It's been a few weeks since my last posts but I've got a bunch in the pipeline coming up.

Firstly, I've got it together to start using the hardware we got a while back. I'm going to be doing some benchmarking, perf testing and playing with various HA technologies, and of course blogging a bunch about what I discover. The hardware was a lot of fun to put together!

This is kind of a reference post, detailing the hardware setup, so I can link to it in all the posts where I use our hardware.

Photos: front and back (no Facebook login required).

Here's what I'll be using, all mounted in a 42U rack:

  • 2 x Dell PowerEdge 1950 servers, each with
    • 2 x quad-core Xeon E5405 Processor2x6MB Cache, 2.0GHz, 1333MHz FSB
    • 8GB 667MHz RAM
    • 2 x 146GB 15K RPM SCSI drive (for OS etc)
    • 4 3GBps NICs
    • Windows Server 2008 Enterprise SP1 64-bit
    • Multiple SQL Server 2008 Enterprise instances
  • (Upper array) Dell PowerVault MD3000i iSCSI array with 2 dual-port controllers
    • 15 x 1TB 7.2K RPM SATA drives
  • (Middle array) Dell PowerVault MD3000i iSCSI array with 2 dual-port controllers
    • 8 x 300GB 15K RPM SCSI drives
  • (Bottom array) Dell PowerVault MD3000i iSCSI array with 2 dual-port controllers
    • 8 x 1TB 7.2K RPM SATA drives
  • Connected with 1GbE through two PowerConnect 5424 24-port iSCSI optimized switches 

The drives will be reconfigured and I'll specify what I'm using in each post.

The SQL Server instances are vanilla installs, with no special parameters, sp_configure options, or trace flags. If I use any I'll detail them in each post.

Time to get using it!