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How do you do....it? Thread, SAN - No Software in Technical; We are considering purchasing a SAN from ServerNation but it appears it doesn't come with software - so do we ...
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    garethedmondson's Avatar
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    SAN - No Software

    We are considering purchasing a SAN from ServerNation but it appears it doesn't come with software - so do we have to look at something like OpenFiler?

    How does that work? Does the SAN have somewhere where you can install software? Rather naive I know but I just assumed you would plug it in to the network and your servers would see it :-)

    Any advice appreciated,

    Gareth

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    Generally the SAN is connected to the server via iSCSI and then the volumes are connected to the server and shared out like you normally would.

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    ChrisH's Avatar
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    It will either be embedded or it will be just a server with lots of bays so in that case Open-e, Openfiler or FreeNas etc.

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    Most SAN types from these places will either have some internal drive bays or SATA DOM for OS installation. Do you have a link to what you're looking at? OS wise you could stick any of the above on, or OpenIndiana with napp-it, or you could look at Nexenta based solutions (although I've struggled to get Nexenta to let me buy their software without getting it put on a device by one of their resellers...).

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    dhicks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by garethedmondson View Post
    We are considering purchasing a SAN from ServerNation but it appears it doesn't come with software - so do we have to look at something like OpenFiler?
    Bearing in mind your other post about server equipment for virtualisation, I think you're looking at a SAN for holding two servers' worth of virtual machine images on. In that case, you're probably looking at a bit of hardware that presents an array of disks as an iSCISI target, i.e. something that's saysa "I'm a (large) harddrive" over a network connection. It doesn't present a file system, or a Windows (SMB/CIFS) share, it presents a block device. You'll need an iSCSI client at the other end to connect to it, which in your case would be your virtualisation software.

    The device itself will probably act as a self-contained RAID controller / iSCSI target, but you can use FreeNAS as an iSCSI target, and in the past I have configured my own with a Debian server.

    Carrying on from my answer to your other post, if what you need on your network is more storage then simply get a NAS device - a server that you can install software on and shove as many large (2TB) harddrives as you can afford in. I like FreeNAS, it's worked very well on our network so far. Don't forget to sort out some way of backing the whole thing up - ideally, another, even larger file server in a separate physical location that you can sync with your live file server on a regular basis, deduplicating the copies so that you can store at least several weeks worth of backups of your file strcutures. If you don't have a second server room handy then swap (encrypted) data over the Internet with another school - you store their (encrypted) backups and they store yours.

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    plexer's Avatar
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    If it doesn't come with anything to actually run on it either embedded in to the device or installed on to it then surely it isn't a san? it's just a chassis with a load of disks?

    Ben

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    glennda's Avatar
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    OPEN-E - its brilliant! Educational discounts included to double your storage. Supports ISCSI, NAS and Fiber Channel.

    I use it all the time for clients, another company to get quotes from is Broadberry and VeryPC will also do hardware for Open-E.
    Last edited by glennda; 30th November 2012 at 04:23 PM.

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    plexer's Avatar
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    Storage these people?

    Ben



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