Virtualizing the SharePoint 2010 Database-Tier

Over the last few months, I’ve had a number of conversations with customers regarding the virtualization of SQL Server for the database-tier of SharePoint Server 2010 deployments.  Historically, administrators have been hesitant to virtualize SQL Server database servers out of concerns for performance. With advances in virtualization technology and the adoption of new IT standards, virtual deployments have become the new norm in many organizations.

Still, virtualization is not the right choice for every workload. The purpose of this blog is to highlight the key considerations that go into deciding whether to virtualize the SharePoint database-tier.

Support for Virtualization

The first thing to consider is the SQL Server support policy for virtualization.  SQL Server 2005+ enjoys support on a wide range of virtualization platforms with two important limitations.  First, mobility technologies, i.e. VMWare VMotion, are not supported with the exception of Hyper-V Live Migration which has received thorough testing with SQL Server.  Second, virtualization snapshots are not supported on any platform, including Hyper-V. 

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By: Bryan C Smith

Virtualization of SharePoint 2010 Farm Architecture

Server virtualization technologies have taken front stage recently and many organizations have begun to replace physical servers, including SharePoint servers, with virtualized machines. Virtualization of the 2007 wave of SharePoint Products and Technologies has been supported for some time, and many 2007 farms have been successfully virtualized over the years. With a new version of SharePoint, however, comes new best practices and new techniques for virtualization of SharePoint. This session focuses specifically on SharePoint Server 2010 farm virtualization, and how components of a SharePoint 2010 environment can be successfully virtualized. Included in the discussion are new virtualization High Availability options such as Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V Live Migration of SharePoint guest sessions as well as time-tested design architecture examples using integrated SharePoint failover techniques.a

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