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Exchange 2010 Sp1 Archive Databases and DAG's RRS feed

  • Question

  • We'd like to implement the new archive database feature with SP1,  but are not sure how to implement it with DAG's.    It would seem to me that if we want archive content available in a failover operation, we have to failover the archive database.     So if we want to leverage "cheap" storage, like SATA drives,  we'd need a "cheap" storage repository on every member of the dag and replicate archive databases between servers.

    Also, what if we have multiple primary databases on one server, but create a single archive database.     What happens if we want to failover one of the databases on that server, but not the complete server?    When users start accessing the failed over database, will they still be able to reference the archive database back on the original server?   I'm guessing yes, since the CAS server handles all database access traffic.  

    I haven't been able to find a doc from Microsoft that defines best practices for using archive databases in a DAG environment.       

    Any feedback and/or references to official documentation on this topic would be appreciated. 

    Thursday, October 14, 2010 8:10 PM

Answers

  • Thats what I thought, but in a complete server outage, you would need to replicate those archive databases the same as any other database, correct?    

    Just to clarify a little.... there is no such thing as an "Archive Database" so any DB you use for Archive Mailboxes should be designed and treated just like any other database, because it is just like any other database. :) You can certainly choose to only put archive mailboxes inside of a particular database, but it is still just a mailbox database. It will not function any differently from the other DBs in your org.
    Microsoft Premier Field Engineer, Exchange
    MCSA 2000/2003, CCNA
    MCITP: Enterprise Messaging Administrator 2010
    Former Microsoft MVP, Exchange Server
    My posts are provided “AS IS” with no guarantees, no warranties, and they confer no rights.
    • Proposed as answer by Alan.Gim Thursday, October 21, 2010 8:28 AM
    • Marked as answer by Alan.Gim Friday, October 22, 2010 7:58 AM
    Friday, October 15, 2010 1:54 PM
  • A personal archive is nothing but a special kind of mailbox. Decoupling of mailbox / archive location makes it indeed possible to use low cost storage to host your personal archives. That doesn't mean you shouldn't think about making that redundant as well; after all, when enabled for archiving the mail ecosystem may look for it (e.g. rules). On the plus side, you could however do with equal low cost redundant hardware.


    Michel de Rooij,
    MCITP Ent.Msg 2007+2010| MCTS W2008, Ex2007+2010 Conf, OCS2007 Conf | MCSE+Msg2k3 | MCSE+Inet2k3 | Prince2 Fnd | ITIL
    I blog on http://eightwone.wordpress.com/ and tweet on http://twitter.com/mderooij
    • Proposed as answer by Alan.Gim Thursday, October 21, 2010 8:28 AM
    • Marked as answer by Alan.Gim Friday, October 22, 2010 7:58 AM
    Friday, October 15, 2010 2:14 PM

All replies

  • The databases operate independently so you can activate a database on server B whilst leaving the archive database on server A.
    "Scott Haigh" wrote in message news:995d5cdb-4eb0-4be0-8181-a206150bf893...

    We'd like to implement the new archive database feature with SP1,  but are not sure how to implement it with DAG's.    It would seem to me that if we want archive content available in a failover operation, we have to failover the archive database.     So if we want to leverage "cheap" storage, like SATA drives,  we'd need a "cheap" storage repository on every member of the dag and replicate archive databases between servers.

    Also, what if we have multiple primary databases on one server, but create a single archive database.     What happens if we want to failover one of the databases on that server, but not the complete server?    When users start accessing the failed over database, will they still be able to reference the archive database back on the original server?   I'm guessing yes, since the CAS server handles all database access traffic.  

    I haven't been able to find a doc from Microsoft that defines best practices for using archive databases in a DAG environment.       

    Any feedback and/or references to official documentation on this topic would be appreciated. 


    Mark Arnold, Exchange MVP.
    Thursday, October 14, 2010 8:19 PM
  • Thats what I thought, but in a complete server outage, you would need to replicate those archive databases the same as any other database, correct?      Which goes back to my first point about having cheap storage on every member of the dag to house archive database replicas. 

    Another possibility is to have a completely separate server host your archive databases outside of the DAG.   This server could be configured with cheap storage, and it's databases accessed regardless of the failover operations that occur on the DAG members.    Obviously a single point of failure,  but the point being that the archive databases really  have no correlation to the primary databases and can exist anywhere.  

     

    Thursday, October 14, 2010 8:29 PM
  • It stands to reason (and is a support requirement) that you're either going to provide three copies of everything that you are not doing RAID or backups with. So if you dump the archive, or any production database on a single SATA disk you are, and must, have at least three servers.
     
    "Scott Haigh" wrote in message news:7809837a-7612-42d7-bd32-243f365c6128...

    Thats what I thought, but in a complete server outage, you would need to replicate those archive databases the same as any other database, correct?      Which goes back to my first point about having cheap storage on every member of the dag to house archive database replicas. 

    Another possibility is to have a completely separate server host your archive databases outside of the DAG.   This server could be configured with cheap storage, and it's databases accessed regardless of the failover operations that occur on the DAG members.    Obviously a single point of failure,  but the point being that the archive databases really  have no correlation to the primary databases and can exist anywhere.  

     


    Mark Arnold, Exchange MVP.
    Friday, October 15, 2010 1:44 PM
  • Thats what I thought, but in a complete server outage, you would need to replicate those archive databases the same as any other database, correct?    

    Just to clarify a little.... there is no such thing as an "Archive Database" so any DB you use for Archive Mailboxes should be designed and treated just like any other database, because it is just like any other database. :) You can certainly choose to only put archive mailboxes inside of a particular database, but it is still just a mailbox database. It will not function any differently from the other DBs in your org.
    Microsoft Premier Field Engineer, Exchange
    MCSA 2000/2003, CCNA
    MCITP: Enterprise Messaging Administrator 2010
    Former Microsoft MVP, Exchange Server
    My posts are provided “AS IS” with no guarantees, no warranties, and they confer no rights.
    • Proposed as answer by Alan.Gim Thursday, October 21, 2010 8:28 AM
    • Marked as answer by Alan.Gim Friday, October 22, 2010 7:58 AM
    Friday, October 15, 2010 1:54 PM
  • A personal archive is nothing but a special kind of mailbox. Decoupling of mailbox / archive location makes it indeed possible to use low cost storage to host your personal archives. That doesn't mean you shouldn't think about making that redundant as well; after all, when enabled for archiving the mail ecosystem may look for it (e.g. rules). On the plus side, you could however do with equal low cost redundant hardware.


    Michel de Rooij,
    MCITP Ent.Msg 2007+2010| MCTS W2008, Ex2007+2010 Conf, OCS2007 Conf | MCSE+Msg2k3 | MCSE+Inet2k3 | Prince2 Fnd | ITIL
    I blog on http://eightwone.wordpress.com/ and tweet on http://twitter.com/mderooij
    • Proposed as answer by Alan.Gim Thursday, October 21, 2010 8:28 AM
    • Marked as answer by Alan.Gim Friday, October 22, 2010 7:58 AM
    Friday, October 15, 2010 2:14 PM