Friday, February 26, 2010

Book Review: Pro SQL Server 2008 Failover Clustering

 

Pro SQL Server 2008 Failover Clustering, by Alan Hirt is over 370 pages about installing, configuring and tuning your SQL Server 2008 failover cluster. This book is a must read for everyone interested in migrating SQL 2005 in a failover cluster to SQL 2008 on Windows 2008 or anyone who just want to know some basic aspects about clustering in Windows 2008, some concepts also work for SQL 2005.

The book cover the following topics:

  • Failover Clustering Basics
  • Preparing to Cluster Windows
  • Clustering Windows Server 2008 Part 1: Preparing Windows
  • Clustering Windows Server 2008 Part 2: Clustering Windows
  • Preparing to Cluster SQL Server 2008
  • Installing a New SQL Server 2008 Failover Clustering Instance
  • Upgrading to SQL Server 2008 Failover Clustering
  • Administering a SQL Server 2008 Failover Cluster
  • Virtualization and Failover Clustering.

I’m right now following chapter by chapter the entire book to configure my SQL Server 2008 on my Windows 2008 cluster. What I liked the most about this book is that it teachs you how to configure anything using GUI, commands and PowerShell.

Failover Clustering Basics:

This chapter talks about some very basic aspects of clustering, before you actually even touch the server, the things you must know.

Preparing to Cluster Windows
This chapter starts explaining the concepts about clustering in Windows 2008, how to create them, quorum configuration, about the changes about the account that runs the cluster.

Clustering Windows Server 2008 Part 1: Preparing Windows

This chapter talks about networking (I think I should have talked about disabling TCP Offload, RSS, TCPA, etc), windows 2008 features to enable and expand more about the special account that runs the cluster.

Clustering Windows Server 2008 Part 2: Clustering Windows

It explains about the validations you should run in your cluster, before installing anything, quorum configurations.

Preparing to Cluster SQL Server 2008

This chapter starts talking about SQL 2008,  what is clusterable and what not and some considerations you should be aware and what they entail.

Installing a New SQL Server 2008 Failover Clustering Instance

This chapter talks about the installation steps in SQL 2008, it guides step by step toward the end and it is very useful, you can follow easily these steps and configure your cluster in minutes.

Upgrading to SQL Server 2008 Failover Clustering

This talks about some considerations you should be aware if you are migrating from SQL 2000 or SQL 2005, very helpful, there other books that covers this more deeply though.

Administering a SQL Server 2008 Failover Cluster

This chapter talks about some related things you may be into, after you have your cluster up and running, like adding disks, nodes, changing ips, etc

To sum up, I deeply recommend this book to anyone involved in installing and migrating SQL servers to SQL 2008