Our SBS (Small Business Solution) Options with Standalone and Cluster Hardware Considerations
Posted by Philip Elder on 15 September 2014 04:17 PM
We’ve received a number of questions about the “How” we present our SBS to prospective and existing clients.
Our primary focus is on what we have provided with Small Business Server starting with SBS 2003 Standard.
We focus on the services the prospect would require while our existing clients are already used to them.
Once we have an understanding of the prospect’s needs, since we already know our client’s business really well, we move forward with a proposal that would be geared towards their business size and sensitivity to downtime.
On the services front where we are installing into a standalone host we would have two options:
Obviously the server and CALs would also be needed for the various components that will be installed into the guest OS.
If we are setting up a cluster then one needs to consider the number of VMs running on one or more of the nodes in the event of a node failure.
On the hardware side we would have a number of options:
Within the above hardware configurations we would have a lot of flexibility that allows us to customize to the specific needs of the prospective client or our clients.
We work with a number of different firms that are prime candidates for at least an asymmetric cluster setup to minimize the possibility of downtime. The cost associated with these entry-level clusters versus a single larger server for the host platform makes them very attractive.
The basic VM configuration would involve fixed VHDX files unless the files are installed on dedicated partitions/LUNs. Note that we would use a shared set of partitions/LUNs if there are around 10 or more VMs as things get to be a bit of a bear to manage otherwise.
Our base VM configurations would be as follows:
We have a set of PowerShell steps and scripts that we use to configure these environments. PowerShell helps to greatly reduce the amount of time required to set things up. It also gives us consistency across all of our client deployments which is vital to troubleshooting if the need arises.
Shameless Plug: We’ve spent some time on the above in our SMBKitchen ASP Author Chats. If you are looking for more information the Author Chat is one of the best ways to do so.
Chef de partie in the SMBKitchen ASP Project