Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Storage Protocol Comparison - A vSphere Perspective

Interesting blog by Chogan ( VMware vSphere Blog) comparing Storage Protocols without really talking about the performance side but looking at it from vSphere perspective.

Things like:
  • Implementation Options
  • Load Balancing
  • Resilience
  • Ease of configuration

Saturday, February 11, 2012

VCAP5-DCD Study Group

Although VCAP 5 Exam Blueprints series haven't been released.

Alastair Cooke has hosted  APAC series of the BrownBags

Two sessions have been conducted;

2 February – Overview, Design methodology and Business Requirements

9 February – Storage Design

You can register for the sessions on GoToMeeting at

Friday, February 3, 2012

SRM 5 in a Box

SRM 5 in a Box
 VMware Site Recovery Manager 5 & NetApp Simulator 8.

Had to do some testing with SRM and decided to build a lab. So I documented the process.

The document has the following section.

1    Introduction   
2    LAB Setup   
3    LAB Environment   
4    LAB Build steps   
Step 1 – Setting up Workstation   
Step 2 – Build Domain Controller (DC01)   
Step 3 – Build vCenter Servers (VC01 and VC02)   
Step 4 – Build ESXi Host (ESX01 & ESX02)   
Step 5 – Add ESX to vCenter   
Step 6 – NetApp Simulator   
Step 7 – OnCommand System Manager 2.0R1   
Step 8 – Create an iSCSI LUN and add to ESXi   
Step 9 – Install SRM   
Step 11 – Configure SRM (Sites and Array Managers)   
Step 12 – Configure SRM (Protection Groups)   
Step 13 – Configure SRM (Recovery Plan)   
Step 14 – Configure SRM (Run Test)

This document came to being with the requirement to be familiar with SRM 5. As you can’t substitute hands on time and the only time I can get is “Lab time”, I decided to see what was out there in terms of Lab setups and what I’ll need to set my LAB up.
First port of call was Google! The most popular result was a document titled “SRM in a Box” by  Tomas ten Dam  ( hence the title of this document. I would like to thank Tomas for his great work on the his document.
The information in this document are the steps I used to build a LAB where I could test SRM 5 and NetApp Simulator and not real world SRM architecture. It is only for testing and educational purposes.

What I used.

The Physical Host PC:
·         AMD Phenom II X6 1090T Processor 3.2 GHz
·         16 GB RAM DDR3
·         VMware Workstation 8.x.
·         Windows 7 Pro  64 Bit
·         120 Gig Corsair Force GT SSD

What I used.

·         Windows Server 2008 R2 Datacenter
·         SQL ManagementStudio x64
·         The Netapp simulator 8.1
·         VMware vCenter (VMware-VIMSetup-all-5.0.0-456005)
·         VMware SRM 5.0.0  474459
·         The Netapp SRA 2.0
·         OnCommand System Manger 2.0R1
·         A ESXi 5 Build 469512
·         Putty

We’ll go through setting up lab environment. The LAB will be divided into two sites consisting of 1 ESXi 5 host, 1 vCenter Server and a NetApp Simulator for Storage. There will be also 1 DC/Management Server managing both sites as shown in diagram below.
From a network perspective we are going to use a flat network (NAT on VM) for ease of setup and troubleshooting. I used 192.168.44.x range.

 The complete document can be found here.