Set up a Web server cluster in 5 easy steps
Construct a highly available Apache Web server cluster that spans multiple physical or virtual LinuxÂ® servers in 5 easy steps with Linux Virtual Server and Heartbeat v2.
Spreading a workload across multiple processors, coupled with various software recovery techniques, provides a highly available environment and enhances overall RAS (Reliability, Availability, and Serviceability) of the environment. Benefits include faster recovery from unplanned outages, as well as minimal effects of planned outages on the end user.
To get the most out of this article, you should be familiar with Linux and basic networking, and you should have Apache servers already configured. Our examples are based on standard SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 (SLES10) installations, but savvy users of other distributions should be able to adapt the methods shown here.
This article illustrates the robust Apache Web server stack with 6 Apache server nodes (though 3 nodes is sufficient for following the steps outlined here) as well as 3 Linux Virtual Server (LVS) directors. We used 6 Apache server nodes to drive higher workload throughputs during testing and thereby simulate larger deployments. The architecture presented here should scale to many more directors and backend Apache servers as your resources permit, but we haven’t tried anything larger ourselves. Figure 1 shows our implementation using the Linux Virtual Server and the linux-ha.org components.