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2008 R2 NLB cluster hosting IIS: SAN configuration?

Posted on 2011-05-06
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2012-05-11
Hello all.

I am working on building a NLB cluster to load balance a few fairly busy websites. Both 2008 R2 boxes are connected via FiberChannel to an EMC AX4 SAN. They share the same logical drive to the SAN (E:) where all of the data for the sites is maintained. We are using the EMC proprietary software PowerPath to allow for both servers to access the same physical drive simultaneously.

The code for the websites is housed on C: which is replicated to each node via DFS if it matters.

The sites themselves do not write to common data. The only data that is written is session based so there shouldnt be any issues with the servers tripping over each other trying to write to the same file.

My question is this: what is the best way to set up the SAN so that both servers can access the necessary data? Is it as simple as connecting both servers to the same logical drive on the SAN where the data is housed? Since the SAN is comparatively small and has a single LUN, DFS replication of the data seems like it would be inefficient.

Your thoughts are appreciated.
Question by:MarlinTechSupport
LVL 56

Accepted Solution

andyalder earned 2000 total points
ID: 35707317
>We are using the EMC proprietary software PowerPath to allow for both servers to access the same physical drive simultaneously.

No, Powerpath is to sort out multiple connections to the LUN, without it you would see the same disk 4 times in disk manager. It isn't clustering software and it doesn't do anything to leverage shared LUNs. Your E: driver is bound to become corrupt pretty quick, it's not a case of writing to the same file but to the same filesystem, since the FAT is stored in RAM rather than instantly committed to disk they'll overwrite each other's files because they don't even know the other server's written them there.

Splitting into 2 LUNs and using DFS is one option (you don't need a SAN of course but you've already got one) or you could buy StorNext from Quantum which is a shared filesystem unlike NTFS.
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Expert Comment

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