Zain Jordan Launches ‘The Bunker’ – First of its Kind Data Center in the Arab World

Telecom Operator launches the most secure and technically advanced data center in the region and one of very few globally

Mr. Farah AlJasim, Chief Executive Officer at Zain Jordan

 Zain, the foremost telecom company in Jordan, has announced the launch of ‘The Bunker’ – a TIER III UPTIME, with 99.982% availability, state-of-the-art, military grade design and development, highly modernized, fully redundant power, cooling and communications network data center, situated at the King Hussein Business Park in Amman Jordan. The Bunker, which is the first of its kind in the region and one of very few worldwide, gives local, regional and international organizations the opportunity to host their IT infrastructure, disaster recovery (DR) offices and enhance their ICT business processes. 

The Bunker is another initiative that exemplifies Zain Jordan’s efforts to spearhead digital transformation in the country. The company revolutionized telecommunications in Jordan by introducing GSM mobile services in the country and introduced Fourth Generation services “LTE” for the first time in the kingdom.

Companies that have very crucial computational functions and important data to store can really value such a facility that provides the highest levels of security and sustainability. When a company uses The Bunker as their main data center or their disaster recovery (backup) location, it is safer than any other conventional building. Its area measures approximately 4300 sq. mts., located 12 mts. below ground level. Built with the same specifications as a military-grade underground facility, The Bunker is constructed to the highest standards of security and redundancy requirements. It has dedicated rooms protected by high security 2-ton iron doors and 2 metres thick reinforced concrete walls, giving it the capability to withstand natural disasters, missiles and fires. Furthermore, when a disaster strikes, the cooling, power and connectivity systems are redundant and can be sustained for long periods without any outage. The facility has 24/7 onsite security personnel and advanced surveillance cameras security systems (CCTVs). 

Mr. Fahad AlJasim, Chief Executive Officer at Zain Jordan says, “We see this as a turning point and a milestone in Zain’s journey to be the most advanced telecom operator, to meet the long-term aspirations of our partners, and to help them with a range of services that are at the core of their business, contributing to their aspirations for further success in their organization.”

The technological advancements of IoT, Big Data Analytics and Cloud Services, require substantial computing power, resilient networks and, most importantly, security. Nevertheless, conventional data centers are not disaster proof and provide a mediocre security level. The value proposition of The Bunker is that it provides a colocation space as well as a designed cloud, heavily protected underground and powered by Zain’s resilient network. Companies can avoid large TCOs of building data centers and alternatively adopt an OPEX model through yearly payments. The facility’s location in the heart of Amman is very convenient to IT staff of any company to reach The Bunker where their servers are hosted. 

The Bunker is not just a data center. Other than its variety of colocation options, it consists of various DR offices. Customers can rent dedicated or shared offices as well as ‘hot seats’ which can serve as business continuity units in cases of disasters or day to day activities related to their data center. These spaces span from 20 sq. mts. to 100 sq. mts. and can cater to various customer needs. 

The Bunker hosts a NOC (Network Operation Center) to monitor and protect data center related infrastructure (UPS, generators, firewalls, switches, chillers, etc). It also hosts a SOC (Security Operations Center) to monitor and protect colocation customers and our existing cloud infrastructure, cyber security threats and other preventive operations. 

The facility is Uptime Tier III certified. This certification is only given to data centers that are secure and provide cooling, power and connection redundancy to the users of the facility to ensure continuity of service. 

Zaid Jordan’s Chief Operating Officer, Mr. Yousef Abu Mutawe concludes, “Zain has transformed from providing services to individuals to becoming a leader in providing services to the business sector. We are extremely proud to introduce the Zain Regional Center for Data Storage, Information and Disaster Recovery (The Bunker) which is the first of its kind in the Arab world. We will continue to expand and enhance our ICT portfolio and introduce innovation to the market.”

Desktop as a Service (DaaS) – Transforming the Digital Workspace

By: Paulo Pereira, Director, Systems Engineering – Emerging Markets and Eastern Europe at Nutanix

Companies of all sizes are turning to desktop as a service (DaaS) solutions to satisfy their digital workspace needs. Traditional desktops and laptops are costly and difficult to manage, and they pose significant security challenges. Virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) replaces traditional systems with virtual ones powered from your datacenter. Many enterprises have successful VDI deployments, but are looking for options that extend their organization into cloud and reduce management overhead. DaaS overcomes the challenges of traditional desktop and laptop systems and can serve as a platform to deliver VDI from clouds. 

For companies undergoing digital transformation, DaaS is a great way to empower both your end users and your IT teams. End users benefit because they have greater flexibility to work from anywhere, on any device, and collaborate more easily with co-workers, partners, and suppliers. IT teams benefit because DaaS can simplify VDI integration and delivery while making it easy to add new services to an Enterprise’s digital workspace whenever and wherever you need them at the speed of the business.

Top Ten Reasons to Choose DaaS

Reason 1: Eliminate Desktop and Laptop Challenges

Managing and supporting a large number of desktop and laptop workstations with locally installed software is a challenge for companies of all sizes. Employees come and go regularly, and appropriate devices have to be supplied and retrieved. Keeping close tabs on desktops and laptops, often across numerous physical locations, is difficult, time consuming, and expensive. An even bigger concern for most companies is security risks created by physical computing devices with data stored locally.

DaaS addresses these challenges by moving all the heavy lifting into an enterprise or cloud datacentre:

  • User applications no longer need to be installed or run locally on each device.
  • Company data remains in your datacenter or the cloud where it is more secure. 
  • If a physical device fails, the user can simply switch to a different device and pick up where they left off.

Reason 2: Remove the Expertise Barrier

For many companies, running VDI in-house is subject to operational, performance, and scaling constraints due to a lack of expertise and experience. Smart companies increasingly view DaaS as an elastic complement to existing VDI deployments or an opportunity for continued growth in VDI in hybrid cloud. DaaS reduces or eliminates VDI management challenges, enabling IT teams to focus on delivering services to businesses and end-users — and satisfying digital transformation goals.

Reason 3: Focus on Strategy Not Tactics

DaaS is an important part of your digital transformation strategy, significantly reducing the IT effort required to support end users and freeing your team to focus on business outcomes rather than IT outcomes. DaaS makes it possible to continuously integrate and continuously deliver emerging technologies. DaaS also allows you to quickly support projects that require a fast ramp up, without exposing your company’s network and intellectual property. In many industries, mergers and acquisitions are a fact of life. DaaS can help you accelerate onboarding of new employees during acquisitions and grant them immediate access to company applications, data, and services. 

Reason 4: Overcome Geographic Limitations

DaaS offers a great solution to address digital workspace needs across disparate geographies. With the right DaaS solution, employees can work from almost anywhere that has an internet connection and receive good performance. If users in different locations need to collaborate electronically, DaaS solutions can facilitate collaboration.

Reason 5: Enable Bring-YourOwn-Device

Adopting a BYOD policy, as many companies are doing, makes device management even more intractable. With DaaS, your company’s important applications run in your provider’s infrastructure services, safely isolated from other activity on user devices. Users gain access to applications and data only after proper authentication. And because no data is stored locally on the device, there’s no risk of compromise if the device is lost.

Reason 6: Soar into the Cloud

DaaS provides an platform for Enterprises to understand and consume cloud services without having to learn new technology terminologies. DaaS also accelerates the cloud learning maturity in an organization because they can focus on application service integration and delivery without worrying about tech debt and tech inertia.

Reason 7: Pay Only What You Use

The ability to pay as you go—and pay only for what you use—is a hallmark of IT success in the digital age. DaaS simplifies your operations, reduces your per user costs, and makes perfect sense for organizations in the midst of digital transformation. DaaS reinforces a subscription based consumption model that meters on actual usage.

Reason 8: Simplify Scaling

The worst thing that can happen to new employees is to have them sit idle waiting for the computing resources they need to do their jobs. But planning for resource needs and scaling infrastructure—whether physical systems or VDI—to keep up with the needs of a dynamic enterprise is hard. DaaS provides immediate scalability to simplify the planning process and address unforeseen needs. You can provision new desktops as needed and release them just as quickly.

Reason 9: Maintain Full Control

A common concern that many enterprises have when it comes to DaaS is loss of control, but DaaS and BYOD don’t necessarily mean that you lose control over your environment. In fact, you may even increase control. DaaS gives you both greater visibility and increased cost control. Depending on your DaaS provider, you can quickly and easily grant (or remove) access to applications and data at a granular level. You can control access to data and prevent employees from making local data copies or writing data to insecure devices. Employees can also access specialized resources like GPUs on an as-needed basis.

Reason 10: Step Up Security

DaaS eliminates the risks that result from sensitive data stored on user devices. Data remains secure in a datacenter, subject to your full control and established governance. DaaS providers take security seriously and offer a variety of advanced authentication and other security capabilities.