I work in a fairly small special needs school, 101 children and around 50 or so staff, we have been looking at replacing our PDC's and consolidating from 2DC's to 1, and using the model of 1 Server servicing the whole of the curriculum network i.e. pupils logins, home drives, shared drives, another server for school management running stuff like sims, shared drives, Sage, and another for the ICT team running backups, AV, and storing data.
I cant help feeling a little nervous using this model, like its putting all your eggs in one basket, a colleague of mine suggested virtualising servers, another suggested 2 new DC's but sharing the load of the curriculum network and storing ICT stuff across the two.
I cant really see which avenue is the best to pursue at the moment.
anyone lay any suggestions?
Personally I'd look at Virtual Servers. Overspec'ing each physical server to temporarily take up the slack if you need to down one of them. To work well you'd need a centralised storage solution to make VM migration between servers possible. Also consider Windows Datacenter Edition, fairly cheep for edu, so you can run as meny individual VM's as you want.
Two good spec quad core servers, Hyper-V/Xen/ESX-i, 2x Windows Datacenter and a good NAS box (Buffallo Terrastation?). Given the size of the school probably all over kill but would give some pretty good redundancy.
EDIT: most of the primary schools we support are bigger and run well of 1 quad core 4gig server doing everything.
this is the argument im coming up against they did over kill now and now the ict manager want to cut right back and i`m worried that theres gonna be alot of pressure on one server.
I think the model you are planning will work well. We currently run a Curriculum server (logins, home drives, etc) and an Admin server(Cmis and the like). Both are DCs and it works well.
We are just about to put in a separate storage server, the Intel SSR212MC2RBR Storage Server which should be adequate for all of our storage needs.
I looked at virtualisation and thought it was just overkill for what we needed.
Look at the Intel Modular server sound like it would do what you what!!!