Installing CAS array

FundFire
FundFire used Ask the Experts™
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I have about 200 user on Exchange 2010.  I have one CAS box.  I want to install new CAS server and setup CAS array.  I understand I need to install NLB on both of my CAS servers.  My question are:

1- Will I need to reboot my current CAS server?
2- is there a down time expected?
3- How should I plan this so it has minimal impact to users?
4- How should I roll out the new CAS array after I built it to all Outlook users?

Thanks
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Most Valuable Expert 2014
Commented:
First - you do not have to use WNLB to use a CAS array. They are completely independent of each other and I would suggest that you deploy the CAS Array right now, so that clients start to pick it up.
Second, deploying a CAS Array will have no effect on the users, because they will not use it by default. To get the users on to the CAS Array address you need to repair the Outlook profile once it has been setup. So that means every client needs to be touched. There are no automatic ways to get it implemented.
Third, WNLB sucks. The Exchange product team do not recommend that it is used, and instead you should use a hardware load balancer. Do you have the CAS on a separate server? If so, I would drop the plan you have, put the CAS roles on to the mailbox servers and spend the money on a hardware load balancer instead of additional Exchange and Windows licences.

If you insist on using WNLB, there will be downtime because the network stack needs to be completely reconfigured and most people will fail to get it to work the first time.

Simon.

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Commented:
Well, I am don't have money to go with hardware load balancer and I planning to go with Windows.  I would like to know know installing NLB on the existing CAS server will be OK? Or I will create havoc.

Thanks
Most Valuable Expert 2014

Commented:
If you haven't already bought the Exchange and Windows licence, that is well over the cost of a load balancer. You can also go free with Zen Load Balancer.

WNLB causes a lot of problems, which is why the Exchange product team does not recommend its use.

Simon.

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