How to consolidate AD/Exchange for multiple customers
Posted on 2007-03-29
we would like some advise on a cost effective setup. For you to understand where we're coming from I'll first provide some info on what we want to do.
We want to lease servers to customers. The servers will be running in a NOC and people will mostly connect to a terminal server and do their work there. We are doing this for _small_ businesses. From 1 to like 20-30 employees.
We have special SPLA licenses and such which already put the costs down quite a bit. There's however more we would like to do with our hardware. At the moment we setup a DC/Exchange and a terminal for _every_ customer. These are separated by VLAN's and running in VMWare ESX (so it would be quite easy to add another networkcard and put servers in multiple customer networks).
At this moment we're running a DC and an Exchange and a Terminal for every customer. This means there are customers with only 3 people that have 2 or 3 servers running (depending on whether exchange is installed on the DC or separate). Every instance already consumes so much space/memory and we would like to bring that down, however I'm afraid Exchange and AD just aren't suit for this.
We would like to get more out of 1 exchange instance and AD _WITHOUT_ the customers being able to see anything from each other.
Anyone know of a way to host multiple AD's on one server or to get one exchange server into more AD domains?
Any advise is welcome (including other software/authentication methods, do note most customers also depend on other software like administrative suites which more or less binds us to use windows for the client OS anyways, also note these are small customers, licenses that cost $500 per server aren't interesting, they are if they cost $5 a user a month (more and more companies are starting which licenses based on this idea)). This is an open question (there is no real definitive solution) so points are probably going to be divided under those with nice suggestions/options. Should be interesting tho' :D