Cloud Storage Solutions (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)
Lihi Tikolsky 2700057XTN 913 Views
We've just released the IBM Storage Driver for OpenStack v.1.3.0, get it
now while it's hot from the oven!
IBM Storage Driver for OpenStack v1.3.0 package now includes:
* OpenStack Havana Support (Including Volume migration)
* IBM DS8000 Storage System in addition to the IBM XIV Storage System
* In addition to Ubuntu 12.04 x64, we now also support RHEL 6.4 x64
* The driver package now includes a script for creating OpenStack Cinder Volume types. Read about Openstack Cinder volume types here.
Lets look at an example of the Volume types script we mentioned:
Assuming you have the following two backends configured in your cinder.conf file:
You can now run the 'create_volume_types.sh' script, to automatically create volume types to point to these backends.
After running this script, you can see your automatically created Volume types by running:
This is it!, your volume types are set and you can now use them when creating volumes:
#cinder create --volume-type IBM-XIV_hostdev31f.xiv.ibm.com_vwc_iscsi --display-name vol_hostdev31f 5
For further details, the software and related documentation can be downloaded from IBM Fix Central
Alon Marx 270006TGYS 924 Views
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
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)
ZivKalmanovich 2700044YXC 1,096 Views
It's raining new releases here at IBM HSG, the latest software released from our team is the IBM XIV HAK v2.1.0.
The HAK is already a well known, widely used toolkit, therefore in this post we will focus on what's new in this latest release, and what will you gain by installing or upgrading to this version.
The first feature to note is the added support for version 11.3.0 of XIV microcode and more importantly for the Online Volume Migration (OLVM) feature. Now the "good old" xiv_devlist utility also presents the OLVM state of each and every volume exposed to the server, providing the host and storage administrators an easily accessible tool to stay updated with the migration state of the volumes under their responsibility, without the need to access the XIV Management GUI.
In addition, the recently introduced host diagnostic utility, the XIV Host Profiler , can now be defined as a scheduled task right from the Host Attachment Kit Wizard - xiv_attach. No need to remember to set it separately, the user will be asked during host configuration if a task should be scheduled to run the utility periodically.
We've also improved the xiv_devlist and xiv_syslist commands' CSV file format output utilities. From this release, by adding the --no-headers argument, the column headers will be omitted from the generated CSV file.
On top of the above-mentioned features and enhancements several stability issues were also fixed. The detailed list of those issues can be found in the Release Notes document coupled with the software package.
To download the IBM XIV Host Attachment Kit v2.1.0 and the related documentation , please visit IBM Fix Central. You will need an IBM ID to download the files.
The IBM Host Software Group
ZivKalmanovich 2700044YXC 1,339 Views
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:
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
It's been a while, but now we're back with our brand new IBM XIV Host Attachment Kit 2.0.0!
You probably noticed that we made the jump to version 2.0.0, and for a very good reason: We have an exciting new feature we've been developing for the last 6 months - xiv_host_profiler.
xiv_host_profiler introduces a new approach in the way we provide support to hosts connected to XIV systems. The utility gathers information about your host's configuration, analyzes it against a set of best-practice rules, and enables pre-emptive identification of storage connectivity problems. And this is exactly why we recommend running it on a regular basis.
This feature is also tightly integrated into our latest XIV System release 11.2. By default, when using xiv_host_profiler, the collected information gets uploaded to your XIV System for further analysis. This ability will assist our technicians to ensure your hosts' health before commencing XIV System upgrades or other procedures.
For privacy reasons, the information collected by xiv_host_profiler is only related to your host's storage connectivity status - items such as the host's HBA model, installed OS version and the configuration state of the multi-path framework.
After collecting the information, xiv_host_profiler is also able to analyze it against a bundled set of rules:
The rules against which we analyze the host's configuration will be updated regularly and can be downloaded from Fix Central.
As mentioned before, it's best to run xiv_host_profiler at least once a week (in order to keep the data as up-to-date as possible). We provide an easy way to do so - simply run 'xiv_host_profiler --create-scheduled-task'.
As usual, you can read more about xiv_host_profiler (and other HAK utilities) in the Host Attachment Guide and Release Notes, as well as in the man pages included in the HAK package (how? simply run 'man xiv_host_profiler').
We believe HAK 2.0.0 and the included xiv_host_profiler will further improve on the way we support our storage systems and the hosts connected to them. We'd love to hear more from you about your needs and expectations in the comments.
In the meantime, you can download yourself a copy of the Host Attachment Kit for your favorite host's operating system, right here.
The IBM Host Software Team
We are pleased to let you know about our recently launched IBM Storage Host Software Solutions Information Center!
In this information center, or IC, you can find the relevant documentation of all the solutions that we offer, including information of both past versions and the latest versions.
Whether our host software solution is for XIV, DS8000, Storwize, or any other IBM storage system – the release notes, user guide, or installation guide are available on the IC in either PDF or HTML format (whatever suits you best).
The solutions are categorized on the navigation tree under four main categories: business continuity, management, host connectivity, and virtualization. Keep in mind, however, that some solutions could belong in more than one category. For example, a solution such as IBM Storage Management Console for VMware vCenter is placed under the virtualization category, but it may also be regarded as a powerful management solution. For another example, our XIV and SVC adapters for VMware vCenter Site Recovery Manager, also placed under virtualization, may also be regarded as business continuity solutions.
In any case, we hope that the organization of our solutions on the IC makes sense to you, and that the information is helpful. If not, please let us know! You can use the online feedback form that is available on the IC.
Each solution has its own welcome page from which you can have quick access to the information of the available versions. The PDF publications are available on the Publications page of each solution.
If you'd like to see our list of solutions per independent software vendor (ISV), check out the Solutions by ISV page. Alternatively, to see which solutions are available for a specific IBM storage system, check out the Solutions by storage system page.
And, of course, the IC is regularly being updated and improved. You can always check what's new on the IC by visiting the What's new page.
Lastly, we would like to thank our Information Development team for making it happen.
The HSG Team
ZivKalmanovich 2700044YXC 1,630 Views
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:
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
Hi everyone, we have some great news for VMware SRM 4.1.x users.
The new IBM XIV Adapter for VMware vCenter SRM 4.1.x was released!
The IBM XIV Adapter version 4.1.0 adds support for XIV's GEN3 systems, and also fixes a couple of bugs.
So if you are using SRM 4.1 - you can now use it with both XIV GEN2 (microcode version 10.2.x) and XIV GEN3 (microcode version 11.x)!
You can download the IBM XIV adapter software package from the SRM 4.1.2 download page (after clicking the View Downloads button, the IBM XIV adapter is listed on the page).
Feel free to ask us any question.
Lihi Tikolsky from the IBM XIV Host Software team.