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Installing and Configuring the Hardware and Windows Server 2008

Updated: February 15, 2008

Applies To: Windows Server 2008

The first step in performing the implementation of a new Network Load Balancing (NLB) cluster is to install and configure the hardware and Windows Server 2008 for each cluster host. Install and configure all cluster host hardware at the same time to ensure that you eliminate any configuration errors prior to installing and configuring the NLB cluster.

To install and configure NLB, you must use an account that is listed in the Administrators group on each host. If you are not using an account in the Administrators group as you install and configure each host, you will be prompted to provide the logon credentials for such an account. To set up an account that NLB Manager will use by default: in NLB Manager, expand the Options menu, and then click Credentials. We recommend that this account not be used for any other purpose.

You should complete the tasks in the following procedure to install and configure the hardware and Windows Server 2008 on each cluster host in the new cluster.

  1. Install the cluster host hardware in accordance with the manufacturer's recommendations.

  2. Connect the cluster host hardware to the network infrastructure.

  3. Install Windows Server 2008 with the default options and specifications from the worksheet for the cluster host.

  4. Install any additional roles or features (such as IIS or Web Server) by using the design specifications for the role or feature.

  5. Configure the TCP/IP property settings and verify connectivity for the cluster adapters.

    Configure the dedicated IP address at this time. The cluster IP address and any virtual IP addresses for port rules are added later in the deployment process through NLB Manager.

  6. If a separate management network is used, configure the TCP/IP property settings and verify connectivity for the management adapter.

    Although not required, it is recommended that you use a separate management network adapter to provide a communication path that is isolated both from the cluster adapter and from the clients.

  7. Configure each server to be a member server in a domain created specifically for managing the cluster and other related servers.

    Although not required, the creation of a domain for the management of the cluster provides a centralized method of controlling security to the cluster. Management of clusters installed in a workgroup is more difficult and time-consuming. When the cluster resides in a perimeter network, create a separate forest for the exclusive purpose of managing servers (including cluster hosts) in the perimeter network.

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