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iSCSI Multipathing configuration

Posted on 2013-02-07
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Last Modified: 2013-02-07
Hello,

We are currently designing a redundant active/active iscsi SAN(not routed, just switched) to be used with ESXi. I have been reading about different configurations multipath iscsi, but not yet sure which one is preferred.

Scenario 1.
one vSwitch with two active nics and two port groups for iscsi. 2 vmkernel ports where one is configured to use active:vmnic0 and unused:vmnic1 and then the other active:vmnic1 and unused:vmnic0. Then bind these two port groups to the iscsi initiator.
Scenario 2.
Two vSwitches with one port group per vSwitch and one physical uplink. Then bind both port groups to iscsi initiator.

What I am wondering is if there is any preferences in regards to which of the scenarios is to be used? Such as known issues, ease of administration, jumbo frames etc.

Appreciate any answer from people with iscsi mp experience. Ask if you need more information.
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Question by:synackrst
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by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE)
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Best Practice is to use Method 1 as detailed in my EE Articles, also JUmbo Frames may help your performance, test enabled and disabled.

either can be used, Method 2 is simpler, and that's how we used to do it, but Best Practice and Recommended Approach is Method 1, follow my EE article, tutorial with sceeenshots...

HOW TO: Add an iSCSI Software Adaptor and Create an iSCSI Multipath Network in VMware vSphere Hypervisor ESXi 4.1

HOW TO: Add an iSCSI Software Adaptor and Create an iSCSI Multipath Network in VMware vSphere Hypervisor ESXi 5.0

HOW TO: Enable Jumbo Frames on a VMware vSphere Hypervisor (ESXi 5.0) host server using the VMware vSphere Client
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by:synackrst
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Thanks hanccocka. If the storage system fully supports round-robin that could be configured per LUN aswell with this configuration to utilize both physical nics?
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE) earned 500 total points
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Yes
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