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Superfast IT Protects profitability for Wilkes Tranter with Arcserve ShadowProtect

A server failure is a potential nightmare for any business. For an accountancy practice such as Wilkes Tranter, if employees are unable to access the applications they need, client services and profitability are at risk. Thanks to Superfast IT and Arcserve ShadowProtect, when one of Wilkes Tranter’s vital servers failed, the firm experienced less than 30 minutes of downtime. With minimal impact on employee productivity, Wilkes Tranter was able to continue to serve its clients, safeguarding satisfaction and profitability.

From IT to cloud, Superfast IT helps its customers establish and manage solutions that are secure, reliable and cost-effective. From its office in Stourbridge, the company works with more than 65 clients across the West Midlands, Worcestershire, Staffordshire and Shropshire.  Superfast IT specialises in IT support, managed cyber security, cloud, backup, Microsoft 365 and connectivity to help business owners simplify IT and gain a better understanding of technology and digitalisation.

The Challenge

Superfast’s customers include Wilkes Tranter, which offers accountancy, audit and tax services to local businesses across multiple industries including construction, manufacturing, retail and service. The company’s 36 employees use their specialist skills to provide clients with first-class services and advice to help them develop and grow their businesses. As an accountancy practice, employees use a wide variety of business applications that are accessed via remote desktops to simplify IT management and updates.

With billing generated from the re-charge of time, Wilkes Tranter cannot afford for its IT systems to be unavailable. “Even an hour’s downtime could impact profitability for the accountancy firm,” confirms James Cash, Managing Director at Superfast IT. “An IT outage would also be hugely frustrating for employees and could affect client satisfaction.”

So when the company’s remote desktop server suffered a hardware failure and employees were unable to access their critical applications, Superfast IT had to act fast to get them back up and running again as quickly as possible.

The Solution

Superfast IT has worked with StorageCraft for more than 10 years to ensure all its clients have reliable backup capabilities. “Arcserve ShadowProtect has been a crucial tool for us for the last 10 years,” explains Cash. “We’ve standardised all our clients on ShadowProtect as it’s so flexible. We can virtualise backup images on the fly, restore to alternative hardware and even use it to resolve issues with laptops, as we can use ShadowProtect to port the operating system to another device while we fix the original.”

In total, Superfast IT protects more than 70 terabytes of data across all its clients with ShadowProtect, taking hourly backups as standard. These backups include two terabytes of data from Wilkes Tranters’ essential accounting applications, tax processing systems, email and file servers. Using ShadowProtect, Superfast IT backs up servers to local storage, then replicates data to its own datacenter as well as a secondary offsite location.

Thanks to these measures, when early one morning Superfast IT received an automated alert that a Wilkes Tranter server was down, it was able to respond quickly. One of Superfast IT’s engineers, Mark Poulding, identified remotely that the RAID card had failed and promptly went onsite to restore services.

“We needed a replacement part before we could repair the server, which would take some time,” he explains. “Using the ShadowProtect backup, however, I was able to virtually boot the server from my laptop and run all the essential systems from there with immediate effect.”

The replacement server part was delivered that afternoon and the server was back up and running later that day.

The Result

Thanks to ShadowProtect and Superfast IT, Wilkes Tranter experienced just 30 minutes of downtime instead of eight hours. Employees were able to continue working without loss of billing hours, and clients were completely unaware of any issues. “Working with Superfast IT and ShadowProtect provides us with confidence that when an IT incident occurs, we can keep serving our clients,” comments James Ellwood, Director at Wilkes Tranter. “It is vital to business continuity.”

The ability to help its clients restore business continuity so quickly is key to Superfast IT’s reputation and competitive advantage. With ShadowProtect, the team has great visibility and control over backups and the replication process across all its clients and can rapidly recover their systems and data should they need to. It is also extremely scalable to meet changing client requirements.

“Arcserve’s MSP subscription model means we can quickly provision and terminate servers when we update client infrastructure,” adds Cash. “We have a great relationship with Arcserve, which we see continuing into the future so we can continue to provide our clients with peace of mind that their critical systems and data are protected.”


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