The Essentials Series: Configuring High Availability for Windows Server 2008 Environments

by Richard Siddaway


System downtime can be very expensive in terms of lost revenue and reputation. Today’s global markets mean we need our systems to be available at the times our customers want to use them.  In The Essentials Series: Configuring High Availability for Windows Server 2008 Environments, author and IT expert Richard Siddaway explains the numerous ways to configure high availability for our Windows Server 2008 environments.  You will learn what is meant by high availability, why it is needed, and its relationship to disaster recovery.  You will also learn about advances in the failover clustering included with Windows Server 2008, as well as the latest non-native technologies used for Windows Server high availability, including data replication, virtualization, application-controlled high availability, and synchronized systems.


Article 1: The Art of High Availability

High availability is becoming a more frequent requirement to ensure our business processes are available when required. There are differences between high availability and disaster recovery, though convergence is occurring. High availability is not just a technology consideration; it also involves having the right people using the right procedures.  The first article will examine what is meant by “high availability” and how to achieve it.

Article 2: Windows Server 2008 Native Technologies

Clustering is the main high-availability technology supplied by Windows Server 2008. The advances in setup and configuration make it easier than ever to create a clustered environment. Geographically-dispersed clusters enable us to combine high-availability and disaster recovery techniques.  This article discusses the advances in clustering that Windows Server 2008 brings (including Windows Server 2008 R2) and look at possible obstructions to adopting the high‐availability technologies that are “out‐of‐the‐box” in Windows Server 2008.

Article 3: Non-Native Options for High Availability

There are situations when native Windows options do not meet the needs of high availability and third‐party or non‐native solutions should be considered.  Data replication, for example, can be used to protect physical and virtual environments. The replication can be controlled by the storage or even the application. Alternatively, full synchronization of machines can be used to protect the server, the service, and the data. This last article looks at these options and more for ensuring high availability.