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M-Biz Server Scalability

7 posts in General Discussion Last posting was on 2007-12-04 09:41:11.0Z
Shao Chan Posted on 2007-11-23 16:12:16.0Z
From: "Shao Chan" <noemail@noemail.com>
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Hi all,

Does M-Biz scale? I wish to have multiple M-Biz servers in a cluster so
that when users perform an app sync, load balancing will kick in through IP
clustering so that it goes to any of the clustered M-Biz servers.

Cheers,

Shao


tiny program Posted on 2007-11-26 13:01:59.0Z
From: tiny program <tony.pigram@ianywhere.com>
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Hi Shao,

The MBusiness Anywhere Server product is built using the same technology
as the AvantGo.com service which handles millions of syncs per day. The
MBusiness Anywhere Server product is constructed in a modular manner to
allow for such scalability.


When you install the MBusiness Anywhere Server product it installs the
Soap, Admin, Sync and an ASA AGDB Service.

If you install multiple MBusiness Anywhere Servers you will need to
modify each configuration post-installation so that you do not have a
single ASA AGDB running on each MBusiness Anywhere Server but have a
single central ASA AGDB that all the MBusiness Anywhere Servers utilise.

You can disable the ASA AGDB Service on each MBusiness Anywhere Server
and modify the DSN for AGDB to refer to the new ASA Engine that will be
the single central repository database.

You can utilise different methods to reduce the single point of failure
(the single ASA AGDB database) by using either hot backups / mirroring
or indeed have the ASA AGDB database within its own cluster also.


If you use a hardware clustering solution (such as a Cisco router) then
the routing table will have to be configured to listen on a specific IP
address / port and redirect the requests to the list of IP addresses
that match your internal MBusiness Anywhere Servers.
You will then need to have a DNS entry configured to relate to the
external IP address.
On the PDAs, you will enter that DNS entry in the "hostname" entry field
when adding a new Server. ie. mobile.somewhere.com

hth,

thanks

tony pigram

Shao Chan wrote:
> Hi all,
>
> Does M-Biz scale? I wish to have multiple M-Biz servers in a cluster so
> that when users perform an app sync, load balancing will kick in through IP
> clustering so that it goes to any of the clustered M-Biz servers.
>
> Cheers,
>
> Shao
>
>


Shao Chan Posted on 2007-11-26 16:30:23.0Z
From: "Shao Chan" <noemail@noemail.com>
Newsgroups: ianywhere.public.mbusinessanywhere.general
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Article PK: 9264

Hi Tony,

Thanks for that.

So if you have multiple M-Business Servers, do they point to their own IIS
webserver or a centralised one?
If we rely on one database to ensure consistency of sync, then that has to
be in an IP cluster to ensure failover right?
So you would have 2 M-Biz machines pointing to an M-Biz central database on
a shared I.P. cluster?
So a total of 4 servers?

Cheers,

Shao

"tiny program" <tony.pigram@ianywhere.com> wrote in message
news:474ac3c7$1@forums-1-dub...
> Hi Shao,
>
> The MBusiness Anywhere Server product is built using the same technology
> as the AvantGo.com service which handles millions of syncs per day. The
> MBusiness Anywhere Server product is constructed in a modular manner to
> allow for such scalability.
>
>
> When you install the MBusiness Anywhere Server product it installs the
> Soap, Admin, Sync and an ASA AGDB Service.
>
> If you install multiple MBusiness Anywhere Servers you will need to modify
> each configuration post-installation so that you do not have a single ASA
> AGDB running on each MBusiness Anywhere Server but have a single central
> ASA AGDB that all the MBusiness Anywhere Servers utilise.
>
> You can disable the ASA AGDB Service on each MBusiness Anywhere Server and
> modify the DSN for AGDB to refer to the new ASA Engine that will be the
> single central repository database.
>
> You can utilise different methods to reduce the single point of failure
> (the single ASA AGDB database) by using either hot backups / mirroring or
> indeed have the ASA AGDB database within its own cluster also.
>
>
> If you use a hardware clustering solution (such as a Cisco router) then
> the routing table will have to be configured to listen on a specific IP
> address / port and redirect the requests to the list of IP addresses that
> match your internal MBusiness Anywhere Servers.
> You will then need to have a DNS entry configured to relate to the
> external IP address.
> On the PDAs, you will enter that DNS entry in the "hostname" entry field
> when adding a new Server. ie. mobile.somewhere.com
>
> hth,
>
> thanks
>
> tony pigram
>
> Shao Chan wrote:
>> Hi all,
>>
>> Does M-Biz scale? I wish to have multiple M-Biz servers in a cluster so
>> that when users perform an app sync, load balancing will kick in through
>> IP clustering so that it goes to any of the clustered M-Biz servers.
>>
>> Cheers,
>>
>> Shao


Jeff Albion (Sybase iAnywhere) Posted on 2007-11-28 21:46:15.0Z
From: "Jeff Albion (Sybase iAnywhere)" <firstname.lastname@ianywhere.com>
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Shao Chan wrote:

> So if you have multiple M-Business Servers, do they point to their
own IIS
> webserver or a centralised one?

Is the IIS server where the web application will be hosted? Then yes,
they will all point to the same server since that information is
contained in the channel (which is shared by having all servers connect
to the same ASA database).

M-Business itself is an Apache/Tomcat solution, so in that sense, no,
they will be individual instances.

> If we rely on one database to ensure consistency of sync, then that
has to
> be in an IP cluster to ensure failover right?

Yes and no. ASA 8 can support fail-over through two solutions - a
Micorsoft Cluster Service, or a live backup solution whereas the
database is consistently "mirrored" to a backup for quick restoration in
the event of device failure.

For a MS Cluster Service, see our Technote:
http://www.ianywhere.com/developer/technotes/asa_cluster_db_service.html

For a "live backup" solution, see our product documentation:
http://manuals.sybase.com/onlinebooks/group-sas/awg0802e/dbdaen8/@Generic__BookTextView/31071;pt=31071#X

---

Version 10 of the SQL Anywhere software supports "high availability",
but this is currently unavailable in M-Business. Check back to our
website for new features in later versions of M-Business to see if this
will be supported.

To give you a sneak peek though, most of the information for High
Availability can be found in our documentation:
http://www.ianywhere.com/developer/product_manuals/sqlanywhere/1001/en/html/dbdaen10/da-database-mirroring-overview.html

There is also a flash presentation that is presented by Jason Hinsperger
(from our Product Management group) that is a great resource if you want
the full presentation of how it works:
http://www.ianywhere.com/downloads/jasper_beta/flash/high%20availability.html
-> The HA-specific information starts about 15 minutes into the
presentation.

There is also a walk-through sample on how to set this type of system up
in SQL Anywhere 10:
http://www.ianywhere.com/products/sql_anywhere_resources/samples/mirroring/db_mirroring_sample.html

Regards,

--
Jeff Albion, Product Support Analyst
Sybase iAnywhere

iAnywhere Developer Community : http://www.ianywhere.com/developer
iAnywhere Documentation : http://www.ianywhere.com/developer/product_manuals
ASA Patches and EBFs :
http://downloads.sybase.com/swd/summary.do?baseprod=144&client=ianywhere&timeframe=0


Shao Chan Posted on 2007-11-30 16:48:56.0Z
From: "Shao Chan" <noemail@noemail.com>
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"Jeff Albion (Sybase iAnywhere)" <firstname.lastname@ianywhere.com> wrote in
message news:474de1a7$1@forums-1-dub...
> Shao Chan wrote:
> > So if you have multiple M-Business Servers, do they point to their
> own IIS
> > webserver or a centralised one?
>
> Is the IIS server where the web application will be hosted? Then yes, they
> will all point to the same server since that information is contained in
> the channel (which is shared by having all servers connect to the same ASA
> database).
>
> M-Business itself is an Apache/Tomcat solution, so in that sense, no, they
> will be individual instances.
>
> > If we rely on one database to ensure consistency of sync, then that
> has to
> > be in an IP cluster to ensure failover right?
>
> Yes and no. ASA 8 can support fail-over through two solutions - a
> Micorsoft Cluster Service, or a live backup solution whereas the database
> is consistently "mirrored" to a backup for quick restoration in the event
> of device failure.
>
> For a MS Cluster Service, see our Technote:
> http://www.ianywhere.com/developer/technotes/asa_cluster_db_service.html
>
> For a "live backup" solution, see our product documentation:
> http://manuals.sybase.com/onlinebooks/group-sas/awg0802e/dbdaen8/@Generic__BookTextView/31071;pt=31071#X

Hi Jeff,

Thanks for that.

I guess the question is, how difficult is it to configure each M-Biz server
in a network load balanced environment? Assuming we have 3000 users that
needed to perform an application sync and 3 server boxes to take the load,
how would you configure these boxes?

We have the following components:
1) M-Business Server
2) M-Business Server Database (installed as part of the M-Business)
3) IIS on each server.
4) Network Load Balancer across the 3 servers.

We also wish for the database to fail over to a secondary site (Server 4) if
the primary site hosting M-Biz goes down.

From what I understand of what you say:
a) There is only one database 2). If you don't have only one database then
you can't ensure consistency of sync as the user synching in may come in on
any of the 3 servers. That being the case, the machine with the database is
the single point of failure right?
b) Assuming that in a) you use some kind of clustering failover (assuming
maybe you even had version 10 SQL Anywhere), then how do you then fail over
to server 4?
c) There is only one copy of the application via IIS, so you have to load
balance IIS and separate instances of M-Biz will request files from the load
balanced IIS. You have to load balance M-Biz separately to receive client
requests?

BTW, where abouts in the M-Biz document does it show you how to configure
multiple instances of M-Biz to point to a single database for data retrieval
of user settings?

Cheers,

Shao









>
> ---
>
> Version 10 of the SQL Anywhere software supports "high availability", but
> this is currently unavailable in M-Business. Check back to our website for
> new features in later versions of M-Business to see if this will be
> supported.
>
> To give you a sneak peek though, most of the information for High
> Availability can be found in our documentation:
> http://www.ianywhere.com/developer/product_manuals/sqlanywhere/1001/en/html/dbdaen10/da-database-mirroring-overview.html
>
> There is also a flash presentation that is presented by Jason Hinsperger
> (from our Product Management group) that is a great resource if you want
> the full presentation of how it works:
> http://www.ianywhere.com/downloads/jasper_beta/flash/high%20availability.html
> -> The HA-specific information starts about 15 minutes into the
> presentation.
>
> There is also a walk-through sample on how to set this type of system up
> in SQL Anywhere 10:
> http://www.ianywhere.com/products/sql_anywhere_resources/samples/mirroring/db_mirroring_sample.html
>
> Regards,
>
> --
> Jeff Albion, Product Support Analyst
> Sybase iAnywhere
>
> iAnywhere Developer Community : http://www.ianywhere.com/developer
> iAnywhere Documentation :
> http://www.ianywhere.com/developer/product_manuals
> ASA Patches and EBFs :
> http://downloads.sybase.com/swd/summary.do?baseprod=144&client=ianywhere&timeframe=0


Jeff Albion (Sybase iAnywhere) Posted on 2007-12-03 21:50:36.0Z
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Shao Chan wrote:
> I guess the question is, how difficult is it to configure each M-Biz server
> in a network load balanced environment? Assuming we have 3000 users that
> needed to perform an application sync and 3 server boxes to take the load,
> how would you configure these boxes?

So, in front of these 3 M-Business boxes, you'd need some kind of
stateful IP Load Balancer. Our professional services group has the most
experience with such a setup, so I'll let someone from there comment on
what solutions other customers have used for this component.

> We have the following components:
> 1) M-Business Server
> 2) M-Business Server Database (installed as part of the M-Business)
> 3) IIS on each server.
> 4) Network Load Balancer across the 3 servers.
>
> We also wish for the database to fail over to a secondary site (Server 4) if
> the primary site hosting M-Biz goes down.
>
> From what I understand of what you say:
> a) There is only one database 2). If you don't have only one database then
> you can't ensure consistency of sync as the user synching in may come in on
> any of the 3 servers. That being the case, the machine with the database is
> the single point of failure right?

This is correct. All of the M-Business servers would connect to the
common database server since it knows which synchs are happening for
which users, on which channels. Your concerns are also right-on: the
database is a single-point of failure, and many of our customers have
had this as a sticking point.

> b) Assuming that in a) you use some kind of clustering failover (assuming
> maybe you even had version 10 SQL Anywhere), then how do you then fail over
> to server 4?

So, this is dependent on which technology you're using for the failover.
If you're using the Microsoft Cluster Service, you'd cluster together
the two database server machines and it takes care of the rest. If you
were using VERITAS clustering, the same rule applies. If it was SQL
Anywhere 10 H/A, you set the two machines up as partners in H/A (with
yet another machine acting as an arbiter), and the fail-over happens
"automatically" (unless you set it up otherwise).

> c) There is only one copy of the application via IIS, so you have to load
> balance IIS and separate instances of M-Biz will request files from the load
> balanced IIS. You have to load balance M-Biz separately to receive client
> requests?

Yes, so your "very load-balanced" structure would look like:

[Clients]
|
[Load Balancer]
/ | \
[M-Bus]=[M-Bus]=[M-Bus]==[ASA fail-over Cluster]*
\ | /
[Load Balancer]
/ | \
[IIS] [IIS] [IIS]...
(Replicated copies of application in a load-balancing cluster)

(My apologies if the diagram doesn't show up very well!)

*Note: SQL Anywhere does not currently support load-balancing clusters,
only fail-over clusters.

-----

Before you go out and buy all sorts of hardware though, I'd thoroughly
recommend examining your application's performance on a "typical" setup.
If the performance isn't what you need, you can expand from there by
"balancing" further. We have many large customers that have found only
two balanced M-Bus servers are sufficient, with tens of thousands of
users synchronizing.

Again, the use of professional services would be critical at this point
as they have tools that can help you and your team discover what the
optimal performance is, what your requirements are, and what kinds of
hardware you should purchase to get the performance you need.

(See: http://www.ianywhere.com/support/services.html )

> BTW, where abouts in the M-Biz document does it show you how to configure
> multiple instances of M-Biz to point to a single database for data retrieval
> of user settings?

That configuration is definitely not in the docs, but is in one of our
TechNotes, featured on iAnywhere.com. See:
http://www.ianywhere.com/developer/technotes/mbiz_multiple_servers.html

(*Note, the technical document outlines how to use the "live backup"
solution for ASA v8, which is not clustering, and is not automatic
fail-over. High Availability in v10 solves the "automatic" issue).

Regards,

--
Jeff Albion, Product Support Analyst
Sybase iAnywhere

iAnywhere Developer Community : http://www.ianywhere.com/developer
iAnywhere Documentation : http://www.ianywhere.com/developer/product_manuals
ASA Patches and EBFs :
http://downloads.sybase.com/swd/summary.do?baseprod=144&client=ianywhere&timeframe=0


Shao Chan Posted on 2007-12-04 09:41:11.0Z
From: "Shao Chan" <noemail@noemail.com>
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"Jeff Albion (Sybase iAnywhere)" <firstname.lastname@ianywhere.com> wrote in
message news:47547a2c$1@forums-1-dub...
> Shao Chan wrote:
> This is correct. All of the M-Business servers would connect to the common
> database server since it knows which synchs are happening for which users,
> on which channels. Your concerns are also right-on: the database is a
> single-point of failure, and many of our customers have had this as a
> sticking point.
> Yes, so your "very load-balanced" structure would look like:
>
> [Clients]
> |
> [Load Balancer]
> / | \
> [M-Bus]=[M-Bus]=[M-Bus]==[ASA fail-over Cluster]*
> \ | /
> [Load Balancer]
> / | \
> [IIS] [IIS] [IIS]...
> (Replicated copies of application in a load-balancing cluster)
>
> (My apologies if the diagram doesn't show up very well!)
>
> *Note: SQL Anywhere does not currently support load-balancing clusters,
> only fail-over clusters.
>
> Before you go out and buy all sorts of hardware though, I'd thoroughly
> recommend examining your application's performance on a "typical" setup.
> If the performance isn't what you need, you can expand from there by
> "balancing" further. We have many large customers that have found only two
> balanced M-Bus servers are sufficient, with tens of thousands of users
> synchronizing.

Hi Jeff, thanks for the detailed response. As far as I can tell, its not
possible to have only 2 servers. Because they share a central ASA, then the
ASA becomes a single point of failure. Therefore you need the ASA server
clustered for fail over. Then to support a high volume of users, you need
to load balance 2 M-Biz servers. Therefore to ensure no single point of
failure, you need to jump to 4 machines at a minimum.

> Again, the use of professional services would be critical at this point as
> they have tools that can help you and your team discover what the optimal
> performance is, what your requirements are, and what kinds of hardware you
> should purchase to get the performance you need.

Thanks for that. We are consulting professional services as well, but its
good to get views from the newsgroup as I get a much better all rounded
response when doing so! :)

>> BTW, where abouts in the M-Biz document does it show you how to configure
>> multiple instances of M-Biz to point to a single database for data
>> retrieval of user settings?
> That configuration is definitely not in the docs, but is in one of our
> TechNotes, featured on iAnywhere.com. See:
> http://www.ianywhere.com/developer/technotes/mbiz_multiple_servers.html

Thanks for that - definately something I was looking for!

Our biggest problem is that we have a solution that sits on multiple tiers
so when selling the product, we not only have to show no single point of
failure, but also that we can fail over in a cluster and to a second site.
When you add 2 tiers (our ASA central database, our backend database) and
also add in the need to do the same with the M-Biz server, this results in a
lot of server boxes. However, I believe that the M-Biz server boxes can
double up with the ASA central tier as users will either sync the
application or sync data through ASA/Mobilink.

Cheers,

Shao

> Jeff Albion, Product Support Analyst
> Sybase iAnywhere
>
> iAnywhere Developer Community : http://www.ianywhere.com/developer
> iAnywhere Documentation :
> http://www.ianywhere.com/developer/product_manuals
> ASA Patches and EBFs :
> http://downloads.sybase.com/swd/summary.do?baseprod=144&client=ianywhere&timeframe=0