ViPR 2.2 - Export a VPLEX Metro Virtual Volume to a Host or Cluster

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Export a VPLEX Metro Virtual Volume to a Host or Cluster

EMC ViPR supports VPLEX Metro High Availability. This support includes data center configurations that cross-connect hosts and use host failover technologies such as VMware HA.

The following services in the ViPR service catalog enable you to build and export VPLEX distributed volumes in a VPLEX Metro environment:

This article also describes the Block Storage Services > Remove Block Volumes service. This service removes a VPLEX virtual volume and its underlying back end storage.

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ViPR Integration with VPLEX Metro: Data Center Requirements

The following figure shows a simple data center configurations that ViPR supports. The following configuration shows a VPLEX Metro that has two clusters. Two isolated fabrics enable connectivity between the hardware elements in each physical data center.

ViPR can provision a VPLEX distributed volume to Host 1. This volume appears on both VPLEX Metro Cluster 1 and VPLEX Metro Cluster 2. Similarly, ViPR can provision VPLEX distributed volumes with high availability Host 2.

Writes to the distributed volume are saved on the physical storage managed by each VPLEX cluster, so data is always saved in 2 places. This feature protects the data in case of an array failure.

The following list shows the data center requirements for this configuration:
  • Physical connectivity must exist among the relevant components in each data center. In the example in the diagram, the Brocade switches in Boston and Cisco switches in New York enable the connectivity in each data center.
  • The VPLEX Metro clusters must communicate.
  • The VPLEX virtual volume can exist on ViPR-managed block storage, such as a VNX or VMAX array.
  • The VPLEX clusters also can use storage on a third-party block storage array that ViPR does not specifically support. ViPR can ingest this storage and export it to hosts that it manages.
  • The networks you add to the virtual arrays must contain the endpoints necessary to provision the back end array volumes to the VPLEX, and the virtual volumes from the VPLEX to a host. ViPR also enables you to filter the ports in the virtual array and select only those ports you need to support provisioning.
Note Image
ViPR does not support physical data center configurations that include cross-connected back end arrays.

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Required Discoveries

From ViPR, you must discover the following hardware in order to export a VPLEX virtual volume to a host or cluster:

  • The hosts (or cluster) to which you want to provision storage
  • The VPLEX that manages both clusters in your VPLEX Metro configuration
  • The block storage arrays where the VPLEX clusters have claimed storage
  • Any Brocade or CISCO switches required to connect the hosts to the VPLEX clusters
  • Any Brocade or CISCO switches required to connect the physical storage to the VPLEX clusters
  • The physical arrays that host the VPLEX virtual volumes
Note Image
Before you can run the VPLEX-related services, ViPR must discover the entire route from the host to the physical storage.

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Block Storage Services > Create Block Volume

The Create Block Volume service creates a distributed VPLEX virtual volume. It also creates physical storage devices on the back end arrays, the VPLEX virtual volume on the source VPLEX cluster, and the high availability volume on the target VPLEX cluster. Create Block Volume does not export the volume to the host.

Before you begin

To run this service, your environment must meet all of the following requirements:

Procedure

  1. Create a ViPR project.
  2. Create two virtual arrays: one for the VPLEX source volume and one for the VPLEX High Availability target where the source volume will be replicated.
  3. Add networks to the high availability source virtual array to enable physical connectivity between all the hardware required by the source VPLEX cluster - the host, the switches, VPLEX, and the back end storage. You can also add specific ports to the virtual array by using ViPR's Storage Ports dialog.
  4. Add networks to the high availability target virtual array to enable physical connectivity between all the hardware required by the VPLEX High Availability target cluster - the host, the switches, the VPLEX and the backend storage. Alternatively, you can add specific ports to the virtual array by using ViPR's Storage Ports dialog.
  5. Create the target virtual pool. Assign the target virtual array to this virtual pool.
  6. Create the source virtual pool. Assign this virtual pool to the source virtual array. Set the High Availability option to VPLEX Distributed. In the High Availability option fields, specify the target virtual pool.
  7. Run Block Storage Services > Create Block Volume from the service catalog to create the distributed VPLEX virtual volume.
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Create a ViPR Project

A project is required when you create a volume.

From the ViPR user interface, create a project:

Procedure

  1. Log in as a user with Tenant Admin rights.
  2. Select Tenant Settings > Projects.
  3. Click Add.
  4. Enter a project name in the Name field.
  5. Click Add ACL. Add the names of any users or groups that will be using the project.
  6. Click Save.
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Create Two Virtual Arrays

In the data center described in this article, the VPLEX Metro environment has two physical data centers, each with its own VPLEX cluster. Create two virtual arrays - one for each data center.

Before you begin

  • Log in to ViPR as a system administrator.
  • Complete the discoveries described in Required discoveries.

Procedure

  1. From Administrator Mode, select Virtual Assets > Virtual Array.
  2. Click Add.
  3. Type the name of the virtual array.
  4. Select Automatic SAN Zoning.
  5. Click Save to add the new virtual array to the list of virtual arrays.
  6. Click Add a second time. Follow steps 3 through 5 to create a second virtual array. You need both virtual arrays to set up a VPLEX distributed volume with ViPR.
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Add Networks or Ports to the High Availability Source Virtual Array

You can add ports to your virtual array in two ways. The first is to add networks (fabrics and VSANs) to your virtual array. The second is to add specific ports to the virtual array.

You can add ports to your virtual array in two ways. The first is to add networks (fabrics and VSANs) to your virtual array. The second is to add specific ports to the virtual array.

Add networks to a virtual array

The fastest and simplest way to enable communication among resources in your virtual data center is to add networks to your virtual arrays.

Before you begin

Use ViPR to discover fabric managers.

Networks are collections of ports. You use software provided by your switch vendor to define networks.

Procedure

  1. Edit a virtual array. The Edit Virtual Array configuration page opens.
  2. Click Networks. The Networks page opens.
  3. Click Add Existing. The Add Network dialog box opens and displays a list of fabrics or VSANs.
  4. Select the check box next to each fabric or VSAN you want to add to your virtual array.
    The networks that you add must provide connectivity between the VPLEX and the physical storage arrays.
  5. Click Add.
  6. Repeat steps 1 through 5 for each virtual array in your configuration.

Results

Click the name of the virtual array in the breadcrumb bar at the top of the screen to navigate back to the Edit Virtual Array page. You should see the VPLEX and the two physical storage systems in the Associated Storage Systems list.
Add Networks

Associated storage systems after adding networks

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Add Ports

Another way to enable connectivity in your virtual array is to add ports.

Before you begin

Before adding ports to your virtual array, complete all required discoveries for your datacenter.

Adding specific ports to your virtual array gives you a level of granular control over which ports you use to communicate with specific resources in your data center. For example, you can set aside certain ports on your VMAX to communicate with VPLEX .

It is very important for VPLEX to isolate the front end ports for cluster1 in a varray and cluster2 in a separate virtual array. You cannot mix VPLEX front end ports from both clusters in the same virtual array. This will result in errors during service execution.

Procedure

  1. Edit a virtual array.
    The Edit Virtual Array screen appears.
  2. Click Storage Ports. The Storage Ports page opens.
  3. Click Add. The Add Storage Ports dialog box opens.
  4. Type a string that filters the ports list in the Search field. For example, if you enter fa-8 in the Search field, the Storage Ports list displays only the ports on arrays whose names matches that string.
    filtered storage ports list
  5. Select the check boxes next to each port that you want to add to the virtual array.
  6. Click Add.
    ViPR adds the storage ports you selected to the virtual array.
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Add Networks or Ports to the High Availability Target Virtual Array

Follow the instructions in the previous step to create a second virtual array. This virtual array should enable connectivity between the VPLEX cluster in the second data center, the physical storage arrays used by VPLEX and any hosts in the data center.

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Create a Virtual Pool for the High Availability Target Virtual Array

Before you can create your target virtual pool, you must create your source virtual pool.

Before you begin

Configure your virtual arrays and enable connectivity.

Procedure

  1. Choose Virtual Assets > Block Virtual Pools.
  2. Click Add. The Create Block Virtual Pool screen opens.
  3. Type a string name for the virtual pool.
  4. Type a string describing the virtual pool. This could include any site-specific information about the purpose of the pool.
  5. Choose both virtual arrays that you built in Create Two Virtual Arrays.
  6. Ensure that the number of physical pools that meet your criteria is greater than 0.
  7. Click Save. The virtual pool is added to the list of block virtual pools.
    Note Image
    You do not need High Availability settings for this virtual array.

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Create a Virtual Pool for the High Availability Source Virtual Array

The high availability source virtual pool is the pool where you create the VPLEX distributed virtual volume.

Before you begin

Before you can create your target virtual pool, you must create your source virtual pool.

Procedure

  1. Select Virtual Assets > Block Virtual Pools . The Create Virtual Pool screen appears.
  2. Type a string name for the virtual pool.
  3. Type a string that describes the virtual pool. It can include any site-specific information about the purpose of the pool.
  4. Select the source virtual array that you built in Add Networks or Ports to the High Availability Source Virtual Array.
  5. Under High Availability, select VPLEX Distributed.
  6. Set the High Availability virtual array to the target virtual array.
  7. Set the High Availability virtual pool to the target virtual pool.
  8. Ensure that the number of physical pools that meet your criteria is 1 or greater.
  9. Click Save.
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Create a VPLEX Distributed Block Volume

From User Mode, create a VPLEX Distributed block volume:

Procedure

  1. Run Block Storage Services > Create Block Volume from the service catalog.
  2. Select the source virtual array in the Virtual Array field.
  3. Select the source virtual pool in the Virtual Pool field.
  4. Select the project that you built.
  5. Type a string description for the block volume.
  6. Set the consistency group field to a setting appropriate for your environment.
    In this example, you can leave the consistency group setting at the default.
  7. Set the number of volumes to 1 or more.
  8. Set the size of the volume in gigabytes.
  9. Click Order.

Results

The following figure shows a successful create block service execution.

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Block Protection Services > Export VPLEX Volume

To run this service, your environment must meet the following requirements.

Before you begin

  • You must log in to ViPR as a tenant administrator, or as a user with access to the project that contains the volume you want to export.
  • Your physical data center must meet the requirements described in Data center requirements.
  • From ViPR, you must discover the physical infrastructure listed in Required discoveries.
  • You must have a VPLEX virtual volume to export to a host. Block Storage Services > Create Block Volume explains how to build the volume.

Procedure

  1. Select User Mode > Service Catalog > Block Protection Services > Export Volume to a Host.
  2. Select Shared or Exclusive. Shared to export the volume to every host in a cluster. Exclusive exports the volume to a single host.
  3. Select the Project to which the volume belongs.
  4. Select the Host or cluster to which the volume will be exported.
  5. Select a virtual array.
  6. Select the VPLEX Volume to export.
  7. Choose -1 for the default Host Logical Unit number (HLU).
  8. Click Order.
    The Orders page opens with the progress of the order.
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Block Storage Services > Create Block Volume for a Host

To run this service, your environment must meet the following requirements.

Before you begin

  • You must log in to ViPR as a tenant administrator, or as a user with access to the project that contains the volume that you want to export.
  • Your physical data center must meet all of the requirements described in Data center_requirements.
  • From ViPR, you must discover the physical infrastructure listed in Discoveries.

This service creates both the physical storage device on the back end arrays and the VPLEX distributed volume. This service also exports the volume to a host or cluster.

To configure the VPLEX high availability feature, create a virtual pool with high availability enabled, then create a volume and assign it to the high availability virtual pool.

Procedure

  1. Create a ViPR project.
  2. Build two virtual arrays: one for the VPLEX source volume and one for the VPLEX High Availability target on which the source volume will be replicated.
  3. Add networks to the high availability source virtual array to enable physical connectivity between all the hardware required by the source VPLEX cluster - the host, the switches, the VPLEX and the back end storage. Alternatively, you can add specific ports to the virtual array by using ViPR's Storage Ports dialog.
  4. Add networks to the high availability target virtual array to enable physical connectivity between all the hardware required by the VPLEX High Availability target cluster - the host, the switches, the VPLEX and the back end storage. Alternatively, you can add specific ports to the virtual array by using ViPR's Storage Ports dialog.
  5. Create the target virtual pool. This virtual pool is assigned to the target virtual array.
  6. Create the source virtual pool. This virtual pool is assigned to the source virtual array, and has the High Availability option set to VPLEX Distributed.
  7. Run Block Storage Services > Create Block Volume for a Host from the service catalog.
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Run Create Block Volume for a Host

To create and export the VPLEX Distributed volume, call the service Block Storage Services > Create Block Volume for a Host from the service catalog.

Before you begin

You must be in User Mode in the user interface to perform this procedure.

Procedure

  1. Run Block Storage Services > Create Block Volume for a Host from the service catalog.
  2. Choose Exclusive to export the volume to a single host. Choose Shared to export the volume to a host cluster.
  3. Choose the source virtual array in the Virtual Array field.
  4. Choose the source virtual pool in the Virtual Pool field.
  5. Choose the project you built.
  6. Give a string description to the block volume.
  7. Leave the consistency group setting at the default.
  8. Set the number of volumes to 1 or more.
  9. Set the size of the volume in gigabytes.
  10. Click Order.

Results

This service creates both the storage devices on the physical storage and the VPLEX distributed volume as well.

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Block Storage Services > Remove Block Volume

You can run the Remove Block Volume service to remove a VPLEX virtual volume built with the Create Block Volume or Create Block Volume for Host services.

To run the Remove Block Volume service:
  1. Log in as a ViPR tenant administrator.
  2. From the User menu, choose Block Storage Services > Remove Block Volume.
  3. Choose the project that contains the volume to remove.
  4. Click the check box next to the volume to remove.
  5. Choose one of the following Deletion Types:
    Full
    • Deletes the Volume from ViPR.
    • Deletes the Virtual Volume from the VPLEX.
    • Deletes all exports, snapshots, clones, and mirrors associated with the volume.
    • Deletes the physical back end storage from the physical arrays, including removing the volume from consistency groups.
    Inventory Only Deletes the volume from ViPR. All VPLEX and physical storage objects are left intact.
  6. Click Order.
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Worldwide Names on VPLEX Volumes Provisioned through ViPR

After VPLEX volumes are provisioned through ViPR, those volumes are not immediately assigned a worldwide name (WWN).

A WWN is only assigned to a VPLEX volume when it is exported.

To view the worldwide name of a volume, choose Resources > Volumes, then click the name of the volume in the list. The following figure shows an example of a volume listing. Notice that the WWN field is blank.

For an unexported VPLEX Local or VPLEX Metro volume, the WWN field on this screen will be blank as shown here.

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Supported VPLEX Versions

For information on the VPLEX versions supported by ViPR 2.2, refer to the EMC ViPR Support Matrix.

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