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SAN (HP p2000) connection to ESX hosts

Posted on 2011-09-28
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Last Modified: 2012-05-12
Greetings,

my p2000 has dual controllers each with (2) iSCSI ports. I have (2) open NICs on each of my (2) ESX hosts. is there any benefit to running them through switches (two switches on separate subnets) rather than just connecting directly between the hosts and the SAN? one host NIC to one p2000 controller and the other host NIC to the other p2000 controller, for redundancy of course. My current SANs (AX4-5i and a Promise VessRaid) run through these switches.

thanks a lot
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Question by:rpliner
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by:ienaxxx
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just scalability, imho
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by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 100 total points
ID: 36720197
if will give you multipathing and redundancy.
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by:Neil Russell
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Multipathing being the big advantage
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shahravish earned 250 total points
ID: 36815531
It would definately be beneficial to run them on 2 seperate switches and subnets! This gives you full mesh design for multipathing and redundancy and protects you from single point of failures.
Taking the following components - SAN ( 2 X Controller + 2 X Ports), 2 Switches, 2 NICS per host
C= Controller, P = Port, S = Switch, H = Host

C1P1 -> S1P1
C1P2 -> S2P1
C2P1 -> S2P2
C2P2 -> S1P2

H1P1 -> S1P3
H1P2 -> S2P3
H2P1 -> S2P4
H2P2 -> S1P4

This would give you protection against (and I know  many say this is unlikely) but if you had a controller failure and the opposite switch failure, you would still have your paths active and access to SAN available. Certain SAN devices however are not able to have different subnets defined in a single controller, so it may be worth checking, But since you mentioned HP, I am confident it has that support. We deploy mostly HP SAN's and configure the same way.


Adding a switch to the mix also provides you scalability to add more hosts in the future. But mainly, wqith only 1 host, you still have 4 paths. If you connect directly, you will only have 2 paths, where if 1 controller failed, and the second nic failed, you have no SAN access.

Hope this helped. If you have any questions, do let me know

Thanks
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