SQL HA & ADFS

I need to configure ADFS as a high-availability solution.

Am I correct in thinking that you need at least SQL Server Standard Edition (we're looking at SQL 2012) installed on both servers so that database mirroring can be configured, i.e. I can't use SQL Express at all on either side)?

I also understand that I need to configure NLB to support the failover. Would this be completed automated?

How long roughly would this take to setup a couple of SQL servers in this configuration and is there any step-through guides available?
HypervizorAsked:
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Barry CunneyCommented:
Hi Hypervizor,
Yes you need at least SQL Server 2012 Standard Edition for Database Mirroring
http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc645993(v=sql.110).aspx#High_availability

Other versions such as Express can be used as just a Witness server in a Database Mirroring set up.
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HypervizorAuthor Commented:
Thanks.

What's the purpose of a witness server?
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Barry CunneyCommented:
When SQL Server Database Mirroring is implemented in 'high safety' mode the role of the Witness server is to enable the Mirror server to recognize if automatic failover should be initiated

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms175191.aspx
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HypervizorAuthor Commented:
So does that mean for HA that each SQL server needs to be a witness server so that it recognises if its partner becomes unavailable or are you saying it has to be another server which is looking at both?
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Barry CunneyCommented:
Hi HyperVizor,
In Database Mirroring in 'high safety' mode, yes, the Witness server is a separate SQL Server instance, separate from the Principal and the Mirror servers
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HypervizorAuthor Commented:
OK, all we have is a small implementation of SQL which ADFS uses. If we then have to create two witness servers, that's just not going to be cost-effective.
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Microsoft SQL Server

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