Houston Fuel Oil Terminal Company

“I heard about IronEdge from the owner of another business. We handle a lot of our IT internally, but we needed good, knowledgeable IT technicians to help with our major projects. We couldn’t find anyone to support us that really knew what they were doing.

When IronEdge came in, we gave them a project right off the bat. We were migrating to a new domain/email server that required us to touch every desktop on the network. The cutover to the new server was a big concern for us, and we needed it to be completed in one day. IronEdge staffed enough people to make sure everything went smoothly. We all worked from about 7am to 10pm that day, and they had no issue with that. They were completely willing to work as long and hard as they needed to, and they did a great job. Their focus was to make sure that everything was set up and working the way we wanted, and we’ve been working with them ever since.

Teaming up with IronEdge has been a great cost savings for us. Instead of needing to ramp up our internal staff for each large project and then maintain those people on staff when work is slower, we have the IronEdge team come in and take care of the larger projects. And, we always know they’re going to do a great job. I have recommended IronEdge Group to other businesses that need reliable IT support. They’ve been great partners.”

Mickey FrancoInfo Tech Coordinator, Houston Fuel Oil Terminal Company

ManagedIRON Case Study: Houston Fuel Oil Terminal Company


Houston Fuel Oil Terminal Company (HFOTCO), a leading marine terminal for storage of residual fuel oil and crude oil, was reaching the maximum capabilities and “end of life” of their networking software. They needed their services migrated away from their all-in-one service solution, Microsoft’s Small Business Server (SBS), to complete, full blown versions of each service to allow for future growth.

As a major player in one of the largest trading centers for residual oil in the world, many pipeline supplies are reliant on HFOTCO operating efficiently at all times. IronEdge had to meet the demand for 24/7 production and work within the strict operational regulations enforced by Homeland Security.


Key Project Components

    • Comprehensive Migration and Expansion of Production Environment – IronEdge migrated all of HFOTCO’s Servers and Services from a Microsoft Small Business Server to a virtual deployment of each fully deployed service, including Exchange, Active Directory, Terminal Server, Blackberry Server and more.
    • Smooth Transition without Interrupting Regulatory Processes – It was critical that HFOTCO maintain nearly real-time reporting to the regulatory entities for any pipelines being fed throughout the project. HFOTCO must abide by Homeland Security, Federal, and state requirements that are reviewed routinely. It was important that these services remain up and running effectively for the duration of the migration project.
    • Cost Effective and Reliable Server Solutions – IronEdge was able to work within HFOTCO’s budget by saving money in the server design for this particular migration. The IronEdge team was able to replace six servers with just one server by utilizing current virtualization technologies. By utilizing SD cards in the servers instead of expensive, power-hungry hard drives, the servers consume less power and have a faster reboot process during maintenance windows. Additionally, the heat footprint of the servers was greatly reduced, which was realized in an immediate return on energy consumption by the server room cooling systems.


Proven Solutions

IronEdge provided HFOTCO with a solution that has allowed them to grow and will allow them to continue their growth for the next 3-5 years without limitations on hardware space or functionality. In addition to reducing HFOTCO’s energy consumption and IT costs, IronEdge completed the project quickly, within budget and without Directory Services ever going offline. This migration was seamless to the users – they just had to login as usual.

Client Since:2005

Company Name:Houston Fuel Oil Terminal Company

About Houston Fuel Oil Terminal Company

Houston Fuel Oil Terminal Company (“HFOTCO”) is a leading marine terminal for storage of residual fuel oil and crude oil. The Company owns and operates a world-class, 13.8 million barrels storage terminal, and is the largest provider of residual fuel oil storage in the U.S. Gulf Coast. HFOTCO’s assets are strategically located on a 312-acre footprint at the widest point of the Houston Ship Channel, one of the largest trading centers for residual fuel oil and crude oil in the world. The Company stores, blends, and transports residual and crude oil via pipeline, barge, rail, truck and ship for major oil companies, refiners, carbon black manufacturers, international trading firms and bunker suppliers. HFOTCO’s size, strategic location, diverse customer base, and extensive transportation infrastructure create the most attractive and liquid trading platform for residual fuel oil in North America.

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