How to Build a SAN

Posted on 2004-11-10
Last Modified: 2013-11-15
I have just finished taking a Win2K3 Server & Win2K3 Exchange class.

I am interested in building a 3 server Exch cluster, so that I can test failover.

I have doing some research, and searching ebay for used hardware.

The problem is, I am still not sure what all I need.

Any Suggestions, again I just need the least expensive way to set it up.

Question by:CMILLER
    LVL 6

    Accepted Solution


    iSCSI is what want to use (it is a low cost very high end SAN) work with cluster too.

    iSCSI  run over ethernet (IP - SCSI )  it is suported by most os's

    How it works for windows cleint  is the software call Initiator (free from windows)  allows you to connect to the host (Target) disks. When connected the disk drives act just like local disk drives.

    On the Windows Host Server you Run Target Software to share the disk over ip.

    For The Target software I have been using Wintarget from they have a demo you can down load. It run on windows xp or server 2003.


    Author Comment

    Thanks, I have downloaded and looked over there website.

    Just to understand,


    build a 2003EE svr DC

    build three 2003EE svr w/exch2003 on each

    build a mem 2003EE svr
    ( this server to be used as the shared resource )

    ALL computers are Dell 360 Precision Workstations
    all have 1 each EIDE-100G

    or do I just install this software on each 2003EE svr w/exch2003
    and connect them to the DC

    LVL 6

    Expert Comment

    To set up iSCSI

    You just plug the shared Drives in Shard resource system

    Run the target software, setup each drive you want to use the as iSCSI drive (with Wintarget they must be formated as an iSCSI drive)

    On your two other system run the Initiator and attach the drives to each system. When Attach they Show up as new disk drives formate them or what ever.  Window cluster work fine with them. It will see them as a  share Resource.

    It is a very Easy setup.

    Author Comment

    Thanks, I will try to set it up
    LVL 55

    Expert Comment

    Exchange 2003 on Windows 2003 can be clustered on NAS if you just want to play and aren't worried about performance.

    Author Comment

    andyalder, have you seen this work,

    according to M$ web site it wont work with a nas, besides I dont have one of those either.
    LVL 55

    Expert Comment

    I haven't set it up myself and I don't like NAS but I watched the webcast at a couple of times and it takes away the single point of failure of the quorum drive and lets you put a decent distance between the servers without the cost of fibrechannel or iSCSI TOE cards. Exchange has been supported on NAS for a while now although you wouldn't normally do it for performance reasons. A 2003 server will do for the NAS box so you do do have one of those.

    Author Comment

    yes, how would I set up the 2003 server

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