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From: David MacKinnon (davidm_at_obsidian.com.au)
Date: Wed 20 Oct 2004 - 10:20:19 BST

Mike Fischer wrote:

> Hello List,
> this may be a little off-topic, but I value your opinions.
> I'm running our company mailserver and webserver on a single host
> machine using vservers. There have been problems in the past so I
> am now faced with the tast of keeping the vital services redundant
> across two machines to have a switchover in case of failure.
> In numbers, this means I will have to synchronize 90 Gigs of Maildata
> and another 16 Gigs of vserver data (using SuSE, vunify was not an
> option) over a direct 1GB link between the two machines.
> I already copied the maildata, and it took just a few hours.

We're in the process of setting up drbd so we have can bring up a backup
server for our vservers (well, fileserver that serves the vserver
directories, close enough :)). So far I've been quite impressed with it.
I remember looking at it a while back, and one thing that put me off at
the time was the prospect of a full sync if the machines got out of
sync. Since we're currently using it on a 500gig partition, with room to
expand that beyond a terabyte, that was a real concern :)

drbd now does intelligent syncing, which so far is working well (I've
been doing some moderately evil things to the machines to test failover,
although I haven't simulated drive failure yet). I did notice a slight
performance hit on writes, but nothing excessive.

In my personal experience I've found rsync memory usage starts
escalating with large number of small files. It's also a bit more cpu
intensive than drbd. This may or may not be a concern for you.

Hope that helps a bit.

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