SQL Server 2014 Installation

SQL Server 2014 is already here and it enables customers to build mission-critical applications and Big Data solutions using high-performance, in-memory technology across OLTP, data warehousing, business intelligence and analytics workloads without having to buy expensive add-ons or high-end appliances. SQL Server 2014 uses a common set of tools to deploy and manage databases both on-premises and in the cloud, which makes it easier for customers to take advantage of the cloud with existing skills.

Download Link to evaluate SQL Server 2014-
(http://technet.microsoft.com/en-US/evalcenter/dn205290.aspx)

1) Go to the setup binaries location and execute the setup file –
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2) Click the ‘Installation’ option-
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3) In this case, I am installing SQL Server on a standalone machine so select the 1st option (New SQL Server stand alone installation) –
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4) We can select Next on this window –
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5) Verification of setup support rules –
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6) I am going to perform a new installation of SQL 2014 (Other option is to add features to existing instances of SQL Server 2014)-
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7) Enter the product key if you are going with a licensed edition (I have downloaded the free version – Evaluation)-
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8) Accept the license and click Next-
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9) Select Feature Installation and click Next-
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10) Select the required features for the installation and click Next- 
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11) Specify a name if you are going with ‘Named Instance’ –
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12) Mention the service accounts for SQL Server services and key in their password (Ensure that full permissions are assigned to the data/log/tempdb directories)-
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13) In Account Provisioning, I am going to use ‘Mixed Mode’. The options are either “Windows Authentication”, which will take benefit from domain and local server logins, or “Mixed Mode”, which accepts Domain/Windows logins as well as logins created and managed by SQL Server.If you pick “Mixed Mode” a login called “sa”, member of the “Sysadmin” role will be enabled.  

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Choose the data directories as per your requirement –
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14) Verify the configuration settings once again, before you hit Next and if everything is in order, click Install –
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15) SQL Server 2014 is now installed. Login to SSMS and get started-
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Happy learning.

Cheers!
Aman Kharbanda

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Removal of node from SQL Server Cluster

To remove a node from an existing SQL Server 2008 failover cluster

1) Insert the SQL Server installation media. From the root folder, double-click setup.exe. To install from a network share, navigate to the root folder on the share, and then double-click setup.exe. .
2) If the Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Setup dialog box appears, click OK to install the prerequisites, then click Cancel to quit the SQL Server 2008 installation.
3) Windows Installer 4.5 is required, and may be installed by the Installation Wizard. If you are prompted to restart your computer, restart and then start SQL Server 2008 setup.exe again.
4) When prerequisites are installed, the Installation Wizard will launch the SQL Server Installation Center.
5) To remove a node from an existing failover cluster instance, click Maintenance in the left-hand pane, and then select Remove node from a SQL Server failover cluster.
6) The System Configuration Checker will run a discovery operation on your computer. To continue, click OK. Setup log files have been created for your installation. 
7) The Installation Wizard will install SQL Server prerequisites if they are not already on the computer. They include the following:
SQL Server Setup Support Files
8) To install prerequisites, click Install.
9) The System Configuration Checker will verify the system state of your computer before Setup continues. After the check is complete, click Next to continue.
10) On the Cluster Node Configuration page, use the drop-down box to specify the name of the SQL Server 2008 failover cluster instance that will be modified during this Setup operation. The node that will be removed will be listed in the “Name of this node” field.
The Ready to Remove page displays a tree view of options that will be removed during Setup. To continue, click Remove.
11) During the remove operation, the Remove Node Progress page provides status.
12) The Complete page provides a link to the summary log file for the remove node operation and other important notes. To complete the SQL Server remove node operation, click Close. 

Key things to note

1) Removal of node should always be performed on the current non-active or the passive node.
2) This removal won’t affect the functioning of other node i.e. Active Node.
3) No downtime is required for the removal of node from clustered environment.
4) Applications won’t be affected since they are connected to the serving node which is the Active one.
5) You will loose the option of HA (High Availability) with the removal of node (In case of 2 node cluster).
6) Services won’t be able to failover in case of a disaster or server crash because we have eliminated or evicted one of the nodes.

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Happy learning.

Cheers!
Aman Kharbanda

SQL Server Cluster Installation (Part 2)

In continuation of the series on how to install a SQL Server 2008 R2 clustered instance, let’s discuss how to add a node into an existing SQL Server clustered instance. The following steps are performed either to add one more node to some already installed clustered instance, or to continue the installation of a brand new clustered instance. 

So connect to the next node, in this case W2K8R2N2, and perform the following steps:

1.) Make sure that you have the same SQL Server 2008 R2 media used to install in the other node available and execute the “Setup” binary.
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2) On “SQL Server Installation Center”, click “Installation” and select “Add node to a SQL Server failover cluster”.
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3)  A check will run in order to verify the setup support rules. Click “OK”.
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4) Accept the terms and click “Next”.
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5) Another check will run in order to identify problems within the installation process. Click “Next”.
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6) Select the instance name which you had configured on the first node.
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7) Key in the domain account name and their passwords in the service accounts window-
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8) Like in the other (first) node, you have the option to send error reports to Microsoft. Click on “Next”.
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9) Setup will verify if the installation process can be blocked-
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10) Review the options and click on Install –

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11) Node addition is complete! Just verify if all of the features have succeeded. Click “Close” and you are done!
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With the completion or rather addition of Node 2, we can now perform a failover from W2K8R2N1 and W2K8R2N2, So we have now a high availability (HA) solution.
In case of a hardware failure on the active node, we will have a failover action.

Verfication

1) Go to FCM (Failover Cluster Manager), and verify if you can see all the nodes/resource groups/owner and summary of your SQL Server
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2) Open SSMS, and use t-sql commands to see your server name and whether its clustered or not and also, who is the current active node-
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Happy learning.

Cheers!
Aman Kharbanda

 

SQL Server Cluster Installation (Part 1)

I will be installing SQL Server Cluster setup on 2 nodes and it will be a 2 part exercise-

  1. New instance installation in one of the nodes.
  2. Add the other node to the existing clustered instance.

Background
A clustered instance is a SQL Server instance installed over a Windows Failover Cluster (WFC) service. WFC service helps us to protect from hardware failure scenarios. In a scenario of a cluster with two nodes, we are talking about two servers, with similar hardware configuration, connected by a Failover Cluster service. Out of the 2 nodes, one of them will be serving as ‘Active Node’ while the other will be in Idle state. WFC accepts shared storage, which means that we need a SAN to store the database files (logs and data).

Pre-requisites
Before we start the installation, we need to assure that we have the following items ready to be used:

  • A virtual hostname or SQL Server Network Name – “MyVIPName″ (Outside world or the applications will be knowing your SQL Server via this name. It will further take it to the current Active Node).
  • A virtual IP, a.k.a vIP. We will use: 192.168.1.6.
  • Available shared storage.
  • Windows Server Nodes – W2K8R2N1 and W2K8R2N2.
  • Windows Cluster Name – WIN2K8R2CLUSTER
  • Service Accounts: One for SQL Server Engine and another for SQL Server Agent. We will use the following accounts: SQL2K8WKS\SQL2K8R2SVC and SQL2K8WKS\SQLAgent2K8R2SVC. These service accounts are domain accounts. We have no other choice, to build a cluster we need to be part of a domain.

We shall first be starting with the setup on Node 1->

1) With the SQL Server installation binaries available, click “Setup”:
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2) Click ‘Installation’ and it will take you to a new window:
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3) Select ‘New SQL Server Failover Cluster Installation’:
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4) At this step, the setup support files will be extracted and installed, click  “Install”:
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5) Verification of Setup Support Rules:
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6) Installation of Setup Support Files-
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7) Finally, we have all the setup files installed. Another check will run in order to validate if problems might occur when SQL Server files is installed.
Its recommended to have Clustered MS DTC Resource
(
http://blogs.msdn.com/b/cindygross/archive/2009/02/22/how-to-configure-dtc-for-sql-server-in-a-windows-2008-cluster.aspx) 
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8) Select “I accept the license terms” and click “Next”:

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9) Select the features you want to install:
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10) Here we will define the instance network name or the Virtual Name (one of our prerequisites). Also, here we can opt to use either a default or named instance.

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11) This step confirms if the disk space requirements are being met. Click “Next”:
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12) This is related to the Cluster Resource Group name to be used. The installation suggests a name, but you can change it.
This window also shows the reserved and already used Resource Group names. Change the Resource Group name if you are not satisfied with the suggestion and click “Next”:

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13) At this step, we will have the information of all available storage to be used on our new clustered instance.
I am going to use – SQL2008R2Base as my shared disk.

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14)  Unmark the DHCP column and fill the address column with the value of the IP. And… “Next”
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15) Use the recommended settings here-
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16) Fill the information about the SQL Server Engine and Agent service account (login and password). For a clustered instance, the “Startup Type” for the services should be as “Manual”. The Cluster Service will manage this for us.
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17) In Account Provisioning, I am going to use ‘Mixed Mode’. The options are either “Windows Authentication”, which will take benefit from domain and local server logins, or “Mixed Mode”, which accepts Domain/Windows logins as well as logins created and managed by SQL Server.If you pick “Mixed Mode” a login called “sa”, member of the “Sysadmin” role will be enabled. 

For the disk strategy, Isolate the TempDB in a faster disk and segregate the Data/Log Files in another directories.

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18) Here you have an option to send error reports or not. Click “Next”
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19) This step will determine if the installation process be blocked. 
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20) Installation has begun-
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21) Voila! Installation succeeded on the first Node-
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We shall be covering the installation on second node in Part -2 of this series.

Till then, happy learning.

Cheers!
Aman Kharbanda