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In the past I have used Veritas Cluster Server for HA clusters of Sybase and other databases at large financial institutions.

Now I am going to have locally written processes that could benefit from some similar behavior. e.g. "fail onto this machine if this process fails"

We will have VCS in the environment for various databases, so the overall skill set is not an issue; but this specific aspect.

Have you used VCS for custom application deployments? Was it worth it? Did it buy you much?

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Have you used VCS for custom application deployments?

Yes, a bunch of Java apps

Was it worth it?

Yes, it gave us HA, and the ability to migrate workload between cluster nodes.

There is a developers' guide for VCS that gives you a list of the things you should incorporate in the design of your app (such as all data on SAN disk, no reliance on external hardware etc), but it's not difficult to stick to for a simple app.

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Yes. We use it with our .Net applications and Oracle 10g R2 Databases. We have 3 distributed nodes. VCS works well, can not say nothing bad.

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