Work

Arte Espina – www.arteespina.nl

First Internship
My third year at Gilde Opleidingen I was sent out on an internship to a company called Arte Espina. At this time, Arte Espina had about 40 employees, two of them were working at the IT department. The network consisted of several dual Xeon servers and Fast Ethernet HP switches. There was a Windows 2003 domain controller, with Exchange 2003 installed on to it. All the other servers were running either Windows Server 2003 or Windows Server 2003 R2. The was no redundancy at servers or network level. During this first 20 weeks, I mostly got familiar with the company, the people and the network. I did a few basic tasks but didn’t make big changes to their infrastructure.

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Second Internship
The forth and last year at Gilde Opleidingen, I had to do a second internship. This time I could choose the company myself. Because I had a great experience with Arte Espina, I decided to go back there again. This time I already knew the company and the network, so I could get started right away. This way I had more time to focus on my assignment. I had the assignment to implement something that would benefit the network. After doing a inventory, I decided to install WSUS (Windows Server Update Services) on a server with low load. The WSUS package was free and there was no need for new server hardware. With this software Arte Espina could now keep all their software up to date by setting policies, instead of each workstation going on the internet and updating itself. After this internship I got my second diploma and I was finished at Gilde Opleidingen.

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Part-time employee
At this time Arte Espina had fired one of the IT employees and offered me a job. I took the job but six months later I decided to go back to school. Because my new school was a lot more flexible, I could keep working part-time at Arte Espina. This is actually where I changed to most of the infrastructure of Arte Espina. All the changes were designed and implemented by me.

File servers and backup
It began with two redundant Windows Server 2008 file servers using DFS (Distributed File System) and two 24TB iSCSI targets functioning as backup disks. The file servers each have 8TB of internal storage and replicate files between each other. Every 30 minutes the files are being backed up to one of the iSCSI targets, making sure there are several different copies of each file.

Network switches
After that, I decided to upgrade the network infrastructure by placing new switches. All switches were replaced for Gigabit Ethernet HP switches and I implemented technologies as redundancy, VLANs, Inter-VLAN routing, STP (Spanning Tree Protocol) and 802.3ad link aggregation. The network was divided into six different subnets and I made a completely new IP addressing scheme.

Server Rack after virtualizing the infrastructureServer virtualization
My third project was implementing a Hyper-V server using Windows Server 2008 R2. By placing the virtual machines on an iSCSI device, I was able to make use of a function called failover clustering. With failover clustering we can migrate a virtual machine from one Hyper-V host to another, without bringing the virtual machine down. Because our budget only allowed us to purchase one new server, I used the two DFS servers as backup Hyper-V hosts. I virtualized all the physical machines except those two file servers, so this meant our server rack was being cleaned up and all the old hardware could finally be removed.

Upgrading software
With this new state of the art server rack, we needed new server software. Our domain was still running in Windows 2003 domain functional level and although the Hyper-V servers were redundant, we only had one domain controller. So I decided to install three virtual Windows Server 2008 R2 machines and promote two of them as domain controllers and the third one as Exchange 2010 server. The mailboxes had to be migrated and the domain functional level was raised to Windows 2008 R2.

At the moment this is the current infrastructure of Arte Espina, as soon as I get a new project this page will get updated! Stay tuned.

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