Success Story

Data highway for the online car market: AutoScout24 relies on optical wavelength multiplexers from MICROSENS

AutoScout24 is Europe's biggest online car market: All kinds of new and used vehicles are traded here. Since 2011, garage services can also be compared and booked on Over 10 million users make use of the platform present in 18 countries to which over 45,000 dealers belong. In its corporate headquarters in Munich, the AutoScout24 experts are continuously working on raising the attractiveness of the portal. But the heart of the company’s IT is located at a secure site on the other side of Munich. To be able to transmit as much data as possible quickly and reliably via the leased dark fiber connection, the company uses the MSP 1000 platform from MICROSENS GmbH & Co. KG.

Information in the fast lane
The success story of the Munich-based company founded in 1998 as MasterCar AG is impressive, the supported brand awareness of AutoScout24 is 95 percent. The subsidiary of the Scout24 Group, to which ImmobilienScout24 [property search platform] also belongs, features over 2.4 million vehicle offers daily, as well as useful information. The AutoScout24 editorial office conducts extensive vehicle tests, reports in the AutoScout24 magazine on current car news, and publishes used car checks. The Scout24 Group was floated on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange in 2015. Continuous innovation forms the basis of this success. And behind the innovation there lies in turn a perfectly functioning IT infrastructure.

Pit stop for IT systems
The AutoScout24 employees access the IT systems in the data centre via a dark fiber connection, the availability of which has to be ensured at all times. Thomas Stapfer, Senior Network Architect at AutoScout24, wanted to exchange and optimise the hardware used. The pre-sales support from MICROSENS strongly impressed the IT expert, he recalls: “We received outstanding explanations of the functionality of the wavelength multiplexers offered and were able to speak with experienced users from other companies. The overall picture soon convinced us”. In addition, the modular structure and the numerous quality features of the MPS 1000 Optical Transport Platform were strong points for the German manufacturer: The exchangeable modules allow the compact chassis to be adapted quickly and easily to new requirements. The software and firmware are developed in Germany and the systems have worked reliably and stably with renowned customers for many years.

On the home straight
At the end of the previous product's lifespan in 2015, firstly one of the redundantly designed dark fiber lines was decommissioned and the MICROSENS platform was installed. The second connection was then migrated, such that there was no downtime at all. Today, AutoScout24 uses both connections in parallel, so if one of the lines were to be interrupted, the other line could take over the complete data traffic. A challenge for Thomas Stapfer was initially to select the suitable SFP transceivers for the respective connections: MICROSENS offers graduated solutions depending on distance. Despite the short distance of AutoScout24's data centre coupling, the attenuation of the line used is so high that the IT team initially tended towards high power transceivers. After consulting with the MICROSENS team, the decision was made for the lower-priced transceivers, which, as proven from practical experience, function smoothly.

Using DWDM (Dense Wavelength Division Multiplex) technology, AutoScout24 transmits via multiple 10G-Ethernet and 8G fiber channels. Since their installation, the four MSP 1000 systems have met all requirements and data transmission runs smoothly without any interruption, as Thomas Stapfer confirms: "It is reassuring to know that the components simply work. We have not had any problems or queries either with the software or with the hardware. Choosing the MICROSENS components was the right decision, both with regard to the security of investment as well as to reliability.

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Transmitting information via fiber optic connections offers numerous benefits. MICROSENS GmbH & Co. KG recognised this very early on. As one of the pioneers, the company has developed and produced high-performance communications and transmission systems in Germany since 1993. Individually matched to the demands of diverse usage areas and embedded in comprehensive concepts for individual sectors. But, above all, close to the customer. Technical challenges from customer projects are incorporated directly into product development. This way, IP-based automation solutions are created for modern buildings, cost-efficient network concepts for the office and workspace, robust and fail-safe solutions for industrial environments, optical transport systems future-oriented wide area networks and efficient coupling of sites and computer centres.