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Wireless Networks Thread, Gigabit Network technology in Technical; Hi, I am looking for a gigabit switch that i can hang an XRAID from, but since i am relatively ...
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    Gigabit Network technology

    Hi,

    I am looking for a gigabit switch that i can hang an XRAID from, but since i am relatively new to fibre switches am struggling to work out the type i need. The connection from the XRAID seems to be an SFP but thats as much as i know, if that is even correct?

    I have also been told that only a few switches are recommended for XRAID connections and have seen a list but its not a long list by any means, about three manufacturers.

    Any info on gigabit switches that i could use would be brilliant. I have looked at a few but get lost in the technological acronyms.
    I do need to research the different types more...i have seen these Mini GBICs which i don't know what they are?

    I need to get a switch so i can get a bit more redundancy from the RAID as well as connect more than just one Xserver to it when more arrive (not for a while yet though). Its part of the configuration of the integration of the OSX into AD but i cannot create the shares on the RAID from the server connected to it since it is joined only to the Active Directory. If anyone can help on this then that would be ace.

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    Re: Gigabit Network technology

    My understanding is that the Apple Xeserver RAID boxes are Fibre Channel?

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    Re: Gigabit Network technology

    Hi.

    Emulex make a good FC switch. But yes- you have to use the Fibre Channel connections for XServe RAID. The ethernet ports on XServe RAID are for administration only (monitoring etc) through the supplied RAID Admin tool set.

    What we have done is connect the RAID to our XServe through dual FC connection and then connected the XServe to a gigabit connection dedicated to the task of feeding files to and from storage. Works great.

    If you look on Apple's store (UK) business section you will find FC switches.

    http://store.apple.com/Apple/WebObje...5nabu6ZJnRoOi6

    Hope that helps!

    Paul

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    Re: Gigabit Network technology

    To connect more than one server to the xraid you need to look at the xsan product, while you could partition the raid into different slices and show a different one to each server, any mistake in config could easily corrupt the volumes if two have access to the same filesystem (xsan software uses a different filesystem than normal).

    There is only so much redundancy with an xraid as there are two controllers, a left and right. If one dies the other will not take over like a real SAN (most will have two storage processors, the remaining one will take over the dead processors LUNs).

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    Re: Gigabit Network technology

    What I would do is utilise the XServe RAID as two independent RAID units. In other words, if you have two XServe Servers to connect to the RAID and use both sides of the RAID Server use one fibre channel connection to one XServe and one connection to the other. Since the RAID controllers are independent this would work fine.

    If you connect both sets of the RAID server to two servers it would be *BAD*. Fibre needs some form of arbitration and wouldn't get any- imagine multiple read/writes on the same data set at the same time and think what that would do to your data!

    Basically, connecting the XServes to the RAID system in the above way would mean you are using the independent nature of the RAID server and just sharing power.

    My *preferred* way of doing this would still be through some kind of fibre channel switch. I just think this would be a whole lot cleaner for what you seem to want to do.

    In your post you mentioned that you cannot make shares on the XServe RAID because you are integrated with AD. Can you elaborate on this- I have the same setup and can happily make shares from the XServe on the RAID server and share it out etc without any issues. Perhaps there are some other things at work here?

    Paul

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    Re: Gigabit Network technology

    The Xserve that is connected to the XRAID is configured as the directory host server as per the OD-AD integration paper (the one with the diagram in) and is only connected to the Active Directory. Because of this when you try and create shares and then try to make them network mount for home shares you have to authenticate. This is where the problem lies becasue you only have the Active directory connection available and it fails since it cannot write to the Schema.

    I thought about connecting it to the OD also (which currently is still a mac-mini) and configure the shares that way, but i would need to disconnect it from the OD afterwards and was unsure of the complications that this would bring and whether it would work since the Connection used to authenitcate the network mounting of the share would no longer be there.

    I cannot leave it conencted to the OD since when migrating one of the Mac-Minis to the Xserve we had an issue with the mail service (which was resolved ny updaing to 10.4.9) the engineer that installed the XRAID and Xserver tried to connect the Directory Host to the OD but it did not resolve the issue. This was before the updates were installed. Only after the updates were installed and the XServer connection to the OD was removed did the mail service start to work again.

    I may go with just connecting a 2nd XServe to the XRAID since if i understand correctly you cannot connect to the XRAID without one XServer being online anyway?

    You cannot connect directly to the RAID like you would a share on a server.

    I am trying to get storage with fault-tolerance but also may re-locate the profiles of the AD users onto the XRAID at the same time. As we have it now if the server hosting the profiles fails then no-one will get their profiles to log in.

    Has anyone done this? I am wondering how the security of NTFS comes into play since they will be hosted on an HFS formatted RAID and would be accessed over SMB and AFP protocols. Are permissions still set as they should be for windows users?

    Seems strange that there are still questions when we have already purchased the hardware, but i feel that it will still be utilised anyway so in the end not too bad an issue really.

    @Kingswood,

    What fibre switches was i looking at? I could only see the 3com one and some things that cost £39,000?

    I have seen a Net Gear ProSafe gigabit switch which also has an optional 4 fibre module slot. Could this do the job also? 24 port £264.99 +VAT

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