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    Running revit on a virtual server

    We are in the process of doing the research to build a new server here for our office.

    We are a small firm who currently has four users. This would be projected out to a maximum of 8-9 users. We have never run an app server before, and currently use individual workstations. We would like to build a server that handles the DNS routing, Domain control, Exchange Email, and a app server for our Revit/CAD needs. We plan on building two identical servers and clustering them together using Citrix Xenserver.

    Questions.......where to even begin.....

    1. Is there a problem with using a NAS to serve the Revit files. I have heard mention before that Revit does not like raided drives...something about corupting the files. The NAS we are looking at is raid 6. Is the NAS not the right solution....? (Model that we are considering http://go.iomega.com/en-us/products/...erviewItem_tab)

    2. Anyone have any specs on the server that I am talking about. The big confusion is what type of graphics cards are needed...if any (maybe some other type of GPU?)



    I would love to speak with someone who has done this before. Praying someone will stop the madness..........

    #2
    When it comes to some of this stuff, you might be better off consulting with an IT specialists - you're throwing around some tech jargon, and it's hard to know whether you really understand what it means or are just repeating what you've been told... and I don't mean that as a criticism, only that it's kind of difficult to understand what you're really trying to accomplish. Frankly, it sounds kind of complicated for a firm of your size... are you the "IT guy" or do you have one on staff?

    Any Windows Server can handle DNS routing and "Domain control" (that's an interesting way of putting it)... what are you getting at?

    Have you ever setup and administered your own Exchange before? It's very complicated - I know from personal experience. Are you going to have outside help to administer it? I'd suggest looking into a "hosted Exchange" solution or Microsoft Office 365.

    Not sure what you mean by an "app server for our Revit/CAD needs"... just the license server? Are you attempting to run Revit off the server?

    What do you mean by using Citrix Xenserver to cluster the two servers together? Why do you think you need this product?

    There's not a problem using a NAS for Revit. Entry-level ones may not offer the best performance. I can't speak about the Iomega you've suggested. Revit works fine with most RAID setups, though certain settings may need to be adjusted to get the best disk performance (I know this was an issue with some versions of Revit and Windows Server having to do with write cache settings). However, I can't fathom why you would need anything more than RAID 1. How could an office of your size need more than 2-3 TB of data storage? Avoid RAID 5, 6, etc. if you can. It's complexity you simply don't need.

    That you're "confused" about what type of graphics card is needed for the server suggests that you're going to run Revit off the server?

    It does sound like madness...

    I'll be frank... I don't think you want to do what you think you want to do.

    :beer:

    Originally posted by scboy View Post
    We are in the process of doing the research to build a new server here for our office.

    We are a small firm who currently has four users. This would be projected out to a maximum of 8-9 users. We have never run an app server before, and currently use individual workstations. We would like to build a server that handles the DNS routing, Domain control, Exchange Email, and a app server for our Revit/CAD needs. We plan on building two identical servers and clustering them together using Citrix Xenserver.

    Questions.......where to even begin.....

    1. Is there a problem with using a NAS to serve the Revit files. I have heard mention before that Revit does not like raided drives...something about corupting the files. The NAS we are looking at is raid 6. Is the NAS not the right solution....? (Model that we are considering http://go.iomega.com/en-us/products/...erviewItem_tab)

    2. Anyone have any specs on the server that I am talking about. The big confusion is what type of graphics cards are needed...if any (maybe some other type of GPU?)



    I would love to speak with someone who has done this before. Praying someone will stop the madness..........

    Comment


      #3
      You might want to take a look at Small Business Server 2011 Standard... For a small office this would work great...I used this for our office when I was running Civil 3D and autocad..

      Build a system so that the file server is on different drives than everything else in case of hard drive failures...Having everything on one drive on a RAID is asking for trouble....you better have an awesome backup that works...


      Why do you want to run Revit on the server? That is something I would not consider...if your wanting remote access for users that might want to work from home, I would use the Remote Desktop feature with SBS...

      But definitely seek out an IT Consultant that is familiar with the in and outs of Revit... After I left my position as network admin my replacement didn't know SBS and changed out the server for 5 different ones (Domain, SQL, Exchange, FAX & File/backup Server) and almost bankrupted the company with the cost. And to top it off it had a ton of issues with CAD... :/
      Michael "MP" Patrick (Deceased - R.I.P)

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by MPwuzhere View Post
        You might want to take a look at Small Business Server 2011 Standard... For a small office this would work great...I used this for our office when I was running Civil 3D and autocad.....
        Is this Windows Small Business Server 2011 Standard (for $545) an alternative to work with Revit Server instead of using Microsoft Windows Server R2 64-Bit (for $1029)?
        Freelance BIM Provider at Autodesk Services Marketplace | Linkedin

        Comment


          #5
          Oh man where to begin.... Ummm

          Citrix.
          I assume you will be using Citrix for your virtual connections then? Have you considered any other options Citrix is very expensive and SBS I believe comes with several VM Ware licenses. Consider the cost involved with the VM listening over buying individual computers. You can get a very capable Revit desktop for 1200.

          Keep things separate.
          DNS routing + Domain control, Exchange Email, App Server
          Exchange can take a ton of resources. I would make 3 servers. DNS and Domain are kind of the same ball. I would always use my domain controller to administer DNS as well.

          NAS.
          The NAS will be your bottle neck in your network. Consider a internal hard drives or SAS.

          APP server.
          Our current set up supports 20 people at once.
          Dual Xeon E5640 , 48GB Ram, Quadro 2000 card.


          Iru69 is correct in stating...
          "When it comes to some of this stuff, you might be better off consulting with an IT specialists - you're throwing around some tech jargon, and it's hard to know whether you really understand what it means or are just repeating what you've been told... and I don't mean that as a criticism, only that it's kind of difficult to understand what you're really trying to accomplish. Frankly, it sounds kind of complicated for a firm of your size... are you the "IT guy" or do you have one on staff?"

          Also get a 2nd opinion. Try to find a IT company that deals with Revit. Most IT people don't understand what Revit does in the first place. Revit is a VERY demanding program!

          Whatever you do, thoroughly test it before going into production with it.
          -Alex Cunningham

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Alfredo Medina View Post
            Is this Windows Small Business Server 2011 Standard (for $545) an alternative to work with Revit Server instead of using Microsoft Windows Server R2 64-Bit (for $1029)?
            SBS is the domain server, Exchange and SQL server on server...makes things a bit easier getting everything to work in one place instead of multiple servers... I have no idea of Revit Server would work on it though...My guess is since SBS is so integrated it may not play nicely. But it does support Virtual Servers if you get the premium package...but does Revit Server work on virtuals?
            Michael "MP" Patrick (Deceased - R.I.P)

            Comment

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