Hardware Thread, Do schools spend more money on back-end ICT than is necessary? in Technical; Originally Posted by psydii
The Equallogic one.
Meh, if I can put up with seeing RM advertising everywhere on here, ...
6th July 2012, 03:13 PM #46
You wouldn't if you saw the mess me and @oxide54 had to clean up from (I essentially watched him 4 years ago but learnt a lot). You wouldn't go near them. Luckily I havn't had to deal with RM directly (apart from get software from them which took 4 weeks to give me a cd) so don't have a direct gripe.
Originally Posted by psydii
The Equallogic one is a client I am currently setting up in London. Its nice SAN to install as it does most of the work for you with its tie in's to VMware (essentially you install the module to Vcenter tell if you want a new datastore it creates a lun and maps it to all hosts for you). It also has a dedicated MPIO config which load balances the nics better. Its connected to 3 x HP DL380 G7's booting from SSD with 100GB ram both Dual 6 core Xeons. Its soon to be running 50 VDI desktops along with around 20 Servers. Sadly they could only afford the 1GB ISCSI model not the 10GBE which would have been nice!! Its replacing an ISCSI MSA2000 but they also have a Dot Hill for backups.
I'm quite lucky thats the San of choice my boss recommends to clients. If they cannot afford that we tend to look towards OPEN-E on HP Hardware for ISCSI SANs.
6th July 2012, 03:23 PM #47
Haven't read the whole thread but £30-60k for virtualization in a 1000 student school............ You have got to be kidding me !!!!??
It cost us 6k in total to virtualize 16 servers. Our school has 900 students.
You don't need outside companies to spec it up or massive SANS to store everything. I learned how to do it on this site in a few hours. virtualboy blog - Site Home - TechNet Blogs
4 simple rack servers with 32gb of RAM and the hyper-v role installed will get you up and running in about a day.
So in answer to the question, yes your spending too much.
6th July 2012, 03:46 PM #48
That is still only £33 pounds a student so you should have some money left.
6th July 2012, 03:52 PM #49
Crikey, you won't like how much we spent then if you think £30-60k is too much :|
Originally Posted by zag
6th July 2012, 04:05 PM #50
Sounds like the mess was there before you. I've found that any vendor working to a non technical spec with no/poor technical oversight will give a post-event technical reviewer the hebejeebies. If it involves their own bespoke software then it gets worse. Avoid these two elements and you get a good service.
On costs: I know that if during the lifertime of the system my entire team walked, the school would not need to spend a single (unbudgeted for) penny keeping the servers, switches and wireless running until they found replacements, and then the replacements would have access to the techincal architects to bring them up to speed on how it was hung together. This with the benefits listed earlier for less than 1 years worth of the salary of a London NM. It all depends on the funding and strategic planning/vision of the school.
6th July 2012, 04:07 PM #51
Problem was before we got there it was Viglen completely in Charge - it was a fully managed service so you can only really blame ermm Viglen - there shoddy hardware desktop wise along with some very badly configured servers and Classlink....... enough said after that word!
Originally Posted by psydii
6th July 2012, 05:12 PM #52
Reading the words Viglen and Classlink I feel your pain
Originally Posted by glennda
6th July 2012, 05:41 PM #53
I have a feeling they will bring out a MSA P2000 G4 to compliment the Gen 8 servers...I've got DL Gen 7s and don't mind grabbing some bargins and they all match in the Cab! :-)
Originally Posted by gshaw
6th July 2012, 05:46 PM #54
TBH the P2000 is a Dot Hill San rebadged. They are not compliant with VMware ESXI 5.0 hence why we no longer use them. As you are going Hyper-V you should be ok!
Originally Posted by MrWu
6th July 2012, 05:52 PM #55
We use an older MSA2012i with Hyper-V no problems, it does have its advantages when it comes to driver support.
Originally Posted by glennda
6th July 2012, 06:11 PM #56
Yup - i used to use the MSA2012FC with Linux but then Linux doesn't tend to mind what you throw at it! As said above the only reason i'm getting rid of the P2000 is to move to VMware 5.0
Originally Posted by SYNACK
8th July 2012, 11:51 AM #57
viglen phoned me up trying to flog me machines the other day, after rolling around on the floor and splitting my sides in laughter for around 10 minutes, I took great delight in telling them that the only way i would buy machines from them is if they changed their company name, all their staff, their location, and their business practices.
Originally Posted by glennda
+MSA 2000 is dot hill rebadged.
Last edited by oxide54; 8th July 2012 at 11:54 AM.
8th July 2012, 12:46 PM #58
The issue with SMT and ICT spend from a few years ago, is that back then it would have been the case that a commercial provider would have gone in
and the budget would have been there to go to town on the switched infrastructure, expensive wifi, blade servers with good SAN backend, vmware with
all the bells and whistles.
these days money is tight, but where there are the budgets there are demands elsewhere (think whole school ICT demands) so that
could be a desire to go bells and whistles on a VLE that SMT can see in action, or 1:1 device programs that SMT can see and get their heads around. Key issue is who is driving the ICT and what their specific points of interest are.
Going back to SMT a couple years down the line from a major infrastructure spend is a hard sell. And here it does help to manage the realities of what your dealing with before getting carried away with technical specs that can easily escalate. These days commercial providers themselves are having to reign in what they spec, because they know the schools aren't going to allocate the budgets in that direction. And providers obviously have to make their margins.
the reality is this, if you can't spend the money on redundant SAN with clustered servers, then make a best efforts approach to speccing something that gives you adequate performance and a DR strategy that you can recover from. Sub-second recovery can be costly, but is that really what you need ? based on a realistic assumption of what your budget is, how important Recovery time is over having a reliable backup plan. That sort of thing.
8th July 2012, 12:55 PM #59
I'm looking at Virtualising the 28 servers here (they were here before me!) and consolidating several of them. The total cost for a Clustered HV Solution using SAS will be under 20k for a two node cluster with the abilty to add a third node.
The maintenance budget for machines and software is roughly 60k oer annum, 30k of which is spent on desktops/laptops etc. Any other development is bid for and then replacements planned for (depending on the system, cost and maintenance)
I see this as a 5 year spend cycle, with 20k needed each 5 years. All of the equipment is under extended 5 year warranty and so the maintenance cost is minimal.
8th July 2012, 01:31 PM #60
Firstly, a two node cluster unfortunately whilst a good starting point rapidly looses credibility unless both nodes can assume the full load of its partner eg if each node is running 4 servers can Node 2 assume the running of the Node 1 VMs easily?
Originally Posted by Mr.Ben
This tends to mean that you over spec the first two nodes, when in reality its probably better to go for the 3 nodes in the first place.
Secondly, can you elaborate on your chosen hardware and levels of redundancy to be achieved with a £20k budget?
Low budget solutions always have a trade off of some kind, sometimes the features can be added later at additional cost, would your £20k include such items as Backup, De-Dupe, Replication and DR?
Low cost and budget is good, but as already stated in this thread the demands and expectations of others can make £20k look incredibly small fry!
I think @alltab 's post makes incredibly good sense, especially as we have already heard from someone who had the full redundant option and still managed to be down for a week!
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