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MSA1000 merging with EVA5000-SAN expertise needed

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Occasional Visitor

MSA1000 merging with EVA5000-SAN expertise needed

Hi - hoping someone can reply to this with experience. I have a customer I am working with to merge a new EVA5k SAN with an existing MSA1000 SAN. This SHOULD be relatively straightforward, but there are several gotchas:

1) The MSA1000 is running firmware v2.38 - currently unsupported by HP, but recommended by them at the same time as they are running SQL on a RAID ADG set - apparently the last rev of firmware - v4.32 - slows that Config down to a crawl or something. Therefore they won't upgrade.

There are several complex issues in this one. Let me explain their environment quickly:

Five Windows servers (2003) fibre attached.
Two of them are an Exchange Cluster, dual pathed on the MSA. The remaining three are single path on the EVA. The SQL servers are single pathed.
EVA5000 with HP-UX box attached - production Progress Database.

We are moving the Exchange to the EVA and ran into several snags...

1) THe FW version mentioned above - limits HBA firmware and possibly connectivity options.

2) The Secure Path running on the Exchange cluster is the Workgroup edition - won't work properly with the EVA. Working on getting a copy of the full software shipped.

3) We won't even mention how badly my predecessor no longer with the company) fouled up the cabling. Fixed now.

4) Other sundry items such as why did my predecessor install one QLogic adapter and one Emulex adapter in each of the cluster servers...?

5) The Exchange servers must remain on the MSA as they have several virtual machines which will remain there.

This weekend we are scheduled to go onsite and upgrade the Secure Path to full version. I know there are some driver issues for the HBAs but can't find any docs.

Has anyone been involved in a merge of MSA and EVA SAN?

Any and all help appreciated!!

No matter where you go, it's still there!

Re: MSA1000 merging with EVA5000-SAN expertise needed

Hi Susan,
Firstly what type of Fibre switches are involved here and how are they zoned?
If you zone so that your MSA and EVA are in seperate zones, this may help; especially if you need to back out.
You may also need to verify the firmware versions of those and check that they will work with the Version of Securepath you are going to install.
I had a very busy Christmas last year when I did some "Simple" upgrades to Secure path. I had to F/W upgrade the switches, MSA and HBA's. So with your old MSA firmware be very, very careful! Although as you are running 2003 I presume you must be using a rather recent version of Secure Path? I did not seem to have problems with the Enterprise version on my system.
I have a DL580 which is sharing between MSA1500cs and an EVA. I have not had any problems with this, although it was all new hardware so I was able to start from scratch.

My suggestion would be to get the SP working in the existing configuration and then perhaps try assigning some EVA storage to the exchange cluster.
Another item that caused me lots of grief was upgrading SP. Ensure that your server is not connected to the SAN at the time you upgrade. This is especially important when you are using Dynamic Disks. When upgrading SP it uninstalls itself, and you can corrupt the Disk mappings when the host see's multiple unmanaged paths to the one disk. This is correctable, but I would recommend you avoid it as you need utilities from Microsoft and it stops the heart for a sec.
Obviously a good backup before proceeding will help :)

I was also able to connect the EVA to an older system with 1GB Emulux cards and an MSA8000 HSG80 system.

Hope this helps,
Occasional Advisor

Re: MSA1000 merging with EVA5000-SAN expertise needed

I saw Dean's reply, and I have a somewhat similar situation, an EVA3000 with up to date 2gb switches, cards and a separate HSG80 with emulex 1gb cards on ugly old FC Hubs (FCAL) This has worked okay in a nt4/2000 environment but I've struggeled with one or two servers where the FCAL is conflicting and we loose connections. I thought about trying to bridge the two together so we could use the newer management software on the EVA to manage the HSG80. Anybody got recommendations and what do I need to get to make it work ?

Occasional Visitor

Re: MSA1000 merging with EVA5000-SAN expertise needed

Thank you Dean for your advice. I did successfully complete the SecurePath upgrade and storage is now visible from both the EVA and MSA to the Exchange cluster. I did make VERY sure to disconnect the cables to the storage while uninstalling the old SP and installing the new.

As a note to Michael, I would recommend taking the FCAL out of the solution entirely and connect all to the 2GB switches. Schedule a tech window for this, as while it may be possible to migrate one side at a time, there's no guarantee. Make sure the 1GB adapters are up on firmware revs and get some LC-SC cabling for those adapters.

Now - if you happen to have 1GB AND 2GB adapters in these servers, you could move off the 1GB almost entirely and with some careful zoning, connect one adapter for each fabric to each of the 2GB switches, connect the HSG80s and HSV100s to both of the switches and voila! a much simpler SAN to manage.
No matter where you go, it's still there!

Re: MSA1000 merging with EVA5000-SAN expertise needed

I am glad it all worked for you! Well done.
I agree with your suggestions to Michael, try to get rid of the FCAL hubs. That will make life much easier.