Booting Windows from the SAN
Rick Cook

Booting a Windows 2000 server from the SAN is useful in a disaster situation where the main server may be unavailable.

Normally Windows boots from a disk attached directly to the main server. But if the server with the boot LUN has crashed or is otherwise compromised, it can take extra work to boot the system from another server. A number of products offer

Requires Free Membership to View

boot-from-SAN abilities for Windows SANs, among them Hewlett Packard's SANLink and Dell's Powervault 530F. Both of these are SAN appliances that run as part of the SAN rather than as servers. With such a device installed a new server can be designated, either locally or remotely, and booted from the SAN array instead of a local disk attached to the server. Here's how Dell describes the process with its PowerVault 530. " Each Windows NT or Windows 2000 server on the SAN can be configured with its own virtual boot device.

The boot device is mapped by the PowerVault 530F to appear as LUN 0 to the server, a requirement of these operating systems. If one server fails, a new server can be brought online by booting it from an external SAN disk array instead of its local disk. In addition, this boot device can be mirrored to a remote site, so in the unlikely event of a primary storage array failure, the server can be mapped to the remote boot device."

Dell Computer talks about the advantages of booting from a SAN in an article titled "Disaster Recovery with the Powervault 530F." And you can read about the Dell PowerVault 530F.

Hewlett Packard discusses its SANLink performance, including booting from the SAN, in a white paper at: www.hp.com/products1/storage/san/sanlink/white-paper.pdf.

The design for a SAN using boot from SAN is sketched at: http://www.1perscom.army.mil/DOIM/Documents/Architecture.htm


Editor's note: The mention of products or services in this tip is for example only, and does not imply that such products or services listed are an all-inclusive list. Moreover, the mention of such products of services does not imply endorsement of them by SearchStorage.com.

Rick Cook has been writing about mass storage since the days when the term meant an 80K floppy disk. The computers he learned on used ferrite cores and magnetic drums. For the last twenty years he has been a freelance writer specializing in storage and other computer issues.


 

This was first published in February 2002

There are Comments. Add yours.

 
TIP: Want to include a code block in your comment? Use <pre> or <code> tags around the desired text. Ex: <code>insert code</code>

REGISTER or login:

Forgot Password?
By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy
Sort by: OldestNewest

Forgot Password?

No problem! Submit your e-mail address below. We'll send you an email containing your password.

Your password has been sent to:

Disclaimer: Our Tips Exchange is a forum for you to share technical advice and expertise with your peers and to learn from other enterprise IT professionals. TechTarget provides the infrastructure to facilitate this sharing of information. However, we cannot guarantee the accuracy or validity of the material submitted. You agree that your use of the Ask The Expert services and your reliance on any questions, answers, information or other materials received through this Web site is at your own risk.