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Best Practice #4: Configuring server hardware for disaster recovery

Best Practices Checklist: Exchange Server disaster recovery planning, Best Practice #4: Configuring server hardware for disaster recovery.

When you build an Exchange 2003 server, you should try to configure the hardware to eliminate all single points of failure. Special consideration should be placed on the disk storage subsystem by selecting the appropriate RAID levels for various types of data.

Work with a hardware vendor that supports multi-path hardware solutions. If you require 100% hardware redundancy, you should implement clustering. Here is a list of common hardware devices that can be redundantly configured:

  • NIC
  • Processor
  • Disk
  • Power supply
  • Memory
  • RAID controllers

Hot swap capabilities are a plus. There are also specialty vendors like Stratus that sell servers with 100% redundancy without having to do clustering.

The choices can make your head spin. Try to focus on what your organization's downtime tolerance is and use that as a guide for configuring your hardware.

Best Practices Checklist: Exchange Server disaster recovery planning

 Home: Introduction
 Best Practice #1: Understanding Exchange databases
 Best Practice #2: Building your plan around the technology at hand
 Best Practice #3: Keeping e-mail in perspective
 Best Practice #4: Configuring server hardware for disaster recovery
 Best Practice #5: Configuring Exchange for disaster recovery
 Best Practice #6: Simulating a disaster
 Best Practice #7: Learning from others' mistakes and successes
 Best Practice #8: Considering offsite storage and remote recovery
 Best Practice #9: Familiarizing yourself with the right resources

Richard Luckett, Vice President and Senior Consultant, Ajettix Security
Richard Luckett is a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer on the Windows NT 4.0, 2000 and 2003 platforms and has been certified on Exchange since version 4.0. He is the co-author of Administering Exchange 2000 Server, published by McGraw Hill, and has written four Exchange courses, Introduction to Exchange 2000, and Hands-on Exchange 2003, Ultimate Exchange Server 2003 and Exchange Server 2003 Administrator Boot Camp for Global Knowledge Inc. Richard is currently Vice President and Senior Consultant for Ajettix Security, where he is the head of the Microsoft security practice.

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