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PAULADAMSJR
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COPYING HYPER V VIRTUAL SERVERS AND USING FOR FAIL-OVER

All, I have 2 physical host servers running 4 virtual machines, The Primary "SERVER1" runs the 4 production virtuals and the back-up "SERVER2" sits idle with back-up virtuals on it in case SERVER1 ever fails.

It is setup as follows:

Physical Server and all virtuals are running Windows Server 2008 R2
SERVER1: THIS IS THE PRIMARY HOST SERVER / HP DL 580 G5 / 2TB ARRAY / 64 GIG RAM

Running the following virtuals
VIRTUAL 1 = DOMAIN CONTROLLER
VIRTUAL 2 = EXCHANGE SERVER 2007
VIRTUAL 3 = SHAREPOINT 2010 RUNNING W/ SQL 2008
VIRTUAL 4 = RUNNING ANOTHER SHAREPOINT FOR EXTERNAL CLIENTS

What my goal is:

I haver Physical SERVER2 which is identical to SERVER1

I want to be able to backup or copy all 4 virtuals from SERVER1 TO SERVER2 everynight.


Questions:

#1 Will I have to stop the virtuals every time I want to make a back-up

#2 Is there a way to simply do an incremental backup ? The VHD files are huge. All 4 virtuals combined are about 1 tb in size. That's a lot of data to push every night.

# 3 With the Exchange Virtual, because there is SSL information, will that be affected if I copy the VHD from SERVER1 to SERVER 2 ? Should it startup and run fine ?

Thanks !!

PA~
Microsoft Virtual ServerHyper-V

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PAULADAMSJR

8/22/2022 - Mon
Svet Paperov

Generally, a fail-over is done by using clustering with external storage.

First, I don’t think that your approach will work. I’ll explain why but let me first respond to the questions.

#1. No, you don’t need to stop the virtual machines for a backup – all resent backup applications use VSS to take backup copies of open files and running VMs too. However, if you want to just copy the VHD files from one server to another, then yes, you will have to stop the VMs.

#2. Backup software can make incremental backups.

#3. There won’t be an issue with the SSL certificate when moving the VM. It’s in the virtual machine and not on Hyper-V level.

Having said that there is a big problem with the way you want to implement a fail-over – it’s not live. Let’s have a situation where you have taken a backup of all virtual machines during the night and the server crashes several hours letter. If you restore the virtual machines from that backup you will lose the changes between the last backup and the crash time. Moreover, the domain controller keeps track of all changes and if restored in that way you will have issues logging from the member servers and computers.
PAULADAMSJR

ASKER
Spaperov, thank you for your valued input.

I do understand the lapse in data capture at night.

Since SERVER1 has 2 tb of data storage internally, there is no NAS that stores the virtuals. We decided to use internall SAS 10k drives in the name of not losing speed while hosting the virtuals.

So, I guess the question becomes:

How to I get SERVER1 to (in real time) sync with SERVER2. You mentioned clustering....Do I need a NAS/SAN type of setup or can clustering be done in real time from server to server ?
I was always told that clustering needs to involve a NAS/SAN of some sort.

If clustering is posslbe with my current config, can you give breifly explain how it would be done ?

Thanks !!
Svet Paperov

Yes, Hyper-V High-Availability with Windows 2008 requires NAS/SAN cluster and additional software, like SCVMM. More info about Hyper-V 2008 R2 HA can be found in this PDF http://www.dell.com/downloads/global/solutions/Hyper-V_guide%20with_HA%20Cluster_0.2__10_27_11.pdf
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PAULADAMSJR

ASKER
Upgraded to 2012 and that gave me the options to schedule the repliczated VM's Thank You !!