I run my own medical practice. The server I purchased in 2004 had a crash 2 mos ago. It cost me 4 days of going back to paper scheduling and charting and halted any billing for that week. It costs $1200 dollars in a service call over 3 days to get the system and network up again. I do not have an IT staff - it is just me. This has worked for me so far. My office has 22 computers and now 2 servers ( included the recently purchased one). I run SBS 2003 but it cannot play nice and share its active directory control with any other SBS on the network. The second server has SBS 2003 on it also. I need a fail over server to support immediate recovery of business critical software that day - that hour a crash occurs. My tape backup system is inadequate in this respect.
I considered DoubleTake software but it requires server 2003 standard to be present on at least one server for their software to work - and two licenses $1800.00 for their failover system to work in a SBS 2003 environment.
I considered purchasing an OEM copy of server 2003 standard for around $700.00 for the second server and using RoboCopy windows server utility to maintain data mirroring.
I considered using Acronis sever software to image server drives - this seems to be the best option for what I have and the cheapest. It would seem to allow the network and server full recovery in minutes. However I do not know if real time backups are being made ???
My last consideration is to use the second SBS server as a stand alone duplicate overlapping network in the office with unique IP and subnet addresses and let the router handle communications via One to One Network address translation or through use of Virtual LANs within the Cisco router
I really just want a fail over server without having to spend much if not any more money - Any suggestions / plans from the experts out there ???? I have no experience with acronis nor doubletake software. Please help :-)