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Best way to setup dual NIC NAS and ESXi Server

Posted on 2010-09-12
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Last Modified: 2013-11-29
Hey guys

Got a thecus n8800 pro, with dual NICs that supports Load Balance, Failover, Balance-XOR, 802.3ad, Balance-TLB and Balance-ALB.

I have, if needed a Procurve 1810G-8 Switch which supports, LACP trunking.

and One ESXi server with a dual port Gig-E NIC that i want to dedicate to storage.

Could you guys please see the attached PDF of my proposed scenarios and advise?

thank you

 Visio-Drawing12.pdf
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Question by:wsc-it
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paulsolov earned 500 total points
ID: 33659045
You could use the first scenario but create multiple vmkernel ports on the ESXi side.  This will give you the load balancing piece, otherwise you will only use one nic worth of banwidth.  Configure Multipath on the ESXi side and you're set

How to Configure iSCSI Multipathing
1.Open VMware vCenter.
2.Select Host > Configuration > Networking.
3.Click Add Networking.
4.Select "Virtual Machine" to create new vSwitch for iSCSI connectivity > Next.
5.Select "Create a virtual switch" and check the box next to the VMNICs for iSCSI connectivity > Next.
6.Type a name for the new virtual switch.  (e.g.  iSCSI) > Next.
7.Click Finish.
8.Scroll down and click Properties on the newly created vSwitch.
9.Click Add button to add Service Console port.
10.Select "Service Console" > Next.
11.Type a name for the new service console port.  (e.g.  iSCSI Service Console) > Next.
12.Select "Use the following IP settings" and type an IP Address on the iSCSI network > Next.
13.Click Finish.
14.Click Add button to add first VMkernel port.
15.Select "VMkernel" > Next.
16.Type a name for the first new VMkernel port (e.g.  iSCSI VMkernel 1) > Next.
17.Select "Use the following IP settings" and type an IP Address on the iSCSI network > Next.
18.Click Finish.
19.Repeat Steps 14 to 18 to create additional VMkernel ports for each physical network adapter (VMNIC).
20.Select the first VMkernel port created and click Edit.
21.Click the NIC Teaming tab and select "Override vSwitch failover order".
22.Designate only one active adapter and move the remaining adapters to the Unused Adapters category.
23.Click OK
24.Repeat Steps 20 to 23 to map each VMkernel port to only one active adapter.  Only one active adapter can exist per VMkernel port for multipathing to function properly.
25.Identify the port names for each VMkernel port created.  (e.g.  vmk0, vmk1)
26.Using the vSphere CLI, connect each VMkernel port created to the software iSCSI initiator using the esxcli command.
27.esxcli swiscsi nic add -n <port_name> -d <vmhba>
(e.g. esxcli swiscsi nic add -n vmk0 -d vmhba33)
28.Repeat the esxcli command until all VMkernel ports have been connected to the software iscsi initiator.
29.Verify the VMkernel ports connections by running the esxcli command.

a.esxcli swiscsi nic list -d <vmhba>
(e.g.  esxcli swiscsi nic list -d vmhba33)
30.Multipathing configuration is now complete.
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Author Comment

by:wsc-it
ID: 33659354
thats a very long approach to it, is it the best way in order for me to achieve teh best speed?

I want ot max out both lan links as the VMs will be booting from this nas
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Expert Comment

by:paulsolov
ID: 33659451
You can't do that with a trunk link and a single IP on the NAS connecting to a single IP on ESXi host.  Remember, your diagram shows that for a trunk to do load balancing it has to be a one to many or many many (mac/ip) connection.
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Author Comment

by:wsc-it
ID: 33659463
Whats the easiest way to achieve what i am after then

lets say i have one ESX 4 box, 2 nics, a managed switch and dual nic NAS, which CAN seperate the NICs if need be

i just want to use both nics for all nas traffic
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Expert Comment

by:paulsolov
ID: 33659470
The easiest way to do this is to create several IPs on the NAS and have each datastore using a different IP.  If not than you have to setup Multipath as described.  If not then your link with will failover only.
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Expert Comment

by:chkdsk01
ID: 33661367
wsc - paulsolov is correct in his approach.  Just wanted to add one thing.  ESX(i) is not LACP compliant, so on the switch side, configure your trunks as multimode trunk, not LACP.
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Author Comment

by:wsc-it
ID: 33678024
Ok, ill take the first suggestion

So on the switch, How shouldi configure the ports, POrts 1 and 2 are from the NAS, ports 3 and 4 are to the ESXi box?

Also, What mode should i run the NAS, in any of the NIC sharing modes? or induvidually?
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Expert Comment

by:paulsolov
ID: 33678273
I would configure the NAS Ports with LACP to the HP switch (setup trk ports) on hp switch. The ESXi ports to the switch can be either teamed on the vswitch with nothing done on the physical switch or a trunk (you setup the trunk on the ip switc and setup ip hash on the vswitch).  I would do the teaming to keep it easy.  In both cases since you're doing a one to one ip/mac you will only get one port worth of data and the other will be failover.  If you configure multipath you can load balance the traffic
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Author Comment

by:wsc-it
ID: 33678326
so configure each device as you just said then configure multipath ?
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Expert Comment

by:paulsolov
ID: 33678622
If you setup both the the NAS and ESXI with trunk ports on the physical switch, then on the NAS setup to use trunk, on the ESXi setup to use ip hash.  Once done setup Multipath, (basically multiple vmkernel ports that will give you a many to one connection) which will allow you have multiple sessions and thus load balance on the trunk.
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