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AD on the host Hyper-V server?

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  • AD on the host Hyper-V server?

    In reference to:

    I currently have the following setup:

    1x Celron 2.4 w4 GB of ram running ISA 2004
    1x AD GC doing almost everything (AS, DNS, WINS, File and print sharing, and SQL to top it off)
    1x IIS6 server that's horribly underutilized
    1x Exchange 2003 server that doubles as the backup AD server

    I wanted to consolidate all the servers except for exchange and put in one hi end server. I was going to put 4 virtual 2008 machines in it:

    1 - File & Print
    1 - SQL
    1 - IIS
    1 - ISA

    Then on the host machine itself run AD (GC) and my backup software to backup the VM's. Why is running AD on the host machine not even a listed option? I would think it makes the most sense if you have the processing power to do it. The host I have planned will be dual quad core Xeons, 36Gb ram. The host hard drive will be 2x 146Gb 15k drives in a raid 1 and the VM drives will be hosted on a 6x 300Gb 10k Raid 5 array.

    Does this not sound acceptable? I just downloaded the 2008 R2 RC x64 to start testing but I don't see why it wouldn't work and having AD on the host machine will pretty much garentee AD is available when your hosts boot up.

    Edit: Domain isn't very big, 150 users of which 90 log in directly (rest through OWA/Active Sync on phones), across 3 offices all T1's together.

    Last edited by vseven; 6th May 2009, 14:35. Reason: Add details about domain being served

  • #2
    Re: AD on the host Hyper-V server?

    As best practices suggest, you want to run AD separate from other roles and processes. GET SQL OFF of THERE!!!!

    You can accomplish what you want to do by creating a VM with AD role installed on your Hyper-V server.

    Set it to always start automatically and once it fires up, your host machine can authenticate and all users in your Domain.

    However, I would still recommend a physical box(doesn't need to be powerful) in addition to a VM to run AD. You have FSMO roles that should be spread between the two.

    Also dont put 2 DCs on the same physical hardware.

    I am in the process of converting 2 AD servers to VMs. Luckily they dont contain any FSMO roles and just help with authentication load. I will do a P2V conversion from withing VMM2008 and put them on seperate physical hosts.

    We do still have our main DC at our data center that contains the Global Catalogs and FSMO roles.......even though these should be spread accross multiple DCs.

    Hope that answers your question???

    Also, remember that you dont want all your eggs in once basket. It may cost a little bit more, but will pay off when disaster strikes.



    • #3
      Re: AD on the host Hyper-V server?

      Yeah I wasn't going to put both AD's on the same physical hardware. Next year I planned on putting in another virtual server to handle Exchange and possibly a terminal server. But in that case I was also going to put AD as a role on the host machine.

      I know running my AD GC with SQL, dns, wins, file, printers, etc isn't a very good config but at the time (3+ years ago?) it was all we could do. Does run just fine errors, no issues, since being onlined.

      Hate "wasting" a virtual machine on AD. Maybe my file/print server can also be the AD GC as our usage isn't very high. Right now even with SQL and everything its running max 20% utilization on the CPU's and 30% on the network so knowing that I don't see why it woudn't run just fine on the VM host machine.