SAN question - Storage

This is a discussion on SAN question - Storage ; Have what is probably a pretty basic question about setting up a SAN. First off, I'm a networking guy at a fairly small but growing company. We (like everyone else on the planet ) have a great deal of data ...

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  1. SAN question

    Have what is probably a pretty basic question about setting up a SAN.

    First off, I'm a networking guy at a fairly small but growing
    company.
    We (like everyone else on the planet ) have a great deal of data
    which needs to be centralized and archived. I'm looking at the HP
    MSA1000 to meet our needs.
    Separation of the data itself from the servers (All 10 of them) would
    make management significantly easier, and disaster recovery would be
    vastly simplified. We want to either mirror the contents of each of the
    server's drives onto the SAN or migrate everything over to be running
    over the SAN. This is my personal opinion; need to talk to the boss.

    My question now is this:
    Do I need to get a fiber channel adapter for each of these servers, or
    could I just attach it to the preexisting copper gigabit Ethernet which
    connects all of the servers? I would just as soon avoid another ten
    grand in fiber adapter cards.

    Also, any recommendations regarding which tape backup drives I should
    look at for server-less backups if I go with the MSA1000?


  2. Re: SAN question


    skrev i meddelandet
    news:1118172368.280374.111180@g49g2000cwa.googlegr oups.com...
    > Have what is probably a pretty basic question about setting up a SAN.
    >
    > First off, I'm a networking guy at a fairly small but growing
    > company.
    > We (like everyone else on the planet ) have a great deal of data
    > which needs to be centralized and archived. I'm looking at the HP
    > MSA1000 to meet our needs.
    > Separation of the data itself from the servers (All 10 of them) would
    > make management significantly easier, and disaster recovery would be
    > vastly simplified. We want to either mirror the contents of each of the
    > server's drives onto the SAN or migrate everything over to be running
    > over the SAN. This is my personal opinion; need to talk to the boss.


    The latter is what everyone does to truly centralize the volumes for
    consolidation. The former is quite possible though, although I've never
    implemented it.

    >
    > My question now is this:
    > Do I need to get a fiber channel adapter for each of these servers, or
    > could I just attach it to the preexisting copper gigabit Ethernet which
    > connects all of the servers? I would just as soon avoid another ten
    > grand in fiber adapter cards.
    >

    Classic setup is you need at least one, two for redundancy, fibre channel
    adapters in each server. If you got two adapters, you'll need to SAN
    (actually fibre channel) switches and dual MSA1000 controllers. To avoid the
    fibre channel adapters, you'd have to use iSCSI as the transport and the
    MSA1000 does not have native iSCSI support (yet, hint). It doesn't even have
    an ethernet connection.

    If you do decide to go with iSCSI, you'll need an iSCSI initiator in each
    server, which is in the Windows world could mean the free iSCSI initiator
    from Microsoft.

    On the storage side, you'd need a storage array with an iSCSI target.
    Technically, it would be be possible to use an HP Storage Server with the
    iSCSI feature pack, build a fibre channel SAN backend to the MSA1000 but to
    me that would be overly complicated.

    > Also, any recommendations regarding which tape backup drives I should
    > look at for server-less backups if I go with the MSA1000?
    >


    You shouldn't be looking at server-less backups at all in my opinion.
    Possible LAN-free backups, but even that is a stretch in many cases. Your
    best and cheapest way forward is to use backup to disk over the regular
    gigabit LAN connection. The disk could be SAN-attached, but doesn't have to
    be. It's nice if you could for example stretch the fibre cable a bit so you
    could place the backup disk in a physically seperate area from the primary
    disk.



  3. Re: SAN question

    Ok, I'll axe the idea of adding server-less backups for now. I'm
    also looking at truly migrating over the systems to be running off the
    SAN. I want to steer clear of the iSCSI protocol, but am still leery
    about having to put in that many fiber cards, and having to go with
    sixteen port switches.
    If I were to get a standard gigabit Ethernet switch which includes a
    fiber module, could I attach the SAN to the fiber port and the servers
    to the gigabit Ethernet ports and have it work correctly?


  4. Re: SAN question

    Ok, I'll axe the idea of adding server-less backups for now. I'm
    also looking at truly migrating over the systems to be running off the
    SAN. I want to steer clear of the iSCSI protocol, but am still leery
    about having to put in that many fiber cards, and having to go with
    sixteen port switches.
    If I were to get a standard gigabit Ethernet switch which includes a
    fiber module, could I attach the SAN to the fiber port and the servers
    to the gigabit Ethernet ports and have it work correctly?


  5. Re: SAN question


    skrev i meddelandet
    news:1118178634.554387.239970@g49g2000cwa.googlegr oups.com...
    > Ok, I'll axe the idea of adding server-less backups for now. I'm
    > also looking at truly migrating over the systems to be running off the
    > SAN. I want to steer clear of the iSCSI protocol, but am still leery
    > about having to put in that many fiber cards, and having to go with
    > sixteen port switches.
    > If I were to get a standard gigabit Ethernet switch which includes a
    > fiber module, could I attach the SAN to the fiber port and the servers
    > to the gigabit Ethernet ports and have it work correctly?
    >


    No, it would not work. Ethernet and Fibre Channel are two different
    protocols almost down to the fundamentals. They share the basic physcial and
    encoding/decoding layers, but that's about it. A Gigabit Ethernet switch
    would not understand Fibre Channel and vice versa.
    You'll have to spring for one or two Fibre Channel switches, and all the
    Fibre Channel host adapters I'm afraid. If you're into the MSA1000, don't
    forget to check the small business kit, which might make the bitter pill of
    buying all the kit a little easier to swallow.
    http://h18006.www1.hp.com/products/s...smb/index.html

    It's only meant for up to 8 servers though.



  6. Re: SAN question


    wrote in message
    news:1118178627.900640.270440@g43g2000cwa.googlegr oups.com...
    > Ok, I'll axe the idea of adding server-less backups for now. I'm
    > also looking at truly migrating over the systems to be running off the
    > SAN. I want to steer clear of the iSCSI protocol, but am still leery
    > about having to put in that many fiber cards, and having to go with
    > sixteen port switches.
    > If I were to get a standard gigabit Ethernet switch which includes a
    > fiber module, could I attach the SAN to the fiber port and the servers
    > to the gigabit Ethernet ports and have it work correctly?
    >


    Using a an array with FC only interface and not putting an iSCSI gateway of
    some kind in front of it, makes attaching the hosts via Ethernet impossible
    (doesn't matter if the Enet switch uses copper or fibre connections.) While
    the FC interface and a GigE interface may look physically similar they are
    utterly different in terms of the underlying protocols and you can't mix
    them.


    --
    Nik Simpson



  7. Re: SAN question

    In article <1118172368.280374.111180@g49g2000cwa.googlegroups. com>,
    timbrigham@hotmail.com says...
    >
    >Have what is probably a pretty basic question about setting up a SAN.
    >
    >First off, I'm a networking guy at a fairly small but growing
    >company.
    >We (like everyone else on the planet ) have a great deal of data
    >which needs to be centralized and archived. I'm looking at the HP
    >MSA1000 to meet our needs.
    >Separation of the data itself from the servers (All 10 of them) would
    >make management significantly easier, and disaster recovery would be
    >vastly simplified. We want to either mirror the contents of each of the
    >server's drives onto the SAN or migrate everything over to be running
    >over the SAN. This is my personal opinion; need to talk to the boss.
    >
    >My question now is this:
    >Do I need to get a fiber channel adapter for each of these servers, or
    >could I just attach it to the preexisting copper gigabit Ethernet which
    >connects all of the servers? I would just as soon avoid another ten
    >grand in fiber adapter cards.
    >
    >Also, any recommendations regarding which tape backup drives I should
    >look at for server-less backups if I go with the MSA1000?
    >


    not forgetting that SAN applies to iSCSI also, if you want all of
    your servers to have access to the RAID on a Fibre Channel SAN
    then you need to buy one HBA for each server

    & i'd forget about "serverless backup"
    even though it's been touted for years all you'l ever probably
    get is "lan free backup" if you have a Fibre Channel SAN

    Lastly, LTO has won the battle & AND both LTO-2 & 3 come with native
    Fibre Channel interfaces

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