Small Business Information Systems: Microsoft 2003 Clustered Server Solutions
Even with typical fault tolerant feature found in
the latest high-end server hardware, such as redundant power supplies and mirrored or RAID 5 disk arrays, failed devices must be identified and replacement components must be procured and installed. These failures can bring down a server for hours, if not days. Furthermore, during regularly scheduled software maintenance functions, servers need to be rebooted or brought off-line for an extended period. For customers who need 100% uptime, the only solution is to deploy a clustered server configuration that provides fully redundant servers for a single application.
A server cluster is a group of independent computers that work together to provide a common set of services. Windows 2003 provides this high-availability solution with the Cluster service. If a cluster node (a computer in a cluster) fails, other nodes in the cluster assume the functions of the failed node. Server clustering is an essential piece of any fault-tolerant architecture, and making large investments in communication infrastructure redundancy without providing for server redundancy defeats the value of that investment.
Progent offers Windows 2003 Server consulting to help your company implement clustered server configurations that can potentially provide 100% uptime, even for normal maintenance functions. This high-availability is possible because a single server in a cluster can be brought off-line for maintenance work without affecting users. Clustering also allows IT personal to perform critical security updates during regular business hours without reducing user productivity.
Microsoft Windows 2003 Server offers mature clustering technology. This is the third major release of Microsoft clustering technology, which was first released in 1997. Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Enterprise Edition, and Windows Server 2003, Datacenter Edition, present a single view of the server to users, applications, and the network and both versions of Windows Server 2003 support up to eight-node clusters. Failover clustering configurations can be built around Microsoft technologies for mission-critical and collaborative applications such as Microsoft Exchange, Microsoft SQL Server file and print services.
Host Clustering with Microsoft Virtual Server
Virtual Server host clustering is a technique for enhancing the capability of Microsoft Virtual Server 2005 with the server cluster support incorporated in Microsoft Windows Server 2003. By means of Virtual Server host clustering, your network can benefit from an array of services via a minimum number of actual hardware servers and, simultaneously, ensure the high availability of the provided services. In case one server requires scheduled or unscheduled downtime, another server can immediately take its place and begin supporting services. As a result, your clients experience minimal service disruption. Progent's Microsoft-certified network engineers have in-depth experience deploying and supporting Microsoft Virtual Server. For more information, refer to Consulting Services for Microsoft Virtual Server.
Server Clustering and Storage Area Networks
A storage area network (SAN) is a set of disks, tapes, and servers connected to a common infrastructure, or storage fabric, such as Fibre Channel. A SAN allows multiple servers to access a common pool of storage. This allows storage to be assigned dynamically from the pool whenever it is required. Storage on a given server can be increased or decreased as needed without complex reconfiguring or re-cabling of devices. SAN technology is a good way to build clusters where shared access to a data set is required. By deploying multiple clusters onto a single storage area network, all of the benefits of SAN technology can be brought to the cluster environment. Progentís Microsoft certified engineers can show you how to combine Microsoftís server cluster technology with storage area networking to make your network more fault tolerant and easier to manage.
Server Clustering with Microsoft Exchange
Messaging systems based on Microsoft Exchange are vital for many businesses. Unfortunately, this crucial function is vulnerable to component failure, power loss, operator errors, and natural disasters. By allowing the failover of resources, server clustering provides fault tolerance for an Exchange environment. Server clusters that use the Microsoft Cluster Service can maintain data integrity and provide failover support and high availability for mission-critical applications and services on your back-end servers, including messaging systems, databases, and file and print services.
This figure shows an example of a four-node Exchange cluster with three active nodes and a passive standby node:
Progent's Microsoft-certified Exchange experts have proven, world-class skills in designing high-availability Exchange environments and can show you how to configure an Exchange Server cluster with shared data access to data and automatic failover capabilities. For details about Exchange consulting services available from Progent, visit Microsoft Exchange Consulting Support.
Additional Zero-Downtime Technologies Offered by Progent's Consultants
Progent's certified consulting experts can assist your company to create an efficient, zero-downtime network that addresses key challenges covering a wide array of networking technologies and operations including:
Workplace Recovery Planning
Progent's disaster recovery planning professionals can help you design a workplace recovery strategy so you can resume network functionality in the event of an information network disaster. Progent can assist you to define a comprehensive disaster recovery strategy that incorporates periodic disaster recovery assessments and drills. Progent's Microsoft and Cisco-certified engineers can also help you build an affordable, high-availability network architecture that takes into account availability issues involving a wide array of infrastructure technologies and processes. To read more, go to Business Continuity Expertise.
24x7 Internet Connectivity
Progent's Cisco-authorized network professionals can show you how to design an affordable, high availability Internet configuration architecture that can achieve 24x7 Internet access through a wide array of fault tolerant Internet network technologies including high availability BGP, automatic fail-over, and redundant Internet Service Providers. Progent can provide CCIE professionals to help you apply the most advanced techniques for fault tolerant Internet access to implement an economical, completely redundant Internet network with automatic failover and other features to deliver zero-downtime Internet connections. To find out more, visit Fault Tolerant Internet Access Architecture.
Virtualization technology is central to any current disaster recovery strategy. Virtualized servers can be configured, updated, replicated, and restored rapidly and simply, offering a level of versatility for achieving maximum uptime impossible to meet with traditional physical servers. Progent can assist your company to plan and deploy a virtualized solution based on Windows Hyper-V, which incorporates advanced business continuity features that include transparent backup and live migration. Microsoft Windows Hyper-V can save much of the time and effort required for scheduled maintenance, failing over to emergency backup data centers, and restoring normal network functions. For more information, see Windows Hyper-V Virtual Server Consulting.
Microsoft Server 2012 Failover Clusters
Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2 brought world-class fault tolerance and recoverability to Microsoft's failover clustering solution. Windows Server 2012 adds to this technology and provides important enhancements offering more expandability, non-stop disk storage availability for server applications, streamlined administration, faster failover, and more flexibility for architecting failover clusters. To learn more, go to Windows Server 2012 Clustering Consulting and Support.
Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2 Clusters
The server cluster technology incorporated into the Datacenter and Enterprise editions of MS Windows Server 2008 R2 has been dramatically re-engineered to simplify the installation, setup, and maintenance of clusters that provide improved levels of network dependability, protection, efficiency, and flexibility. New or enhanced capabilities include cluster validation, easier setup and deployment, improved cluster management, new cluster architecture for increased availability, hardened protection and quorum models, elimination of failure points, greater storage and memory capacity, and enhancements for geographically dispersed clusters. To find out more, see Windows ServerR2 2008 Clustering Help.
Network Load Balancing
Progent offers fault tolerant load balancing consulting that addresses system load balancing, load balanced applications, LAN/WAN infrastructure routing, and content dispatching products including F5 Networks 3DNS. High availability load balancing solutions for which Progent offers consulting services include Windows Server 2003 and 2008 Network Load Balancing Manager, Citrix Access Suite and Presentation Server, Cisco CSS, Cisco Content Engine and ACNS, and F5 Networks BIG-IP. For more information, visit Fault Tolerant Load Balancing.
Non-stop Internet Data Centers
Progent's Data Center engineers can help you select high availability data centers that match the particular needs of your company. High availability collocation sites are especially attractive to small and mid-size businesses because of their affordability and convenience in comparison to pursuing a do-it-yourself strategy. Trying to create an in-house data center with even a basic level of fault tolerance is too expensive for the majority of small organizations. Progent can help you get all the benefits of non-stop data centers by providing a complete array of consulting and maintenance services. For more information, go to Non-stop Colocation Expertise.
High-Availability Inter-office Networking
Progentís interoffice connectivity consultants can help companies create zero-downtime inter-site connections via redundant networks with automatic failover. Progentís Cisco-qualified CCIE engineers can plan and implement fault-tolerant Inter-office connections based on non-stop EIGRP routers or non-stop OSPF configurations of Cisco routers. Progent can demonstrate how multi-path connections and automatic fail-over can provide economical non-stop interoffice networking. For more information, visit Failsafe Interoffice Connectivity.
Data Protection Manager (DPM) Backup and Recovery Consultants
Progent's expert Microsoft Data Protection Manager engineers can help you to create an effective business continuity strategy, implement a cost-effective zero-downtime IT architecture, install a DPM-powered backup and recovery system, thoroughly validate your system, educate your administrative personnel or local consultants how to manage DPM, or provide complete information technology outsourcing such as remote hosting of DPM servers in Progent's secure data center facility. To learn more, visit Data Protection Manager Expertise.
Managed Offsite Data Protection Manager Backup Service Package
Progentís affordably priced Offsite Data Protection Manager Backup Service combines the advanced capabilities of Microsoft Data Protection Manager with the state-of-the-art security and availability features of the Herakles co-location center to deliver continual, non-disruptive backup for up to 2.5 Terabytes of data from one or several of your Windows-powered servers. Progent's service offering includes all setup, support, and monitoring required for a complete offsite backup solution. To find out more, see Managed Offsite Data Protection Manager Backup Service Package.
Backup and Restore Technology Consulting Experts
Progent can provide affordable online access to consultants with expertise in a broad array of utilities and services that deliver solutions for backing up Windows, Mac, and Linux physical and virtual servers and desktops as well as notebooks and smartphones. Progent offers consulting support for all major data protection platforms such as Acronis Backup and Recovery, Backup Exec, BackupAssist, HP Data Protector, Double-Take Backup, MozyPro, Retrospect, Time Machine, VMware Data Recovery, and Oracle Solaris FLARs. Progent's consultants can assist your company to implement, enhance, or maintain backup systems for a variety of environments such as on-premise, remote, cloud-based, or hybrid. For details, go to Backup and Restore Technology Consulting.
Consulting for Double-Take Software for Backup
Double-Take publishes a family of tools designed to deliver small and midsize companies a range of affordable alternatives for backing up and recovering business-critical applications including Exchange, SQL, Blackberry, and Microsoft SharePoint. Progentís business continuity planning consultants have in-depth experience integrating Double-Take Software products into small business information systems to achieve an advanced state of fault tolerance and business continuity capability at a budget-friendly price. To learn more, visit Consulting Services Double-Take Solutions for Backup.
CRISC-qualified Network Risk Mitigation
The CRISC certification program was initiated by ISACA in 2010 to validate an IT professional's skills to plan, deploy, and support IS control mechanisms to mitigate risk. Progent can provide the expertise of a CRISC-certified consultant to help you to develop and execute a business continuity plan that follows leading practices promoted by CRISC and crafted to align with your organization's risk appetite, business goals, and IT budget. To find out more, see CRISC-certified IT risk mitigation experts.
Why Pick Progent for Disaster Recovery/Business Continuity Planning Solutions?
Because Progent is a Microsoft Gold Partner and offers professional application expertise for a broad variety of small business software programs, Progent can assist customers to find efficient IT solutions that maximize the business value of your network. As a Registered Partner with Cisco Systems, Progent offers the support of certified consultants and specialists with experience in designing, implementing and supporting infrastructure environments built on Cisco Systems products. The depth and breadth of Progent's IT know-how and Progent's familiarity with the needs of small and midsize companies make Progent the ideal partner for building and maintaining a cost-effective, dependable information system.
How to Access Progent's Engineers for Fault Tolerant Computing Services
In order to ask Progent about technical support for non-stop LAN design, call 1-800-993-9400 or email email@example.com.