Microsoft SQL Server Cluster Vs Standby Server

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  • You didn't mention Transactional Replication as a way to keep a warm standby server. It would be interesting to read about pros/cons from the field regarding this method.

  • We use clustering in production and log ship to a secondary site to maintain a standby server, this gives us the best of both worlds in my opinion.

    To be honest I don't like the idea for transactional replication for standby servers, not when there are other options available, but that's only my opinion and i'm sure that others will disagree.

  • Nice, an advertisment article, the link at the bottom doesn't even work.


  • Yes, indeed, an advertisement and not a lot more.

    For similar solutions:

    Legato (now EMC) had Co-Standby Server, which has now evolved into Autostart. I have used Co-Standby since its days with Vinca and then into Legato. It does disk level bit replication, and allows a fail over cluster to exist without the need of shared storage. Their own management software monitors for server failure and automatically takes over much the same way Microsoft clustering does. If you can't afford Enterprise Edition, then Legato is a far easier purchase. Downside: Both servers have to exist in the same datacenter and will have a dedicated link between them for the disk replication.

    - Note: this product is NOT limited to just SQL Server. You can use it for a lot of things. It is basically failover clustering for virtually any app/service.

    NSI Doubletake: While not a clustering solution, it does let you implement 'block' level file replication. What ever gets written to disk for a monitored file also goes into the queue to go to the destination server. The cool aspect to this as it can watch all file I/O on your SQL databases and capture that and send it over a slow link like a WAN to remote server. It also is not specifically tied to SQL server. But, as a downside, recovery on the far side (where ever that is for you) will be a manual task. NSI claims there is some scripting ability you can implement to make the process almost automatic, but until I actually use the product, I am not so trusting yet.

    Note: We (my company) are considering this to keep several of our database servers in our corporate datacenter replicated to standby servers locate on another continent.

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