Production Deployment -- Version Questions

Joshua West jwest at
Wed May 26 16:10:09 UTC 2010

On 05/26/10 11:28, Glenn Satchell wrote:
> On 05/27/10 00:40, Joshua West wrote:
>> Hey folks,
>> I'm currently in the process of redeploying our ISC DHCPD system.  It
>> issues IP addresses to a class B network, along with several other
>> private networks (for things like VoIP phones, etc).
>> Our current deployment consists of RHEL3 and DHCP 3.0.x on a pair of
>> servers -- no failover configured.  We use RHEL5 now as our standard OS,
>> which also ships with version 3.0.x.
>> Seeing that I'd like to make use of failover in our new deployment, I
>> have a few questions:
>>     * Which version would you recommend?  3.1.x?  3.1.x-ESV?  4.1.1?
>>     * Or should I stick with the stock ISC DHCP 3.0.x from RHEL?
>>     * Release notes for 3.1.x state "A significantly enhanced Failover
>> protocol implementation" -- can anybody elaborate beyond whats listed in
>> the notes?
>> Lastly, has anybody written an RPM .spec for 3.1.x or 4.1.1?  The
>> contrib/dhcp.spec file within the 4.1.1 tarball looks like it is only
>> for 3.0.x.
>> Thanks, I appreciate any input/help y'all may have.
> Hi Joshua
> 3.0.x is out of support, so you definitely should run something newer.
> There has been a few releases of the 4.x branch, so it's not like it's
> brand new anymore. Running 4.1.1 also allows you to run ipv6 without
> having to upgrade again. If you're only just retiring rhel3 then your
> rhel5 boxes should be around for a while :)
> I installed 4.1.1 at the beginning of this year and it has been stable
> for me, but I don't run failover. I recently went to 4.2.0b1 and that
> has run fine for me, but maybe not ready for a large production
> network yet? It has some additional enhancements to failover that are
> probably going to be worthwhile. Plan to upgrade to that once it is
> stable.
> One feature that helps with upgrades is the upwards compatibility of
> dhcpd.conf. I don't believe I've had to make config or syntax changes
> since I ran 3.0.x (yes I've added more subnets and host entries). That
> allows you to upgrade to a new version without too much pain.
> The changes to the failover protocol are long and boring, just trust
> the ISC guys when they say "lots of fixes and improvements".

Hey Glenn,

Thanks for the help.  I think I'd like to go with 4.1.1, until 4.2.x
becomes stable.  Using 4.1.x, which is whats coming with RHEL6, should
make things easier for future admins down the road, when they have to
move the custom built DHCP from RHEL5 to stock on RHEL6 :-)

While the failover protocol changes are probably not very interesting,
are they still significant enough to make failover perform much better
in 3.1.x and 4.1.x, versus 3.0.x?  Failover being better in something
later than 3.0.x makes my decision much easier :-)

And yeah the enhancements to failover between 4.1 and 4.2 look
interesting.  I'm looking forward to a version beyond a .0hhh-noo!!
release of 4.2.

Joshua West
Senior Systems Engineer
Brandeis University

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