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Server upgrade planning advice

Our servers are in need of an upgrade and I am trying to get an idea of what would be a good solution before contacting the so-called expert consultants for their opinions.

I need to figure out
1. How many and what type of server I need
2. wether to go for server 2008 and hyper-v or stick with server 2003 for time being
3. what would be the best setup in regards to server roles and software

Current server setup catering for about 50 client computers detailed below. Consists of 2 x IBM xSeries servers and 1 x IBM pentium 4 desktop

-----------------------------------------------------------
Server1

Hardware
IBM x series 235 8671-7AX
Intel Xeon-A 2800MHz processor
1.5GB RAM

Software
Server 2003 Standard SP2
Exchange 2003 SP2
Practical accounting/enterprise software

Roles
Application
Remote access/VPN
Print
File
Domain Controller
DNS
DHCP

-------------------------------------------------------------
Server2

Hardware
IBM x series 235 8671-7AX
Intel Xeon-A 2800MHz processor
1GB RAM

Software
Server 2003 Standard SP2
Trend Micro Worry Free antivirus server
MapInfo GIS map server

Roles
File
Application

------------------------------------------------------------
Server3
IBM Thinkcentre 8184-B2M (desktop)
Pentium 4 2800MHz
512MB RAM

Software
Server 2003 Standard SP2
Blackberry Professional Server (5 clients)

Roles
Application
-------------------------------------------------------------------------

So that is what we currently have. Obviously I would like to put Blackberry server on an actual server machine and also set up a second domain controller. I also have a copy if ISA Server 2004 that I would like to set up.

As stated above I would like to figure out
1. How many and what type of server I need
2. wether to go for server 2008 and hyper-v or stick with server 2003 for time being
3. what would be the best setup in regards to server roles and software

So what I have been looking at as a possible solution is 2 x HP Proliant DL380 G5 with Server 2008. I could then set up 2 virtual servers on each of these using hyper-v. Maybe set up one of the virtual servers as Server 2003 if necessary. Please also let me know what you think about this possible solution.

Many thanks



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danielrt9
Asked:
danielrt9
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2 Solutions
 
Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
I assume you are looking into this because your existing servers are falling out of warranty, right?  

Because for 50 users, unless they were falling out of warranty, I don't know why you are replacing them.  For 50 users, the hardware is generally excessive.  

If you are looking to consolidate, then I'd suggest two physical servers with one running Hyper-V should be enough... but you should also look into getting EBS - essential business server.
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danielrt9Author Commented:
Thanks for the quick reply.

Yes, servers are well out of warranty and the map server freezes regularly when staff work on it among other things.

I have had a quick look at EBS and looks very promising. I will definately consider this.

Does anyone else have any suggestions?

Thanks
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cuadminCommented:
I have used HP Proliant Server's after upgrading 3 years ago and have been impressed with their reliability and performance. They have extended warranty options you can purchase which you should consider doing.

For a network your size, SBS or EBS would be a good option for you.

If you decide not to go this way, you should look at taking your exchange server off your Domain Controller. It's not best practice to have exchange on a DC in a 'non SBS' environment.
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danielrt9Author Commented:
Thanks for your comments CUADMIN

I had a look wether SBS or EBS would be best suited for us and came accross a very informative video of a presentation by the project managers of both solutions. Worth a look.

http://sbs.seandaniel.com/2008/08/dean-and-bjorn-sbs-vs-ebs-from-wpc.html

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cuadminCommented:
No Problem.

Good luck with your project.
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