Microsoft NLB with CloudGateway (Receiver Storefront) 4 Comments

Many time at many of my customer place I had to install WebInterface and bring high availability  for this front web. The first thing coming in my mind every time and the first question I have is : "Ok, do you have an appliance (F5, NetScaler) to enable the load balancing ?" Most of the time it's yes, but we cannot use it to load balance WebInterface... So if you cannot use an application to load balance the WebInterface, the solution was to use what was build-in Microsoft Windows, the Network Load Balancing. Of course this is a dummy load balancing but it's better than nothing. The Micrsoft NLB runs as a Windows networking driver. Its operations are transparent to the TCP/IP networking stack. So basically, this is what I'm doing for WebInterface and it should work as well for Receiver Storefront (CloudGateway). Here a simple how to enable Microsoft NLB for 2 Receiver Storefront servers (at least) Information : Receiver Storefront server 1 : suomiweb01.suomi.inc, 192.158.0.103 Receiver Storefront server 2 : suomiweb02.suomi.inc, 192.168.0.109 nlb details : nlbstorefront.suomi.inc, 192.168.0.121 Network Load Balancing feature in Microsoft Windows 2008 R2 To enable NLB feature on Windows 2008 R2 there are two ways, the Server Manager GUI and with a PowerShell script (to make an unattended installation) Using the Server Manager GUI Using PowerShell with the following command : That's it for the installation of the NLB feature. Setting up the NLB This is quite easy as well, just log on one of the two Receiver Storefront server and follow the next screenshots :   And then add the second Receiver Storefront server : and here you are, your Receiver Storefront is available through the address we define during the setup and you can test the high availability but powering of one server. This is cheap this is easy and if you need a fast and reliable solution I will recommend this one. Be aware ! Remember with Receiver Storefront now, there is also another component you need to make high available, this is the database which store apps subscription for users. If you don't have an appliance to load balance your Receiver Storefront servers, if your servers are virtual, you can use the hypervisor high availability instead of using the Microsoft NLB, your choice ! Sources : Overview of the Network Load Balancing : [link]

During my experimental EdgeSight setup, I have to face different error, mostly because everything was not ready or not well configure on my side but it can happen. I have install two Edgesight web server (Esx nlb) and two SQL Reporting Services server (Esx nlb too) with a database store on a SQL 2005 cluster. I didn't had the hand on the setup of the two nlb so things where a bit hard to understand since there is quiet a lot of issue and things to do to enable two VMWare ESX nlb communication. (I'm still working on it, any informations are welcome :) ) I will update this post everytime I will have an error, I hope it will help some of you. Error : Setup was unable to locate the requiered SQL Server Client Tools. The SQL Server Client Tools can usually be located on the SQL Server installation disk. You just have to install client components of SQL Server 2005 (or 2008) and RTM first :) You must have database and SQL Login creation rights on the server. This message means the credentials choose to create / access database needs to have sysadmin rights on the database server, I still hevn't understand why but still.   Error -2147217900: failed to execute SQL string, error detail: MODIFY FILE encountered operating system error 112(There is not enough space on the disk.) [...]   This error message happen when you don't have enough space where you choose to record SQL data. I think that would me near the same for log space.   The report server address used to communicate with Reporting Services is invalid This message will occure when your SQL Reporting is not reachable. I had this issue until my SQL Reporting Services ESX nlb works very fine. Error publishing reports: Server was unable to process request. ---> Timeout expired. This is a typical message when a timeout occure when you're uploding templates to the SQL Reporting Services.