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  • Upgrading to 2012 which setup to follow

    Hi All,

    We are planning to move to Windows server 2012 and exchange 2013 with all new hardwares.
    Now I need to know what solutions to follow to have a well scalable setup with HA and a DR site setup.

    Our requirement is to have HA exchange and file server, with a replication to DR site.

    We have Exchange (clustered), File server (disk Array) on same clustered server but without redundancy of data as single storage on a Disk Array.

    Should we go Virtualization, or something else, its a SMB firm.


    Thanks
    Last edited by wrathyimp; 20th August 2013, 10:51.

  • #2
    Re: Upgrading to 2012 which setup to follow

    Without knowing the environment, business, users, applications, requirements, etc it would be very hard to make a recommendation.

    There are lots of options and they vary in price. Hyper-V 2012 allows you to do replicas but you may have issues syncing DB applications over a low bandwidth link. DAGs and multiple CAS and Hub servers would be a good option for Exchange HA. For the file servers you can look at clustering them or DFS. And there are a ton of other options, configurations, and products.

    My advice is to get a consultant in to help you design things and then, if you're comfortable, you can implement the plan.
    Regards,
    Jeremy

    Network Consultant/Engineer
    Baltimore - Washington area and beyond
    www.gma-cpa.com

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Upgrading to 2012 which setup to follow

      Exchange 2013 wise, you'll probably want an Active/Passive with shared namespace configuration and ensure you enable Datacenter Activation Mode on the DAG.

      File serveir wise, you can consider DFS or another replication solution.

      Your DR site would of coruse be an AD site and permantly have a DC and Exchange server or servers powered up and in contact with your environment.

      I have just come off the back of a scheduled DR switchover as there was a scheduled power cut. We provide DR services to them and replciate the volumes that contain their VMDK files and that are used as Raw Device Mappings to their VMs to our datacenter using Dell Compellent. We remove the VMs from their VMware infrastructure, invoke DR on the Compellent volumes that need to switchover and then at the other end, they get mapped to our VMware infrastructure and imported in.

      We also have Hyper-V Infrastructure and have used replicas and is ok for replication of a few VMs but does have limitations that means it is not a featrue we tend to use by choice.

      It's all down to your DR SLA what you go with.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Upgrading to 2012 which setup to follow

        My company is a small investment consultancy firm with not more than 40 users at max.

        Upgrade will not be a super investment, but will be good servers, but Only one at DR site, as we might plan a rack space at a datacenter (where we mount our server).

        Our Emails on a daily basis are not high (reaching around 500 MB), and data currently is below 1TB.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Upgrading to 2012 which setup to follow

          Originally posted by wrathyimp View Post
          My company is a small investment consultancy firm with not more than 40 users at max.

          Upgrade will not be a super investment, but will be good servers, but Only one at DR site, as we might plan a rack space at a datacenter (where we mount our server).

          Our Emails on a daily basis are not high (reaching around 500 MB), and data currently is below 1TB.
          Its all about the costs at the end of the day.

          What benefits will virtualising bring you?

          How many servers are you looking at replacing?

          Visualisation has its draw backs, vm sprawl being a classic, which in turn brings costs.

          There are also the inherent training costs for the IT team to take into account if you virtualise. Changing things like OS will add to this as well.

          IMO get a few consultants in and get some advice from someone who can see what your environment is.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Upgrading to 2012 which setup to follow

            Got a small setup discussion with a consultant, and recommended the cheapest as:

            Option 1
            Two Server Nodes + Storage,
            Node A with AD + Exchange, and do a failover to Node B, but have to manually change some DNS configuration in the mean to get the passive node up.

            Licenses:
            2-Windows Server (includes 2x2 Hyper-V)
            2-Exchange Server (includes 2x2 Hyper-V)

            Option 2
            Two Server Nodes + Storage,
            Node A has AD+File Server+Exchange MB+ Exchange CH all Hyper-V
            Node B has same no Servers,
            Exchange MB will be DAG, Cas/Hub with be Active/Passive.
            File Server to replicate data.

            Licenses:
            4-Windows Server (includes 4x2 Hyper-V)
            4-Exchange Server (includes 4x2 Hyper-V)

            So guys is it scalable or what else to consider.

            Thanks

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Upgrading to 2012 which setup to follow

              Originally posted by wrathyimp View Post
              Got a small setup discussion with a consultant, and recommended the cheapest as:

              Option 1
              Two Server Nodes + Storage,
              Node A with AD + Exchange, and do a failover to Node B, but have to manually change some DNS configuration in the mean to get the passive node up.

              Licenses:
              2-Windows Server (includes 2x2 Hyper-V)
              2-Exchange Server (includes 2x2 Hyper-V)

              Option 2
              Two Server Nodes + Storage,
              Node A has AD+File Server+Exchange MB+ Exchange CH all Hyper-V
              Node B has same no Servers,
              Exchange MB will be DAG, Cas/Hub with be Active/Passive.
              File Server to replicate data.

              Licenses:
              4-Windows Server (includes 4x2 Hyper-V)
              4-Exchange Server (includes 4x2 Hyper-V)

              So guys is it scalable or what else to consider.

              Thanks
              I'm not sure why they haven't touted a virtualised environment, whether it be VMware or Hyper-V or ANOther.

              Can you please give spome more detailed requirements so we can get a better idea of exactly what you are after.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Upgrading to 2012 which setup to follow

                Originally posted by wullieb1 View Post
                I'm not sure why they haven't touted a virtualised environment, whether it be VMware or Hyper-V or ANOther.

                Can you please give spome more detailed requirements so we can get a better idea of exactly what you are after.
                Ditto.

                Originally posted by wrathyimp View Post
                Option 1
                Two Server Nodes + Storage,
                Node A with AD + Exchange, and do a failover to Node B, but have to manually change some DNS configuration in the mean to get the passive node up.
                Is this shared storage or DAS on two servers?

                Did the consultants sit down with you and go over your environment and listen to what you're wanting to accomplish? I would make sure you're meaning the same thing when communicating. Defining terminology is important or else you may not get what you're looking for.
                Regards,
                Jeremy

                Network Consultant/Engineer
                Baltimore - Washington area and beyond
                www.gma-cpa.com

                Comment

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