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Designing the Support Structure for Server Clusters

Updated: March 28, 2003

Applies To: Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2003 with SP1, Windows Server 2003 with SP2

A server cluster depends on network connectivity for communication with clients and end users, and for intra-cluster configuration information between nodes. The other fundamental requirement for a server cluster is storage ¯ the storage of application information that is shared and failed over between nodes, and the storage of cluster configuration data. Note that your storage design, in addition to providing sufficient storage capacity, must be able to deliver information to the cluster in a timely and efficient manner.

Before you design the support structure for your server clusters, assemble the information that you collected during the steps outlined earlier in this chapter, including:

  • Usage statistics, such as the number of users and clients who will be using applications running on your clusters.

  • The number of clusters you plan to run on your network, and the number of nodes in each cluster.

  • The amount of storage your applications need.

  • The scalability needs in your organization, particularly projections for anticipated growth in storage needs and network traffic in the near future.

Figure 7.14 shows the high-level process for analyzing your network and infrastructure needs.

Figure 7.14   Designing the Support Structure for Server Clusters

Designing the Support Structure for Server Cluster


  • All storage and networking solutions for a server cluster must be supported by Microsoft. For more information about qualified storage and networking solutions, see the Windows Catalog link on the Web Resources page at http://www.microsoft.com/windows/reskits/webresources.

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