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Vmware and storage

Posted on 2011-09-14
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Last Modified: 2012-05-12
Dear Experts:

Iam planning for the infrastructure with VM ware and storage for 5 Virtual Machines on each server having two servers, below mentioned details for your reference:


1.HP DL380 G5 Server proceesor:  Quad-Core Intel Xeon E5410 Processor (2.3GHz, 80 Watt, ,333 FSB) / ,2MB (2 x 6MB) Level 2 cache # purchased few years ago

2.Dell(TM) PowerEdge(TM) R710 Rack Mount Server , TPM Motherboard for R710, Westmere CPU , Intel(R) Xeon(R) E5630 2.53GHz, ,2M cache # purchased recently

Both the servers are with 4 physical NIC's.

3. purchased Vmware vsphere 5 essential plus kit

4. EMC storage Vnxe3100 with 600GB * 12

I have planned for the storage technology with iSCSI, please suggest me what all the additional hardware to be procured

Below doubts please help on this:

1.Is it required to purchase the HBA for the HP DL380 G5 Rack Mount Server and Dell(TM) PowerEdge(TM) R710 Rack Mount Server if yes then please suggest me the models of the HBA for the HP and Dell servers.

2. Is it possible to install ESXi hosts on these servers and VM's stored on the storage without the HBA.

3. Should the HBA  has to be compatible with the storage Vnxe3100 or HBA compatibility is only with the server hardware not related to the storage device, please explain.

3. Is ISCSI HBA is recommended please suggest iam looking for the best practice method.

Please help me in this. Thanks in advance.
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Question by:D_wathi
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by:
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE) earned 250 total points
ID: 36536817
You do not have to purchase an iSCSI hardware HBA, you can use the iSCSI Software Initiator, Add and Enable the iSCSI Software Initiator on the ESXi server, this uses your existing 1GBe Ethernet Network.

You can enable Jumbo Frames on your ethernet network if you phsyical network switches and SAN support Jumbo Frames, we have seen the iSCSI Software Initiator + Jumbo Frames outperform a Hardware iSCSI Initiator.

Also see this source for details and their findings
http://www.vmadmin.co.uk/vmware/35-esxserver/252-esxihwswiscsijumbo
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LVL 117
ID: 36536862
Some other help, that'll you'll need, rather than posting new questions in the future refer back to these!!!

How to Add/Enable iSCSI Software Initiator to ESXi 5.0
http://blog.vmpros.nl/2011/07/13/vmware-creating-iscsi-network-in-vsphere-esxi-5-0/

Setup Jumbo Frames for ESXi 5.0
http://vmwaremine.wordpress.com/2011/07/21/setup-jumbo-frames-on-vsphere-5-via-gui/
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Assisted Solution

by:paulsolov
paulsolov earned 250 total points
ID: 36536937
As Hanccocka mentioned you do not need an HBA for this.  But you will need to setup an EVC CLUSTER since R710 have a newer CPU then the DL G5 series, otherwise you will not be able to vmotion.

Ensure that you have at least 6 nics in each system (I would add a 4 port nic to each..much cheaper than HBA) that will give you redundancy and  let you isolate functionality of your vswitches (production lan, san, vmotion, management network)

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Author Comment

by:D_wathi
ID: 36537125
Thanks for the information very much valuable. As of now both the server is with 4 nic by default, can you please suggest the model's ,part number for the additional 4 port nic for the Hp DL  380G5 and Dell
R710 .

2.Please provide me how to setup EVC CLUSTER.

3. Can this EVC cluster be done in th later stages once both the servers are installed with the ESXi host and VM's running or should be done before creating the VM's please suggest.
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LVL 117
ID: 36537328
1.

HP DL380 G5

HP NC364T PCI Express Quad Port Gigabit Server Adapter 435508-B21

DELL R710

Intel® Gigabit ET Quad Port Server Adapter or
Broadcom® NetXtreme II 5709 Quad Port 1GbE NIC

2.

EVC Mode

See here
http://kb.vmware.com/kb/1005764
http://kb.vmware.com/kb/1003212
http://www.vladan.fr/what-is-enhanced-vmotion-compatibility/

3. Yes. EVC Mode is created, when you create your Cluster. (once you have installed the servers, connected storage, Create Cluster, Enable EVC, and then Add VMs)
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