In this post we would like to introduce the latest version
of the IBM Storage Driver for OpenStack, which we released on January 31st,
If by any chance you are unfamiliar with OpenStack, check
out the official OpenStack project website at: www.openstack.org
To put in a few words, OpenStack is an open-source software platform
for building private and public cloud environments. The IBM driver is a
software component that enables storage provisioning of the IBM XIV Storage Systems in OpenStack
The latest IBM driver version was preceded by an earlier one
(1.1.0), which enabled basic storage provisioning operations, such as volume
creation and deletion from OpenStack Cinder Node, and volume attachment to
The new release (1.1.1) further enhances the integration
between OpenStack and IBM XIV Storage System by adding support for XIV
volume snapshot functions.
For example, let's look at the following OpenStack Web UI management page:
In this example, if you want to create a snapshot of ‘vol1’ on
IBM XIV Storage System, you can use the ‘Create Snapshot’ action using either
OpenStack CLI or Web UI.
Here is your created snapshot, as can be viewed from the
Similarly, you can use OpenStack's ‘Create volume from
snapshot’ action to create a volume based on an existing snapshot.
An additional ease-of-use enhancement in version 1.1.1 is
the new unattended installation option, allowing no user interaction during the
installation, perfect for automating the installation process. You can use the following command format to install the IBM driver
in an unattended mode:
./install.sh –s –a <xiv_address> –u <username> –p <password>
The IBM Storage Driver for OpenStack can be downloaded here along with the Installation Guide and Release Notes.
Whenever you choose to integrate your IBM XIV Storage System with an
OpenStack cloud environment, our driver is available to help you achieve this
goal. We are happy to provide this newer version that further facilitates and
enhances the utilization of your XIV storage resources and capabilities in your
As always, you are welcome to share your thoughts with us.
- The IBM Storage Host Software
Modified on by DmitriyIsayev
We are proud to announce that the IBM Storage Driver for OpenStack has been recently upgraded to a new version - 1.6.0. This version brings support for OpenStack Liberty release, as well as for DS8870 microcode version 7.5 SP3 and DS8880 version 8.01. In addition, this release introduces the XIV and Spectrum Accelerate support for the OpenStack consistency groups. It also brings in the RESTful API that replaced the Java-based ESSNI driver in DS8000 storage systems.
Modified on by DmitriyIsayev
OpenStack Mitaka is upon us, and with it - a new IBM Storage Driver to support this release. This time it is version 1.7.0. This release brings support for the newest IBM's all-flash storage offerings: ultra-fast IBM FlashSystem A9000 and IBM FlashSystem A9000R. In addition, it brings the following exciting features:
- Support for high-availability and disaster recovery of applications running on top of OpenStack clouds, using volume replication version 2.1, introduced in OpenStack Mitaka.
- Utilization of OpenStack volume QoS on FlashSystem A9000 and FlashSystem A9000R storage systems.
- Adoption of image-volume caching on DS8000 storage systems.
Install and enjoy!
Modified on by DmitriyIsayev
OpenStack Newton is here, and with it - a new IBM Storage Driver (1.8.0) to support this release. In addition to the Newton support, version 1.8.0 brings the following enhancements:
- Support for asynchronous mirroring with Spectrum Accelerate Family storage systems. These storage systems include: XIV, IBM Spectrum Accelerate, IBM FlashSystem A9000 and IBM FlashSystem A9000R.
- Adoption of image-volume caching on Spectrum Accelerate Family storage systems.
- Fixes and improvements in the implementation of the OpenStack volume replication.
Download the new release from IBM Fix Central:
Install and enjoy!
We have just made the latest version of IBM Storage Enabler for Windows Fail-over Clustering publicly available on IBM Fix Central
I would like to highlight some of the new features and improvements introduced in version 1.1.0:
- Security-wise, the credentials for XIV systems utilized by the cluster are now stored in a secured keyring, as opposed to the plain-text registry keys in the previous versions
- On the same note, from now on, you can store separate sets of credentials for each XIV system the cluster node is exposed to (upon upgrades, the registry stored single set credentials will be automatically stored in the encrypted keyring for each storage system)
- Additional CLI commands were added for eased configurability, such as, the registry key controlling the forced-fail-over policy (previously known as the 'red-button') that now can be set from the command line directly
- Verbosity was significantly enhanced, the '--install', '--uninstall' , '--deploy' commands now report every action performed to the console for better transparency
- The '--report' command output has been enriched with additional information regarding the mirror status of the XIV volumes and more
- Added Support for Windows Server 2012 Fail-over Clustering
- The product code underwent major improvements to make the it both more stable and efficient
In addition several major issues were resolved, such as those related to deployments where XIV disks resided in the 'Available Storage' cluster group and issues related to XIV Mirror resource behavior upon Cluster Service failure.
The new version of the IBM Storage Enabler for Windows Fail-over Clustering and the related documentation can be found here
Happy Clustering !
The IBM Host Software Group
We’ve recently released a new version of the Storage Enabler for Windows Failover Clustering. As you may know, it is a software agent that runs as a Microsoft Windows Server service on two geographically dispersed cluster nodes, providing failover automation for IBM XIV storage provisioning on these nodes, and enabling deployment of these nodes in a geo-cluster configuration.
The new version, 1.2.0, is mainly a maintenance release that resolves some previous limitations and provides support for the new IBM XIV and Microsoft Windows Server versions that have been released since version 1.1.0.
So, what's new in version 1.2.0? Here are the main things:
Support for Microsoft Windows 2012 R2
Support for XIV microcode versions 11.2, 11.3 and 11.4
Support for post-migrated Hyper-Scale Mobility volumes (supported in XIV microcode version 11.3 or later)
The IBM Hyper-Scale Mobility feature is used for online migration of volumes from one XIV storage system to another (for more detailed information, see "IBM XIV Storage System: IBM Hyper-Scale Mobility Overview and Usage" here: http://www.redbooks.ibm.com/abstracts/redp5007.html
An important note to make is that previous IBM Storage Enabler versions (1.1.0 or earlier) could not be used to protect volumes that have been migrated through the Hyper-Scale Mobility feature. In such cases, you could no longer use the IBM Storage Enabler with these volumes.
Now, version 1.2.0 of the IBM Storage Enabler resolves this limitation by allowing protection after the final migration state (after performing ‘End Proxy’). Starting from this version, the IBM Storage Enabler can be reconfigured with the migrated volume and resume its protection in just a few steps.
Here is what you will need to do before the protection of the IBM Storage Enabler can be resumed on the migrated volume:
First, upgrade the IBM Storage Enabler on all the cluster nodes to version 1.2.0. Then, remove from the cluster any XIV volume that you want to migrate with Hyper-Scale Mobility. Once removed from the cluster, you can start the migration of these volumes.
When the migration process is complete, ensure that the original XIV proxy volume (which was migrated) is removed from the original XIV storage system. Also ensure that a mirror relationship between the source and XIV destination volumes exists.
You can then add the migrated XIV volumes back to the MSCS cluster.
Finally, run the following commands to add the XIV mirror resource dependency to the newly added (migrated) volumes, and to verify the configuration:
That’s it. As always, we are happy to receive any feedback!
The IBM Storage Host Software Group (HSG)
We are proud to announce a new HAK release - version 2.6.0. Starting from this version, IBM XIV Host Attachment Kit has been renamed to IBM Storage Host Attachment Kit to indicate support for additional storage systems, including the newly announced all-flash IBM FlashSystem A9000 and IBM FlashSystem A9000R. In addition, this version introduces support for RHEL 7.2, SLES 12 and SLES 12 SP1. Moreover, selected Linux releases can now be run on IBM Power Systems servers, as detailed in the HAK release notes.
Modified on by Lihi Tikolsky
If you happen to be using one or more IBM storage systems that are serving your VMware environment, we invite you to check out our recently released ’IBM Storage Integration Server’, a software solution that consolidates all your IBM storage usage through a single backend deployment.
You can add your IBM storage arrays into the scope of IBM Storage Integration Server in just one step, by using your storage user credentials as shown in the following example from the web-based management interface:
Once added, the arrays would be available to all supported solutions, without having to re-add each storage array separately for each solution or for any future supported solution.
This single integration server reduces the amount of management traffic and shares the queried storage information with all the supported solutions. The first release, version 1.1.0, introduces support for ‘IBM Storage Enhancements for VMware vSphere Web Client’ and for ‘IBM Storage Provider for VMware VASA’.
‘IBM Storage Enhancements for vSphere Web Client’ enables native visibility and provisioning of IBM storage volumes (LUNs) within VMware vSphere Web Client. These enhancements bring the value of the already known and acclaimed IBM Storage vCenter plug-in, formally known as ‘IBM Storage Management Console for VMware vCenter’, to the new web-based VMware vSphere Web Client, which allows the integration of multiple vCenter servers instead of one.
VMware administrators who were previously daunted by the thought of the complex task of connecting and utilizing storage resources through vSphere Web Client – can now be much more relaxed with the ability to easily create and manage storage volumes in delegated storage pools, which were attached by the storage administrators on the IBM Storage Integration Server side.
‘IBM Storage Provider for VMware VASA’, previously a standalone plug-in, is now a feature of the IBM Storage Integration Server, adding the following enhancements:
· Supports the IBM Storwize family in addition to the existing IBM XIV support.
· Storage capabilities are automatically defined and assigned, eliminating the need for manual definition and assignment.
That’s about it, for now J
More to come soon!
You can download the IBM Storage Integration Server software package and the related documentation from the IBM Fix Central.
You can also view the online documentation at our information center.
As always, we would be happy to have your comments and thoughts.
The IBM Storage Host Software Group (HSG)
For nearly a year in development, a new version of IBM Storage Management Pack for Microsoft System Center Operations Manager (SCOM), 2.5.0, is out. This release brings support for the latest IBM's all-flash storage systems: super-fast IBM FlashSystem A9000 and IBM FlashSystem A9000R with microcode 12.0.x. In addition, it supports the newest releases of the following IBM storage products:
- Storwize Family and SVC 7.7
- DS8880 8.1
Note: FlashSystem V9000 will be supported in Q3 of 2016.
Modified on by DmitriyIsayev
As promised, a new version of IBM Storage Management Pack for Microsoft System Center Operations Manager (SCOM), 2.6.0, is out. This release brings support for the newest releases of the following IBM storage products:
- IBM FlashSystem™ V9000 7.7
- IBM FlashSystem A9000/A9000R 12.0.x
Install and enjoy!
Modified on by ZivKalmanovich
A few days ago we have a released a new version of our VASA Provider for the XIV Storage System.
For those unfamiliar with VMware VASA or with the previous version of IBM Storage Provider for VMware VASA , here is some background:
VASA stands for vStorage API for Storage Awareness, and it is an API specified by VMware and implemented by storage vendors to standardize communication between the various storage systems and the vCenter Server. The Storage Provider is a web server that handles requests from the vCenter Server in which it is registered.
The IBM Storage Provider provides a standard interface for any connected VMware vCenter Server using VMware APIs for Storage Awareness (VASA), delivering information about XIV storage topology, capabilities and state, as well as storage events and alerts to vCenter Server in real time. VMware administrators can view this information on the vSphere Client management station, and can configure storage-related operations accordingly
For example an IBM VASA Provider registered in a VMware vCenter will provide the following information in the "Storage View" tab of the vShpere Client (both web and c#)
Screenshot from vShpere Client 5.1
In version 1.1.5 several major enhancements and changes were introduced:
This version runs only on Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.3 x64, as opposed to the previous one that ran on Windows Server platform. The provider and the required software packages are distributed in standard Linux RPM packages.
We also added support for Storage Capabilities, so now VMware administrators can assign Storage Capabilities to volumes and use that information when creating or working with Datastores and VMs.
The VASA Provider management CLI has been streamlined and redesigned, IBM VASA Provider Version 1.1.5 introduces the following new CLI management utilities:
ibmvp_storage_credentials – For setting, removing, and listing XIV access credentials.
ibmvp_admin_commands – For adding, removing, and listing IBM Storage Integration Server users.
ibmvp_storage_array – For adding, removing, and listing connected XIV storage systems.
ibmvp_capabilities – For defining storage capabilities.
ibmvp_volume – For listing the available storage volumes and assigning storage capabilities to these volumes.
ibmvp_configuration – For backing up or restoring a specific configuration of
The IBM Storage Provider for VMware v1.1.5 and the associated documentation can be downloaded from IBM Support Fix Central here (You'll need an IBM ID to download the files).
Your comments are always welcome,
IBM HSG Team
A new version of IBM Storage Support for Microsoft Volume Shadow Copy Service and Virtual Disk Service has been released. This is version 4.11.0, which introduces support for the following storage system microcodes:
- Storwize Family, SVC and FlashSystem V9000, ver. 7.6.0
- DS8800, ver. 8.0
Also, version 4.11.0 adds support for temporary (non-persistent) read/write access to a snapshot.
A new version of the IBM Storwize Family Storage Replication Adapter is here. It's version 3.2.0, which adds support for the local HyperSwap for IBM SVC and Storwize systems, running IBM Spectrum Virtualize software. This new topology is used with VMware vSphere to enable transparent VMware vMotion migration and automatic VMware HA failover of virtualized workloads between physical data centers. This update:
- Introduces application consistency, maintaining a useful DR image (with RPO > 0), even in the case of a rolling disaster (a storage failure before an inter-site link or replication is established).
- Ensures replication between four nodes for greater resiliency in the case of a site failure.
It's been 4 months since the release of the IBM XIV HAK 2.1.0 and we're back with a new release - IBM XIV HAK 2.2.0.
So what's new in this release? We won't bother you with all the changes and fixes - you can find the detailed list in the Release Notes document coupled with the software package. We would however like to point out that the new release supports a new operating system - Microsoft Windows Server 2012 R2 - an important step by itself. But the main feature of this release is related to xiv_host_profiler and the way 'analyze' operates.
Since the addition of xiv_host_profiler utility in the HAK 2.0.0 release, we see growing interest in this application. Administrators want to know that the system they are working on is configured right and how to improve their settings. Makes sense, doesn't it?
The problem was that the analysis was based on the latest microcode released, and this is not the common situation in the field. Following the famous "if it ain't broken don't fix it" approach, upgrading the storage microcode is not done as frequent as we'd like it to happen. So for example, although a microcode version 11.1.x is used, the administrator would get the analysis results of 11.2.0 (HAK 2.0.0) or 11.3.0 (HAK 2.1.0) which have different rules.
To solve this problem in the new HAK release we collect the microcode versions of the connected XIV storage and the analysis is based on these versions. So if your host is connected to 10.2.4 or to 11.2.0 or 11.3.0, you can expect different results. In the following example you can see the same host running against two different microcode versions with two different analysis results.
And what about testing your configuration against a different microcode version? For example, if you have an XIV system running microcode 11.2.0 and you want to upgrade to 11.4.0 - will your host configurations still be valid? So we added an option for the user to specify the microcode version he is interested in.
To download the IBM XIV Host Attachment Kit version 2.2.0 and the related documentation, please visit IBM Fix Central.You will need an IBM ID to download the files.
The IBM Host Software Group
Modified on by Alon Marx
It's been a long 9 months since the release of the IBM XIV HAK 2.2.0 and we're back with a new exciting release - IBM XIV HAK 2.3.0 .
This release brings in a few new features, and most of them are responses for requests from our customers.
The first feature derives from issues in the field where rescan operation did not do what people expected. Although the rescan operation worked well and found new devices, in many cases there were leftovers from old mappings that were previously removed. A stale device is something that happens for various reasons like network issues where the issue is should be resolved in a short period of time. But when a stale device is left for a long time it becomes a maintenance issue, especially when there is an amount of such devices. These stale devices can cause a variety of problems, ranging from slower performance on the low end, to applications being stuck on the high end.
To solve these issues xiv_iscsi_admin and xiv_fc_admin have an additional option that complements rescan and cleans up stale devices. Now, you may ask yourself why did we add it as an option and not just always clean up stale devices. Well, stale devices are a sensitive issue. For example, let's assume your host has 2 paths to your XIV storage and one of them fails due to a temporary network issue. When the network issue is resolved, the device will be automatically up and running. So in such a case, removing the device would be a mistake. So the bottom line is that this calls for a human decision. This is a powerful option and as the saying goes "with great power comes great responsibility".
Example 1: Cleaning up a stale device
The next feature is also a response to customers needs. People using Veritas Dynamic Multi-Pathing (DMP) had issues running xiv_attach, as it always configured and initiated the native multipath framework. Two multipath frameworks on the same host is like having two managers not speaking to each other, each pulling in another direction.
To solve this issue we went over all our tools and made changes that enable them to work without using the native framework. in case of xiv_attach, if you have Veritas DMP installed on your system, you will be asked to choose between the multipath frameworks. If you are running any other utility you are required to add a --no-native-multipath flag to the utility. And what happens if you run the tools by mistake without the flag, will it ruin all your work? In case there Veritas DMP already in the system and the tools are run without this parameter, the utilities will issue a warning, but will not cause any damages.
Example 2: xiv_attach in presence of Veritas DMP
A third feature relates to the new release of XIV Microcode 11.5 and a feature we call Multi-Tenancy. Let's say you have two companies working on the same storage, each with it's own data that should never ever get to the other company. The storage can be divided into domains so that each is maintained by separate people, unaware of each others work. From the point of view of the storage administrator running xiv_attach or xiv_iscsi/fc_admin, he just uses his credentials to connect to the storage and everything behaves as expected. In case a user is able to see more than one domain (e.g. in case of domain per department) he is able to specify the domain the host should be using via a flag in the xiv_iscsi/fc_admin command line.
We should make it clear that support for XIV Microcode 11.5 also means that xiv_host_profiler and its rule file were updated.
We've added support for the major release of Redhat Enterprise Linux 7.0. And a bunch of other minor versions for Redhat and AIX. We made some nice changes in xiv_diag, xiv_syslist, and a variety of fixes that you can find in the release notes.
To download the IBM XIV Host Attachment Kit version 2.3.0 and the related documentation, please visit IBM Fix Central. You will need an IBM ID to download the files.
The IBM Host Software Group