I'm looking to deploy a blade solution in our network. It is, however, going to be my first time with them and I'd like to verify my understanding what I've read about it. We're a VMware shop, so I'll be referencing it specifically to how it'd be used.
Since the Dell website is the easiest to load out a full enclosure, that's what I'm going to use as a demo unit for this question.
Dell M1000E Enclosure:
8 x M520 Blade Servers:
1 x Broadcom 5720 Quad NIC in slot A
2 x Brocade 1741M-K Dual Port 10GbE CNA in slots B and C
1 pair of M6348 Ethernet Switch in slot A
2 pairs of M8428-K Converged Network Switch in slots B and C
I have an existing fibre channel storage array which plugs into a pair of SAN switches, which presently feeds a number of rack mounted servers (to be replaced by the blades), as well as a pair of GigE switches operating as distribution layer switches.
Assuming blade CNAs were numbered and converged switches were lettered, would it make sense that I could:
Connect CNAs to Storage Array, offering FC adapters to VMware vSphere hosts (blades)
Switch B-1 to extern Storage array Controller 1 port 1 via fibre
Switch B-2 to extern Storage array Controller 2 port 1 via fibre
Switch C-1 to extern Storage array Controller 1 port 2 via fibre
Switch C-2 to extern Storage array Controller 2 port 2 via fibre
Connect CNAs to Ethernet distribution switching, offering 10GbE network access (negotiating down to 1GbE if extern switches don't support 10GbE):
Switch B-1 to extern GbE switch 1
Switch B-2 to extern GbE switch 2
Switch C-1 to extern GbE switch 1
Switch C-2 to extern GbE switch 2
Connect 1GbE switch to Ethernet distribution switching:
Switch A-1 to extern GbE Switch 1
Switch A-1 to extern GbE Switch 2
Switch A-2 to extern GbE Switch 1
Switch A-2 to extern GbE Switch 2
And that the connections as described above would offer:
4 paths to the FC storage
4 10GbE paths to the network
4 1GbE paths to the network
Would I also be able to connect the converged switches to each other for increased availability? For example, if they were not connected and both Converged Switch B1 and Storage Array Controller 2 were to fail, I would ultimately only have 1 path to the storage array (C1 -> SA C1P2), where if they were interconnected, I would also be able to utilize C2 -> SA C1P2, providing room for one of the Blade slot C mez cards to fail as well.