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Windows Thread, How many domain controllers? in Technical; For your domain I would agree with the general consensus of 2 DCs, but I disagree that DCs must only ...
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    For your domain I would agree with the general consensus of 2 DCs, but I disagree that DCs must only be DCs - they don't actually do that much in terms of processing and bandwidth utilisation, so, if they are well spec'd, having shares and profiles stored on them can be fine. If you can spread the current roles in your domain across to other servers and leave the DCs free, then do it, but I certainly wouldn't spend any money to achieve this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sparkeh View Post
    Virtual servers require licences too.
    Can you real-time mirror a running Windows virtual server's disks to a second physical server without needing a second license? You'll need the license for the one virtual Windows server, obviously, but surely the mirror is simply a backup until the first physical server conks out and the second physical server starts actually running the virtual server image?

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    Quote Originally Posted by richard.thomas View Post
    If you promote some other servers to DCs then they can help with the load and when someone logs on their request will be dealt with by a random server out of the DCs you have.
    Is there any way to get machines to use their nearest domain controller (i.e. nearest in terms of network connectivity)? Otherwise, wouldn't it be more efficient to simply get a bigger machine to be your domain controller?

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    You could well need a license for that. You can only move a server license every 180 days, and you are allowed one virtual instance for 2003 standard on the *same host*. I bought datacenter licenses for this reason, unlimited virtualisation rights, so I can move them around as I want (bar exchange).

    If you have 3 servers, 3 copies of Windows server and want to move them between all 3 hosts at will you will need datacenter or 9 licenses.

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    dhicks (19th June 2008)

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    Quote Originally Posted by DMcCoy View Post
    If you have 3 servers, 3 copies of Windows server and want to move them between all 3 hosts at will you will need datacenter or 9 licenses.
    Damn - I checked with the chap we buy software licenses off and got the impression we only needed to buy licenses for Windows Server standard for each running virtual server we wanted. I'll have to check with him again.

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    Quote Originally Posted by todav View Post
    For your domain I would agree with the general consensus of 2 DCs, but I disagree that DCs must only be DCs - they don't actually do that much in terms of processing and bandwidth utilisation, so, if they are well spec'd, having shares and profiles stored on them can be fine. If you can spread the current roles in your domain across to other servers and leave the DCs free, then do it, but I certainly wouldn't spend any money to achieve this.
    Its more about getting things restored quickly in a disaster recovery situation. Imagine having to rebuild a DC as well as I file server when you have people knocking on your door because the entire network is down.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dhicks View Post
    Is there any way to get machines to use their nearest domain controller (i.e. nearest in terms of network connectivity)? Otherwise, wouldn't it be more efficient to simply get a bigger machine to be your domain controller?
    You must descend into the wierd and wonderful world that is the AD Sites and Services MMC. Define your 'sites' then define which domain controllers and clients belong to which sites. This way, clients will attempt to use their local site DC before asking others. In a school environment, it's useful to have a site equal a building.

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    Thank you all for your feedback. Good to know that our plans sounds sensible. In answer to some of the points raised:

    We have one server that has been setup with all FSMO's - and three of the five setup as Global Catalogs.

    I thought that the Infrastructure Master shouldn't be running as a global catalog?
    Alos, should I have the FSMO's split? Isn't it good practice to have PDC Em and RID on different servers too?

    Thanks again to you all for your help.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dhicks View Post
    Damn - I checked with the chap we buy software licenses off and got the impression we only needed to buy licenses for Windows Server standard for each running virtual server we wanted. I'll have to check with him again.
    Right, checked again, and he went back and asked Microsoft. It seems we simply have to license each physical machine for as many copies of Windows Server 2008 Standard that each physical machine has on it, even if those copies aren't actually running. So if we have one machine running Windows Server, with live mirroring to another physically separate server, we have to get two Windows Server licenses. I rather get the feeling that the licensing simply hasn't been thought through all that clearly as it seems a bit much to have to pay for two whole server instances when we'll only ever be running one, but said licenses are still only £100 each so we can't grumble too much.

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    I thought that the Infrastructure Master shouldn't be running as a global catalog?
    Yes, but only in the approriate context. In principle (and practice for me) if it's a single domain forest a) GC +IM does not matter, b) it's good to make your DCs GCs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dhicks View Post
    Right, checked again, and he went back and asked Microsoft. It seems we simply have to license each physical machine for as many copies of Windows Server 2008 Standard that each physical machine has on it, even if those copies aren't actually running. So if we have one machine running Windows Server, with live mirroring to another physically separate server, we have to get two Windows Server licenses. I rather get the feeling that the licensing simply hasn't been thought through all that clearly as it seems a bit much to have to pay for two whole server instances when we'll only ever be running one, but said licenses are still only £100 each so we can't grumble too much.

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    Microsoft do not yet have a product that allows VM migration, coincidence or not?

    And that applies to additional servers you may add, want to run 6 VMs on 6 potential servers, then it's 36 server licenses (or less enterprise ones). You see why I went to datacenter. It's around 70 per cpu each year under schools agreement.

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    I'm know that with 2003 R2 Enterprise you get one non virtual install and then up to 4 virtual installs on the same machine without any additional liscences. It may end up cheaper to go with enterprise as this probably extends to 2008 as well. Doesn't solve the different liscence for each host issue though.
    http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserv...rview.mspx#EQC

    Here is a document that explains the virtualisation liscence stuff for older products. Not 100% on 2008
    http://download.microsoft.com/downlo...tion_brief.doc
    Last edited by SYNACK; 20th June 2008 at 09:36 PM.

  15. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by SYNACK View Post
    I'm pretty sure that with 2003 R2 Enterprise you get one non virtual install and then up to 4 virtual installs on the same machine without any additional liscences. It may end up cheaper to go with enterprise.
    Yep your right

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    Quote Originally Posted by DMcCoy View Post
    And that applies to additional servers you may add, want to run 6 VMs on 6 potential servers, then it's 36 server licenses (or less enterprise ones).
    DRBD is point-to-point replication, i.e. a specific block device is replicated in one other particular place, so each Windows Server instance can only possibly be run in one of two places. Besides, we only want a domain controller, all our other servers are Linux based :-)

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    It's even worse when you use shared storage, nothing moves except the memory state, and you only have it running on any one machine.

    However, microsoft licensing ties the license to the physical device

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