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CF8.01 Cluster creation issues - Coldfusion Server Administration

I've just recently installed CF8.01 Enterprise edition with IIS 6, and I'm trying to wrap my head around creating instances from J2EE EAR archives and clustering them on the same machine. I followed the official instructions for "Enabling clustering for load balancing and failover", but I don't quite understand why you'd want to overwrite the IIS website connected to the cfusion instance with the clustered instance, as this makes the cfusion CFIDE administrator page inaccessible. Should I create a separate webserver for the cluster first and connect it to that? Also, how can I easily update the clustered instances? We're ...

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  1. #1

    Default CF8.01 Cluster creation issues

    I've just recently installed CF8.01 Enterprise edition with IIS 6, and I'm
    trying to wrap my head around creating instances from J2EE EAR archives and
    clustering them on the same machine.

    I followed the official instructions for "Enabling clustering for load
    balancing and failover", but I don't quite understand why you'd want to
    overwrite the IIS website connected to the cfusion instance with the clustered
    instance, as this makes the cfusion CFIDE administrator page inaccessible.
    Should I create a separate webserver for the cluster first and connect it to
    that?

    Also, how can I easily update the clustered instances? We're used to editing
    templates on a test machine and then copying the changes directly to the
    production server, but obviously it won't be that simple with multiple
    instances.

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    steeef12345678 Guest

  2. #2

    Default Re: CF8.01 Cluster creation issues

    It sounds like you need some direction and understanding of how clustering
    works. These topics may be a good place for you to start:


    http://www.adobe.com/cfusion/webforums/forum/messageview.cfm?forumid=1&catid=7&t
    hreadid=1329039

    http://www.adobe.com/cfusion/webforums/forum/messageview.cfm?forumid=1&catid=143
    &threadid=1294296

    Best of luck.

    Grizzly9279 Guest

  3. #3

    Default Re: CF8.01 Cluster creation issues

    After trying a few things, I think I've got it. I created a new site in IIS
    with a new doent root, and then attached the cluster to this site. I'm
    guessing that updating templates in the new docroot will effectively update
    both instances in the cluster, so the only time I need to update the instances
    is if I need to change settings in CF Administrator (e.g. adding datasources).

    So, I've now got 4 instances of jrun: 1 running the cfusion instance, 2
    running the clustered instances, and 1 running the admin instance. Can I safely
    decrease the heap site of the cfusion instance without affecting overall
    performance?

    steeef12345678 Guest

  4. #4

    Default Re: CF8.01 Cluster creation issues

    Unfortunately it is difficult to configure a different heap size for each
    instance. When you change the heap size for one of the instances, it affects
    ALL instances. This is because this heap size is configured in jvm.config
    (JRun4\bin) which is shared by all instances.

    If you're willing to jump through a few flaming hoops, you can work around
    this limitation. This article has some excellent notes on how to approach it:
    http://mkruger.cfwebtools.com/index.cfm/2006/4/17/multiserver


    Grizzly9279 Guest

  5. #5

    Default Re: CF8.01 Cluster creation issues

    Yeah, I noticed that. It's kind of annoying having the cfusion instance taking up 128MB unnecessarily, but I don't know if I feel ambitious enough to try tweaking it.
    steeef12345678 Guest

  6. #6

    Default Re: CF8.01 Cluster creation issues

    I have been searching the web for books or doents about how to cluster
    cold fusion 8 (no books to be found). I have found a few doents but am not
    clear about what is needed beyond cold fusion and windows servers. Other
    server administrators for IIS I know say I should use NLB. In one doent the
    is a reference to a ?cluster device? that I have not found clarification on.
    Is Microsoft?s NLB needed or desirable? Do we need anything other than Good
    Code, CF8 and two windows servers?

    P.S. We write all of our web code in Cold Fusion and our Electronic Permitting
    Software is about to be required for Mining industry in WV to use. We hope to
    cluster our web site in preparation for this requirement.

    Thank you
    Neil Chakrabarty
    Server Admin & Oracle Database Admin
    www.wvdep.org


    WV_DEP_GUY Guest

  7. #7

    Default Re: CF8.01 Cluster creation issues

    A good article on the software aspect of it:
    http://www.adobe.com/devnet/coldfusion/articles/clustering_cf8.html

    I'd suggest looking into F5's BigIP Load Balancer or a Cisco one.
    NeoRye Guest

  8. #8

    Default Re: CF8.01 Cluster creation issues

    Hi NeoRye,
    Thank your for the link. I had allready read this and it is the source of
    my confusion. In the article Mike mentions a cluster device that is not in the
    Cold Fusion Cluster setup instructions.
    Is a cluster device required for failover and or load balancing?

    Thank you
    Neil Chakrabarty.

    WV_DEP_GUY Guest

  9. #9

    Default Re: CF8.01 Cluster creation issues

    NLB is great if you've got just a small site or two with a smaller load
    requirement. But as Neo says, you'll want to look into a hardware based load
    balancer.

    I personally detest Cisco's load balancers. In my 8 years of experience with
    the things, I think they're junk. But they'll run forever.

    F5 is good, but over priced. You could check into Radware or Zeus as
    alternatives.

    If you've spooled up a clustered CF environment, you shouldn't need that old
    ColdFusion instance all the time. You could set it up so that you start it
    when you need it (like the JRun admin).

    Finally, it is a snap to have each instance using a different config file.
    You can start the server on the command line with the -config switch, or create
    a service with:

    ../jrun4/bin/jrunsvc ?install cfusion1 ?JRun Cfusion1 Server? ? config
    jvm.config_cfusion1

    ke4pym Guest

  10. #10

    Default Re: CF8.01 Cluster creation issues

    Hmnn, so I think either NLB or a Cluster Device is required. That is Cold Fusion 8 cannot do load balancing and failover without a third party product. Is this correct?
    WV_DEP_GUY Guest

  11. #11

    Default Re: CF8.01 Cluster creation issues

    WV_DEP_GUY wrote: 

    I think it can, on the same machine. I.E. I know you can have multiple
    instances of ColdFusion installed on the same machine. I have read that
    this *can* be used for fail over and|or load balancing. Personally, I
    have only used it for application isolation.

    But I think when you start talking multiple physical servers, then you
    are looking outside of ColdFusion for your load balancing|fail over tools.

    Just be aware that there maybe more options here, depending on what you
    want to do. It is often not thought that a ColdFusion server can be
    separated from and configured to connect to one or more remote web
    server boxes. You can separate the web server layer from the
    application server layer. Then you can load balance|fail over these
    layers independently of each other as needed or desired.
    Ian Guest

  12. #12

    Default Re: CF8.01 Cluster creation issues

    Thank you!
    This does clear it up for me. So I think the best direction for our site is to use NLB.

    Thank you again
    Neil Chakrabarty
    WV_DEP_GUY Guest

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