Modern Network Architecture

Aug 18 2012   1:32PM GMT

Modern Network Architecture – Lync Layer 3

James Murray James Murray Profile: James Murray

Something that took some time for our Seattle IT consulting clients was building out a routing design for the Lync Hosting pack topology.  As you design your system here are some things to think about.  We designed three separate areas for routing.  The hosting provider provided the infrastructure used to connect with external sites and with the internet. Data coming from outside, through the hosting provider, into the client site enters through the edge server router cluster.  Data from the router cluster, then moves to the data center core cluster where the data can take one of two paths. 

  • Path 1 Core systems Data is routed to a core data center compute block firewall systems
  • Path 2 VOIP communication data is routed to the VoIP systems

A formal firewall protects the Data firewall protects the load balancing systems for the data center computing block.  The compute block is comprised of the Ethernet and storage fabrics, application delivery controllers, servers (connected via fabric adaptors) and SAN storage. The Ethernet fabric connects and distributes data from the Data Center Core to the servers.  Similarly, the storage fabric connects and distributes date from the servers to the SAN storage. The application delivery controller connects to the Ethernet Fabric to load balance the various Lync Server Multitenant Host Pack servers’ roles

A VoIP boundary controller protected the add on VoIP systems.  This included a video gateway, mobile integration system, text integration systems and audio conferencing.  A routed connection created between the VoIP systems and the data block.  This way communication between Exchange and the third party VoIP systems could be managed securely without requiring communication back through the Data center core.

Each zone (Data Center core, Data Center Compute Block and VoIP systems) represents a natural demarcation between roles and functions within the Lync Server 2010 Multitenant Hosting Pack infrastructure.  

  • Edge Zone   this zone is demarked by the routers and the firewall systems.  Systems in this zone include: External facing DNS, Lync Server Edge pool, SBC, and external facing SMTP.
  •  Proxy zone   Protected by the Edge zone, the proxy zone allows communication systems pools to forward data to the appropriate technology server pools within the core zone.  Server pools include: The Exchange Hub Transport servers, the Exchange Client Access Servers (CAS), and Exchange UM servers.
  •    Core zone   Inside the main firewall, proxy zone and communication network SBC; this is where the Lync Server UC integration roles are served. Server pools in this zone include:  Active Directory domain controllers, Exchange Mailbox servers, Lync Server Director, Lync Server conferencing, Lync Server Mediation Server, Lync Server Monitoring Server, Lync Server Front End Server, Lync Server Monitoring Server SQL Server database and Lync Server back-end SQL database.

Of course this system won’t necessarily match your system, but if you are looking for ideas, it helps to understand how the system has been put together successfully in the past in order to design your system.  Lync is not the simplest system to setup for clients, but once configured has been very reliable and secure.

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