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Our press releases provide our clients, the press and interested third parties with a single, easy to access source of company related information. Contact our public relations team at social@i3D.net.

Latest Press Release

Choosing the right network setup for a twin datacenter
PRESS RELEASE
Rotterdam, The Netherlands - July 21st, 2016 -

One of the largest challenges there is, is to achieve 100% availability. Is it possible to achieve this theoretical figure? First of all a second datacenter location has to be found and a network in-between has to be created. But where to begin? Here at SmartDC we regularly discuss the various network options with our clients and we therefore want to provide an overview of the pros and options that can be taken and should in to consideration. 

The goal here is to give a general idea of the network component of a twin datacenter setup. To setup such a network, knowledgeable colleagues or collaboration with someone who´s able to configure and maintain a network. The solutions provided below can prevent common SPOFs. Of course hardware and storage need to be mirrored on both datacenter locations and local break outs via one or multiple carriers are available.

Public BGP

In this setup we assume an AS and public IP space is owned. This makes it is very easy to open up the second location. There are no points of failure in this networksetup. The basic necessities consist of at least four BGP+VTEP routers, ideally Brocade VDX6740's. These routers have the capability to provision a redundant layer 2 circuit on top of a dynamically routed network between the two datacenters. This technology allows one to utilize the same IP address pool on both locations in a loop-free topology. If one site goes down the other automatically takes over, without the need to manually intervene to bring all of the services back online. OSPF + VRRPe are used to detect and route around faults on the transport layer, which in turn safeguards the stability of the VTEP layer which rides on top of the normal routing.

The circuits between the two facilities can be MPLS, wavelengths, or even dark fiber if excessive capacity is needed.

Pro

  • Safest solution
  • Easiest to maintain
  • Highest possible availability

 Con

  • Most costly solution
  • Technically trained network staff

Private BGP

When owning an AS is not an option and the company is not planning to line up for one in the future, the best alternative is a Private BGP network. This setup has the same basic principles as the Full Table BGP, but is slightly different as to the techniques that are used to setup the network. If one site goes down in this setup the other one takes over automatically. But this setup uses cheaper switches so basically as an enterprise whose business isn’t mainly focused online. At SmartDC we generally advise and build this solution. VTEP over OSPF is used here to fully setup the configuration. 

The circuits between the two facilities can either be MPLS or Wavelengths.

Pro

  • Safest solution
  • Easiest to maintain
  • Highest possible availability

Con 

  • Knowledgeable NOC

Basic setup (non BGP)

The simplest way to setup an active passive solution is to use the already used switching equipment and setup a similar stack at the other location. This solution allows for two sub configurations. The layer 2 setup and a layer 3 setup. The latter will be discussed briefly,  since the first has so many downsides. The layer 3 setup uses two static routes and quick failover when a site goes down.

The circuit between the two facilities can either be MPLS or Wavelengths.

Pro

  • Low cost
  • Easiest to maintain
  • Highest possible availability

 Con

  • Knowledgeable NOC
  • Configurations needed when site goes down

Three solutions as promised with pros and cons. If you want to know more just contact us and we’ll work out a setup. To find out more about BGP, view this video and read more here.


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