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Network upgrade to Hyper-V with live migration, please assist...

Hello everybody,

We're planning to upgrade our current network to Microsoft server 2008 with Windows 7 clients. Currently we have two SBS2k3 servers and 8 XP clients.

My plan so far is this:

We might buy a SonicWall TZ100 and connect our two internet modems to it, so we create a redundant connection to the internet. The SonicWall will be connected to our Cisco switch.

Our two physical servers are also connected to the Cisco switch, each in one of the two (1Gbps)ports. All Windows 7 clients are connected to the other ports (100Mbps) on the switch.

On the servers we install Microsoft Hyper-V R2.

So far the plan.

What I want is to run three virtual pc's (one with data, one with exchange, antivirus, antispam and one as application server) with Microsoft Server 2008 Enterprise R2 (we allready have the license through the Microsoft-MAPS program) on the servers. The two physical servers are needed both for load-balancing and (more important) redundancy. We require minimum downtime.

We do not have the budget to buy a SAN solution and store the virtual pc's on it. Therefor I need some other (far cheaper) solution. I found some information on the internet about software to create a mirrored volume on multiple servers. However I did not manage to find an affordable solution that supports live migration with the hardware/software mentioned above. It seems that a NAS is not supported (yet?) with live-migration.

A topic on a random forum I ran into by google-ing (I forgot the url) mentioned a software solution offered by Norton that would suit our needs. That would be great, since I can obtain internal-use licenses of Norton. However on their website I can't find a product that seems to do what I need.

Can someone please point me in the right direction? Ofcourse comments on the whole plan are welcome as well! Since our current network has some serious problems, help with this plan asap would be very appreciated.

Thank you in advance.

3 Solutions
For hyper-v live migration you need to setup a cluster and have shared storage so thats not possible.

Norton has software which lets you take backup snapshots of a server every 15 mins and place copies on another server but the copies then need converted to a VM for use.
Doubletake will do what you are looking to have mirrored VM but it does cost.
Mirosoft DPM will also do what you want depends how much down time you can live with


A1237Author Commented:
Thank you for your post.

If I understand the information from Microsoft correctly, i can't install System Center Data Protection Manager (DPM) on my Microsoft Hyper-V R2 installations. It requires a full version of server 2008 and I don't want to install that on the physical machine (more systemload, not enough available licenses).

In the Q&A of Hyper-V R2 is this:

Q.  What types of physical storage does Microsoft Hyper-V Server support?
A.  Hyper-V offers flexible storage support such as:
    *Direct Attach Storage (DAS): SATA, eSATA, PATA, SAS, SCSI, USB, FIrewire
    *Storage Area Networks (SANs): iSCSI, Fiber Channel, SAS

So I might advise something like this (although I doubt if the budget allows it):


That should be a better solution then software like Doubletake and I doubt if it's more expensive...
A1237Author Commented:
Or model


(is even cheaper and we have some spare harddisks)
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A1237Author Commented:
I have green light to use the model RNDU4000. Can someone please confirm that this is a good solution for our needs?
You can use iSCSI targets to setup a cluster, and a NAS or another server will suffice, if does not have to be a SAN.

Check out the following for more information:

Hyper-V: Using Live Migration with Cluster Shared Volumes in Windows Server 2008 R2

Windows Server 2008 R2 & Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2 - Hyper-V Live Migration Overview & Architecture

And the RNDU4000 should work because it does support iSCSI and can be an iSCSI target. You're going to want to upgrade your switch though. You'll need more then two gigabit ports available to make this work.
Greg HejlPrincipal ConsultantCommented:
live migration in such a small environment is a bit of overkill.
the purpose of live migration is to distribute load and making configuration changes in a large environment.  
to provide uninterrupted services use dfsr, load balancing, and cluster services.  you can't live migrate clustered services.
to effectively run a hyper-v environment you must have a DC available at all times

are you installing sbs2008 to provide services?

Or will you be separating services?  DC, Fileserver, webserver, mail, backup?

for vhd's - do not use dynamic for VM OS and database applications

A1237Author Commented:
Thank you for your comments!

@MSFT_NET_SEE: I will place a 5 port gigabit switch behind one of the gigabit ports of the current switch (to create a 1Gbps connection to the RNDU4000). If that causes slowness in the future then we might replace the whole switch.

@Greg_Hejl: As I mentioned in my earlier post, I am planning to run three virtual machines for the services (Microsoft Server 2008 Enterprise R2).

We decided to go for the live migration features to prevent downtime of the applications we run through terminal services.
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