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SBS 2008 + TS Server + Hyper-V

Posted on 2010-09-13
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Hi Guys
Here is a nice one for you.
I have a new client running 1x SBS 2003 server and 2x Terminal Server 2003 (one is supposed to be for redundancy but is apparently not working).
Here is where I come in. They want to run SBS 2008 and Terminal Server 2008 (With redundancy, i.e. second server) and I am charged with either upgrade their current old hardware and do an in place upgrade of current SBS and TS operating systems. Hope they don’t want to go that way.
My other option is to blow hardware and all away and setup fresh site.

What do you recommend is the best and most cost effective way to achieve the above?

Here is my line of thought
Cluster 2x DL380’s – 2x 2.66GHZ CPU, 12GB Ram, 3x 300Gb 10k SAS drives in RAID1 with hot spare. Using Hyper-V I will be able to installed SBS 2008 Premium (Virtual) and Terminal Server 2008 (Virtual) on the Cluster and so make my entire system safe of any kind of hardware failure bar total disaster and will also be able to do load balancing.
A daily backup to external USB drive will be used for of site storage.
Can this be done? Or have you got an even better/valid  idea.
The client is an Accounting firm with 15 users. They use Office suite, all the versions of MYOB and Quickbooks.

Remember I am suppose to save the client money while give them a fail proof system guaranteed. Except who is going to protect the system from the users.... :-) lol

Any help and advice will be greatly appreciated.

Regards
Frank
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Question by:FrankvanRensburg
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DrUltima earned 250 total points
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First of all, make sure your client understands there is no such thing as a fail proof system.  You can mitigate many points of failure, but you cannot make something fail proof.

Your scenario looks like a good one.  The only other option I can think of would be more costly, because it would involve the use of a SAN. :)

Justin
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by:FrankvanRensburg
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Indeed I looked at the SAM's and stopped when the $ started mounting. I also looked at a blade system but also to expensive.
I was also looking at 2x server and a program called double take that takes live snaps of the two servers and acts as a failover, but i do not know the software well and cannot stake my head on it.
Come on lads I am sure half of us have these issues. Any other idea's that will not blow out the costs for a 15 user site..
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by:Kini pradeep
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The SBS 2003 - 2008 would be a migration process, and this can be achieved easily enough with the migration wizard in 2008. comming to the question of building redundancy, i presume you plan to have a cluster of two server ( 2 node Hyper-V cluster ) and host the sbs 2008 and windows 2008 TS, such that if there is a Hardwrae failure then the virtual instances failover onto the second hardware.

This is a good idea however i see a couple of addition requirements.

1. Need for a shared storage ( iscsi or fiber channel) since for failover the VHD should be on a storage - This might possibly turn to be quite expensive.

This setup will only build redundancy only at the hardware level if there are any OS level failures or application level the Hyper-v cluster will not be of much help.

Here is my take on the scenario:

small business server, cannot have a cluster or high availability solution at the OS or application ( wss/ Exchange/ sql) level you may cluster it on Hyper-v cluster which will address any hardware level failures only. however you may build redundancy for the active directory by introducing an additional domain controller, such that if the SBS server fails , users would still be able to login.

comming to terminal servers, you may have a network load balanced terminal servers for redundancy using windows load balancer.

There is always a cost to be paid for higher availability. if its a 15 user site then the cost of storage (SAN) will not be viable
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by:simonlimon
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Have you taken in account the possibility of  an additional domain controller. Because by default in SBS you have one, and if that one stops, nobody can authenticate anywhere.

Also, will you be using roaming profiles for TS? Where will the files be stored? If not,  how will you achieve that users always get the same profiles loaded?
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by:FrankvanRensburg
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I didn't think that SBS aloe 2x dc's on the same network.
HyperV sounded good, but like all of you say. SAM is too expensive.
Someone gave me another idea. I have not personally tested it but this person is currently supporting a site like this.
His got
1x Sbs Server 2008 prem
1x TS Server
1x DoubleTake Server

apparently this
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by:FrankvanRensburg
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I didn't think that SBS aloe 2x dc's on the same network.
HyperV sounded good, but like all of you say. SAM is too expensive.
Someone gave me another idea. I have not personally tested it but this person is currently supporting a site like this.
His got
1x Sbs Server 2008 prem
1x TS Server
1x DoubleTake Server

 He tells me that the doubletake server makes a bit level image of all the systems and acts as a failover in case of hardware or software failure automatically!!!

Does anyone know double take? Because if it works I will be able to save the client a fortune. The only thing extra would be to add a tape backup for off-site storage and backup the lot daily.
Guys if this works it could be a solution for all you other poor IT pros working under severe budget restraints and is still expected to whip up a beauty of a network.
Please anyone with DoubleTake experience, I would like to hear from you.
To all the other lads that replied thank man. Good insight so far. Let's see how far we got with this
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by:simonlimon
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You can have multiple DC's in a SBS environment. You can't have multiple SBS servers and forests.

I haven't really heard of double take. But I'm sure there are viable alternatives. Maybe SBS even supports DFSR?
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by:Kini pradeep
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SBS 2003 did not support DFS root, however it can host file shares ( target), not sure whether the same applies to 2008. I have checked double take "availability" datasheet. it supports both VMware & Hyper-V and it does mention from any type of a storage ( I guess this includes normal disks as well ).

havent tested it out as of now so cannot comment on it. doubletake also has highavailability solution for sbs, its an appliance from Heroware
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by:Kini pradeep
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Frank: I would recommend checking with a doubletake sales rep/ support engineer whether it would support the scenario that you are looking for, it would also give you a ballpark figure for the cost of this solution.
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by:Kini pradeep
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Frank: I would recommend checking with a doubletake sales rep/ support engineer whether it would support the scenario that you are looking for, it would also give you a ballpark figure for the cost of this solution.
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by:FrankvanRensburg
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Spoke to a Double Take rep and it all sounds good in theory but what about practical. I have had some interesting situations with software like this promising but not delivering. I am going to setup a workshop and do some nasty things to a server and see if it works. If you are interested in the outcome let me know.
 
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by:Kini pradeep
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I sure would be interested to find whether its

1. viable ( cost)
2. reliable ( Failover mechanism)

Please do let me know the results
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by:FrankvanRensburg
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No Problem, not sure how to get hold of you.
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by:DrUltima
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Just post back to this Question, and everyone who is monitoring it will get the email.
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by:FrankvanRensburg
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Ok stand by
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by:Glen Knight
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This question has been classified as abandoned and is being closed as part of the Cleanup Program. See my comment at the end of the question for more details.
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