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Hardware Thread, VMWare ESX 4.0 and S7310 in Technical; I am about to configure VMWare ESX 4.0 update 1 and S7310 (2010.Q1.1.0 (2010.02.09.1.0)), is NFS or ISCSI better to ...
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    VMWare ESX 4.0 and S7310

    I am about to configure VMWare ESX 4.0 update 1 and S7310 (2010.Q1.1.0 (2010.02.09.1.0)), is NFS or ISCSI better to use for the datastore?

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    Duke's Avatar
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    Generally NFS is the better solution. You'll get better analytics and working at a file-level is often easier than at a block-level. NFS performance used to be a lot better than iSCSI on the S7000, but since they replaced the iSCSI stack this is less of an issue. I think I'm correct in saying that iSCSI has slightly lower latency while NFS has better streaming performance, so NFS is definitely the route for something like a file server, but SQL and Exchange servers may benefit slightly from iSCSI. However, raw device mapping may also be a better option for these types virtual servers anyway. If you've got the time and space, try setting up both datastores and put identical VMs on both then monitor disk performance with the actual workload you'll be using.

    Cheers,
    Chris

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    Hi Chris,
    Thanks for your reply. We have done some testing on a S7210 and we found that "dd" and "vdbench" gave a better performance using ISCSI but this my not be the case with our database PostgreSQL.

    Have you or anyone on this forum got ISCSI on the S7000 working with VMWare ESXi 4, if so, did you have any issues with setting it up or any performance issues?


    Thanks Tony.

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    Duke's Avatar
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    I used iSCSI for testing but ended up using NFS for real-world (albeit it development servers) use. No issues with iSCSI when I did try it though, just set up your VMkernel stuff right in ESX. I was using the old iSCSI stack on the S7000 though so it's a bit different now. Both NFS and iSCSI are certified for use with ESX so you shouldn't have any problems.

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    apaton's Avatar
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    No problems with ESXi 4 and iSCSI on the S7000, done it at a few sites.

    If using iSCSI you could present an iSCSI LUN as a RDM and you can tune the LUN for PostgreSQL, If I/O is low-medium then stick to a standard VMFS datastore for simplicity.

    Recommended changes for PostgreSQL LUN (NOT VMFS)
    Create individual LUNS for PostgreSQL and Logs
    Change S7000 Databases Record size to 8k for optimal write performance for table space (Matches PostgreSQL default page size) Logs may bet better at 128K

    Andy
    Last edited by apaton; 16th June 2010 at 07:57 AM. Reason: Clarification on Databse Record Size

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    Thanks for the updates.

    Tony.

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    Originally when I set up my 7110's iSCSI performance was dire so I set up with NFS and it's been working a treat. Apparently iSCSI performance is fixed now so I guess its up to you!

    Butuz

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    Thank you for your reply. I think that we will be going down the NFS/CIFS route.


    Best regards,


    tonyw3.

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    Hi Tonyw3/Butuz,

    Do you guys have configuration setting for S70310 iSCSI? In order to setup the s7310 storage, we should configure the storage LUN with initiator or targets? i found out that if i setup the LUN thru initiator cannot be detected by the OS. Any idea on that?

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    RobFuller's Avatar
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    I’m more than happy with my iSCSI performance (7100), though it really was noticeably slower before the software update. I’m using Hyper-V however so not much help there as iSCSI is really the only ‘supported’ option.

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    Hi Rob,

    Since u r using s7100, i assume the iscsi configuration should be same. My initiator is under SunOS. So on storage side, i just need to create a LUN under target and auto assign IQN? I have done this and the SunOS can detect the rdsk but i cant newfs the partition. I tried to use format to create partition. No issue. If there any steps i missed out? please advice.

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    Duke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drLurve View Post
    Do you guys have configuration setting for S70310 iSCSI? In order to setup the s7310 storage, we should configure the storage LUN with initiator or targets? i found out that if i setup the LUN thru initiator cannot be detected by the OS. Any idea on that?
    What OS? Sun have docs on using S7000 with ESX (iSCSI and NFS), and using S7000 in a Windows environment (although this primarily covers CIFS shares).

    Oracle - BigAdmin System Administration Portal

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    I am using S7310 with Sun Solaris 10 but the initiator OS is not important, right? i need to confirm the iscsi configuration on s7310.

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    I found this guide useful when I was setting up S7210 ISCSI and VMware:

    http://www.sun.com/bigadmin/features...age_vmware.pdf

    Tony.

    Quote Originally Posted by drLurve View Post
    Hi Tonyw3/Butuz,

    Do you guys have configuration setting for S70310 iSCSI? In order to setup the s7310 storage, we should configure the storage LUN with initiator or targets? i found out that if i setup the LUN thru initiator cannot be detected by the OS. Any idea on that?

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    Hi Tony,

    Thanks for the info. I have go thru the big admin guide. I found out that we need to identify the initiator IQN from the OS (VM ESX in big admin guide) and create an initiator in the S7000 storage. I used the "iscsiadm list initiator-node" to identify Sun Solaris IQN and used it to create an initiator in S7000 storage. From there, i drag the initiator to iSCSI initiator group and created a LUN. I tried to use auto-discovery and static discovery on Sun Solaris but still nothing.

    Another way i tried is straight to the SAN>Targets>iSCSI Target>Auto Assign IQN+alias>Share>+LUN. Surprisingly the OS recognized the LUN in command "format" but i cant "newfs" or mount it.

    Which is the proper way? The document is showing the storage to use +initiator to accept the initiator IQN. The OS then will detect/rescan the target (storage) automatically. Why the storage have both initiator and target option? Confused admin here.

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