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Revision History

Revision Date Changes

v11.1 April 2010 FY11 Version 1 - Audience: Internal only.


Updated content. Applied new template.
v11.1.1 May 2010 Corrected data errors & typos
v11.2 July 2010 Quarterly version cycle update: content additions and edits.
Audience: Internal Only
Major Updates in Sections:
o 2.3.4 Firmware, 2.4.2 RAID 6
o 3.1 Groups, 3.3.5 Cloning, 3.3.6 Replication, 3.3.7 Clustering
o 4 SAN Design, 4.2 Layer 3 SAN Architectures, 4.3 iSNS Support,
4.4.1 Connecting SAN Switches in a Layer 2 Network, 4.6 10GbE
and 10GbE SAN Integration

V11.3 Oct 2010 (TBD / in progress)

THIS WHITE PAPER IS FOR INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY, AND MAY CONTAIN TYPOGRAPHICAL
ERRORS AND TECHNICAL INACCURACIES. THE CONTENT IS PROVIDED AS IS, WITHOUT EXPRESS OR
IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF ANY KIND.

© 2010 Dell Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction of this material in any manner whatsoever without
the express written permission of Dell Inc. is strictly forbidden. For more information, contact Dell.

Dell, the DELL logo, and the DELL badge, PowerConnect™, Dell™ EqualLogic™, PowerEdge™ and
PowerVault™ are trademarks of Dell Inc. Broadcom™ is a registered trademark of Broadcom
Corporation. Intel™ is a registered trademark of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.
Microsoft™, Windows™, Windows Server™, and Active Directory™ are either trademarks or registered
trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and/or other countries.

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Table of Contents
1 Introduction ........................................................................................................ 1
1.1 Audience ....................................................................................................... 1
1.2 Document Structure ......................................................................................... 1
2 PS Series Storage Arrays .......................................................................................... 2
2.1 Array Models .................................................................................................. 2
2.2 Feature Comparison ......................................................................................... 3
2.3 Controllers .................................................................................................... 3
2.3.1 Controller Types ........................................................................................ 4
2.3.2 Controller Redundancy................................................................................. 5
2.3.3 Controller Failover ..................................................................................... 5
2.3.4 Firmware ................................................................................................. 7
2.4 RAID Policies .................................................................................................. 9
2.4.1 RAID 5..................................................................................................... 9
2.4.2 RAID 6.................................................................................................... 10
2.4.3 RAID 10 .................................................................................................. 11
2.4.4 RAID 50 .................................................................................................. 12
3 Peer Storage Operations ......................................................................................... 14
3.1 Groups ........................................................................................................ 14
3.2 Pools........................................................................................................... 14
3.3 Volumes ....................................................................................................... 15
3.3.1 Volume Attributes ..................................................................................... 16
3.3.2 Volume Features ....................................................................................... 16
3.3.3 Thin Provisioning ....................................................................................... 17
3.3.4 Snapshots ............................................................................................... 18
3.3.5 Cloning .................................................................................................. 18
3.3.6 Replication .............................................................................................. 19
3.3.7 Clustering ............................................................................................... 24
4 SAN Design ......................................................................................................... 25
4.1 Standards Requirements ................................................................................... 25
4.2 Layer 3 SAN Architectures ................................................................................. 25
4.3 iSNS Support ................................................................................................. 25

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4.4 Switches ...................................................................................................... 26
4.4.1 Connecting SAN Switches in a Layer 2 Network ................................................... 27
4.5 EqualLogic iSCSI SAN Design ............................................................................... 30
4.5.1 Redundant SAN Configuration ....................................................................... 30
4.5.2 Partially Redundant SAN Configurations ........................................................... 33
4.6 10GbE and 10GbE SAN Integration........................................................................ 35
5 M1000e Blade Chassis Integration .............................................................................. 37
5.1 Guidelines for Stacking Switches in a Blade Chassis ................................................... 37
5.2 Single M1000e Enclosure Integration ..................................................................... 37
5.3 Multiple M1000e Enclosure Integration .................................................................. 38
5.4 M1000e Ethernet Pass-Through I/O Module ............................................................. 40
5.5 External Tier Stacking ...................................................................................... 40
5.6 Stack to Stack Interconnect ............................................................................... 40
5.6.1 10GbE Uplinks Recommendations ................................................................... 40
5.6.2 1GbE Uplinks Recommendations .................................................................... 41
Appendix A PowerConnect 54xx Switch Configuration ...................................................... 44
A.1 Disabling iSCSI Optimization Setting ........................................................................ 44
A.2 Enabling the PortFast Option to Configure STP Edge Ports ............................................. 45
A.3 Configuring Flow Control ..................................................................................... 45
A.4 Disabling Unicast Storm Control ............................................................................. 46
A.5 Configuring Jumbo Frames ................................................................................... 47
Appendix B PowerConnect 62xx Switch Configuration ...................................................... 48
B.1 Interface Naming Convention ................................................................................ 48
B.2 Enabling the PortFast Option to Configure STP Edge Ports ............................................. 49
B.3 Configuring Flow Control ..................................................................................... 49
B.4 Disabling Unicast Storm Control ............................................................................. 49
B.5 Configuring Jumbo Frames ................................................................................... 50
Appendix C Cisco IOS based Switch Configuration ........................................................... 51
C.1 Enabling the PortFast Option to Configure STP Edge Ports ............................................. 52
C.2 Configuring Flow Control ..................................................................................... 52
C.3 Disabling Unicast Storm Control ............................................................................. 53
C.4 Configuring Jumbo Frames ................................................................................... 53
Related Publications ................................................................................................... 56

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1 Introduction
With the Dell™ EqualLogic™ PS Series of storage arrays Dell provides a storage solution that delivers the
benefits of consolidated networked storage in a self-managing, iSCSI storage area network (SAN) that is
affordable and easy to use, regardless of scale. By eliminating complex tasks and enabling fast and
flexible storage provisioning, these solutions dramatically reduce the costs of storage acquisition and
ongoing operations.

To be able to leverage the advanced features provided by an EqualLogic array, a robust, standards-
compliant iSCSI storage area network (SAN) infrastructure must be created. While almost any industry
standard, enterprise class Ethernet switch can be used to connect hosts to the EqualLogic-based virtual
storage volumes, some switches, network interface controllers(NICs), iSCSI Host Bus Adapters (HBAs),
and iSCSI initiators can directly impact the overall performance of the SAN storage solution. The Dell
EqualLogic Configuration Guide is provided as an aid to help storage administrators determine how
best to build an iSCSI infrastructure for use within an EqualLogic SAN solution. This document focuses
on network configuration, host integration and other topics that help to ensure a smooth deployment
with maximum SAN performance.

This document should not be considered a statement of support for any specific configuration. Actual
viability of any configuration will depend on the capabilities of the individual components (switches,
network interface controllers, initiators, etc.) that make up the SAN infrastructure.

This document should be used strictly as a guide in planning an EqualLogic SAN solution.

1.1 Audience
This configuration guide is intended for storage administrators, SAN designers, storage consultants, or
anyone who is considering purchasing or has purchased an EqualLogic PS Series Array(s) for use in a
production storage area network.

It is assumed that all readers have experience in designing and/or administering a shared storage
solution. Also, there are some assumptions made in terms of familiarity with all current and possibly
future Ethernet standards as defined by the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) as
well as all TCP/IP and iSCSI standards as defined by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF).

1.2 Document Structure


This rest of this configuration guide contains the following sections:

 Section 2, PS Series Storage Arrays on page 2


 Section 3, Peer Storage Operations on page 14
 Section 4, SAN Design on page 25
 Section 5, M1000e Blade Chassis Integration on page 37
 Appendix A on page 44
 Appendix B
 Appendix C

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2 PS Series Storage Arrays
PS Series Storage SANs provide a peer storage architecture comprised of one or more independent
arrays. Each array contains its own controllers, cache, storage, and interface ports. Grouped together
they can create one or more single instance storage pools that are based on the IETF iSCSI standard.
The capabilities of the PS Series solution are provided through a unique set of software and hardware
capabilities that, when used cooperatively, can provide a full featured SAN solution. The following
sections provide additional insight into specifications and functions of PS Series arrays.

2.1 Array Models


Starting with the PS5000 family of arrays, Dell EqualLogic model names designate various pieces of
information regarding the PS Series array. The "PS" is the product name and stands for "Peer Storage".
The four digit model number indicates the major feature sets and generational information. The first
digit is the "family" and is typically referred to as the "x-thousand" family where "x" is (currently) either
5 or 6. The second digit designates the chassis form-factor (16 drives vs. 48 drives). The last two are
digits designate the controller type (―00‖ indicates a controller with 1GbE ports, ―10‖ indicates a
controller with 10GbE ports).

The letter designation at the end of the model name indicates the array drive technology being used
within the array: "E" indicates SATA technology, "X" indicates 10,000 RPM SAS technology, "XV" indicates
15,000 RPM SAS technology and "S" indicates SSD technology.

Array Model Drive Type Number of Drives

PS50E – PS2400E SATA 14, 56(a)

PS3000X, PS3x00XV SAS 16


PS4000E SATA 16
PS4000X, PS4000XV SAS 16
PS5000E SATA 16
PS5000X, PS5000XV SAS 16
PS5500E SATA 48
PS6000E SATA 16
PS6000X, PS6000XV SAS 16
PS6000S, PS6010S SSD 16
PS6010E SATA 16
PS6010X, PS6010XV SAS 16
PS6000XVS, PS6010XVS SAS / SSD 8/8
PS6500E SATA 48
PS6510E SATA 48
PS6510X SAS 48

(a) PS2400E comprised of 4 drive enclosures, 14 drives each


Table 1: Array Models

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2.2 Feature Comparison
The Dell EqualLogic PS6000 Series provides the full range of features and capabilities available with the
EqualLogic PS Series storage products. The Dell EqualLogic PS4000 Series provides a subset of features
and capabilities, targeted at remote office and small to medium business storage deployments. Table 2
provides a feature and scalability comparison between the various array models offered.

Feature PS50 – PS6XX01 Group with


PS4000 Only
Maximum members in a group 162 2
Maximum members in a pool 8 2
Maximum volumes in a group 1024 256
Maximum number of pools in a group 4 2
Snapshots in a group 10,000 2048
Snapshots of a volume 512 128
Replicas of a volume 512 128
Replication partners per group 16 2
Replication partners per volume 1 1
Volumes in a collection 8 8
Collections in a group (snapshot and
100 100
replication)
Volume connections per pool and per group 2048(a) with 4 pools,
(each time an iSCSI initiator connects to a maximum 512 per pool
256 with 2 pools,
volume counts as a connection)
4096(b) with 4 pools, maximum 128 per pool
maximum 1024 per pool

Access control records per volume and its


16 16
snapshots
Maximum volumes enabled for replication 128 32
Simultaneous management sessions (any
combination of GUI, telnet, or scripting 7 7
sessions)
(a) Up to controller firmware level 4.x.x
(b) Beginning with controller firmware level 5.x.x
Table 2: Array Feature Comparison

2.3 Controllers
Since the EqualLogic PS Series was introduced, there have been several different array models released
with new features, better performance and greater storage capacity. The storage array controllers
were improved to take advantage of advances in the underlying networking and storage technologies.

1
In a mixed group of PS6000, PS6500 and PS4000 the higher limits normally prevail
2
In a mixed group of PS6000, PS6500 and PS4000 arrays the maximum number of PS4000 arrays in the group is two

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2.3.1 Controller Types
Array controllers can be identified and differentiated by the controller "type" designation. Each
controller type will have a different colored label to help quickly identify the controller type. Table 3
lists each Dell EqualLogic controller along with some characteristics about each.

Controller Network Storage


Faceplate Notes
Type Interfaces Type
 Original Controller
3 x 1GbaseT Design
Type 1 SATA
3 x 1Gb SFP (combo)  PS50 – PS2400
 1GB Cache
3 x 1GbaseT  PS50 – PS2400
Type 2 SATA  1GB Cache
3 x 1Gb SFP (combo)
 PS3000 – PS5000
 1GB Cache
Type 3 SAS SAS
3 x 1GbaseT  Small Form Factor
Type 3 SATA SATA
 Cannot mix Type 3 SAS
with Type 3 SATA
 PS3000 – PS5000
 1GB Cache
Type 4 3 x 1GbaseT SAS  Small Form Factor
 Cannot mix Type 3 SAS
with Type 4 controller
 PS3000 – PS5000
 1GB Cache
Type 5 3 x 1GbaseT SATA  Small Form Factor
 Cannot mix Type 3 SAS
with Type 5 controller
 PS5500 only
Type 6 3 x 1GbaseT SATA  2GB Cache
 Small Form Factor
 PS6000 – PS6500
SAS  2GB Cache
 Small Form Factor
Type 7 4 x 1GbaseT SATA
 Cannot mix SAS and
SSD
SATA drives in same
array
 PS4000 only
 2GB Cache
2 x1GbaseT SAS  Small Form Factor
Type 8
1 x 10/100Mb mgt SATA  Cannot mix SAS and
SATA drives in same
array
 2nd generation PS4000
 2GB Cache
2 x 1GbaseT SAS  Small Form Factor
Type 9
1 x 10/100Mb mgt SATA  Cannot mix SAS and
SATA drives in same
array

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 10Gb Ethernet
SAS
2 x 10GB SFP+  PS6010 – PS6510
Type 10 SATA
1 x 10/100Mb mgt  2GB Cache
SSD  Small Form Factor
Table 3: Array Controller Type Comparison

2.3.2 Controller Redundancy


Each array can be configured with either a single controller, or dual redundant controllers. The single
controller configuration will provide the same level of I/O performance as a dual controller
configuration. The dual controller configuration provides for redundancy. Redundant controllers will
prevent volume connections between hosts and SAN from being dropped in the event of an active
controller failure.

The Active Controller is the controller which is processing all disk and network I/O operations for the
array.

A second controller in dual controller configurations will always be in a ―passive‖ operating mode. In
this mode, the secondary controller will exhibit the following characteristics:

 Each of its Ethernet ports are electrically inactive (active lights are off)
 The passive controller cache mirrors the cache of the active controller.

2.3.3 Controller Failover


To support redundant controller fail over, each Ethernet port on the active controller that is connected
to the SAN must have its corresponding port on the passive controller also connected to the same SAN
network. In the event of a controller failure, the passive controller will immediately activate and
continue to process all data requests to the array. The following changes occur during fail over:

 The backup controller automatically enables each of the corresponding Ethernet ports that
were enabled on the failed primary controller
 The IP addresses that were assigned to each of the failed controller Ethernet ports are
reassigned to the corresponding ports on the second controller.

A link failure on one or more of the Ethernet ports on the active controller does not constitute a
controller failure. For this reason, it is important to ensure that ports from each controller are
connected to at least two different switches. This will prevent a switch failure from also disabling all
paths between a host and its connected volumes.

It is critical that port connections for both controllers are configured so that the corresponding ports
on each controller are connected to the SAN. If port 0 on the active controller is the only port
connected to the SAN, then port 0 on the passive controller must also be connected to the SAN. This is
shown in the partial and fully connected controller failover scenarios illustrated in Figure 1 and Figure
2 below. Note how IP addresses are reassigned to the ports during the failover process.

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Figure 1 Partially Connected Controller Failover

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Figure 2 Fully Connected Controller Failover

2.3.4 Firmware
Each EqualLogic PS Series array runs a core operating system in firmware that provides all of the PS
Series features and functionality. The firmware version is defined using a version number and will be
updated from time to time as new features are added or for general maintenance improvements.

The firmware version number takes the following form: "X.Y.Z":

 "X" is used to identify the "major" release number. This changes when there are very significant
changes in the features and functionality.
 "Y" is the "minor" release number. This changes as new minor features or improvements in
existing features are made for a given major release.
 "Z" denotes maintenance releases. This changes whenever a maintenance release level is
released to resolve any identified technical or usability issues.

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Firmware Upgrade
Before beginning a firmware upgrade process, you must review the Release Notes for the firmware
update revision. The release notes will be included with the firmware update kit. All firmware update
kits are available at http://www.equallogic.com/support/ (Support ID required for login access). The
release notes contain the latest information and guidelines for:

 Completing the upgrade with minimal potential for service disruption


 Operating system and iSCSI initiator configuration settings that will minimize potential for I/O
disruption during the upgrade process
 Latest updates to the supported firmware upgrade paths

In addition to the Release Notes, the process for updating controller firmware is described in detail in
the following document (Support ID required for login access):

 PS Series Storage Arrays: Updating Storage Array Firmware, available at:


https://www.equallogic.com/support/download_file.aspx?id=594

 Supported firmware upgrade paths (up to version 5.0.x) are shown in Table 4 below:

Starting Firmware Ending Firmware


Version Version
4.2.*, 4.3.* 5.0.*

4.2.* 4.3.*

4.1.* 4.2.*, 4.3.*

4.0.* 4.1.*

3.2.*, 3.3.* 4.0.*

3.1.* 3.2.*, 3.3.*

3.0.* 3.1.*

Table 4 Controller Firmware Upgrade Paths

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2.4 RAID Policies
Each array in an EqualLogic array group is configured with a single RAID policy. Arrays (or group
members) within the same storage pool that have the same RAID policy will cooperatively work to host
volumes by distributing those volumes over multiple arrays. Two things defined the RAID policy:

 RAID level
 hot-spare configuration

Each array implements a default RAID policy that includes a hot-spare. To configure a RAID policy that
does not include a hot-spare you must manually initialize the array using the Command Line Interface.

Note: Configuring a RAID policy that does not include a hot-spare will increase the risk
potential for data loss in the event of multiple drive failure.

2.4.1 RAID 5
RAID 5 (striped disks with distributed parity) will combine N disks in an arrangement where each stripe
consists of N-1 disks that contain data blocks plus 1 disk that contains a parity block. For each stripe,
the parity block will be placed on a different disk ensuring that the parity blocks are not located on a
single disk in the RAID set. RAID 5 implementations can tolerate a single drive failure without data
loss.

For EqualLogic arrays using a RAID 5 policy, Table 5 shows the drive layouts that are enforced based on
the number of drives in each array and the hot spare configuration.

Disk Hot Spare No Hot Spare


Drives
7 6 Data/Parity
1 Hot-spare
8 7 Data/Parity
1 Hot-spare
RAID Policy for RAID 5
14 13 Data/Parity
without a hot spare is not
1 Hot-spare
supported
16 15 Data/Parity
1 Hot-spare
48(a) 46 Data/Parity
2 Hot-spares
(a) 48 drive arrays implement multiple RAID 5 sets within a chassis

Table 5: RAID 5 Drive Layouts

For EqualLogic arrays using a RAID 5 policy, the total quantity of raw storage available can be
computed based on number of drives and the hot spare configuration. The Table 6 below shows the
amount of raw storage available using the hot spare drive layouts specified in Table 5 above.

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Disk Drive
50(a) 100(a) 74 146 250 300 400 450 500 600 750 1000 2000
Qty / Size
-
7(b) - - - - 1250 - - - - - - -

8(c) - - - - 1500 - - - - - - - -

14(d) - - 888 - 3000 - 4800 - 6000 - - - -

16 700 1400 - 2044 3500 4200 5600 6300 7000 8400 10500 14000 -

48 - - - - - - - - 21000 25200 - 42000 84000

(a) Solid State Disk


(b) Legacy PS50E
(c) PS4000E and PS6000E only
(d) Legacy PS70E,PS100E, PS100X, PS200E and PS300E
Table 6: RAID 5 Total Storage Available with Hot Spares (in GB)

2.4.2 RAID 6
RAID6 (striped set with dual distributed parity) combines N disks in an arrangement where each stripe
consists of N-2 disks that contains data blocks and 2 disks that contain parity blocks. Each parity block
generates parity using a different ―view‖ of the data blocks depending on the RAID 6 implementation.
RAID 6 implementations can tolerate up to 2 drive failures per RAID set at the same time without data
loss. RAID 6 is not recommended for workloads consisting mainly of random writes. For EqualLogic
arrays using a RAID 6 policy, Table 7 shows the drive layouts that are enforced based on the number of
drives in each array and the hot spare configuration.

Disk Drives Hot Spare No Hot Spare


7 6 Data/Parity
7 Data/Parity
1 Hot-spare
8 7 Data/Parity
8 Data/Parity
1 Hot-spare
14 13 Data/Parity
14 Data/Parity
1 Hot-spare
16 15 Data/Parity
16 Data/Parity
1 Hot-spare
8 / 8(c) 13 Data/Parity(d)
16 Data/Parity
1 Hot-spare
48(a) 47 Data/Parity
N/A(b)
1 Hot-spare
(a) 48 drive arrays implement multiple RAID 6 sets within a single chassis.
(b) 48 drive arrays cannot implement a no hot-spare RAID policy.
(c) PS60x0 XVS with 8x 100GB SSD and 8x 450GB SAS.
(d) One 450Gb hot spare, 2x 450 Gb parity and 2x 100Gb SSD parity.
Table 7: RAID 6 Drive Layouts

Table 8 shows the amount of raw storage available using the hot spare drive layouts specified in Table
7 above.

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Disk Drive
50(a) 100(a) 74 146 250 300 400 450 500 600 750 1000 2000
Qty / Size
-
7(b) - - - - 1000 - - - - - - -

8(c) - - - - 1250 - - - - - - - -

14(d) - - 740 - 2500 - 4000 - 5000 - - - -

16 650 1300 - 1898 3250 3900 5200 5850 6500 7800 9750 13000 -

8 / 8(e) - - - - - - - 2850 - - - - -

48 - - - - - - - - 19500 23400 - 39000 78000

(a) Solid State Disk


(b) Legacy PS50E
(c) PS4000E and PS6000E only
(d) Legacy PS70E, PS100E, PS100X, PS200E, PS300E and PS400E
(e) PS60x0 XVS with 8 x 100GB SSD and 8 x 450GB SAS
Table 8: RAID 6 Total Storage Available with Hot Spares (in GB)

2.4.3 RAID 10
RAID 10 (mirrored sets in a striped set) combines two high performance RAID types: RAID 0 and RAID 1.
A RAID 10 is created by first building a series of two disk RAID 1 mirrored sets, and then distributing
data over those mirrors. RAID 10 implementations can tolerate one drive failure per mirror pair.

For EqualLogic arrays using a RAID 10 policy, Table 9 shows the drive layouts that are enforced based
on the number of drives in each array and the hot spare configuration.

Disk Hot Spare No Hot Spare


Drives
7 6 Data (3 mirrors)
N/A(a)
1 Hot-spare
8 6 Data (3 mirrors)
8 data (4 mirrors)
2 Hot-spares
14 12 Data (6 mirrors)
14 Data (7 mirrors)
2 Hot-spares
16 14 Data (7 mirrors)
16 Data (8 mirrors)
2 Hot-spares
48 46 Data (23 mirrors)
N/A(b)
2 Hot-spares
(a) Not supported. An even number of drives is required by RAID 10
(b) 48 drive arrays cannot implement a no hot-spare policy.
Table 9: RAID 10 Drive Layouts

For EqualLogic arrays using a RAID 10 policy, the total quantity of raw storage available can be
computed based on number of drives and the hot spare configuration. The Table 10 below shows the
amount of raw storage available using the hot spare drive layouts specified in Table 9 above.

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Disk Drive
50(a) 100(a) 74 146 250 300 400 450 500 600 750 1000 2000
Qty / Size
7(b) - - - - 750 - - - - - - - -
(c)
8 - - - - 750 - - - - - - - -

14(d) - - 444 - 1500 - 2400 - 3000 - - - -

16 350 700 - 1022 1750 2100 2800 3150 3500 4200 5250 7000 -

48 - - - - - - - - 11500 13800 - 23000 46000

(a) Solid State Disk


(b) Legacy PS50E
(c) PS4000E and PS6000E only
(d) Legacy PS70E,PS100E, PS100X, PS200E, PS300E and PS400E
Table 10: RAID 10 Total Storage Available with Hot Spares (in GB)

2.4.4 RAID 50
RAID 50 (RAID 5 sets in a striped set) is created by first creating two or more RAID 5 sets, and then
striping data over those RAID5 sets. RAID 50 implementations can tolerate a single drive failure per
RAID5 set.

For EqualLogic arrays using a RAID 50 policy, Table 11 shows the drive layouts that are enforced based
on the number of drives in each array and the hot spare configuration.

Disk Hot Spare No Hot Spare


Drives
7 6 Data/Parity
N/A(a)
1 Hot-spare
8 6 Data/Parity
8 data (4 mirrors)
2 Hot-spares
14 12 Data/Parity
14 Data (7 mirrors)
2 Hot-spares
16 14 Data/Parity
16 Data (8 mirrors)
2 Hot-spares
48(b) 46 Data/Parity
N/A(c)
2 Hot-spares
(a) RAID 50 requires an even number of disk drives. A 7 drive configuration without hot-spare
would result in odd number of disk drives.
(b) 48 drive arrays implement stripes across multiple RAID 5 sets within a single chassis.
(c) 48 drive arrays cannot implement a no hot-spare policy.
Table 11: RAID 50 Drive Layouts

For EqualLogic arrays using a RAID 50 policy, the total quantity of raw storage available can be
computed based on number of drives and the hot spare configuration. The Table 12 below shows the
amount of raw storage available using the hot spare drive layouts specified in Table 11 above.

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Disk Drive
50(a) 100(a) 74 146 250 300 400 450 500 600 750 1000 2000
Qty / Size
7(b) - - - - 1000 - - - - - - - -
(c)
8 - - - - 1000 - - - - - - - -

14(d) - - 740 - 2500 - 4000 - 5000 - - - -

16 600 1200 - 1752 3000 3600 4800 5400 6000 7200 9000 12000 -

48 - - - - - - - - 19500 23400 - 39000 78000

(a) Solid State Disk


(b) Legacy PS50E
(c) PS4000E and PS6000E only
(d) Legacy PS70E,PS100E, PS100X, PS200E, PS300E and PS400E
Table 12: RAID 50 Total Storage Available with Hot Spares (in GB)

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3 Peer Storage Operations

3.1 Groups
A PS Series SAN Group is a Storage Area Network (SAN) comprised of one or more PS Series arrays
connected to an IP network. Each array in a group is called a group member. Each member is assigned
to a storage pool. There can be up to 4 pools within the group.

A group can consist of up to 16 arrays of any family or model as long as all arrays in the group are
running firmware with the same major and minor release number. For example, it is supported to have
different arrays in the same group running different maintenance release levels, as long as their major
and minor revision levels match. An example of this would be running version 4.0.1 and 4.0.3 on
different arrays in the same group. An example of an unsupported configuration would be different
arrays in the same group running 4.0.1 and 4.1.0 (the minor versions differ). The only exception to this
rule is for short term time periods when array firmware versions may be out of sync while upgrading
the firmware on each array within a group. Features available for use within the group are determined
by the lowest version of FW running within the group.

Note: It is recommended that all arrays run the exact same version of FW at all times,
except during a FW upgrade process. (See Section 2.3.4 on page 7 for more information.)

3.2 Pools
A pool is a container that each member is assigned after being added to the group. A pool can have
between 1 to 8 members. There is always at least one pool in any group and it is called the ―default
pool‖ unless the name is changed. Regardless of the name of this pool, it is always considered the
default storage pool. All newly added members are automatically assigned to the default pool. The
default pool cannot be deleted.

Pools can be used as part of an overall tiered storage strategy for the SAN. Tiered storage is storage
that is differentiated and optimized for the type of applications and data being hosted. Instead of
optimizing all of the storage in the group for maximum storage utilization, a tiered storage system
allows for the administrator to optimize different arrays for a variety of requirements such as
application performance requirements or cost efficiency.

Pools are the containers that provide scope for all automated storage optimization features of the
group. Pools with multiple arrays can implement different RAID policies within the pool. The
EqualLogic automated optimization features will automatically move a volume from an array or set of
arrays with one RAID policy to another array or set of arrays with a different RAID policy if it is
determined that the application needs more (or less) performance.

The following rules apply to pools:

 Each member can be assigned to only one pool.


 Each pool can host up to 8 members.
 Each group will have at least 1 pool – the default pool.

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 Each group can have up to 4 pools.
 PS5500E, PS6500E/X and PS6510E/X must reside in a different pool from other arrays.
 PS5500E, PS6500E/X and PS6510E/X can coexist in the same pool.

Figure 3 shows a PS Series group with the maximum of 4 pools. Note the use of Pool 3 for containing
PS5500/PS6500 series arrays only. Also note that Pool 3 contains arrays that implement both 1GbE and
10GbE controllers.

Figure 3 Tiered Pools in a PS Series Group

The following best practices should be considered for storage pools:

 Do not mix arrays with different drive speeds within a single pool unless they are running a
unique RAID policy
 Do not mix arrays with different drive technologies (SATA, SAS, SSD) within a single pool unless
they are running a unique RAID policy.
 Do not mix arrays with different controller speeds (1GbE, 10GbE) within a single pool unless
they are each running unique RAID policies.
 To override the automated performance decisions for a specific volume, indicate a ―preferred‖
RAID type for that volume. If that RAID type exists within the pool, the volume will reside on
those arrays that match the preferred RAID policy for the volume.

3.3 Volumes
Volumes provide the storage allocation structure within an EqualLogic SAN. Volumes are seen on the
network as iSCSI targets by hosts and are presented to the user as disk drives once the iSCSI initiator

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has been configured and authenticated to the volume. Only computers with an iSCSI initiator and the
correct access credentials can access a volume. Disk space for volumes is allocated from the target
storage pool’s free space.

Volumes are identified within the Group Manager with a unique volume name. The volume name is
created by the administrator during volume creation and can be configured with several additional
characteristics and capabilities. The following sections provide additional details.

3.3.1 Volume Attributes


Volumes are created using the ―create volume‖ function in Group Manager or through the Command
Line Interface (CLI). Each volume must have a unique name that is used by Group Manager to identify
and manage the volume. Volume names may be changed via Group Manager at any time. Volume names
must meet the following requirements:

 1 to 64 alpha-numeric characters
 A-Z, a-z, 0-9, ―.‖, ―-―, ―:‖ are legal characters

Volumes are assigned a unique iSCSI Qualified Name (iqn) that consists of the following parts:

 ―iqn‖ followed by a ―.‖ (period)


 Year and Month of first full month that the naming authority was registered with standards
body. EqualLogic’s value is ―2001-5‖ followed by a ―.‖
 The storage provider’s domain name in reverse order. For example: ―com.equallogic‖
 A colon (―:‖)
 Vendor specified information to identify an iSCSI target or initiator as unique within the vendor
domain. For EqualLogic iSCSI targets, this part consists of a unique set of numbers and the user
assigned volume name (within Group Manager).

The following is an example of an iSCSI target name for a volume named db3:

iqn.2001-05.com.equallogic:7-8b0900-6d0000000-001ebbc5d80sf0k0-db3

Volumes are visible to iSCSI initiators through one or more of three mechanisms during volume creation:

 iSCSI initiator IP address


 A host’s iSCSI iqn well-known name
 Mutual CHAP authenticated user identity

Note: IQN names are assigned to volumes automatically when they are created. They
cannot be changed for the life of the volume. If a volume name is changed, the IQN name
associated with the volume will remain unchanged.

3.3.2 Volume Features


Each volume supports a set of features and capabilities that include the following:

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 Ability to define a volume as thin-provisioned
 Support for snapshots
 Support for replication
 Support for creating clones
 Support for multiple host shared access

3.3.3 Thin Provisioning


Thin provisioned volumes provide administrators with an additional option for managing data growth
within the SAN. Thin provisioning allows volumes to present a logical capacity to the host(s)
connecting to the volume that is different (larger) than the actual physical storage resource allocation
used by the volume at any given time.

A volume can be provisioned as a thin provisioned volume at creation or after creation. The following
rules apply to thin provisioned volumes:

 A minimum physical allocation of 10% of the logical allocation is required


 If a volume is converted to a thin provisioned volume, physical allocation cannot be less than
the amount of physical space already used within the volume
 Any pool free space allocated to a thin provisioned volume is not returned to the free pool if
the host’s file system capacity usage of that volume is reduced (due to file system
defragmentation, data removal, etc)
 If a thin provisioned volume’s allocated space exceeds the ―maximum in-use space‖ setting,
the volume will go into an offline state.
 Converting a volume to a thin provisioned volume may not reduce the physical allocation of
space the volume is using. Actual physical space recovered will depend on previous writing
patterns for the OS file system hosted on the volume.
 All initial settings for ―minimum volume reserve‖, ―In-use volume reserve warning level‖ and
―maximum in-use space‖ are default recommendations and can be changed by the
administrator within the constraints defined above.

The following best practices should be considered when using thin provisioned volumes:

 Use Pool Free Space, not Group Free Space when making all determinations of thin provisioned
volume physical capacity allocation.
 Create regular volumes before creating thin provisioned volumes. This provides the
administrator with a better view of the remaining available free space in the pool.
 Set each thin provisioned volume’s ―In use Volume Reserve Warning Level‖ to a level that
allows the administrator to ensure that additional physical storage can be deployed before the
volume uses the remainder of current pool free space.
 Ensure that the Sum of all ―In use Volume Reserve Warning Levels‖ for all thin provisioned
volumes does not exceed the current pool free space capacity minus 10%.
 The storage administrator and application owner should reach an agreement on storage use and
procedures in determining the best automatic growth policy, reducing the frequency of
monitoring and intervention.
 Be aware of an application’s data usage patterns. Some applications perform automated disk
optimization that may cause a thin provisioned volume to use more physical storage than would

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be needed for normal operations. For these types of applications, thin provisioned volumes may
not be indicated.
 Use ―quick format‖ options when formatting OS file systems that are hosted by thin provisioned
volumes.
 Thin provisioned volumes should not be used for hosting OS boot partitions or OS page file
cache.

3.3.4 Snapshots
Snapshots are point in time copies of volumes. Snapshots have some features and properties similar to
volumes as well as some unique capabilities. Like volumes, snapshots can be assigned an iqn and
presented as volumes to a host. This allows hosts to mount a snapshot, potentially change the data in
the snapshot, or convert it to a real volume (clone) that has dedicated space allocated to it from the
free storage pool.

Snapshots require that space be reserved during volume creation (or after volume is created) to store
the snapshot(s) created from that volume. All snapshot reserve space for a specific volume always
resides in the same storage pool as the volume. By default, Group Manager allocates snapshot reserve
space equal to 100% of the host volume’s allocated space. This ensures that a 100% data change in the
volume can be protected by a single snapshot. This value can be set to a lower value based on the
application’s data change rate, snapshot/backup plan, or role that the snapshot will be used. The
following items should be considered when determine the size of a volume’s snapshot reserve:

 Data change rate for the application(s) who is using the volume
 Defragmentation policy of the OS or application using the volume
 The role or purpose for creating the snapshot(s).

Snapshots have the following characteristics:

 They are identified using names that consist of the parent volume name plus a date/time
stamp indicating when the snapshot was created as a default name.
 If name of parent volume changes, existing snapshots iqn names do NOT change accordingly,
but retain their original iqn name.
 Deleting a snapshot’s parent volume deletes all associated snapshots for that volume.
 Snapshots of volumes with a high data change rate will require a larger snapshot reserve space.
 Snapshots have access control lists that are inherited from the parent volume by default.
 Snapshot reserve space for any volume can be decreased at any time. The minimum size
allowed will be based on the current space usage consumed by existing snapshots using the
snapshot reserve.
 Snapshot reserved space for any volume can be increased at any time assuming there is
available free space in the storage pool hosting the volume.

3.3.5 Cloning
Cloning creates a new volume by copying an existing volume. The new volume has the same reported
size, contents and thin-provision settings as the original volume. You can clone a regular volume, a
specific replica of a volume, or a specific snapshot of a volume.

 Volume clones use non-shared storage (unlike snapshots)

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 Volume clones reduce the amount of storage pool free space
 All regular volume operations can be performed on the clone once the cloning operation is
complete.
 The cloning operation supports instant accessibility (while the clone operation is occurring)

Table 13 shows clone sources and properties.

Clone Source Common Properties

 Creates a new volume


Clone from Volume
 Creates a new volume name
 Creates a new iSCSI target IQN
 Has same reported size as source volume
Clone from Snapshot
 Has same contents as source volume
 Cloned volume is immediately available
Clone from Inbound Replica(a)  Cloning consumes free pool space
(secondary group) equivalent to 100% of the volume reserve
setting for the source volume(a)

(a) Replica clones are created in the secondary group pool and are immediately available at
the secondary group IP address.
Table 13 Cloning Modes and Properties

3.3.6 Replication
Replication is a powerful tool to help you manage and implement a disaster recovery strategy for your
business applications and data. By replicating business-critical volumes, you ensure that your business
operations can resume quickly on a partner group in the event of a disaster on the primary group. You
also have the ability to restore the configuration to its original state if the problem on the original
group can be corrected. The replication process does not require placing volumes offline. Thus you can
take advantage of the benefits of replication without causing interruption in application or data
availability.

In EqualLogic PS Series storage, replication is the process of copying volume data from one PS Series
group to another PS Series group. Physical distance between the replication groups is not a concern as
long as they are connected by a reliable TCP/IP network path.

You need to consider the following limits when designing a volume replication topology:

 A primary group can replicate to multiple partner (secondary) replica groups.


 PS series groups can have up to 16 replication partners and can support a maximum of 10,000
total snapshots and replicas from all of its replication partners.
 A group can have volumes replicating with multiple partners, but an individual volume can
have only one replication partner.
 A maximum of 128 volumes per group can be configured for active replication.
 All volumes that are part of a volume collection can only replicate with a single partner.

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 A volume can have up to a maximum of 512 replicas stored on a partner group.
o For a PS4000 only group, you cannot exceed two replication partners and 32 volumes
configured for replication

Warning: Any type of application or operating system level process that causes block level
data changes will affect replication data size and time to complete. For example, file
system defragmentation of a large partition will significantly increase the amount of space
consumed in replica reserve, delegated space on the secondary group and time to complete
the next scheduled replication.

Example Replication Topologies


The following figures present various replication topologies or patterns that are possible to create
between EqualLogic PS Series storage arrays.

 Figure 4 shows the basic replication paths, with one partner group hosting the primary copy of
the volume and a second partner group hosting the replica copy of the same volume. We also
show the reverse direction of the path for the Fast Failback replication feature, if it is enabled
for the replica set.
 Figure 5 shows how a single group can support replication of multiple primary volumes to
different secondary replication partner groups.
 Figure 6 shows how you can create bi-directional replication paths between partner groups.
 Figure 7 shows a common scenario in which multiple primary groups replicate their volumes to
a single secondary group partner in a different location.

Figure 4 Basic Replication Partner Data Paths

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Figure 5 Replication Partnerships with Multiple Groups

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Figure 6 Partner Groups with Bi-Directional Replication

Figure 7 Multiple Groups Replicating to a Single Secondary Group

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Sizing Replica Reserve and Delegated Space
The volume replication process in EqualLogic PS Series storage consumes extra storage space on both
the primary and secondary group partners. In addition to the space consumed by the volume itself,
each volume will require additional space in the primary group for Replication Reserve and Local
Reserve, plus delegated space for storing replica sets in the secondary group. This is illustrated in
Figure 8 below. A single delegated space on the secondary group must be used for all volumes
received from a specific primary group.

Delegated space for a replication partnership must be assigned to a pool (the ―Default‖ pool, by
default). Delegated space for different replication partnerships can be assigned to different pools on
the secondary group.

Figure 8 Replica Reserve, Local Reserve and Delegated Space

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The recommended and space efficient guidelines for sizing replication reserves and delegated space
are presented in Table 14 below.

Recommended Space Efficient


Replication Space
Value Value
No Failback
100% 5% + CR(a)
Snapshot:
Local Reserve
(Primary Group) Keep Failback
200% 10% + CR(a)
Snapshot:

Replica Reserve 105%(b)


200%
(Primary Group) + CR x (# of Replicas – 1)

Delegated Space Sum of all replica reserve sizes Monitor CR, adjust to lower
(Secondary, for all replica sets for all volumes replicating to than recommended value and
coming from single group) that group continue monitoring.

(a) CR: ―Change Rate‖. For details on how volume changes affect replication space, see the Centralized
Replication section under Replication Configuration Options in the Group Manager Help documentation.
(b) Start with 105%, then add to that the maximum number of replicas expected to be stored in the replica set
minus 1, multiplied by the expected Change Rate.

Table 14 Replication Space Sizing Guidelines

3.3.7 Clustering
To support a shared storage environment, EqualLogic allows concurrent access to any volume.
Concurrent volume access is enabled on a per volume basis within the Group Manager or via CLI. The
EqualLogic array will not manage concurrent access to these volumes. Control of access to a shared
volume must be provided by means of access control software on each host that has access to the
volume.

Warning: Failure to provide access control to a shared volume can result in data loss.

By default, EqualLogic PS Series groups disable multi-host (shared) access to target.

 If needed, you can enable multi-host access for a volume.


 If you enable multi-host access to a volume, then proper I/O operation concurrency must be
maintained.

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4 SAN Design
EqualLogic PS Arrays have the following general SAN design recommendations:

 For all members in a given SAN Group, all ports should be on the same subnet. This allows each
array to communicate with each other as a group of peer members. The arrays must be in the
same subnet as the Group’s ―well known‖ IP address.
 All switches within the SAN must be interconnected such that there is always a path from any
Ethernet port on one array to all other Ethernet ports on all other arrays in the group.
 When the SAN infrastructure has more than two switches in a non-stacked configuration, Rapid
Spanning Tree Protocol must be enabled.
 All switches and host network controllers within the infrastructure must have flow control
enabled for optimal performance.
 You should consider creating a VLAN dedicated to iSCSI traffic (even on dedicated switches),
and possibly a second VLAN for management traffic if necessary. Actual VLAN configuration in
your iSCSI SAN will be dictated by your SAN network design requirements and the features of
the iSCSI SAN switches being used.
 Jumbo frames may be enabled. If enabled, all nodes in the SAN fabric must have jumbo frames
enabled.
 Port requirements to support fully redundant configurations and maximum SAN throughput are
as follows:
o PS4000 family: 2x 1GbE ports per controller = 4x 1GbE ports total
o PS5x00 family: 3x 1GbE ports per controller = 6x 1GbE ports total
o PS6x00 family: 4x 1GbE ports per controller = 8x 1GbE ports total
o PS6x10 family: 2x 10GbE ports per controller = 4x 10GbE ports total
 Port requirements for fully redundant iSCSI host connectivity is 2x ports per host. Ports can be
1GbE or 10GbE.

Since an EqualLogic iSCSI SAN can be operated in any network that complies with the industry
standards and IP subnet design contraints, there are many network design and configuration choices
that can affect SAN performance. The following sections provide details related to network design and
configuration to support the use of an EqualLogic SAN.

4.1 Standards Requirements


EqualLogic SANs are based on industry standard TCP/IP (IETF RFC1122, RFC1123) and the iSCSI standard
(IETF RFC3270) transmitted across standard Ethernet networks (IEEE 802.1, 802.3) for all host to target
communications and member to member communications.

4.2 Layer 3 SAN Architectures


We recommend that all hosts be placed within the same subnet as the group. Hosts can be in a
different subnet as long as those hosts have layer 3 routing available to the subnet containing the
arrays and the group’s well known address.

4.3 iSNS Support


An Internet Storage Name Service (iSNS) server supplies a central management point for the group by
dynamically updating information about the iSCSI target names for group volumes. Once the IP address

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of an iSNS server is entered in an iSCSI initiator’s configuration utility, the setting is persistent across
initiator sessions. A PS Series group can be configured to register with up to three iSNS servers.

Starting with Firmware V4.1.4, volume and snapshot identifiers are no longer automatically published
to any configured iSNS server. This applies to new volumes and snapshots as well as volumes and
snapshots that existed before the group was upgraded to V4.1.4.

4.4 Switches
An EqualLogic SAN consists of one or more hosts connected to one or more PS Series arrays through a
switched Ethernet network. To support a high performance Dell EqualLogic SAN, switches must meet
the following general requirements:

 Low latency
Switches with relatively high latency may cause SAN throughput performance to degrade, and
under high load conditions they could increase the risk of dropped connections.
 Non-blocking backplane design
SAN Switches should be able to provide the same amount of backplane bandwidth to support
full duplex communication on ALL ports simultaneously.
 Adequate buffer space per switch port
The Dell EqualLogic arrays use the SAN to support inter-array communication and data load
balancing on top of supporting data transfers between the hosts and the SAN. For this reason,
the more buffer space per port that a switch can provide the better. Due to the multitude of
buffer implementations used by switch vendors, Dell cannot provide definitive guidelines as to
how much is enough, but as a general guideline switches should have at least 256KB per port.
Port buffers should be designed such that data is not lost when traffic reaches extreme levels.
 Support for IEEE 802.3x flow control (active or passive) on ALL ports.
SAN Switches must be able to actively manage ―pause‖ frames received from hosts, or they
must passively pass all ―pause‖ frames through to the target arrays.
 Support for Jumbo Frames
Support for jumbo frames is not a requirement, but it is highly desirable. Many storage
implementations can take advantage of jumbo frames. The actual impact when using jumbo
frames will depend on your workload’s SAN I/O characteristics.
 Support for Rapid Spanning Tree protocol (IEEE 802.1w), or Cisco “portfast” functionality if
the SAN infrastructure will consist of more than two switches
For SAN infrastructures consisting of more than 2 non-stacking switches, R-STP must be enabled
on all ports used for ISLs. All non-ISL ports should be marked as ―edge‖ ports or set to
―portfast‖.
 Support for unicast storm control
iSCSI in general, and Dell EqualLogic SANs in particular can send packets in a very ―bursty‖
profile that many switches could misdiagnose as a virally induced packet storm. Since the SAN
should be isolated from general Ethernet traffic, the possibility of actual viral packet storms
occurring is non-existent. In an EqualLogic SAN, the switches must always pass Ethernet
packets regardless of traffic patterns.
 Support for Inter-Switch Linking (ISL) or Stacking

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ISL support is required to link all switches in SAN infrastructure together. For stacking capable
switches, the use of stacking ports for ISL is assumed. A good rule of thumb for stacking link
bandwidth would be a minimum 20 Gbps full-duplex.
 Support for creating Link Aggregation Groups (LAG)
For non-stacking switches, the ability to bind multiple physical ports into a single logical link
for use as an inter-switch link (ISL) is required. The switch should support designating one or
more ports for ISL (via Link Aggregation Groups). The switch should support creating LAGs of at
least 8 x 1Gbps ports or at least 2 x 10Gbps port. Note: Use of non-stacking switches to connect
three or more EqualLogic arrays into a single group may negatively impact SAN I/O throughput
performance.
 Support for vLAN functionality if SAN traffic is to share the same physical switch resources
with other (non-iSCSI SAN) network traffic.

4.4.1 Connecting SAN Switches in a Layer 2 Network


When more than one SAN switch is required, each switch connected to the array group members will be
in the same subnet. These switches must be interconnected to provide a single switched Ethernet
fabric. Figure 9 shows the two common methods for making this connection, using either stacking
switches or non-stacking switches.

Figure 9 Switch Interconnects

Stacking Switches
Stacking switches provide the preferred method for creating an inter-switch connection within a Layer
2 network infrastructure. Stacking is typically accomplished using a vendor proprietary, high-bandwidth,
low-latency interconnect that allows two or more switches to be connected in such a way that each
switch becomes part of a larger, virtual switch. A stackable switch will either have a set of fixed,
dedicated stacking ports, or an optional stacking module that will need to be installed.

For 1Gb switches, the stacking link bandwidth should be at least 10Gb/s in each direction on each wire
(full-duplex) to provide adequate throughput to support an EqualLogic SAN consisting of 1Gb arrays.

For 10Gb switches, the stacking link bandwidth should be at least 40Gb/s in each direction on each
wire (full-duplex) to provide adequate throughput to support an EqualLogic SAN consisting of 10Gb
arrays or a mix of 1Gb and 10Gb arrays.

Non-stacking Switches
Non-stacking switches do not have a dedicated switch interconnect. Instead, to create an interconnect
between non-stacking switches you must utilize one or more of the switched Ethernet ports on each
switch to create a Link Aggregation Group (LAG). This type of Inter-switch connections should utilize

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link aggregation functions (if provided by the switch) to aggregate multiple Ethernet ports into a single,
logical high bandwidth interconnect. There are several options depending on the vendor of the switch.
Table 15 describes the most common options:

Link Aggregation Type Notes


Static link aggregation defines a set of links that provide a point to
Static point connection between two switches. These links may or may not
provide failover redundancy or traffic load management.
Link Aggregation Control Protocol is based on IEEE 802.3ad or IEEE
802.1AX. LACP is a dynamic LAG technology that automatically adjusts
LACP
to the appearance or disappearance of links within the defined LACP
group.
PAgP Cisco’s proprietary Port Aggregation Protocol
Several switch vendors may provide additional link aggregation options
that are completely proprietary or may be extensions to one of the two
previously mentioned solutions. In most cases, this type of link
aggregation solution is designed to reduce or eliminate the need – and
the overhead – of the Spanning Tree Protocol that must be used in the
Vendor Proprietary two previous options. If available, these proprietary options should be
considered. They may be very useful in allowing the network
administrator to create a more efficient multi-switch layer 2 network
infrastructure for a SAN. Be aware that these proprietary solutions
must support the transmission of IEEE 802.1x flow control and jumbo
frames (if used) to properly support an EqualLogic SAN.
Table 15: Link Aggregration Types

Inter-switch connections should be sized (initially) according to following guidelines in Table 16.

Connection Speeds Interconnection Guidelines

1-5 arrays: 1Gb of ISL bandwidth per active array


controller port (up to the aggregated maximum
1GbE switches attached to bandwidth of the ISL.
1GbE array controllers
6+ arrays: Use 1-5 array rule, then add 1Gb of additional
bandwidth for each array added

1-5 arrays: 20Gb of ISL bandwidth


10GbE switches attached to
10GbE array controllers
6+ arrays: 40-80Gb of ISL bandwidth depending on data
access profile

1GbE switches connecting to Same guidelines as 1GbE switches attached to 1GbE array
10GbE switches in a mixed speed SAN controllers (above)

Table 16: Switch Interconnect Design Guidelines

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Comparison of Inter-Switch Connection Types
Table 17 provides a more detailed description and comparison of the two interconnect options.

Interconnect Type Primary Purpose Analysis


Pros:
 Easier to manage multiple switches as single
switch
 Higher bandwidth than using link aggregation and
Ethernet
 Not limited by Ethernet standards
Cons:
 Proprietary, cannot be used to interconnect
Create a larger,
switches from different vendors
logical switch
Stacking  Increases cost of switch
within an isolated
physical location.  Stack bandwidth overload risk
Recommendation:
 Best way to scale a storage network in a single
location on a single subnet
 Provides lower latency and higher bandwidth
than inter-switch linking
 Understand the stacking technology and limit
stack size in accordance with total throughput
requirements and connection counts.
Pros:
 Leverages Ethernet standard extensions
 Can be used to interconnect switches from
different vendors
 Can use Link Aggregation Protocols
(LACP/EtherChannel) to pool multiple 1GbE or
10GbE links into a single logical link providing
Create a data bandwidth and redundancy
path between Cons:
switches in one
Link Aggregation  Most solutions limited to 8 port link aggregation
location or subnet
Groups (LAG) group
with those in
 Spanning Tree Protocol must be used if more
another location
than two switches are used causing some links to
or subnet
be ―blocked‖ reducing bandwidth availability
 LAG bandwidth overload risk
Recommendation:
 Use when stacking is not available
 Use when connecting to aggregation/core
switching infrastructure
 Use when switches are from different vendors
Table 17 Stacking vs. Inter-Switch Linking

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4.5 EqualLogic iSCSI SAN Design
This section will combine all of the SAN components and information provided so far and bring them
together to configure a redundant EqualLogic PS Series SAN configuration. We also include a series of
examples illustrating partially redundant and non-redundant SAN configurations.

The information provided here will not be able to address all of the possible variations in a customer
network environment. All information is presented using a set of basic reference designs that make
the following assumptions:

 The SAN network is physically isolated from all other network traffic
 All best practices recommendations will be used to derive all examples
 Unless otherwise stated, all reference designs will promote end-to-end host to volume
redundant paths
 A minimal number of switches will be illustrated that allows the design concept to be
understood. Actual implementations will vary depending on customer’s actual network
infrastructure.
 If sharing physical switches with other, non-SAN traffic, assume all switches can represent
a VLAN rather than physical switches.

4.5.1 Redundant SAN Configuration


A redundant iSCSI SAN that utilizes an EqualLogic array is illustrated in Figure 10. In this SAN design,
each component of the SAN infrastructure has a redundant connection or path.

Note: For a production environment, this configuration will protect your access to data and is the ONLY
type of configuration recommended by Dell.

Figure 10 Redundant SAN

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Designing a redundant SAN requires the availability of redundant NICs on the server. A redundant NIC
configuration on the server requires at least two NICs installed into separate PCI slots in the server.
This can be achieved by installing one extra PCI-E NIC into the server and using it in combination with
the LOM (LAN on Motherboard) NIC. Table 18 below shows how to achieve redundant server NIC
connection configurations for a server with three installed NICs.

LOM Installed Installed


NIC NIC 1 NIC 2
X X -
NIC Connections
to SAN - X X
X - X
Table 18: Redundant Server NIC Configurations

Using the Dell PowerEdge R610 server as an example, you configure redundant connection paths to the
SAN switches as shown in Figure 11 below. The R610 server shown in Figure 11 has one additional dual-
port PCI-E NIC installed. This configuration leaves two unused ports on the LOM controller for
connecting to the server LAN.

Figure 11 Redundant NIC Connections from Server to SAN using one installed PCI-E NIC and LOM

An R610 server with two additional dual-port PCI-E NICs installed is shown in Figure 12 below. This
configuration leaves all four ports on the LOM controller available for other connections.

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Figure 12 Redundant NIC Connections from Server to SAN using two installed PCI-E NICs

Note: As a best practice, we recommend using the same NIC devices in your server for all
connection paths to the iSCSI SAN. This will minimize the complexity of server configuration
management.

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4.5.2 Partially Redundant SAN Configurations


Each of the SAN configurations shown in this section will allow host connectivity to data stored in the
SAN. These configurations are for reference only. They are not recommended for production
deployment since they do not provide end-to-end redundant connection paths.

Single Array Controller Configurations


You can configure a Dell EqualLogic array to run using a single controller. Table 19 below shows
configurations using a single array controller.

Single Controller
Single Switch
Single NIC

Single Controller
Single Switch
Dual NIC

Single Controller
Dual Switch
Dual NIC

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Table 19 Single Controller Array Configurations

Dual Array Controller Configurations


You can configure a Dell EqualLogic array to run using dual controllers. Table 20 below shows
configurations using a single array controller.

Dual Controller
Single Switch
Single NIC

Dual Controller
Dual Switch
Single NIC

Dual Controller
Single Switch
Dual NIC

Table 20 Dual Controller Array Configurations

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4.6 10GbE and 10GbE SAN Integration
With the introduction of 10GbE, there will be situations that require 1Gb arrays and 10Gb arrays
coexisting in the same SAN infrastructure. EqualLogic PS Series arrays support operation of 1Gb and
10Gb arrays within the same group. There are advantages in running a mixed speed (1GbE <-> 10GbE)
SAN:

 Not all of the application workloads on a SAN will require storage I/O performance that the
10Gb arrays provide. Thus, SAN administrators will have additional storage tiering flexibility
based on array I/O performance.
 The PS Series Group Manager will allow the SAN administrator to still manage both types of
arrays within the same SAN group.

There are many ways to design an iSCSI SAN that integrates 1GbE and 10GbE networks together. A
significant factor affecting the design of a mixed speed iSCSI SAN is the feature set and port densities
provided by the Ethernet switches you will be using in your SAN. To create a redundant, mixed speed
iSCSI SAN, at a minimum we recommend that you start with dual 1GbE and dual 10GbE switches.
Figure 13 shows an example SAN design, where two switches of each type are used. The design in
Figure 13 is based on the features provided by the Dell PowerConnect 6248 1Gb Ethernet switch with
10GbE uplink modules, and the Dell PowerConnect 8024 10Gb Ethernet switch. The Dell PowerConnect
8024 is not a stackable switch, so a link aggregation group (LAG) is used to create the inter-switch link
paths. Two additional LAG groups are created to connect to the 10GbE uplink ports on the 1Gb
switches to the 10Gb switches.

Note: See the following Dell EqualLogic whitepaper for more detailed analysis and guidelines for
integrating 1GbE and 10GbE iSCSI SANs:

 Integrating EqualLogic PS6x10 Arrays with Existing SANs, available at:


http://www.equallogic.com/resourcecenter/assetview.aspx?id=9447

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Figure 13 Mixed Speed Redundant SAN

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5 M1000e Blade Chassis Integration


M1000e (or any 3rd party blade chassis implementation) requires additional SAN design considerations.
In general, most blade integration solutions will require an external set of switches that will host the
PS Series arrays that are then uplinked to the M1000e blade enclosure I/O modules. It is recommended
that stackable blade I/O modules and external switches be utilized for all blade solutions when
possible.

Note: See the following Dell EqualLogic whitepaper for more information on integrating blade
solutions into the EqualLogic SAN infrastructures:

 Integrating Blade Solutions with the Dell EqualLogic PS Series, available at:
http://www.equallogic.com/resourcecenter/assetview.aspx?id=7173

5.1 Guidelines for Stacking Switches in a Blade Chassis


Use the following guidelines for blade server integration with EqualLogic SANs.

Note: All configurations documented here assume that Fabric A is dedicated to client LAN traffic and
Fabric B and/or C will be used for SAN infrastructure connectivity

 Blade I/O modules and external switches should preferably be from the same vendor if
possible.
 Stack blade I/O modules into one of two stacking architectures as described in Section 5.2 and
Section 5.3 when possible. Other configurations are possible and may be used if desired.
 Stack any external switches into a single stack as described in Section 4.4.
 Interconnect blade I/O stack(s) with external switch stacks via aggregated links
 Use 10GbE port options where available (See Figure 17).
o Aggregate at least two 10GbE ports from each blade I/O module stack for redundancy
o Distribute 10GbE links among multiple switches within each I/O module stack
o Distribute 10GbE links evenly between all switches within the external switch stack
o Use Switch vendor preferred method for link aggregation (if all switches from same vendor)
o Use LACP as method for link aggregation when I/O modules and external switches are from
different vendors
 Use 1GbE port options only if 10GbE is not available for up-linking
o Aggregate at least two 1GbE ports from each blade I/O module stack for redundancy
o Aggregate at least one 1GbE port from each I/O module for every two blades in chassis
o Distribute links among multiple switches within each I/O module stack
o Distribute links evenly between all switches within the external switch stack
o Use Switch vendor preferred method for link aggregation (if all switches from same vendor)
o Use LACP as method for link aggregation when I/O modules and external switches are from
different vendors

5.2 Single M1000e Enclosure Integration


For single M1000e enclosure, the two redundant switches in the fabric slots (B1 & B2 or C1 & C2) should
be stacked together as shown in Figure 14 below.

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Figure 14 Single Enclosure Switch Stacking

5.3 Multiple M1000e Enclosure Integration


Two options are available when configuring the blade I/O modules into stacks:

Dual I/O Module Stacks


The I/O modules in one half of the redundant fabric (B1 or C1) of each M1000e enclosure should be
stacked together and the I/O modules in the other half of the redundant fabric (B2 or C2) should be
stacked together as shown in Figure 15 below. This configuration scales the number of M1000e blade
enclosures in parallel with the maximum stacking count for each I/O module vendor. In the case of the
M1000e, the maximum number of I/O modules per stack is 9 modules for Cisco® Catalyst® 3130 family
of switches and 10 modules for the PowerConnect M6220. This is the preferred method of stacking the
M1000e chassis for EqualLogic.

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Figure 15 Dual I/O Module Stacks (Fabric B)

Single I/O Module Stack


All of the I/O modules in each of the enclosures can be stacked together as shown in Figure 16 below.
This provides a single management structure for the blade I/O modules. This configuration scales the
number of M1000e blade enclosures to ½ of the number allowed in the Dual Stack configuration. For
Cisco Catalyst 3130 family of I/O modules, the enclosure limit would be 4 M1000e’s, and for the
PowerConnect M6220 I/O modules, the enclosure limit would be 5 M1000e’s. This configuration is not a
preferred method for stacking M1000e blade enclosures. See the Dual I/O Module Stack in the previous
section for the preferred method of stacking.

Figure 16 Single I/O Module Stack (Fabric B)

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5.4 M1000e Ethernet Pass-Through I/O Module
Pass-Through modules are supported for use with EqualLogic SAN solutions. The Pass-Through module
provides a simple, direct path from each blade server’s optional Ethernet mezzanine card to an
externally accessible port. These ports can then be connected to one or more external switches that
are configured for EqualLogic SAN support as described in Section 4.4.

5.5 External Tier Stacking


The second tier for the SAN infrastructure should consist of two or more stackable switches – preferably
from the same vendor as the M1000e switches. The number of external switches required will depend
on the number of arrays being deployed as well as the type of uplink technology being used to connect
the M1000e I/O stacks to the external tier stack.

5.6 Stack to Stack Interconnect


Connecting each blade enclosure I/O module stack to the external storage tier stack using either the
1Gb/s external Ethernet ports or by using optional 10Gb/s external uplink modules.

5.6.1 10GbE Uplinks Recommendations


The following recommendations should be used when connecting

 Aggregate at least two 10GbE ports from each blade I/O module stack for redundancy.

If possible, any Link Aggregation Group used for connecting the I/O modules to the external
switch stack should contain at least 2 links for redundancy. The actual number will depend on
both the number of 10GbE ports available on each stack (spread across multiple modules within
the stack) and the number of 10GbE ports available on the external switch stack.

For example, each Cisco 3130X blade I/O module can have up to two 10GbE X2 ports and the
Cisco 3750-E can have at most two 10GbE X2 ports. In most configurations, your external stack
will be comprised of two switches – and a maximum of four 10GbE ports. Regardless of the
number of M1000e enclosures, there are only four available ports to use for uplinking;
therefore, only four 10GbE ports total can be used for uplinking – two ports per redundant
stack in the dual stack blade configuration or four ports for the single stack blade
configuration. This is illustrated in Figure 17.

 Distribute 10GbE links among multiple switches within each I/O module stack if supported

When the blade solution consists of more than one M1000e enclosure, the 10GbE ports used for
up-linking should be distributed between multiple enclosures to protect against a complete
enclosure failure. Doing this requires that the M1000e I/O Modules be stacked.

 Distribute 10GbE links evenly between all switches within the external switch stack if
supported

When the external switch stack consists of more than one switch, the 10GbE ports used for up-
linking should be distributed between all switches in the stack to protect against a switch
failure.

 Use Switch vendor preferred method for link aggregation (if all switches from same vendor)

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Some switch vendors have proprietary or enhanced link aggregation protocols. For example,
Cisco supports Port Aggregation Protocol (PAgP) that contains advanced management features.

 Use LACP as method for link aggregation when I/O modules and external switches are from
different vendors

The industry standard link aggregation protocol is IEEE 802.3ad (802.1AX), also known as the
Link Aggregation Control Protocol (LACP). LACP is typically the only method for creating link
aggregation groups that can link switches from multiple vendors.

Figure 17 illustrates an example of how to link the M1000e enclosures using Cisco Blade Switch 3130X
I/O modules with an external switch stack consisting of Cisco 3750-E switches using 10GbE links.

Figure 17 Stack to Stack Uplink Using 10GbE Links

5.6.2 1GbE Uplinks Recommendations


If 10GbE links are not available, 1GbE links can be used to link the blade enclosure I/O modules to the
external switch stack. Configurations using 1GbE uplinks should be limited to smaller installations
limited to one or two M1000e blade enclosures due to increased cabling complexity.

Blade I/O connection guidelines:

 Aggregate at least two 1GbE ports from each blade I/O module stack for redundancy
o Configurations will be limited to one active link aggregation group per I/O module stack
due to rapid spanning tree protocol restrictions.

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o Link aggregation groups will typically contain a maximum size permitted by switch and/or
I/O module vendor (typically eight 1GbE links).
 Distribute links amongst multiple switches within each I/O module stack if supported

When the blade solution consists of more than one M1000e enclosure, the 1GbE ports used for
up-linking should be distributed between multiple enclosures to protect against a complete
enclosure failure.

 Distribute links evenly between all switches within the external switch stack if supported

When the external switch stack consists of more than one switch, the 1GbE ports used for up-
linking should be distributed between all switches in the external switch stack to protect
against a switch failure.

 Use Switch vendor preferred method for link aggregation (if all switches from same vendor)

Some switch vendors have proprietary or enhanced link aggregation protocols. For example,
Cisco supports Port Aggregation Protocol (PAgP) that contains advanced management features.

 Use LACP as method for link aggregation when I/O modules and external switches are from
different vendors

The industry standard link aggregation protocol is IEEE 802.3ad, also known as the Link
Aggregation Control Protocol (LACP). LACP is typically the only method for creating link
aggregation groups that can link switches from multiple vendors.

Figure 18 illustrates an example of how to link the M1000e enclosures using Cisco Blade Switch 3130X
I/O modules with an external switch stack consisting of Cisco 3750-E switches using 10GbE links.

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Figure 18 Stack to Stack Uplink Using 1GbE Links

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Appendix A PowerConnect 54xx Switch Configuration


The PowerConnect 54xx Family of switches must be placed in ―privileged‖ mode to perform
configuration steps in this Appendix. Use the following command to enter ―privileged‖ mode:

console> enable

console#

Note: You may be prompted for a password after submitting the enable command

The PowerConnect 54xx Family of switches must be place into configuration mode before any
configuration steps can be performed. To enter configuration mode, the following command must be
entered:

console# configure

console(config)#

PowerConnect 54xx Family of switches are non-stacking switches and must be configured
independently using either the web-based Switch manager or the Command Line Interface (CLI). The
instructions in this Appendix provide CLI commands for configuration. Please go to Dell’s support
website for the latest documentation if the web-interface is preferred.

Port references for the PowerConnect 54xx switch must use the interface command and the port
references are in the form of ―g‖+<port#>.

For example, Port 10 on the Powerconnect 5424 would be referenced as

console(config)# interface ethernet g10

To reference a range of ports, the interface range command must be used with the port reference in
the form of ―g(―+<begport#> + ―-― + <endport#>+ ―)‖.

For example, to reference all ports between port g1 and port g15 would be referenced as

console(config)# interface range ethernet g(1-15)

A.1 Disabling iSCSI Optimization Setting


The PowerConnect 54xx family of switches has a global feature called ―iSCSI Optimization‖ that is
designed to configure the Quality of Service settings to allow iSCSI frames to have priority over other
frame types within the switch. The settings used when this command is enabled are designed to
optimize an iSCSI storage solution consisting of a single iSCSI storage device and is not optimal for a
SAN consisting of multiple EqualLogic PS Series arrays in a peer storage configuration and must be
disabled for switches used within a PS Series SAN.

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To disable the iSCSI Optimization settings for the PowerConnect 54xx family of switches, perform the
following steps:

console# configure

console(config)# no iscsi enable

console(config)# exit

console# copy running-config startup-config

console# exit

A.2 Enabling the PortFast Option to Configure STP Edge Ports


To enable PortFast on a single port, the spanning-tree portfast command must be used. PortFast
should be enabled only on those ports being used to for inter-switch connections. The following steps
are an example of using this command to enable portfast on port 10 of the PowerConnect 5448.

console# configure

console(config)# spanning-tree mode rstp

console(config)# interface ethernet g10

console(config-if)# spanning-tree portfast

console(config-if)# exit

console(config)# exit

console# copy running-config startup-config

console# exit

A.3 Configuring Flow Control


Flow control on the PowerConnect 54xx Family of switches is off by default. To enable flow control on
all ports in the switch, use the system flow control command. Flow control only works when the port is
in full duplex mode, so be sure to enable full duplex on the port before enabling flow control. To
enable flow control on all ports of a PowerConnect 5448, enter the following commands:

console# configure

console(config)# interface range ethernet g(1-48)

console(config-if)# speed 1000

console(config-if)# duplex full

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console(config-if)# flowcontrol on

console(config-if)# exit

console(config)# exit

console# copy running-config startup-config

console# exit

A.4 Disabling Unicast Storm Control


To disable port storm control on the PowerConnect 54xx switch, use the no port storm-control
broadcast enable command.

The following steps are an example of using this command to disable storm control on a single port of a
PowerConnect 5448 switch:

console# configure

console(config)# interface Ethernet g1

console(config-if)# no port storm-control broadcast enable

console(config-if)# exit

console(config)# exit

console# copy running-config startup-config

console# exit

The following steps are an example of how to disable storm control on all ports of a PowerConnect
5448 switch:

console# configure

console(config)# interface range ethernet all

console(config-if)# no port storm-control broadcast enable

console(config-if)# exit

console(config)# exit

console# copy running-config startup-config

console# exit

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A.5 Configuring Jumbo Frames
Jumbo frames are not enabled by default. To enable jumbo frames on the PowerConnect 54xx switch,
use the port jumbo-frame global configuration command. Jumbo frames are enabled on all ports on a
switch when enabled.

console# configure

console(config)# port jumbo-frame

console(config)# exit

console# copy running-config startup-config

console# exit

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Appendix B PowerConnect 62xx Switch Configuration


The PowerConnect 62xx Family of switches must be placed in ―privileged‖ mode to perform
configuration steps in this Appendix. Use the following command to enter ―privileged‖ mode:

console> enable

console#

Note: You may be prompted for a password after submitting the enable command

The PowerConnect 62xx Family of switches must be place into configuration mode before any
configuration steps can be performed. To enter configuration mode, the following command must be
entered:

console# configure

console(config)#

PowerConnect 62xx Family of switches are stacking switches and must be configured as a stack using
either the web-based Switch manager or the Command Line Interface (CLI). The instructions in this
Appendix provide CLI commands for configuration. Please go to Dell’s support website for the latest
documentation if the web-interface is preferred.

B.1 Interface Naming Convention


The conventions for naming interfaces on Dell PowerConnect 62xx family of switches are as follows:

 Unit#/Interface ID — each interface is identified by the Unit# followed by a / symbol and then
the Interface ID (see below). For example, 2/g10 identifies gigabit port 10 within the second
unit of a stack.
 Unit# — the unit number is used only in a stacking solution where a number of switches are
stacked to form a virtual device. In this case, the unit number identifies the physical device
identifier within the stack.
 Interface ID — is formed by the interface type followed by the interface number. There is
currently a predefined list of interface types (see below). If additional interface types are to
be defined, they must be registered with Dell. For example, 2/g10 identifies the gigabit port
10 on the second unit.
 Interface Types — the following interface types are defined in the 6200 series switches:
o g — gigabit Ethernet port (for example, 1/g2 is the gigabit Ethernet port 2).
o g — 10 Gigabit Ethernet port (for example, 1/xg2 is the 10 gigabit Ethernet port 2).

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B.2 Enabling the PortFast Option to Configure STP Edge Ports
To enable PortFast on a single port, the spanning-tree portfast command must be used. The following
steps are an example of using this command to enable portfast on port 10 of the first PowerConnect
6248 in a stack

console# configure

console(config)# spanning-tree mode rstp

console(config)# interface ethernet 1/g10

console(config-if)# spanning-tree portfast

console(config-if)# exit

console(config)# exit

console# copy running-config startup-config

console# exit

B.3 Configuring Flow Control


Flow control on the PowerConnect 62xx Family of switches is off by default. To enable flow control on
all ports in the switch, use the flowcontrol command.

To enable flow control on all ports of a PowerConnect 6248, enter the following commands:

console# configure

console(config)# flowcontrol

console(config)# exit

console# copy running-config startup-config

console# exit

B.4 Disabling Unicast Storm Control


To disable port storm control on the PowerConnect 62xx switch, use the no storm-control unicast
command. The following steps are an example of using this command to disable the unicast storm
control on a single port – Port 10 of Switch 3 in a stack:

console# configure

console(config)# interface ethernet 3/g10

console(config-if)# no storm-control unicast

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console(config-if)# exit

console(config)# exit

console# copy running-config startup-config

console# exit

The following steps are an example of how to disable unicast storm control on all ports in a
PowerConnect 62xx switch stack:

console# configure

console(config)# interface range ethernet all

console(config-if)# no storm-control unicast

console(config-if)# exit

console(config)# exit

console# copy running-config startup-config

console# exit

B.5 Configuring Jumbo Frames


Jumbo frames are not enabled by default. To enable jumbo frames on the Powerconnect 62xx switch,
use the mtu interface configuration command with a parameter of 9216. Because the mtu command is
an interface configuration command, each port must be individually configured with the mtu
command. All ports on a switch can be configured using the port range command.

console# configure

console(config)# interface range ethernet all

console(config-if)# mtu 9216

console(config-if)# exit

console(config)# exit

console# copy running-config startup-config

console# exit

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Appendix C Cisco IOS based Switch Configuration
Cisco IOS based switches required ―privileged‖ mode access on the console before you can perform
configuration steps in this Appendix. Use the following command to enter ―privileged‖ mode:

Switch> enable

Switch#

Additionally, you must be in configuration mode before any configuration steps can be performed. To
enter configuration mode, the following command must be entered:

Switch# configure terminal

To configure a port on non-chassis based Cisco IOS switch, the interface type, stack member number,
module number, and switch port number must be provided (once you have entered interface
configuration mode).

 Interface Type: Gigabit Ethernet and small form-factor pluggable (SFP) modules
(gigabitethernet or gi), 10-Gigabit Ethernet (tengigabitethernet or te).
 Stack member number: Identifies the switch within the stack. The switch number range is 1 to
9 and is assigned the first time the switch initializes. All standalone switches have stack
member number equal to 1. When a switch is added to an existing stack it will receive a new
stack member number and it keeps that number until another is assigned to it. Non-Stackable
switches have a stack member number of 1. The switch port LEDs can be configured in Stack
mode to identify the stack member number of a switch.
 Module number: The module or slot number on the switch is always 0.
 Port number: Reflects the actual port number on the switch. Port numbers always begin at 1,
starting with the far left port when facing the front of the switch.
For switches that have Cisco TwinGig Converter Modules in 10-Gigabit Ethernet module slots, the
interface type is tengigabitethernet, and the port numbers restart at 1. For example, the first
port on the first TwinGig Converter Module is referenced as tengigabitethernet1/0/1 and the
first port on the second TwinGig Converter Module would be referenced as
tengigabitethernet1/0/3.

For switches that are using Cisco dual SFP X2 converter modules in the 10-Gigabit Ethernet module
slots, the SFP module ports are numbered consecutively following the fixed port interfaces. For
example, if the switch has 24 fixed ports, the SFP module ports are gigabitethernet1/0/25
through gigabitethernet1/0/28.

For example, on a Cisco Catalyst® 3750-E, port #4 is identified by entering the following command:

Switch(config)# interface gigabitethernet1/0/4

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C.1 Enabling the PortFast Option to Configure STP Edge Ports
To configure STP edge ports on Cisco IOS-based switches, the Portfast option must be set on the
desired port(s).

The following example shows how to enable PortFast on Gigabit Ethernet interface 0/1 on switch 1:

Switch> enable

Switch# configigure terminal

Switch(config)# interface gi1/0/1

Switch(config-if)# spanning-tree portfast

Switch(config-if)# exit

Switch(config)# exit

Switch# copy running-config startup-config

To view or confirm Port Fast status on a port, use the following command.

Switch# show spanning-tree interface gigabitethernet0/1

Note: Use the spanning-tree portfast default global configuration command to globally enable the
PortFast feature on all non-trunking ports.

This example shows how to globally enable PortFast by default on all access ports:

Switch# config terminal

Switch(config)# spanning-tree portfast default

Switch(config)# end

Switch# copy running-config startup-config

For additional information on understanding and configuring Spanning-Tree Protocol on Cisco Catalyst
switches, see:

http://www.cisco.com/en/US/tech/tk389/tk621/technologies_configuration_example09186a00800946
7c.shtml

C.2 Configuring Flow Control


This section describes how to configure Flow Control on Cisco Catalyst 3750 and 2970 switches. You
must enable Flow Control on each switch port that handles iSCSI traffic.

Note: Cisco Catalyst switch ports are capable of receiving, but not sending, pause frames.

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The following commands shows how to configure Gigabit Ethernet interface 0/1 on switch 1 to auto-
negotiate the correct Flow Control setting with the device to which it is connected:

Switch> enable

Switch# configure terminal

Switch(config)# interface gigabitethernet1/0/1

Switch(config-if)# flowcontrol receive desired

Switch(config-if)# exit

Switch(config)# exit

Switch# copy running-config startup-config

To view or confirm Flow Control status on a port, use the following command:

Switch# show flowcontrol interface gigabitethernet1/0/1

C.3 Disabling Unicast Storm Control


This section describes how to disable unicast storm control on Cisco Catalyst 3750 and 2970 switches.
The following example shows how to disable unicast storm control on Gigabit Ethernet interface 0/15
on switch 1 and verify the configuration:

Switch> enable

Switch# configure terminal

Switch(config)# interface gigabitethernet1/0/15

Switch(config-if)# no storm-control unicast level

Switch(config-if)# exit

Switch(config)# exit

Switch# copy running-config startup-config

To view or confirm storm control status on a port, use the following command:

Switch# show storm-control gigabitethernet1/0/15 unicast

C.4 Configuring Jumbo Frames


On Cisco Catalyst switches, MTU size cannot be set for an individual interface. Instead, it must be
configured for all Gigabit Ethernet ports on the switch, or for all ports in a VLAN. When the MTU size is

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changed, the switch must reset before the new configuration takes effect. If a value is entered that is
outside the allowed range for the specific type of interface, the value is not accepted.

Use the following commands to configure Jumbo Frames, which sets the maximum packet size to 9000
bytes:

Switch> enable

Switch# config terminal

Switch(config)# system mtu jumbo 9000

Switch(config)# exit

Switch# copy running-config startup-config

Switch# reload

The following example shows the output when you try to set Gigabit Ethernet interfaces to an out of
range value:

Switch(config)# system mtu jumbo 25000

% Invalid input detected at '^' marker.

Once the switch completes reload, the configuration can be verified by entering the following
commands:

Switch> enable

Switch# configure t

Switch(config)# show system mtu

Switch(config)# exit

The commands shown next are used to enable an individual VLAN to use Jumbo Frames. Note that
VLAN1 cannot have Jumbo Frames enabled. VLAN 2 must be used if Jumbo Frames are required.

Switch# vlan database

Switch(vlan)# vlan 2 mtu 9000

Switch(vlan)# exit

To view or confirm MTU size on port 7 of the switch, use the following command.

Switch# show interface gigabitethernet1/0/7

Dell EqualLogic Configuration Guide v11.1.1 54


Dell Internal Only
For more information on configuring Jumbo Frames or Giant Frames on Catalyst switches, see:

http://www.cisco.com/en/US/products/hw/switches/ps700/products_configuration_example09186a00
8010edab.shtml

Dell EqualLogic Configuration Guide v11.1.1 55


Dell Internal Only

Related Publications
The following publications provide additional background and technical details supporting configuration
of EqualLogic SANs.

In future versions of this document we will continue to extract and include more information from the
various white papers and technical reports that are referenced here. All documents listed in Table 21
below are available for internet download, unless noted otherwise.

Published in 2010

Configuring Dell PowerConnect 62XX Switches for use with EqualLogic (Dell internal access only)

Dell PowerVault DL Backup-to-Disk Appliance Powered by CommVault Simpana

DELL PowerVault DL Backup-to-Disk Appliance Powered by Symantec Backup Exec

Deploying Microsoft SQL Server 2008 based Decision Support Systems using Dell EqualLogic 10GbE
iSCSI Storage (EqualLogic support site – registration required)

Integrating EqualLogic PS6x10 Arrays with Existing SANs

Understanding Data Replication Between Dell EqualLogic PS Series Groups

Published in 2009

10 GbE, Servers, Storage and Virtualization - Interoperability Review and Highlights

Benefits and Best Practices for Deploying SSDs in an OLTP Environment Using Dell EqualLogic PS
Series (EqualLogic support site – registration required)

Configuring and Deploying the Dell EqualLogic Multipath I/O Device Specific Module (DSM)

Configuring VMware vSphere Software iSCSI with Dell EqualLogic PS Series Storage

Dell EqualLogic PS Series Network Performance Guidelines

Dell Reference Architecture Implementation Guide for Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 in a
Virtualized Environment using EqualLogic PS Series Storage

Dell Reference Architecture Sizing and Best Practices for Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 in a
VMware ESX Server Environment using EqualLogic PS Series Storage

Deploying Microsoft Hyper-V with PS Series Arrays

Deploying Thin Provisioning in a PS Series SAN

Host Integration Tools Installation and User Guide (Internal link to product documentation file)

Monitoring Your PS Series SAN with SAN Headquarters

Dell EqualLogic Configuration Guide v11.1.1 56


Dell Internal Only
PS Series Arrays: Expanding Basic Disk Volumes (Dell internal link – external link not found)

PS Series Groups: Backup and Recovery Overview

PS Series STorage Arrays: Choosing a Member RAID Policy

PS Series Storage Arrays CLI Reference (Internal link to product documentation file)

Red Hat Linux v5.x Software iSCSI Initiator Configuration, MPIO and tuning Guide

Published in 2008

Auto-Snapshot Manager/VMWare Edition USER'S GUIDE (Internal link to product documentation


file)

Creating and Applying IP Access Control Lists on Dell PowerConnect 62XX Series

Data Protection Examples using PS Series Snapshots in a VMware Virtual Infrastructure

Dell PowerEdge M1000e Systems Configuration Guide (Internal link to product documentation
file)

Integrating Blade Solutions with EqualLogic SANs

MSTP Interoperability of Dell PowerConnect 62XX Switches

PowerEdge M1000e Chassis Management Controller User Guide Version 1.1 (Internal link to
product documentation file)

PS Series Storage Arrays Group Administration Guide (Internal link to product documentation file)

PS Series Storage Arrays Installation and Setup Manual (Internal link to product documentation
file)

Using Active Directory for Account Authentication to a PS Series Group

VLAN Interoperability of the Dell PowerConnect M6220

Published in 2006

Aligning Disk Sectors for Optimal Performance in Microsoft Windows

Published in 2005

PS Series Groups Network Connection and Performance Guidelines

PS Series Groups: Sizing Replication Space (Dell internal link – external link not found)

Red Hat Linux Clusters Using a PS Series Group as Shared Storage

Using Cisco Catalyst 3750 and 2970 Switches with a PS Series Group

Published in 2004

Dell EqualLogic Configuration Guide v11.1.1 57


Dell Internal Only
PS Series Array Using CHAP to Restrict Access to Volumes

Table 21 Reference Publications

Dell EqualLogic Configuration Guide v11.1.1 58


THIS WHITE PAPER IS FOR INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY, AND MAY CONTAIN TYPOGRAPHICAL
ERRORS AND TECHNICAL INACCURACIES. THE CONTENT IS PROVIDED AS IS, WITHOUT EXPRESS OR
IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF ANY KIND.

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