This week I attended a high availability workshop with Microsoft called “Protect your Business with AlwaysOn”. It was a 1-day workshop focused on SQL Server 2012 AlwaysOn Availability Groups, which was FREE of charge to their enterprise customers.
Why was I interested in attending this workshop?
- Microsoft has done a good job with their marketing SQL Server 2012 AlwaysOn features to the management of companies (https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/sqlserver/solutions-technologies/mission-critical-operations/high-availability.aspx). And my management, like most, has shown an interest in trying to find out how it can be leveraged in our environment.
- Also, this workshop included hand-on lab work as opposed to just presentations. I felt this would be very beneficial, because I would not have to setup my own test environment, just to understand this feature, which would save me time.
What did I really enjoy about attending this workshop?
- Overall, they gave a nice presentation of AlwaysOn Availability Groups mixed in with the lab work (http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ff877884.aspx).
- Here were some of the details:
- Discussed how to identify factors that will affect high availability (HA) and disaster recovery (DR) requirements, which also included non-technical processes.
- Created a Windows Server 2012 Failover Cluster with no shared disks.
- Created, configured, and managed multiple AlwaysOn Availability Groups for HA/DR on premise, and in the cloud (Azure).
- Instructors demonstrated how the Operations Manager and Database Protection Manager components of System Center 2012 (http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/server-cloud/products/system-center-2012-r2/default.aspx#fbid=mjMi72u5Z3-) could be used with SQL Server 2012.
After leaving this workshop, I felt very comfortable implementing SQL Server 2012 AlwaysOn features. So, if an option like this is available to your company, I feel that you should definitely take advantage of it. Being able to test features in a lab environment with experienced instructors is definitely worth the time involved.