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vmWare RDM to Virtual Server setup and config

Posted on 2011-03-02
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
On my vmWare ESXi host, I am attempting to configure a RDM to an iSCSI target located on my SAN appliance in vcenter. This virtual server (2008 r2) will server as my newtwork file server.

I am unsure how to go about setting this up. I do have a dedicated NIC on my esxi host and I was wondering if I just create a new vswitch, add the NIC, go in to storage and add the new storage, then go to the virtual server and do the RDM settings? Please advise how to set this up. In the end, I want to enable VSS Snapshots and I will also be doing snapshots of the volume on my SAN appliance.
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Question by:Trihimbulus
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by:Trihimbulus
ID: 35021299
also- how do I go about resizing the volume for future knowledge? Obviously increase size on my SAN appliance- but what next so the virtual server sees the size increase?
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danm66 earned 500 total points
ID: 35022905
It is advised that if you are going to setup iSCSI on an ESX(i) host, that you have setup a dedicated, private network just for the iSCSI storage device and host(s).  So..., yes, create a new vswitch with the uplink(s) that will be connected to the iSCSI SAN.  You may want to utilize 2 or more nic's for this connection for redundancy purposes, though.

Once you have the vswitch going, then you can add the vmkernel portgroup to it.  After that's done, go to Configuration | Storage Adapters and configure the software iSCSI adapter to connect to your SAN.

On the SAN side, you'll need to have configured a volume/lun that is available for the ESX(i) host to connect to.

Once these parts are working you should see a target listed under the software iSCSI adapter.

Now, if you use this LUN as an RDM, then all you need to do is to go to your VM and add a new disk of type RDM.  If you want to allow multiple guests to access this storage LUN, then you'll need to format with the VMFS file system by adding it as a datastore.  The iSCSI guide at http://www.vmware.com/pdf/vsphere4/r41/vsp_41_iscsi_san_cfg.pdf will give you more detail.

http://kb.vmware.com/kb/1007021 covers how to expand an RDM.  You will need to use diskpart or another utility like that for the OS to expand the partition within the disk/LUN.
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Author Comment

by:Trihimbulus
ID: 35028905
Whasts weird is that the LUN is only showing up under the iSCSI Software adapter
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Expert Comment

by:danm66
ID: 35029335
That's what you want if you are going to use it as an RDM.  

Edit Settings on your VM and add a new disk, select RDM and it should see the LUN and allow you to complete the wizard.
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