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Proof Point - Millions Served
Jan/Feb 2004    by Liz Tanner

Novell Helps Largest
Restaurant Chain in Brazil
Provide Non-stop Service
to Millions of Customers

McDonald's is the world's leading food service retailer with more than 30,000 restaurants, serving nearly 46 million people each day in over 110 countries. More than 80 percent of McDonald's restaurants around the world are locally owned and operated. In Brazil, the company has 584 restaurants, 43 McCafés, and 638 kiosks scattered across 132 cities, serving more than 1.5 million customers a day.


Serving millions of customers a month is no small task for a food service company whose customers demand the highest quality service and speed. McDonald's Brazil relies on a robust IT infrastructure to keep its operation running without interruption. Even an occasional server outage could cause delays while the IT team restores the server and synchronizes data. Such delays can be particularly bothersome during month-end accounting periods. McDonald's needed a business continuity solution to provide 100 percent uptime for its network resources.

McDonald's also wanted to decrease the amount of time its IT team was spending to give users access to the right applications. Without a desktop management solution, IT personnel had to manually distribute new applications and updates to each workstation, a time-consuming process that prevented them from focusing on more strategic tasks.

Finally, McDonald's needed an identity management solution for its corporate portal to give all its stores and 36,000 employees secure access to information. A single sign-on to the portal would provide employees with a personalized view of information and eliminate multiple passwords to access applications.

novell solution

McDonald's Brazil has been a NetWare user for nearly 15 years. The company wanted to upgrade to Novell NetWare 6 and Novell Cluster Services to improve business continuity, and selected Novell ZENworks for resource management throughout its five corporate offices. The company's new Oracle portal will rely on the information in Novell eDirectory to authenticate users based on their identity.

Novell consultants helped McDonald's deploy NetWare 6 on six servers in five locations. The new Web-based management tools in NetWare 6 have helped McDonald's reduce its network administration time by 10 percent.

"Our goal was to complete the upgrade without any user disruption," said Roberto Galdieri, IT Infrastructure Manager at McDonald's Brazil. "Novell consultants validated our plan and were extremely supportive during implementation to optimize the technology for our particular environment. With their help, we completed a painless migration."

Business Continuity Keeps Business Running and Customers Happy
Six NetWare servers are at the heart of McDonald's IT infrastructure and keeping these servers available at all times is critical. The servers manage an enormous volume of data from more than 580 stores that is stored in an Oracle database, the company's repository for critical administrative information.

"Any failure with our database could paralyze our basic business activities, such as taking orders at the stores or issuing receipts," said Galdieri. "There is never a good time in our business for a server failure. We need the highest level of security and availability to keep our business running and our customers happy."

Novell Cluster Services enables a collection of individual network servers to work together, providing McDonald's with high network availability and manageability. If one network server in the cluster fails, other servers in the cluster automatically take over the failed node's responsibility, guaranteeing uninterrupted system operation.

"With past server failures, it took us several minutes to enable the second server and synchronization consumed a lot of network bandwidth," said Galdieri. "Now when a server goes down, Novell Cluster Services ensures that everything fails over to another server in the cluster and continues to run without delay. Our users never know the difference."

Cluster Services also works in diverse geographical locations so if disaster strikes a primary location, business-critical services automatically failover to a secondary location without interruption.

"Any failure with our database could paralyze our basic business activities, such as taking orders at the stores or issuing receipts. There is never a good time in our business for a server failure. We need the highest level of security and availability to keep our business running and our customers happy."

- Roberto Galdieri,
IT Infrastructure Manager

Efficient Resource Management Frees Up IT Staff
Novell ZENworks provides a resource management solution for McDonald's five corporate offices. Before ZENworks, a small IT staff was spending 30 percent of its time manually installing new applications and managing access rights for each employee. With ZENworks, the IT team can automatically install applications throughout its enterprise from a central location, delivering applications 30 percent faster.

The policy management features in ZENworks help McDonald's customize access to applications depending on an employee's role and responsibilities. The company uses group policies to determine which groups of users have access to specific applications. Instead of creating a new profile for a new user, the IT team can just include the user in the proper group to ensure access to the right resources, decreasing the time to set up a new user by 70 percent.

"We have more than 50 user groups in our system, each one with its own characteristics and tied to company security policies," said Galdieri. ZENworks integrates with the user profiles stored in Novell eDirectory so when users change computers or move offices, they can log on to a new computer and get the same access rights to applications as before.

"With the combination of ZENworks and eDirectory, we can easily ensure that employees have the right access to applications," said Galdieri. "We automatically distribute the software that matches a user's profile, regardless of the computer they are using."

"We save money with Novell ZENworks by not having to work more or hire additional people," said Galdieri. "Our team is more productive and can focus on more strategic parts of our business."

ZENworks has greatly improved the productivity of the IT team, allowing them to provide more support for users, take better care of the data center, test new applications and tackle new projects.

Identity Management for a Secure, Personalized Portal
McDonald's is developing a new Oracle portal to give its employees access to corporate information and resources. The initial rollout will include the company's 500 administrative employees, with plans to expand to all its stores and 36,000 employees.

With Novell eDirectory as the central repository for all user identity information, McDonald's can give employees a single user name and password to access the portal. Users will have secure access to the appropriate resources and applications based on their identity.

Figure 1

"Users always complain about the number of times they have to log in to access different systems," said Galdieri. "A single sign-on will give them quick access to information customized according to their job responsibilities."

McDonald's also uses Novell BorderManager as its firewall. Integrated with Novell eDirectory, Novell BorderManager safeguards network resources by protecting against security threats from outside the company. Novell BorderManager also enables the company to monitor Internet usage and give users access only to approved cotntent, thereby ensuring that users stay productive and do not expose the private network to potentially dangerous Internet conent.

"Novell BorderManager makes it easier to manage our Internet users and prevent malicious attacks against our network," said Galdieri. "Security precautions both within and outside the company are important for us."


After a successful upgrade to NetWare 6, McDonald's utilized Novell Cluster Services to provide 100 percent uptime and non-stop access to network resources. The company can serve both its own employees and more than 1.5 million customers a day without interruption.

"We have complete trust in Novell solutions," said Galdieri. "I can assure our management team that we have a secure, clustered solution so users will never know if a server goes down."

Novell ZENworks has eliminated the need for the IT staff to travel to individual workstations to install or upgrade applications. As a result, the IT team can automatically deliver applications 30 percent faster and set up a new user workstation 70 percent faster—all from a central location.

"We save money with Novell ZENworks by not having to work more or hire additional people," said Galdieri. "Our team is more productive and can focus on more strategic parts of our business."

Novell BorderManager protects the company from both internal and external Internet attacks, safeguarding corporate security. As the company rolls out its new portal, eDirectory will provide the foundation for secure, personalized access, ensuring that users view information according to their roles and responsibilities.

"Novell is an extremely supportive, collaborative partner," said Galdieri. "We couldn't get the same results with any other network or software solution. And with our entire staff trained on Novell solutions, it's easy to keep them updated and we save money on training costs. We are better able to manage and maintain our software infrastructure and to provide the best support for our users." 

  • Business Needs
  • Provide non-stop access to network resources
  • Speed delivery of applications and upgrades to five corporate offices
  • Create secure identity management solution for corporate portal
  • Solution
  • Novell Security and Identity: Novell eDirectory, Novell BorderManager
  • Novell Operating Systems and Services: Novell NetWare 6, Novell Cluster Services, Novell ZENworks
  • Benefits
  • Reduced network administration time by 10 percent
  • Implemented business continuity solution to protect data and provide non-stop access to network resources
  • Increased application delivery speed by 30 percent and time to set up a new user by 70 percent
  • Established foundation to give 36,000 employees secure access to corporate portal based on identity
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