Moving from single server to multiple servers

Tags:
Backup & recovery
Backup servers
NAS
SDSL
Server migration
Server upgrades
SQL Server 2000
SQL Server 2003
Windows 2000 Server
Windows Server 2003
Hi all, We have a Single Windows 2000 server (Back office edition, configured as a Primary domain controller). It has SQL server 2000 running, which serves a bespoke database application. The server is also used as a simple fileserver for documents, etc... We do not use Exchange Server. I need to have a way to kind of replicate this server to another server incase this server was to crash, with the other server instantly, or very quickly taking over, either automatically or through a quick reconfiguration of IP addresses, etc... Now, one of the issues is that the server has certain networked applications that are not SQL server, or Active directory integrated. The third requirement is to hopefully have a solution where the main server can be backed up whole to the backup server off-site over a Hi speeed SDSL connection. My initial thinking was to setup another server localy, and they would both connect to a Network attached storage device. Then somehow copy that drive over the SDSL connection. Does anyone have suggestions on which road to take on this ? Any suggestions are welcome, even ones that involve new hardware. Also would the task be easier if I upgraded them both to 2003 server ? Regards, Mike.

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If you need to have the same exact server, you might try building the same machine, then Ghost it and install on waiting machine, main server crashes just plug and play, however you will have to keep ghost image up to date. other senario is to spoof IP with identical server,there is software for routers with this capability. second choice would be my best guess. But I do not know it all, but its my .02 cents.

Good luck

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  • Irvingwashington
    Michael- It's not clear from your question, do you want to migrate all services on this box to new one, or just SQL Server resources? I'm not familiar with anything but SQL Server clustering, but what you should be looking at if you want a seamless failover is which of your applications are supported by Microsoft Cluster Services. MSCS will do automatic detection and failover, and works pretty well I've found with SQL Server. The problem is that you must use Advanced Server, and SQL Server Enterprise Edition ($$$$). Not to mention that it really only operates well in an active/passive configuration, so you'll need another exact duplicate of your server as the hot standby. And you'll need some kind of shared storage for it to work, such as an iSCSI/SCSI/FC SAN, NAS boxes won't work. Outside of using MSCS, you could look at setting up the backup server as a BDC, and setting up transactional replication with SQL server to publish your changes to the backup server. I don't know how to do ARP spoofing in Windows, but you'll either need to figure out how to address take over or virtualize the servers somehow. Unfortunately what is trivial in Linux isn't in Windows. As far as pushing the changes offsite, unless you've not got a whole lot of data, it's going to take forever to replicate at 768kbps (the max I've see for upstream DSL). Either get a dedicated multi mbps connection (T3 or such) or look at using something like rsync which will only copy changes and compress the uploads as well. Z
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  • Irvingwashington
    Michael- It's not clear from your question, do you want to migrate all services on this box to new one, or just SQL Server resources? I'm not familiar with anything but SQL Server clustering, but what you should be looking at if you want a seamless failover is which of your applications are supported by Microsoft Cluster Services. MSCS will do automatic detection and failover, and works pretty well I've found with SQL Server. The problem is that you must use Advanced Server, and SQL Server Enterprise Edition ($$$$). Not to mention that it really only operates well in an active/passive configuration, so you'll need another exact duplicate of your server as the hot standby. And you'll need some kind of shared storage for it to work, such as an iSCSI/SCSI/FC SAN, NAS boxes won't work. Outside of using MSCS, you could look at setting up the backup server as a BDC, and setting up transactional replication with SQL server to publish your changes to the backup server. I don't know how to do ARP spoofing in Windows, but you'll either need to figure out how to address take over or virtualize the servers somehow. Unfortunately what is trivial in Linux isn't in Windows. As far as pushing the changes offsite, unless you've not got a whole lot of data, it's going to take forever to replicate at 768kbps (the max I've see for upstream DSL). Either get a dedicated multi mbps connection (T3 or such) or look at using something like rsync which will only copy changes and compress the uploads as well. Z
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  • Ve3ofa
    replicate your primary server completely but set the new machine up as a BDC .. You may want to also consider making this BDC a primary for users based locally to the machine.. this way you will have 2 authentication servers with one being the master for each local group. This will cut dowwn on your network bandwidth for logins/authentication issues. What you are describing is a typical head office - branch office scenario. When you say that you have network apps that are not aD aware how are you authenitcating their access now.. as far as SQL Server you will want to have a backup/replication group between the 2 servers. You also did not say whether your network is in native or mixed mode
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  • Stevesz
    You probably would want to take a look at replication software, shuch as DoubleTake by NSI Software. This can provide a copy of your data on another server, and automatically, or manually, failover should there be a problem that prevents use of the original server. Active Directory would replicate itself to another box, so you would be covered there. Steve
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  • Espettit
    I agree w/ stevesz. Doubletake is a really good solution for what you are trying to do. I've yet to find an app that I can't failover using DT (sometime w/ a little experimentation. My company has been selling & using the product for 5 years and it's pretty cool. As Steve said it won't replicate the AD stuff, but if you set up the target as a DC the native replication should take care of that. Eric Pettit
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  • Dweise1817
    Neverfail Group makes the best solution for keeping your SQL application highly available. (www.neverfailgroup.com) Set up as an Active Passive server pair, it replicates, fails over, has no requirement for enterprise level software, and monitors the SQL application for trouble and can failover if it detects a problem. And it works. Also allows you to switchover to the other box gracefully in order to perfomr maintenance,etc. Just moves the clients over to the other server in seconds.
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  • Joco1141
    cluster the servers if you are running win2k advanced server and then put in NAS for the files that way the server accesses the files from the network and the second server has access to the data at the same time and by clustering there is no need todo any reconfiguration change the second server will take over
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