Originally Posted by Joluth
I'd like to get some feedback on my current BES setup and am interested in how others are set up as far as number of servers and what your DR plan is.
My current setup is one active 4.1.4 BES with just under 2000 users. We use Exchange and an off box SQL DB. I also have a standby server with the same server name and SRP, but all services disabled; in the event of failure of the primary box, we start the services on the backup and it rolls along.
I'm in the process of adding 2 additional boxes to our environment. My original plan was to setup an additional active box and an additional standby box, similar to the first pair of boxes.
I'm re-thinking this a little since all boxes will be using the same external SQL DB and I can switch users between boxes in the event of an issue with one of them. I'm thinking I could setup both new boxes with different server names and SRPs so I have 3 active BES. If one dies, I could conceivably move the users from that box to the other 2 and get by on those (or at least I should be from what I've read and from some limited testing--correct me if I am wrong).
So my questions:
1. If I make the two new servers both active ones and one dies, could I change the server name and SRP on my current standby machine and bring it up 'as' one of those two boxes? I think that stuff is only set during install, so I don't think that's a possibilty, unless I do a complete BES reinstall and rename it that way (or is there a regedit for that?).
2. Part of the decision is based on answer to question 1, but which route would you recommend: two active servers, each with a dedicated 'standby' server, or three active servers, with one 'standby' server?
BTW, I know NeverFail is possible as a BES DR solution, but I'm looking for input on possible solutions with out using 3rd party software.
If you can afford the licensing (or have it already) I'd go with 4 active servers and no standby servers. Then if a server (or 2) dies it is truly a drag and drop and you won't over-tax the servers.
With that said, if you want to be a little more cost conscious, go with 3 active and one as a cold spare where you don't have BES installed and then if one dies you temporarily move users to the other 2 live ones while you're bringing up the 3rd. Then you can move those same users back to the newly built server which'll replace the one that just died.