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Overview - Setup vSphere-VSA help

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twns
Occasional Advisor

Overview - Setup vSphere-VSA help

I realize my questions have more to do with VMware then HP VSA but I'm hoping someone can steer me in the right direction here...I've read through the VSA guide and watched the setup/config offered by HP for setting up VSA but I need some guideance on setting up the virtual servers (vmware hosts).

 

We have 2 HP DL 360P G8 servers running ESXi 5.5, setup with hardware RAID1, I understand this is not listed in the official HP guide but I assume it wil still work.

 

Can someone fill in the blanks on my next steps?

 

1. Install VCenter

2. Setup vSwitches

3. Create a new VMDK or RDM to present to VSA (now sure how this is accomplished)

4. Deploy HP VSA

5. Deploy HP CMC

10 REPLIES
twns
Occasional Advisor

Re: Overview - Setup vSphere-VSA help

In case it wasn't clear, all storage is local (not SAN-lefthand storage). 270GB useable on each of the two hosts

a_o
Valued Contributor

Re: Overview - Setup vSphere-VSA help

 Not sure that you need to install vCenter.

Each individual physical node can be managed using vMware vSphere client that you would install on a PC.

 

I wont go through the details, but you can find a good installation guide @ http://vmfocus.com/2012/09/27/part-1-how-to-install-configure-hp-storevirtual-vsa-on-vsphere-5-1/

 

There are some vMware networking design considerations that come into play. They have been discussed on this board and others Ad Nauseum. Google is your friend.

twns
Occasional Advisor

Re: Overview - Setup vSphere-VSA help

I appreciate the information! So if I'm reading the information in the link correctly, I have 2 SAS drives on each host, I woulc create a datastore for each hard drive to present to VSA?

 

Any suggestions on how to create a new VMDK or RDM to present to VSA? I have searched google but have come up empty handed since I'm not really sure what to search for exactly. I tried "create vmdk datastore esxi 5 and variants of this string"

 

 

*  We configure SSDVSA01 and SSDVSA02 in Network RAID 10 giving us a highly available SSD clustered solution (how is this accompished or what should I search for?)

 

a_o
Valued Contributor

Re: Overview - Setup vSphere-VSA help

Yes, that is correct.

 

However,  there are different ways to approach the underlying storage.  StoreVirtual is agnostic about the underlying storage.

 

That being said, I would not put any SAN into production that was not running on hardware RAID as the underlying storage. RAID 1  or 10, 5,6,50 should do.

 

So, I'd recommend that you configure what ever RAID you're comfortable with in ORCA/SmartStart.

 

Install ESXi on the host, and create datastores on the storage by using the vSphere client and going to  Configuration->Storage->Add Storage.

Once this  is done, run the VSA ESXi installer, and deploy the VSA appliance OVF on the host by using the OVF deployment wizard.

 

Lastly, configure the VSA as shown in the linked guide. It's actually a very good guide, with lots of illustrations. However,  you have to apply the instructions to your specific configuration.

 

From your last question, it seems that you did not understand the guide.

Or, could it be that you need to get a more basic understanding of vMware terms or technology?

 

a_o
Valued Contributor

Re: Overview - Setup vSphere-VSA help

twns
Occasional Advisor

Re: Overview - Setup vSphere-VSA help

Thank you for the information. I have a pretty good understanding of vmware I just haven't had to add storage before or setup "network raid", the datastore creation links are helpful thanks.

 

As I understand my issue at this point is with the current hardware configuration, each has 2 HD's and no SD card for the ESXi install therefore the only datastore I can setup with this config is used for the ESXi install. So I'd need to either procure an SD card for the ESXi install or more HD's to be used for the "presented" VSA datastore.

twns
Occasional Advisor

Re: Overview - Setup vSphere-VSA help

I've read where some have said the VSA configuration requires a minimum of 2 hosts for the VSA/datastore and a third host for quorum, FOM, is that accurate?

oikjn
Honored Contributor

Re: Overview - Setup vSphere-VSA help

I"m an hyper-v guy so I can't speak the correct lingo for vmware, but you need to present a data OS disk for EACH VSA and then at least one virtual drive (datastore?) for the VSA to use for storing its SAN data.  Keep in mind that if you want this to be RAID protected (and you probably should), this needs to be done before it is presented to the VSA as the VSA will not do any physical RAID protection like the hardware appliances do.  

 

In order to get network raid protection, you are required to have at least two VSA nodes installed on two difference pieces of hardware which both have the same requirements mentioned above.

 

Then, if you are installing an even number of physical nodes, the suggestion is to have a FOM which is basically a third physical node that only has the OS partition for the VSA and no SAN storage.  This isn't needed if you have an odd number of VSA nodes or if you chose to use a virtual manager, but keep in mind that if run a virtual manager with only two nodes, you will have your SAN go offline temporarily when that node goes offline where if you use a FOM, your data will only go offline  if you lose both nodes at the same time (assuming all LUNs are setup as NR10 per best practice docs).  The FOM is the way to go... its a really lightweight VM, so you can put it almost anywhere... I installed ours on our back target server.

a_o
Valued Contributor
Solution

Re: Overview - Setup vSphere-VSA help

As I said previously, there are different possible approaches to configuring storage on VMware.

 

re: " I just haven't had to add storage before or setup "network raid", the datastore creation links are helpful thanks."

Network RAID (NR) is StoreVirtual VSA. With StoreVirtual, you install the software on two or more servers, and you create a network RAID that exists on the VSA servers. Each  VSA serving the same function as a local disk would in Hardware RAID on a single server. Just like 2 disks allow you to create RAID1,  2 VSAs would allow NR10, 3 or more VSA would allow NR5, etc.

 

In your case, I'll suggest re-configuring  hardware RAID 1 in Smartstart.
Then, create a small LUN for your Hypervisor, and a larger LUN for StoreVirtual.
You could conversly install ESXi on the SD card, and create one single LUN on your hardware RAID.

 

Once ESXi is installed, connect to it via vSphere Client, and create a datastore on the large LUN on the hardware RAID.

This is done by using the Configuration->Storage->Add Storage. option in  vSphere Client.

Then, run the VSA ESXi installer, and deploy the VSA appliance OVF on the host by using the OVF deployment wizard.

You'll be prompted for a location to install the VSA appliance. Select the datastore you created in the previous step.

Configure the VSA's IP/hostname etc, and complete the VSA installation on the first node.

 

Repeat the above on the 2nd node.

 

Install the FOM on a separate third node if possible. It can run on Hyper-V, VMware on any other host on the network.

Best practice says you should run a FOM in a 2 node VSA cluster.

 

If necessary, install CMC on another host (could be on the host running the FOM) for managing your cluster.

 

twns
Occasional Advisor

Re: Overview - Setup vSphere-VSA help

With the information the two of you provided along with these helpful video's I was able to get the systems properly configured and am in the testing phase now. Thanks for the help!

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jWWMXOT7vy4