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How to measure I/O to determine backplane stress

Posted on 2014-04-15
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Last Modified: 2014-05-04
Greetings, I have 4 1U VMWare servers, 5 2 U VMWare servers, and 2 4-node SAN Arrays on a 1Gig Backplane.

I am being pressed on moving to 10Gig backplane, but reasons are all intangible.  Is there any tools outthere I can put onto that rack to determine who much stress on the backplane is being applied on an average daily balance to help quantify when to upgrade teh backplane to 10Gig?

Thank you
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Question by:Evan Cutler
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Expert Comment

by:SelfGovern
ID: 40003880
Are you using a switch that can tell you traffic over the port(s) connected to your servers?  Hard to say without knowing which switch models you're using.

Look for the equivalent of perfmon at the server level to show how much traffic is going over any particular server's NIC(s).
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by:Aaron Tomosky
ID: 40004292
Vcenter server has some performance charts built in, but I like to Install the free veeam one monitor into a windows vm as it's much better IMO. See if that shows you enough information.
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by:Gerald Connolly
ID: 40004487
What does your network layout look like for this lot?

How many 1GbE links do have? and from where to where?   (NB a picture paints a thousand words)
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by:Evan Cutler
ID: 40004498
Yes.  we have two pairs of switches.  2 brocades from IBM that connect the servers to the SAN arrays and two enterasys C5Gs that connect the servers to the network.  I'm going to start with the C5Gs.  what do you recommend?
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by:Gerald Connolly
ID: 40004519
So are the Brocade switches IP or Fibre-Channel.

Is each server connected to both switches
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Author Comment

by:Evan Cutler
ID: 40004525
Yes. and Yes.
The Brocade and C5Gs are all fiber....
The servers have four ports: two for each.
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Expert Comment

by:eeRoot
ID: 40005813
On many smart switches, there is no direct way to monitor the backplane because it consists of paths between circuitry on the PCB.  You can, however, monitor the total load of all VLAN's going across the switch.  The backplane load will be similar to this.
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by:Evan Cutler
ID: 40006473
ok.  What's the best tool for this?
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Accepted Solution

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eeRoot earned 2000 total points
ID: 40006511
Any SNMP monitoring tool such as Observium or Nagios can poll the switches and collect stats.  There are some free tools from SolarWinds that you may find useful, if you are not looking to set up a monitoring server.

www.solarwinds.com/.../solarwinds_free_...
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