Trying to find an optimal solution for a client with various problems!



  • Places where you might save some or even a lot of money here:

    • Remove QB, go to something free. No serious business should be on a toy like QB. There are far better free options and paid ones too. Wave is completely free, for example, and much bigger than QB.
    • AD. Is that needed? Maybe, maybe not.
    • Why is Windows being used for file sharing? It's good for that, but not cheap and not good for HA file sharing like you want.
    • Is Windows needed at all?
    • Is a server needed at all? Can you go down to a tiny NAS?

    From the description, it sounds like a few hundred dollars on an appropriate two bay NAS with two not very expensive WD Red drives would do the trick, potentially.



  • So IF you go with a new, second server....

    Keep the old one, put on HyperV or XenServer and have the second DC there. However, running a second server will cost $700+ in licensing, so that is a pretty major investment just to have a second AD DC. That's not a very common need and, like so many things, if the company even hints at IT budgets being an issue, secondary AD DCs is a place where you should not be spending a lot of money (or any.)



  • @scottalanmiller said:

    Places where you might save some or even a lot of money here:

    • Remove QB, go to something free. No serious business should be on a toy like QB. There are far better free options and paid ones too. Wave is completely free, for example, and much bigger than QB.

    As mentioned in my original post, the internet connection is not very reliable at the moment with the single ISP they have in that place. I would love to recommend solutions like wave, where they get web based access from any where not just their office, not having the issues what they have now, but i am sure there are other better free softwares that can easily replace QB, but that needs time, a good amount of time for their finance person to evaluate, understand and implement in their company.

    • AD. Is that needed? Maybe, maybe not.
      Debatable, we can even get Zentyal instead of AD reducing the server OS cost, without compromising the basic AD joiniing/managing machines from central server.
    • Why is Windows being used for file sharing? It's good for that, but not cheap and not good for HA file sharing like you want.
    • Is Windows needed at all?
    • Is a server needed at all? Can you go down to a tiny NAS?

    A NAS again, becomes a single point of failure, considering the power issues they have. The first question i asked them is "when are they planning to move, which seems like only next year mid"



  • @Ambarishrh said:

    A NAS again, becomes a single point of failure, considering the power issues they have.

    You need to stop thinking in these terms. This is not good business or cost thinking. You need to think in terms of "reliability for the money." Single points of failure are a term we use to incite panic, and they are useful to think about, but what you care about are cost and reliability (the two things that they were not thinking about that got them to where they are.)

    The power issue is not solved by removing single points of failure, nor is heat, nor is flood or fire. The problem that you had before was not from any of those things either. Any decent NAS would have protected you AND saved a lot of money already.

    And if a NAS is still a problem being much better than where you are today, you can make a NAS redundant much more inexpensively than a Windows server too.



  • @scottalanmiller said:

    @Ambarishrh said:

    A NAS again, becomes a single point of failure, considering the power issues they have.

    You need to stop thinking in these terms. This is not good business or cost thinking. You need to think in terms of "reliability for the money." Single points of failure are a term we use to incite panic, and they are useful to think about, but what you care about are cost and reliability (the two things that they were not thinking about that got them to where they are.)

    The power issue is not solved by removing single points of failure, nor is heat, nor is flood or fire. The problem that you had before was not from any of those things either. Any decent NAS would have protected you AND saved a lot of money already.

    And if a NAS is still a problem being much better than where you are today, you can make a NAS redundant much more inexpensively than a Windows server too.

    The problem i had with the current setup was that the network adaptor gone bad, may be due to a power spike. no one knows, planning to go with the new entry level server or a good NAS.



  • @Ambarishrh said:

    The problem i had with the current setup was that the network adaptor gone bad, may be due to a power spike. no one knows, planning to go with the new entry level server or a good NAS.

    I understand that, and a power spike would have impacted anything on the same power, right? At least very likely. So no amount of redundancy that does not involve a completely different power source isn't really redundancy, right? So having two servers or twenty servers might provide zero protect if the issue is bad power and you only have one power supplier.



  • I have three NAS at home, all of which would meet your needs well. All have RAID, all are easy to use, all have redundant NICs and are way more reliable and easy to work on than the desktop unit that you have . One is even fire and flood proof. Even with major power spikes and the like, each of the home units that I have would be far more likely to survive an event with power intact than what you have today and the one dramatically so since it is designed to handle a building fire.



  • @scottalanmiller said:

    @Ambarishrh said:

    The problem i had with the current setup was that the network adaptor gone bad, may be due to a power spike. no one knows, planning to go with the new entry level server or a good NAS.

    I understand that, and a power spike would have impacted anything on the same power, right? At least very likely. So no amount of redundancy that does not involve a completely different power source isn't really redundancy, right? So having two servers or twenty servers might provide zero protect if the issue is bad power and you only have one power supplier.

    Completely agree with that point, but in this case even there are other machines, only this servers network adaptor had gone bad. (Bad luck), so even though not ignoring the fact that, a power spike potentially could blow out all the systems, but at least if it affects one and the other one still active and servers the users, its better i guess



  • @scottalanmiller said:

    I have three NAS at home, all of which would meet your needs well. All have RAID, all are easy to use, all have redundant NICs and are way more reliable and easy to work on than the desktop unit that you have . One is even fire and flood proof. Even with major power spikes and the like, each of the home units that I have would be far more likely to survive an event with power intact than what you have today and the one dramatically so since it is designed to handle a building fire.

    Could you please give me the models? i will check the prices here for that and see if that can be taken



  • @Ambarishrh said:

    Completely agree with that point, but in this case even there are other machines, only this servers network adaptor had gone bad. (Bad luck), so even though not ignoring the fact that, a power spike potentially could blow out all the systems, but at least if it affects one and the other one still active and servers the users, its better i guess

    But in that case, having redundant NICs (a very basic feature on NAS or Server) would have protected you too. I feel like you are jumping from a tiny issue to a completely overblown reaction to it. It's like blowing a tire on your car and instead of learning to carry a spare tire, buying a second car!



  • @Ambarishrh said:

    Could you please give me the models? i will check the prices here for that and see if that can be taken

    Fireproof One: IOSafe 214 NAS

    IOSafe is here in ML too. Nice unit. It is a Synology 214 under the hood, retrofitted to be fire and flood safe. It's really impressive. RAID 1, comes all ready to go.



  • Will check the cost here, and what kind of HDD you suggest to be used with this?





  • The IOSafe has no drive options, it comes as it comes. For a diskless system I would recommend starting with the WD Red drives. Cheap and reliable, but not fast. They are big capacity for cheap and are very good for high heat environments.

    If you need a little speed boot, the WD Red Pro are 50% faster on the spindle for not a ton more money.



  • @scottalanmiller
    Hi Scott-
    Just found out about this site - thanks for the ioSafe mention. Perfect application btw. The ioSafe 214 now comes with drive options - all new loaded ioSafe NAS products contain WD Red Drives by default and have for several months now. We'll be working on updating the product description in the field over time. Also, all NAS units can be ordered with Enterprise Grade Drives as an option.

    Redundant NICs are an option on the 1515+ but not the 214.

    Hope that helps!
    -Robb

    Robb Moore, CEO
    ioSafe Inc.