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  #1  
Old 12-17-2010, 12:49 AM
VirtualRain VirtualRain is offline
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Building a SAN


I'm just doing research on a project I am working on.
I'm looking into the best options for building a SAN, the SAN would have to have high I/O, so no SATA.

One option was NetApp, has anyone had any experience with them?

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  #2  
Old 12-17-2010, 05:12 AM
NoSupportLinuxHostin NoSupportLinuxHostin is offline
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  #3  
Old 12-17-2010, 05:57 AM
eming eming is offline
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We've (OnApp) been through something like 300-400 client SAN's the last 5-6 months and it seems there is 3-4 different approaches out there.

One - lowcost - route is a whitebox with a bunch of 2TB SATA drives in it + something like OpenFiler. We've seen that setup more than once, but it still scares me. Not a good idea for redundancy, performance or reliability.

One step up would be to do Supermicro (something like SC836E1-R800B) with 14 SAS 500gb-1TB drives (more spindles/gb->better). Adding something like Open-E to it will make it easy for you to carve out lun's etc.

Finally going up another step (before going NetAPP/etc). You could take two of the SAN's above. Chuck in something like MaxIQ and you've got a high performing hardware setup. For redundancy I would suggest you go with Starwind, their active-active setup is sweet (if you can get over the fact it runs on windows). We've got a lot of OnApp clients with that exact setup, and I can vouch for it's performance and reliability.

Obviously the last step up would be go to with something like NetAPP, EMC or HP etc. Actually I've seen some new things coming out from VSI that looks really nice as well, and at a very good price.

Finally, in the last 6 months I've been in ongoing talks with the guys from http://acunu.com/ - you should keep an eye on them. They have some VERY interesting technology on the way.


D

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  #4  
Old 12-17-2010, 10:48 AM
DeanoC DeanoC is offline
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There is some interesting work going into hierarchical multiple node systems that look at the problem not from a disk point of view, most at the moment are custom builds, but the right ones can perform and be reliable far more than would suggest from the outside.

The work derives oddly not from the traditional file system work but from throughput computing areas.
The entirety of the SAN can be considered a throughput computing device. The large scale but slow spindles are considered the end of the memory hierarchy (treated like memory or virtual memory is treated in HPC). DDR and NV drives are different cache pools with CPU (and its memory and caches) and drive controllers as unreliable compute devices, each server node is then seen as a large compute node.

You can see some of the basic approaches in L2ARC, but that is just the tip of the ice-burg and its gets alot more interesting once you take the leap from disk thinking to throughput computing imho.

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  #5  
Old 12-17-2010, 10:51 AM
WebGuyz WebGuyz is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eming View Post
We've (OnApp) been through something like 300-400 client SAN's the last 5-6 months and it seems there is 3-4 different approaches out there.
What do most SAN builders usually choose for their disk RAID level? RAID 10 or RAID 6?

Thanks!

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  #6  
Old 12-17-2010, 10:58 AM
eming eming is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WebGuyz View Post
What do most SAN builders usually choose for their disk RAID level? RAID 10 or RAID 6?

Thanks!
I'm not sure I've seen anything but RAID10.

But it depends on what you are trying to do.
Raid 10 would give you faster reads and writes of the two, BUT it is possible to lose everything if you lose the wrong two drives. But on larger disk arrays you could lose exactly half the drives and retain full operations. If you loose two drives from the same side at the same time...you'r in trouble...

However, with Raid 6, your writes could be a bit slower because of the extra checksum. But you could lose any two drives and not lose any data.

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  #7  
Old 12-17-2010, 11:16 AM
CRego3D CRego3D is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WebGuyz View Post
What do most SAN builders usually choose for their disk RAID level? RAID 10 or RAID 6?

Thanks!
Raid-10

I would not advise anything other, not even Raid-60

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  #8  
Old 12-20-2010, 02:04 PM
jameshsi jameshsi is offline
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We are study how to make a workable and low cost iSCSI SAN to be used in onapp's solution, it seems there is no cheap way to do this.

If you only build one SAN, you feel if something happen on that SAN, you loss everything, all your VM clients will start calling you, even you have backup on a NAS, you still need time to get it back on what ever SAN you re-build.

So that means you need 2 SAN, 2 SAN means double your cost, one SAN is already cost you much, 2 SAN makes you .... painful ?

If you spend too much money on the storge, that means you might lost the competeition, or you can give large disk space as other hosting company do.

Is there anybody using onapp and happy to share how you build your SAN and how much you invest on it ?

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  #9  
Old 12-20-2010, 02:10 PM
eming eming is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jameshsi View Post
We are study how to make a workable and low cost iSCSI SAN to be used in onapp's solution, it seems there is no cheap way to do this.

If you only build one SAN, you feel if something happen on that SAN, you loss everything, all your VM clients will start calling you, even you have backup on a NAS, you still need time to get it back on what ever SAN you re-build.

So that means you need 2 SAN, 2 SAN means double your cost, one SAN is already cost you much, 2 SAN makes you .... painful ?

If you spend too much money on the storge, that means you might lost the competeition, or you can give large disk space as other hosting company do.

Is there anybody using onapp and happy to share how you build your SAN and how much you invest on it ?
This setup:
Quote:
  • 3U Rackmount Server Chassis SC836E1-R800B
  • 2x Intel Xeon Quad Core E5620 2.40GHz
  • 2x Onboard Intel Gigabit NIC
  • Integrated IPMI 2.0 with KVM and Dedicated LAN
  • 800W Redundant Power Supply
  • 6x 2GB DDR2-667 PC2-5300 Fully Buffered RAM
  • 2x Seagate Barracuda ES.2 500GB 16MB Cache 7200RPM SAS Hard Drive
  • 14x Seagate Barracuda ES.2 1TB 16MB Cache 7200RPM SAS Hard Drive
  • Adaptec 5805ZQ 16 Port SAS/SATAII PCI-E Controller w/MaxIQ and BBU
Isn't that bad really. Like $6k or less.
You should also consider going with a hosted infrastructure with a provider that already has a strong shared SAN setup that you can buy a 1TB from to get started. That way you wouldn't have to worry about redundancy, capex etc.


D

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  #10  
Old 12-20-2010, 02:21 PM
JordanJ JordanJ is offline
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I think alot of people will be shocked at the IOPS limitations on large sans.

When you factor in De-Dupe, IOPs, Redundancy, management tools - NetAPP is one of the cheapest ways to go.

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  #11  
Old 12-20-2010, 03:10 PM
Uncorrupted-Michael Uncorrupted-Michael is offline
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Yea the IOPS limitations are pretty rough. Even with SAS drives.

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Last edited by Uncorrupted-Michael; 12-20-2010 at 03:13 PM.
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  #12  
Old 12-20-2010, 03:22 PM
jameshsi jameshsi is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PhPhear View Post
Yea the IOPS limitations are pretty rough. Even with SAS drives.
What u guys mean ? You mean it will cost much than you may imagine if you need a big storage ?

If you build a cloud for 500 clients, each of them need a 50GB space, you need 25000 GB = 25 TB space, is that big to you ?

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  #13  
Old 12-20-2010, 03:26 PM
jameshsi jameshsi is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eming View Post
This setup:

Isn't that bad really. Like $6k or less.
You should also consider going with a hosted infrastructure with a provider that already has a strong shared SAN setup that you can buy a 1TB from to get started. That way you wouldn't have to worry about redundancy, capex etc.


D
I don't think the above config can be less than USD$6k, also, it seems you didn't count the open-e or software you need to spend.

Also, the above's performance ?

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  #14  
Old 12-20-2010, 03:40 PM
eming eming is offline
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That san performs very well because of the MaxIQ SSD controller dealing with the majority of the iops.
I ignored the price of san software (starwind/open-e) as you said this was for OnApp.


D

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  #15  
Old 12-20-2010, 09:05 PM
jameshsi jameshsi is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eming View Post
That san performs very well because of the MaxIQ SSD controller dealing with the majority of the iops.
I ignored the price of san software (starwind/open-e) as you said this was for OnApp.


D
Don't follow you, why ? you mean if go with onapp you don't have to use/pay for the (starwind/open-e) software ?

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