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Introduction

The following guide explores the best practices and configurations for using Infinidat InfiniBox with VMware Virtual Volumes (vVols).  

Revision

Last updated on: February 2021

Target Audience

This document is intended for storage, system and VMware administrators who plan to deploy and manage InfiniBox with VMware Virtual Volumes configuration.

The authors of this document assume that the reader is familiar with the following:

  • InfiniBox storage resources.
  • VMware Virtual Volumes.

For more information and assistance with Infinidat InfiniBox please send an email to Infinidat support support.infinidat.com

Before You Begin

Prior to setting up InfiniBox with VMware Virtual Volumes, it is advised to read this document carefully.

Prerequisites 

InfiniBox 6.0 or later 

VMware vSphere:

  • vCenter version 6.7 or 7.0 and above
  • vSphere version 6.7 or 7.0 and above
  • vSphere host should be connected to InfiniBox via FC (Fibre Channel) or iSCSI

Overview

VMware Virtual Volumes (vVols) is a framework that provides tight integration between the Virtual Machines and the underlying external storage arrays, allowing the latter to expose their full data services capabilities. As a result, VMware administrators can consume these capabilities in scale and with ease. vVols simplify storage consumption and management through policy-driven automation, enabling agile storage management for virtual machines and dynamic adjustments in real time. vVols further provide VM administrators finer control over storage resources, and native array-based data service instances at the scope of virtual machine. 

vVols allow VM administrators to create, manage, and provision VMs and their virtual disks. They allow users the opportunity to use storage array capabilities for individual virtual machines instead of a whole datastore. vVols contain entire virtual disks, and natively store everything on the storage system. This allows users to use vSphere's virtual storage features without sacrificing the ability to use array-based features.

The InfiniBox implementation for vVols provides awareness of virtual disk granularity at the level of the storage array, using a VASA provider embedded in InfiniBox systems.

InfiniBox supports vVols using SAN access, via Fibre Channel (FC) and iSCSI:

  • vSphere hosts access vVols using the vSphere standard block access stack, including support for multi-pathing
  • Access to all vVols is done through a special LUN called Protocol Endpoint

Setting Up vVols Datastores

Setting up vVols Using Host PowerTools for VMware

Once you have registered your InfiniBox with HPT-VM, select the vSphere cluster and then go to the Infinidat page.

Click CREATE to create a new datastore:

The Create Datastore window opens:

  • Change the TYPE to Storage Container
  • Enter the POOL NAME for the vVols pool, which will serve as a Storage Container
  • Enter the SIZE of the Pool to specify its physical capacity

Click CONTINUE. The CREATE DATASTORE STEPS window appears.

Click START to begin the process of creating the vVol, where HPT-VM will:

  • Register the InfiniBox VASA provider with the vCenter server
  • Allow the vSphere hosts access to the InfiniBox Protocol Endpoint
  • Create the vVol pool and mount it as a new datastore 

Creating Additional vVols Datastore Using Host PowerTools for VMware

Repeat the above steps in Host PowerTools for VMware to create new vVols datastores as needed

  • Host PowerTools for VMware will skip steps that were already implemented automatically.

Setting up vVols Without Host PowerTools for VMware

You can configure vVols without using Host Power Tools for VMware, although it is more involved.

For more information, refer to Configure VMware Virtual Volumes without HPT-VM.

Monitoring vVols I/O Load 

Monitoring I/O Using InfiniBox GUI

The InfiniBox GUI can be used to monitor the I/O for the vVols.

From the left side of the  InfiniBox GUI, select the Performance tab.

Click Add Top Table.

Select SAN > vVols VMs.

The Top SAN vVols VMs table is added to the Performance tab.

Monitoring long term I/O 

Use InfiniMetrics, InfinVerse or the Infinidat management pack for VMware vRealize Operations to monitor the performance of your vVols datastores over time.


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Last edited: 2021-08-19 09:03:13 UTC

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