Best practice Network setup question

Posted on 2011-05-09
Last Modified: 2012-05-11
I support smaller networks. I usually have 1 server which acts as a Domain server, DNS server, and a DHCP server. I realized that if this machine is off line for some reason, we cannot even get out to the internet, much less get to other machines.

Without putting in another machine (although I may have to) is there a way that we might solve this bottleneck problem? I thought my router might play the DHCP role. Not sure what to do with DNS role, though.

Thanks for any suggestions.
Question by:sfaexpert
    LVL 95

    Accepted Solution

    You could use another system with a DNS server that accepts Dynamic Updates (hardly ideal), but the only way to provide redundancy for authentication is to have a backup DC.

    If the networks you support are really small (10 or fewer users), I would suggest installing Windows Server 2008 R2 Foundation Edition - that has a MAXIMUM of 15 users in the entire domain but no need for CALs.  (I say 10 when the max is 15 to allow growth over time - once you get past that 15 user mark, the license is garbage).

    DNS is VITAL to an Active Directory domain as it tells the clients where things are.  So while you COULD move DHCP to another system, you CANNOT use ISP or other third party DNS services unless delays in logins and occasional error messages that the client can't find a server resource are acceptable to you.

    Adding a second server you could setup DFS (to replicate files), setup split-scope DHCP (to provide redundancy in DHCP - provided you're not using SBS), and setup a second DC/DNS server to provide redundancy there.

    Bottom line, if you need (or your client needs) redundancy, then it costs money... how "smooth" and "redundant" you want to be dictates how much money it costs.  (You could also purchase BDR devices like those from HeroWare authorized resellers) and have a system in place that "takes over" and virtualizes your failed server in a few minutes.
    LVL 67

    Expert Comment

    This question has been classified as abandoned and is closed as part of the Cleanup Program. See the recommendation for more details.

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