[THIN] Re: Alternative fileservers (EMC Celerra)

  • From: "Rick Mack" <ulrich.mack@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: thin@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sat, 29 Mar 2008 21:11:12 +1000

Hi Erik,

I guess I'd better explain why I mentioned Polyserver earlier.

HP's Polyserve uses a proprietary file system that allows simultaneous
access by multiple servers. So you can have a SAN volume that allows 2,4,6
or more systems to access it at the same time and load balance the network
i/o load over all those systems. It's a true active-active clustering

It gives you full HA, DR and rather good scalability. Nothing that Microsoft
has even comes close. So if you want to double your capacity, you just add
another server. If you're using blades, you can just keep allocating blades
to the cluster until you have a comfortable level of spare capacity.



Ulrich Mack
Quest Software
Provision Networks Division

On 3/28/08, Erik Blom <erik.blom@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> Strange, 3 rd time I try to post my reply, hope this one makes it to the
> list
> **************
> Hi Adam,
> Some background information about my originally posted question:
> As far as performance goes, we continuously have about 7,000 files open
> (which include files from users' home drives & the usual company data) and I
> do not have the impression that our current Windows 2003 SP1 file server
> will easily scale to say 10,000 open files. All relevant maxmpxct,
> maxworkitems, … tweaks have been applied to the fileserver and the Citrix
> servers, and file serving is this servers' unique role. Thus in order to
> scale for more users, I would need to configure a second file serving
> environment and kind of 'load balance' the files between these file servers,
> unless of course another solution would 'perform' better, which in my case
> means more open files without hiccups. BTW, the SAN the file server is
> connected to is an EMC Clariion CX300 – Perfmon shows no abnormally high
> disk queue lengths so we don't have the impression that SAN performance is
> the bottleneck.
> Regarding high-availability, this file server is replicated and clustered
> with its counterpart 10 km away. Legato Autostart is at present the
> clustering/replication solution, replication is hostbased (via a locally
> installed driver) and travels via a Gbit IP link to the other node. So each
> of the two file servers is connected to its own CX300 which is kind of a
> protection against SAN outages too, I presume. We would like to keep this
> level of HA, and if possible 'upgrade' towards an active/active clustering
> solution if possible (I think this will be difficult to achieve given that
> we are talking about two separate sites that are replicated). EMC told us
> that active/active clustering is possible with their Celera line.
> Active/active clustering would also allow for spreading the load between
> multiple servers which would gain us obvious benefits in the
> performance/scalability department.
> This year we are going to upgrade our back-end storage (the CX300) towards
> a higher-end storage system that would allow for SAN-to-SAN replication
> which I think will perform better, so that the fileserver itself only needs
> to worry about its files and not about replication anymore. The clustering
> solution might be Windows 2003 cluster, or we might do away with Windows
> 2003 and deploy a totally new sort of fileserver, like the Celera or Netapp
> or one of the other solutions that I have read here. I don't know Windows
> Storage Server that well, but will certainly look further into it.
> Erik

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