High Availability Data - Server Mirroring

Ok, very high maintenance client, only 25 users, but they are movers and shakers.

When a fileserver started wailing due to a RAID failsafe situation, and a genius decided to immediately start restarting the server over and over, we ended up with a corrupt filesystem, causing several hours of downtime.

I would like to be able to replicate this data, in its live state, onto another server, and have the mappings remain persistent. So that a failover becomes transparent, or almost transparent.

What software would allow me to do this? The file server is 2003 R1 and the target server would also be 2003 R1. I have a feeling that FRS would not be the best choice, but what say you?
DerekleuAsked:
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shankshankConnect With a Mentor Commented:
Use DFS technologies that is included with windows 2003

You can easily replicate with DFS exact volumes, or shares, etc

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shankshankCommented:
see here

http://www.windowsnetworking.com/articles_tutorials/Windows2003-Distributed-File-System.html
http://www.informit.com/articles/article.asp?p=345783&rl=1

Only catch is you need to upgrade to R2

but it will be the perfect solution
automatically replicates between servers

and you can create a script for a failover of the network
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DerekleuAuthor Commented:
Upgrading to r2?

Have they come out with an r2 patch/upgrade? Last I heard that didn't exist.

----------------------------------------------------

It seems regular DFS is what I need to be using. Anyone know of a FAQ, or definitive guide to using DFS? Something that not only tells you what it is supposed to do, but what I can't do, and what its known weaknesses are?
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shankshankCommented:
Noipe

that's the crappy party. You need to buy Windows 2003 again, which comes with R2 (addon)
so you need to buy 2 copies of windwos 2003, upgrade your current installed version with the included r2 cd

then install windows 2003 on a new box, then use r2 cd, then you will be set


hang on for dfs articles
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shankshankCommented:
one side note is that you cannot rely on DFS technology as a backup.
for ex

lets say you setup DFS to replicate immediately to another server

If you make a change on server one, its going to server 2
server 1 delete file = server 2 delete file

my failover is that I am using Backupexec with CPS (continuous backup protection) so as a file gets modified on my file server it gets backup on my backup server. it also backs up changes every hour so i can revert back to what I want. If my file server crashes then I could restore what I have live onto another server ...

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DerekleuAuthor Commented:
You are using a dedicated backup server with disk based CPS, and offloading to tape every hour?

I am thinking of having 2 DC/File servers with DFS, and have one of them back up to tape every night.

High availability has priority over a dedicated backup server in my situation. These guys would rather lose 12 hours work than have the entire office at a standstill for an afternoon.

 I may have a 3rd server be a dedicated Backupexec server at a later time.
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shankshankCommented:
Hello

We are using a dedicated backup server, CPS at every file change to disk, and offloading to tape at night using differential backup.

Yeah setting up 2 DCs with DFS and then  having a tape backup at night would be good.

The only problem I am not sure of is that if setup instantly, as said before, if the server1 data would be deleted, would that result in server2 data being deleted
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DerekleuAuthor Commented:
Ok, I'm going with DFS. My secondary DC is now up.

Here is my situation:

Server 1: DC+file server
Server 2: DC

I would like to have server 2 keep a copy of the files on server 1, and synchronize them as much as possible. If I could get them both under a single DFS root for transparent failover, that would be great.

Is there a step by step that would alllow me to accomplish this?
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