Storage Motion

Posted on 2014-11-27
Last Modified: 2016-11-23
We have multiple vendor storage devices (dell, Hp, neatapp), the volumes are shared for Esxi hosts in cluster.
HA and DRS enabled on cluster.
I am not an expert in vmware and trying to find the way to automate storage motion in case the storage device fails.
Is it possible to do that?
i normally migrate manually and never tested buy disconnecting the storage (offline)
We have vmware ver5.1 enterprise.
Question by:sara2000
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by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE)
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If the Storage has failed, and is not available....

how can VMware vSphere migrate the VM from failed storage!

It cannot.

There is Storage DRS, but we do not have Storage HA.....

How often does your storage fail?

What you are wanting is vSAN, a Storage Cluster (or Mirror!)
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gheist earned 100 total points
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You need VASA agent for each of your storage devices, so that vmware can be made aware of predictive failure indications.
Or you can use mirror with each disk on different storage unit in each guest system you value.

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Storages did not fail, but it does not mean that they are not going to fail.
Chances are one day multiple disk failure can happen since they are mechanical and old devices.
i am trying to take proactive measure so our VMs will be available 24*7.
HA. DRS and FT are not going to help.
i have to dig into vSAN and VASA
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by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE)
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE) earned 100 total points
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You will want to investigate SAN Clusters.

e.g. VSA, vSAN (now new vSAN, clustered storage across vSphere Hosts) or HP LeftHand, which is mirrored SAN Storage.

vSAN and the software defined datacentre is where vSphere is moving...vSAN is a feature of vSphere ESXi 5.5.
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VSAN and VASA is like cats and potatoes - completely different things.
Wasa would add some metricks to vcenter like "datastore in degraded state" that could let you either react yourself or automate with vmware (it is a driver from manufacturer of storage)
VSAN is a vmware software product that makes NAS out of local disks in ESXi
While first could save a data loss or two, second is a no-hardware replacement of NAS (well you can buy a new ESXi host with a bit bigger disks inder its influence)

Accepted Solution

Dawid Fusek earned 300 total points
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hello sara2000, mates,

as Andrew Hancock said, there is no "like that" possibility to vmotion a storage volume when a storage will fail...(and it's not available) but there are a few options available to take care of that problem :)

As others say, I know such options to be aware of one storage failure like:
1. Use storages with storage or volume mirroring function and mirror one storage to the other (works only between same storage vendors and in most cases models) and will be not cheap in your situation when You have same or lot of different vendors storages

2. use a VMware vSphere v5.5 vSAN software solution to Cluster and mirror storage on a ESXi hosts, but it's rather best (but not limited) to local raw/PT connected disks to ESXi hosts (with or without raid controller), not by design (but works ok) for a SAN fabric, this will cost You quite lot, because You have vSphere v5.1 and need to upgrade and depends of a number of hosts as I remember VMware vSAN license (don't have time to check vSAN licensing for sure), so it need probably bigger project and in most cases (when not using a SAN's, just a local disks) not a best solution for blades (not a places for local disks, with SAN ok), but at all there are some cool feature of vSAN is caching of read and write operations from a HDD/SAN on local SSD or even PCIe caching cards which especially in that second option (PCIe caching cards) are blazing fast, but PCIe caching/accelerator cards on ESXi hosts You can use separatelly from a variety of vendors (OCZ, FusionIO or oem version of that cards in IBM, HP and LSI)

3. thrid option that I use (my customers are mainly govs of 1k-5k users) is a cheapest (in older heterogeneous storage environment). So when I see a situation like yours that some company need to in easiest and cheapest way with use of current running storages and software failover array failure protection I use cheap solution with 2 different vdisk for every VM from different array/SAN/NAS and just mirror every vdisk (inside VM OS) between 2 different SAN/NAS/array vendors and solutions volumes, it's more flexible and cheap solution but also has their own limitation, one is that it makes storage environment little more complicated (here VMware Storage Profiles helps) and second, when one of a storage array connected to the ESXi host failed ESXi not always stay fully functional (sometimes console connection to ESXi crash but vm's are still working, often it stabilize after some minutes and/pr restart management services helps in newer version of ESXi or some vendors drivers but in general it's a critical situation for ESXi hosts when they lost connection to array that have running VM's, they dont like such situation at all, but at all eventual problems in most cases all your VMs still working and even if ESXi is inaccessible (what may happens) You will always have second copy of a volumes with your VM's data (and they in most cases will be online), so its safe (not relay on any single storage array and vendor) flexible (you can use any kind of array/NAS/SAN and vendor) and cheap (You don't need to buy any license, software or any new hardware, if you of course have enough storage on your arrays). This solution is also compatible with any other Hyper-Visor environment.

You can choose what is better for your environment, company and You.


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