Private message from Johnfm3

Good Morning.

In the thread you asked a lot of good questions and also made a good suggestion about keeping the thread on topic. As such, I hope you don’t mind if I answer your questions via PM.

  1. What situation do you want to protect from? Disk failure, node failure, both?
    [COLOR="#0099ff"]I am looking to protect my self from both Disk and Node Failure. (more on this later)[/COLOR]

  2. How much resources can you spend? Would it be possible to split up storage and compute? Will you need to expand to three or more Xen nodes in the foreseeable future?
    [COLOR="#0099ff"]As far as financial resources, I am tapped out. As much as I would love to buy 2 small SAS storage arrays, that’s not in the budget. Regarding my Server Resources, I can afford to spend a lot as what I have is 100 times over kill for my needs. The only way I see it possible to break up the storage and compute needs is with 2 SAS storage arrays, and as said above that’s not in the budget at this time. There is no need to add a 3rd XEN server as 2 is way overkill for my computational needs. But 2 servers meet the needs of uptime. [/COLOR]

  3. How do you want to distribute your compute load? I assume that you’d prefer to run the “Xen part” in active/active mode, that is running VMs on both nodes simultaneously.
    [COLOR="#0099ff"]Your assumption is correct. I would like my VMs balanced between the 2 VMs. [/COLOR]

  4. How are you going to fail over? Manually or automatically?
    [COLOR="#0099ff"] In most cases, I have no need for automatic fail over.[/COLOR]

So these answers seem alittle hacked with out some background information on how this is being used. This environment is for my home use. And has been my way to push my IT limits which I use in my career. For my career, I am a contractor at Microsoft working in the “Cloud Platform Systems” group. My son has opted to follow in my foot steps in a career in IT and is currently in his first year in College for such. I am rebuilding my old Enterprise Level home lab environment. Even though I work at MS, I my home has been ran on SuSE Linux since the days of 7.X. I still own a physical copy of 6.4, but never installed it. its a desk piece I keep at work. Most of my windows needs were met with VMs (back when VMware was the only free option) and WINE.

As far as my environment, what I am looking for is failover between xen servers and trying to remove single point of failure. So as my son (or myself) are learning new skill sets which could harm the physical XEN server stability, we can migrate all the VMs to the other XEN server and rebuild the physical node. Then redistribute the VMs back between the 2 nodes. Not only do these 2 XEN servers host the house hold Infrastructure (including DNS, DHCP, PXE, Proxy, and Nagios), it also will be used for my son’s home school lab environment where he can continue his school studies at home.

The hardware at our home includes the following
2 Dell R710 2U (XEN)
1 Dell R610 1U (firewall/Router)
1 Dell T610 5U (storage)
1 Layer 3 Netgear 48port 1G with 4 SFP

My sons setup in his room
1 Dell R300 1U (firewall)
1 MicroSystem 5U (XEN and Storage)
1 Layer 3 Cisco 48port 1G with 4 SFP

Fiber between switches

Like I said, its way overkill for our computational needs. But serves a purpose in teaching tech skills to my son and myself. Its also a way for him and I to take part in like activities together… And of course I don’t play video games, this kind of stuff has always been what has driven me. My son is the middle child of 5. With 1 who left the house, 2 in college. And 2 in High School.

I know this is a novel, but hope it answers a lot.

Thanks for your interest and help

PS: Next, I need to sort out the performance issue on my 10gb as it seems to be not much faster than my 1Gb eth now with transfer rates just under 90MB per second.