15/08/2013

The secret update on Lync 2013 and SQL Cluster


In the last few days, Microsoft has done some changes in what they support when it comes to SQL Server.

Lync Server 2013 supports the use of either SQL mirroring or SQL clustering for each Lync Server database. You can easily set up SQL mirroring with the Topology Builder tool in Lync Server 2013. For SQL failover clustering, you must use SQL Server deployment tool.

The following is mentioned on Technet!

Lync Server 2013 supports SQL clustering topologies for all deployments, including greenfield deployments and organizations that have upgraded from previous versions of Lync Server.

SQL Clustering support is for an active/passive configuration. For performance reasons, the passive node should not be shared by any other SQL instance.

The following support is included:

· Two-node failover clustering for the following:

oMicrosoft SQL Server 2012 Standard (64-bit edition). Additionally running the latest service pack is recommended.

oMicrosoft SQL Server 2008 R2 Standard (64-bit edition). Additionally running the latest service pack is recommended.

· Up to sixteen-node failover clustering for the following:

oMicrosoft SQL Server 2012 Enterprise (64-bit edition). Additionally running the latest service pack is recommended.

oMicrosoft SQL Server 2008 R2 Enterprise database software (64-bit edition). Additionally running the latest service pack is recommended.

For more information about SQL mirroring, see Back End Server High Availability. For details on how to deploy SQL clustering, see Configure SQL Server Clustering.


Be aware that Microsoft still recommend SQL Mirroring. In my correspondence with Microsoft TAP team, they are clear on the fact that Lync 2013 is designed to use SQL Mirroring.

From what I have tested so far is that Topology builder will not be able to deploy the databases by using dynamic ports for the SQL, who are other than SQL standard ports for communication.

Normally the SQL Server use as we know TCP port 1433/1434. In a cluster environment, we also might use instance and Dynamic ports for the SQL.

You will from what I have experienced get RTC connection error when using dynamic ports for the SQL.

My experience are based on a customer Lync 2010 upgrade to Lync 2013 enterprise edition. The Lync 2010 using the base SQL in the cluster (first node) on port 1433/1434. When we started to build the topology and told the Lync 2013 environment we wanted to use another SQL server in the cluster, it failed. Because it was using Dynamic port, the deployment of the new databases failed. We had to create a new SQL server on the outside of the cluster where we installed the databases.

I have spoken with the Microsoft TAP-team and they are not sure if this has been officially tested.

I will keep this blog updated as we get more information about this issue.

If anyone out there have experiences they would like to share, please comment on this blog.