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vsphere max volume size

Posted on 2010-11-10
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Hi
I have a V-Sphere 4 server that I have just attached a 16 TB san to via fibre. As yet I have not divided this up into volumes.

1) is there a max volume size the vsphere4 will be able see/cope with?
2) Numbering the Luns for the volumes, is there any reason why I sshouldn't just do this sequentially as I create each volume?

Thanks  IA
Jo
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Question by:jrb139
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by:robocat
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ID: 34101130

1. The maximum LUN size supported by vSphere 4.x is 2TB. So you should carve up your 16TB into LUNs of 2TB max.

2. Unless you have a specific numbering scheme  (for easier identification purposes), you can number sequentially.



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by:coolsport00
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Just a bit to piggy-back what "robocat" shared:
1. The max amt for a volume or datastore because they are quite different. But, the largest datastore size you can allocate is 2TB - 512MB, so in reality 1.95TB (but the Config Max Guide says 2TB; see: http://www.vmware.com/pdf/vsphere4/r41/vsp_41_config_max.pdf, pg. 4). A datastore can have a max of 2TB, but extents can be added...32 total extents, for a total of 64TB. I don't really recommend that, but to break up your storage into multiple datastores, as their could potentially be a minor performance 'hit' for having non-contiguous storage.
2. This is more about your org and any storage/LUN policy or SLAs you have as far as numbering scheme goes. I personally 'label' my LUNs to mirror what I'm using it for and let my SAN infrastructure to the numbering for me.

Regards,
~coolsport00
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by:Blundey
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Isnt it now 3.5TB on esxi 4? :S
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by:coolsport00
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No....2TB - 512MB (see link to Config Max Guide I posted).

~coolsport00
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by:jrb139
ID: 34101360
What makes you think it's 3.5 ?
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by:Blundey
ID: 34101398
Remember an old post on vmware forums saying max config size could be increased...tried to look for the post, but unable to find.
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by:coolsport00
ID: 34101404
You can increase by 'extents'; but the 'standard' max size is what's stated above.

~coolsport00
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by:jrb139
ID: 34101420
How do extents work.
I guess I still need to configure all my space as Volumes, say 8 of and then do I 'extend' one to another some how?
Jo
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by:coolsport00
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bgoering earned 150 total points
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Just to add a bit, the max datastore (volume) size is 64 TB minus 16k. This is comprised of up to 32 extents (LUNs) each of size 2 TB. Where coolsport00 mentioned the max datastoe size I am sure he meant the max size for any single virtual machine disk drive (.vmdk file) is 2 TB - 512k and is only achieved if the datastore is formmated with 8MB block size. See http://www.vmware.com/pdf/vsphere4/r40/vsp_40_config_max.pdf for a list of all the maximums.

Back to your case - you could divide up your storage into 8 2TB chunks - but I would recommend smaller LUNs for datastores unless you have a need for a very large virtual drive in one of your guests. The standard in my shop for SAN storage is 500 GB LUNs for VMware. The smaller LUNs will also reduce the number of virtual machines per LUN thus reducing the impact to your environment when datastores have to be reserved (locked) by VMware for certain virtual machine operations.

In short - I would recommend you create 32 500 GB LUNs for VMware use - but much depends on your requirements for virtual machine disk size.

Good Luck
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by:robocat
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Yes, although it is possible to create very large datastores, it is not recommended to do so.

1. I would certainly never recommend using extents, they complicate matters greatly if things go wrong.
2. Even 2TB is quite large for most purposes. Best practices state that it is better to limit the number of VMs in a single datastore, as already said by bgoering.



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by:jrb139
ID: 34102848
Gents, this is all good stuff and thankyou. I thought I would play around a little, see what happens. My San configurator wants volume sizes in MB so I have tried 3 so far.

Vol in MB           Capacity in Storage adaptors in Sphere       Vsphere-add storage available  
2097152             1.91 TB                                                        1.91 TB
3000000             2.73 TB                                                         745.96 GB
2195970             2.00 TB                                                         2.00 TB

So I am happy with the last size of 2TB but do you chaps think this is OK, does it look like it encompasses the -512mb mentioned earlier.

TIA
J
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by:coolsport00
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It will have to be 1.95TB.

~coolsport00
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by:jrb139
ID: 34103109
I have created another disk
2195458

this is 512 mb less that the one that reported 2.00TB

this also reports 2.00TB, do you think this would be alright or do you think I really have to play with the MByte numbers till it reports 1.95TB?

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by:coolsport00
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It has to be less than 2TB, so you will have to play around with it until you get it there.

Regards,
~coolsport00
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by:bgoering
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The 2TB - 512KB is the max for a single .vmdk file. 2TB is the max for a LUN. However, as coolsport00 mentioned, if you want LUNs that large (again I tend to use 500GB) I would make it slightly less. Maybe 1.99 TB for safety.

VMware is a bit unpredictable when presented with a LUN larger than 2TB
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by:robocat
ID: 34105520


@jrb139: how big will your average VM be ?

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by:jrb139
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OK, I'll try and get them in at 1.99TB

I have a few VM's that are about 700gb. I use Veeam for backups, this keeps (say) 7 rollbacks. That makes 700 GB + 7 days changes. If I want to boot one of those rollbacks I need a partition that houses All the above and another instance of the entire server and some working space for veeam to do its thing. That takes me right up there to 2 TB.

If I had the choice I'd put everything in one big partition but from the conversations above this doesn't seem like such a good idea.
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by:jrb139
ID: 34110016
As so often is the case with these GUI's the maths appears to get reported wrong.

I have to define how many MB I want the partition to be and I want 2TB.
1024 * 1024 *2 = 2097152  ( I reckon)
Subtract  1 to accomodate the 512K mentioned above.

Vsphere reports this as being 1.91 TB, well hey, I am going with partitions of this size unless someone out there can point out the failings in my Maths.
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by:coolsport00
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That should do it "jrb.." :)

Regards,
~coolsport00
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Author Closing Comment

by:jrb139
ID: 34111061
Gents

Your help, time and efforts on this much appreciated.

Volumes are now set and now ready for use.

Jo

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