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Manually failing over a mirror without access to Primary Server


Manually failing over a mirror without access to Primary Server

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Brandie Tarvin
Brandie Tarvin
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I am putting together a disaster recovery plan. As part of this, we have databases mirrored over to a server (Server B) to which we have limited access (db_owner as opposed to sysadmin permissions). Server B (the secondary) is in a separate data center from Server A (the primary). I've created a job to initiate failover of the mirrors in case of database failure, but the one contingency I can't seem to cover is data center failure. I've looked everywhere but cannot find a method of failing over mirrored databases if I don't have access to the primary server.

So here's my question (because I need to put it in my plan): If my data center or Server A goes down entirely, how do I fail over the mirror to Server B?

Everything I have found in BOL says I have to do this from the primary server. Maybe I missed a reference somewhere?

Brandie Tarvin, MCITP Database AdministratorLiveJournal Blog: http://brandietarvin.livejournal.com/On LinkedIn!, Google+, and Twitter.Freelance Writer: ShadowrunLatchkeys: Nevermore, Latchkeys: The Bootleg War, and Latchkeys: Roscoes in the Night are now available on Nook and Kindle.
John Mitchell-245523
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Brandie

Is it a witness you're looking for?

John
Brandie Tarvin
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John Mitchell-245523 (8/15/2014)
Brandie

Is it a witness you're looking for?

John


I wish. Corporate set up the mirroring without a witness server. @=(

Brandie Tarvin, MCITP Database AdministratorLiveJournal Blog: http://brandietarvin.livejournal.com/On LinkedIn!, Google+, and Twitter.Freelance Writer: ShadowrunLatchkeys: Nevermore, Latchkeys: The Bootleg War, and Latchkeys: Roscoes in the Night are now available on Nook and Kindle.
Perry Whittle
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Brandie Tarvin (8/15/2014)
So here's my question (because I need to put it in my plan): If my data center or Server A goes down entirely, how do I fail over the mirror to Server B?

Everything I have found in BOL says I have to do this from the primary server. Maybe I missed a reference somewhere?

You only issue the ALTER DATABASE ... SET PARTNER FAILOVER against the principal when the principal is actually online.
In the situation you're describing, you must either connect to the mirror server and use ALTER DATABASE ... SET PARTNER FORCE_SERVICE_ALLOW_DATA_LOSS or leave the mirror offline until the principal is brought back online or stop the mirror session to recover the database and start a new mirror session later on.

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"Ya can't make an omelette without breaking just a few eggs" ;-)
Brandie Tarvin
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Thanks, Perry. I appreciate the assist.

Brandie Tarvin, MCITP Database AdministratorLiveJournal Blog: http://brandietarvin.livejournal.com/On LinkedIn!, Google+, and Twitter.Freelance Writer: ShadowrunLatchkeys: Nevermore, Latchkeys: The Bootleg War, and Latchkeys: Roscoes in the Night are now available on Nook and Kindle.
Brandie Tarvin
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On another note, I recently found that I can also just break the mirror from either the primary or the secondary as per this BOL note. So it all depends on whether or not I want to just set the failover or break the mirror entirely.

Breaking the mirror seems a little last resort to me, though.

Brandie Tarvin, MCITP Database AdministratorLiveJournal Blog: http://brandietarvin.livejournal.com/On LinkedIn!, Google+, and Twitter.Freelance Writer: ShadowrunLatchkeys: Nevermore, Latchkeys: The Bootleg War, and Latchkeys: Roscoes in the Night are now available on Nook and Kindle.
Perry Whittle
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Brandie Tarvin (8/21/2014)
On another note, I recently found that I can also just break the mirror from either the primary or the secondary


Yes, hence my comment
comment
Perry Whittle (8/19/2014)
or stop the mirror session to recover the database and start a new mirror session later on.


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"Ya can't make an omelette without breaking just a few eggs" ;-)
Brandie Tarvin
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And that's what happens when I forget how to read a post all the way through. @=)

Brandie Tarvin, MCITP Database AdministratorLiveJournal Blog: http://brandietarvin.livejournal.com/On LinkedIn!, Google+, and Twitter.Freelance Writer: ShadowrunLatchkeys: Nevermore, Latchkeys: The Bootleg War, and Latchkeys: Roscoes in the Night are now available on Nook and Kindle.
arnipetursson
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One more question.

If you do not have access to server B beyond db_owner in the database,
how do you ensure that the logins (server principals) are synced?
happycat59
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arnipetursson (8/21/2014)
One more question.

If you do not have access to server B beyond db_owner in the database,
how do you ensure that the logins (server principals) are synced?


As db_owner, you cannot do anything except ask someone else to sort it out (e.g. someone with sysadmin or securityadmin priveleges).
You would already need to be doing that - mirroring does not do anything about logins. Logins are at the server level, database mirroring is at the database level.



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