Thursday 10 May 2012

A Couple of Virtualization Scenarios for a 150 Seat Client

The following is our response on the Yahoo SBS2K list to a question about whether to virtualize Exchange or not.

For a client size of 150 users we would look at deploying a 2 node Hyper-V Failover Cluster to give some resilience to the Exchange environment.

  • Dual Xeon E5-2640+, 96GB/Node, 120GB Intel 320 SSD RAID 1 for host OS, Intel R1208GZ 2P 1U server system, dual RS25GB008 SAS HBA for DAS connection/Node, Quad Port i350 Gigabit NIC (comes with we add another), and a few other goodies.
  • Promise VTrak E610sD or HP P2000MSA RAID Subsystems with dual SAS controllers loaded up with 15K SAS or 10K SAS depending on I/O needs. JBODs attached for nearline running 7200RPM SAS.

One suggested VM deployment scenario:

  • VM 1: DC duties and file services
  • VM 2: Exchange 2010
  • VM 3: SQL/Management
  • VM 4: RDS
  • VM 5: VDI/VDA

The servers above would be fully licensed with two Windows Server 2008 R2 Enterprise Open Licenses that give 1+4 virtualization rights. This would be important for those times when the nodes themselves would need to be updated and thus the VMs moved from node to node.

Additional licenses would be required for Exchange, SQL, RDS, and other components. Enterprise CAL would cover much of it except SQL.

Another option would be to virtualize the four VMs on one box.

In that case two systems would need to be addressed:

  • RAM for VMs is paramount.
  • I/O for VMs along with data volume.
  • A high performance hardware RAID solution with flash cache or battery backup. PCI-E Gen 2 at 8x or better.
    • 15K SAS or enterprise grade SSDs would be the request here.
    • 24x 2.5" on board hot swap.
  • Secondary I/O and/or Nearline Storage:
    • Dual SAS HBAs
    • SAS based DAS like VTrak E610sD or HP P2000MSA dual SAS Controllers.
    • Load up with 7200RPM SAS 1TB or 2TB for nearline storage.

The above two options would be along the lines of what we would propose.

Philip Elder
Microsoft Small Business Specialists
Co-Author: SBS 2008 Blueprint Book

*Our original iMac was stolen (previous blog post). We now have a new MacBook Pro courtesy of Vlad Mazek, owner of OWN.

Windows Live Writer

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