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Backup internet line

Posted on 2014-10-27
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Last Modified: 2014-11-12
Hi there, im trying to work out the best options and if there are any options i have not thought of for when you have a backup internet line in place.

If you have a on site exchange server and your main internet line goes down, hopefully your backup internet line kicks in, how would/should things like your DNS/MX/A records/external IP addresses be site up on the domain name to allow for email to still be able to hit your exchange server on the backup IP address if your main line and main IP address are down?

I guess this would also apply to if users connect to the server with a VPN

Thanks
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Question by:David
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by:David
ID: 40406538
In the case im thinking of, the backup line will not be active until the main line is down,
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by:Andy M
Andy M earned 250 total points
ID: 40406549
Regarding Exchange one method would be to setup two MX records/host records (A - main line and B - secondary line). You would have MX record A with the lowest preference (i.e. 10) and record B with a higher preference (i.e. 90). In the event the main line (A) went down other email servers would then try the secondary line (B) as they wouldn't get a response on the main line.

VPN is a bit of a different issue - either users would need to change the IP address on the vpn connection when the main line went down or you would need some sort of dns failover service so that the hostname used to connect would switch between the two ip addresses as required.
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Author Comment

by:David
ID: 40406582
i guess it could be set to have VPN1.mydomain.com for the main IP and VPN2.mydomain.com set to the backline line IP. And tell users to try the VPN2 if there was trouble

do you have any recommendations for the DNS fail-over service?
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Simon Butler (Sembee) earned 250 total points
ID: 40407325
Don't try and overcomplicate this.
Dual WAN router, two DNS entries. Nice and simple.

Or look at something like a cloud based load balancer.
http://totaluptime.com/solutions/cloud-load-balancing/

Simon.
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Author Comment

by:David
ID: 40407335
Ok with the two DNS entries, i think the MX records is easily done, but what about the VPN entries?
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Expert Comment

by:Simon Butler (Sembee)
ID: 40407345
The only way I have done it in the past is to have two VPN connections. A primary and a backup.
DNS does not provide any kind of high availability, it has no service awareness. If you want something completely transparent then you need a load balancer (either your own in an independent data centre or a cloud based service).

Simon.
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