affordable open-source foundation. The company embarked on a project to deploy SUSE Linux Enterprise Server across its core business systems, which include ERP solutions, databases, email systems and development environments.

BSE runs SUSE Linux Enterprise Server on a mix of HP, DELL and IBM servers. As the operating system is configured for interoperability with a wide range of hardware platforms, it enables BSE to maximize the value of these existing computing resources. The organization has taken advantage of the solution’s built-in Xen virtualization technology to provision 24 virtual servers on seven physical machines, and plans to gradually migrate to a fully virtualized infrastructure.

As BSE runs a wide variety of Windows applications, it has migrated a number of its Windows operating systems to the virtualized SUSE Linux Enterprise Server environment using the SUSE Linux Enterprise Virtual Machine Driver Pack. This approach delivers exceptional performance for virtualized Windows applications and protects the value of BSE’s existing software investments, all while maximizing the efficiency of its IT systems.

The Results

By selecting SUSE Linux Enterprise Server to support its mix of physical and virtual computing systems, BSE has significantly boosted its business agility. The ability to adapt more quickly to changing demands by deploying virtual servers allows the IT team to introduce changes or add new applications as needed, while maintaining high levels of availability.

The new solution has delivered impressive cost savings. BSE been able to reduce operating and maintenance expenses by consolidating its hardware infrastructure and has also saved on licensing costs, thanks to the unlimited virtualization policy of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server.

“Deploying SUSE Linux Enterprise Server and moving to a virtualized environment has reduced our operational costs by an estimated 50 percent, which is a huge saving,” said Kersi Tavadia. “It also is a robust platform for handling the high number of transactions that a stock exchange needs to go through, and helps us to ensure more efficient operations and better levels of service.”