Build SharePoint Farm

Build SharePoint Farm

Building a production class SharePoint farm is a complex task for enterprise. There are best practices and then there are infrastructure constraints. And for organizations, it becomes immensely difficult to decide between building a sustainable near perfect farm vs a faster scalable deployment based on limitations of available infrastructure. The needs of various stakeholders should be kept in mind while building a production grade farm as you would for sure come across a point where you are asked “how much is too much”?

Your executive team may ask for cost effective solution with predictable budgeting and increased customer satisfaction. Your business may be struggling to get a solution with faster time to market by bringing in agility and faster adaption to change. And your technology infrastructure team would want you to target operational efficiency by using minimal infrastructure components and leverage existing infrastructure and licenses where ever you can.

One of the service I provide as part of my consultancy is to plan and build production quality farm that both follows industry standard practices and solutions customized to your organizations need.

As you can see in the following image, there are various moving parts that are configured and tweak to build a sustainable farm.

Figure 1

Each of these moving parts needs to be carefully planned and configured to avoid architectural debt. And in the event of creating a hybrid environment with Office 365, there are additional moving parts involved that require specific configuration to enable Hybrid features of SharePoint & Office 365.

Engagement Model

It is important to understand goals and metrics before building a SharePoint farm. The engagement model depends on the following scenario.

  1. Build Farm Only: In this model, I help organization build complex SharePoint farm given pre-defined requirements, architecture and infrastructure.
  2. Advisory Service + Build Farm: In this model, I perform an assessment of business needs and existing infrastructure landscape, analyze capacity needs and build the farm.
  3. Advisory Service + Build Farm + Configure Hybrid: In this model, a detailed assessment of business needs that drive hybrid configuration would be done in addition to capacity planning and farm architecture.

Deliverables

Depending upon the engagement model, the following deliverables would be provided after agreement with the client.

  1. Assessment Reports
  2. Farm Architecture
  3. Capacity Plan
  4. Automated Scripts to build the farm

Case Study

  1. A large manufacturing company based out of North America wanted to configure SharePoint 2013 Business Intelligence farm. The key challenges were to use freshly built SQL Server Analysis Service data warehouse cluster and configure SQL Server Reporting Services to use with this cluster. The farm configuration included Kerberos configuration for Business Intelligence and external access enabled without putting SharePoint 2013 web front end servers on DMZ.
  2. A system integrator based out of UAE wanted to build Hybrid SharePoint 2013 farm with their Office 365 tenant to demonstrate hybrid capabilities.
  3. Build a large extranet farm and configure external access using Azure AD Proxy.

For more details and quick quote, please write an email to ravi@gokulgandhi.com