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Booting from SAN- EMC Symmetrix Array

 
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Warren G Landrum
Frequent Advisor

Booting from SAN- EMC Symmetrix Array

Guys,

We have an Integrity rx6600 running VMS 8.3 that we will be migrating one of our Alpha Clusters from. We have the test Integrity hooked up to a EMC SAN Array via fiber, switches etc. I am booting the test system off of a local disk, but when we add the 2nd node and form a cluster, we obviously want to boot off a common system disk - on the EMC SAN.

Can we do this with an EMC Symmetrix array? I have heard yes and I have heard no. Anybody out there have any experience with this kind of SAN boot?

Thanks in advance for your help.
14 REPLIES
Jorge Cocomess
Super Advisor

Re: Booting from SAN- EMC Symmetrix Array

Warren,

However, I am running a non-clustered and using HP EVA5000 SAN environment. What I did was I installed the VMS 8.3 ia64 on the local drive and configured it just the I wanted to. Once the configuration was completed to my satisfaction, I presented the LUN on the SAN to be my SYSDISK, then I backup/image from my local SYSDISK to the SAN SYSDISK. Once that's done, I changed the boot flag to the SAN SYSDISK and off I went.

I know this is the long way home, but I didn't intend to boot from the SAN than I changed my mind at the end and did not want to reinstall the O.S. again.

I am sure that tons of details, but you get the idea how I did mine.

Again, this is only for a stand-alone VMS server.

By the way, I do like the rx6600 server running OpenVMS 8.3 though. Very fast!!

Have you tried running Samba yet? I have and it's much faster than Pathworks.

Best of luck!!

Jorge
Warren G Landrum
Frequent Advisor

Re: Booting from SAN- EMC Symmetrix Array

Jorge,

Thanks for your reply. I know you can boot from the SAN off of EVA and HSG disks on Fibre SAN. I have done this, pretty much the same way you describe.

But I need to know about specifically EMC Symmetrix disks/array as the boot disk for an OpenVMS 8.3 cluster. Again, I have heard yes and I have heard no. Just want to hear from someone who has done it.

Thx,

w
Jorge Cocomess
Super Advisor

Re: Booting from SAN- EMC Symmetrix Array

Warren,

Have you tried contacting EMC? I wonder if EMC have any such as, "Best Practices" docs?

Good luck!!

Jorge
EdgarZamora
Trusted Contributor
Solution

Re: Booting from SAN- EMC Symmetrix Array

Yes, you can boot from EMC Symmetrix array. I am doing that right now in two sites. In one site my alpha systems are booting off a DMX2000. In another site the systems are booting off a DMX1000. The Symmetrix code level is 5671.

You'll need to use wwidmgr to set up the boot device.


EdgarZamora
Trusted Contributor

Re: Booting from SAN- EMC Symmetrix Array

Oops, I just noticed you mentioned Integrity. Ignore the wwidmgr part.
Warren G Landrum
Frequent Advisor

Re: Booting from SAN- EMC Symmetrix Array

I just wanted to post some additional info regarding this, since it's quite likely that I (as opposed to EMC) need to do something to get this to work.

1. We have confirmed with EMC that the EMC Symmetrix DMX2000 array is at correct code level.

2. My HBA (HP PN AB378A) is supposed to work with this config (rx6600 and VMS 8.3) according to an EMC Whitepaper

3. I used SYS$MANAGER:BOOT_OPTIONS.COM from the DCL prompt to try and add the EMC drive as a boot drive and get:

efi$bcfg: Invalid MBR/GPT on Disk.
efi$bcfg: Unable to execute the Add Option. Status = 2

I thought that maybe since it was an EMC array, I need to try this with system down, so I shut system down and booted off the VMS 8.3 DVD, ran BOOT_OPTIONS and got same error

- An associated note: I also tried making a locally attached disk a boot disk and get the same error message about the Invalid MBR/GPT - hmmm, the plot thickens.

Any ideas? Possibly HBA Fimware updates needed?

Thanks,

Warren
Bill Hall
Honored Contributor

Re: Booting from SAN- EMC Symmetrix Array

Warren,

Silly question, but... Did you initialize the disks before you tried to use BOOT_OPTIONS?

Bill
Bill Hall
Warren G Landrum
Frequent Advisor

Re: Booting from SAN- EMC Symmetrix Array

Yep,

They're inited. As a matter of fact, the one on the EMC array actually has a page file on it. I'm going to put the page file somewhere else, re-init it, and try to make it a boot disk again via BOOT_OPTIONS.

Will let you know results.

w
Bill Hall
Honored Contributor

Re: Booting from SAN- EMC Symmetrix Array

Warren,

Last month after returning from the Bootcamp, I added an rx6600 to our development cluster of two ES40s. We have the rx6600 on loan from HP for "evaluation". We use an HP XP1024 (HDS) array to provide all of our storage, including boot.

IIRC, I could not boot the rx6600 with a vanilla 8.3 binary DVD that we had received from HP as part of our software maintenance service. I don't know if HP shipped a special 8.3 binary DVD for rx3300/6600 with the 3300/6600 ECO installed on it or not. I did all of my work remotely and didn't get to see or physically touch the rx6600 until after I completed adding it to the existing cluster. Anyway, I could only boot the 6600 from the FIS on it's internal SCSI disk.

I installed all of the 8.3 ECOs that had been released at that time to the internal SCSI disk that had the FIS on it. I then did an image backup/ignore=interlock of the SCSI boot disk to an XP LUN. I ran BOOT_OPTIONS to change the boot device to the XP LUN, shutdown and booted off the XP LUN. No other issues.

Bill


Bill Hall
Warren G Landrum
Frequent Advisor

Re: Booting from SAN- EMC Symmetrix Array

Bill,


DOHHH!!! Thanks for helping me see the obvious!

I just shut the system down, booted off the 8.3 DVD, made an image backup of the local system disk to the SAN disk, added the SAN Disk as a boot option, and booted it! Simple as pie. I was trying to make something hard out of something simple.

But that's why we have this Forum, right - to get more eyes looking at the problems :-)

Good thing this solution wasn't a snake or it would have bit me good !

Again - many thanks !!!

Warren
Warren G Landrum
Frequent Advisor

Re: Booting from SAN- EMC Symmetrix Array

Problem solved.

Thanks All !!!
Rob Leadbeater
Honored Contributor

Re: Booting from SAN- EMC Symmetrix Array

Hi Warren,

Does the EMC array have the option to set up an Identifier for the LUN, as you would do on an EVA or HSG ?

I know that's a requirement for VMS on Alphas, so I'd guess that Integrity would be similar...

Hope this helps,

Regards,

Rob
Warren G Landrum
Frequent Advisor

Re: Booting from SAN- EMC Symmetrix Array

Rob,

The way our department is structured here, I don't actually have direct control or access to the EMC controller or array. I have to go through our "Server" team, who then talks with EMC. So I'm basically working like a one-armed bandit here.

Anyway, from my understanding, and from what I read in the EMC Whitepaper that talks about how to set the LUNS up, it is NOT like on the HSGs or EVAs or even the MSAs. EMC basically has to flip some bit (OVMS flag) to allow OpenVMS access and then THEY set an OPEN_VMS_BASE_ID field that determines what unit id we see from OpenVMS(ie $1$DGAxx:). In my case, I had them set up a 36gb system disk/partition and a 500gb data disk/partition and they wound up being called $1$dga1419: and $1$dga1421: respectively.

If I had direct control over the EMC portion, I could give you a better answer, but that's about all I have. Muy frustrating to have to work like this, but hey, at least I have a job right....???

w
EdgarZamora
Trusted Contributor

Re: Booting from SAN- EMC Symmetrix Array

Those ugly EMC Symmetrix unit numbers are from the hex Symm device ID's which in turn are based off the hypers. As far as I know you can't change them.