Gracefully Shutdown an Equalogic SAN

Posted on 2011-10-27
Last Modified: 2012-05-12
Like many others I have jumped on the VMware bandwagon. We are hosting all of our data on an Equalogic SAN and need a "gracefull" way to shut down the VMs and the SAN if the battery backups reach a certain level. (similar to what PowerChute did for physical windows boxes). Has anyone out there run into this issue or have a possible solution?
Question by:jhaysbns
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    Expert Comment

    LVL 116

    Accepted Solution

    The APC software installs in the vMA.

    The software is called PowerChute Network Shutdown v3.0.0 for VMWare ESXi

    this is the link to the free download

    you will need to login to APC to download.

    Once you have download and extracted the pcns300ESXi.tar.gz, there is a Installation.pdf document which guides you through the installation.

    You must have a supported APC Smart UPS and APC Network Management card.

    For ESXi:

    - You need to install PCNS on a VMware Infrastructure Management Assistant (VIMA,
    also known as (vMA) instance running on the ESXi server.

    - You must add the ESXi server as a fastpass target for that VIMA/ vMA using the
    command - vifp addserver. (See the VMware guide for administrators and developers
    for information on adding a target server to VIMA).

    vMA is a Linux-based vSphere virtual machine that is pre-installed with a command-line interface and select third-party agents needed to manage your vSphere infrastructure.

    Download here for vMA
    LVL 41

    Expert Comment

    I have used EqualLogic for many years, but I am not sure if I would try to shut down the SAN. You should have about 72 hours of backup for the cache, which is hopefully enough. Getting your VMs shutdown is the important thing. There is a scripting interface for the SAN if you really want to go that route.

    Author Comment

    Thanks Kevin - how do you handle power outages, we
    Don't have a generator and fear the SAN would suffer
    Corruption if in middle of night, with power out and batteries running out, it just shut off. Do they do a self check before mounting volumes? We have had the SAN a year and are 80% virtualized - it would be terrible to loose the SAN. Mgmnt is taking about a generator, I was folks like you could tell me how you deal with this
    LVL 41

    Expert Comment

    My unit is attached to two different building UPS, and we have 2 generators for the building. The last time we had a power outage was before we put everything on both UPS, so we had some times when the UPS tripped and everything went down. That's not a problem anymore.

    My understanding of the EqualLogic, and every other cache backed system is that as long as the battery, capacitor, or whatever is still holding the dirty page writes is still good, those writes will be help until the power is restored, at which point they will be flushed back to the disk. Battery backed cache is usually supposed to be good for 72 hours. My new PS4100x doesn't have a battery. I guess that it has a way to write the cache to some sort of NV storage.
    LVL 41

    Expert Comment

    BTW, we're a 24 x 7 x 365 operation involved in safety, which is why we have so much invested in power.

    Author Closing Comment

    Thank you for the information - this is what we were looking for.

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