ViPR 2.2 - What is ViPR Controller?

Table of Contents

What is ViPR Controller?

Gain an understanding of ViPR Controller, a software-defined storage platform that abstracts, pools, and automates a data center's underlying physical storage infrastructure.

ViPR Controller provides a single control plane to data center administrators to manage heterogeneous storage environments, including EMC and non-EMC block and file storage. The key value of ViPR Controller is that it decouples the control path from the data path. The ability to abstract the control path allows storage management to operate at the virtual layer.

The ViPR Controller does not sit in the data path for file and block stores. This ensures applications can access storage and all its underlying value and data services embedded in the storage arrays without performance degradation.

ViPR Controller is deployed as a vApp and contains the functionality to automate block and file storage provisioning tasks. Once deployed, you can set up one storage control point for one or more physical data centers. One ViPR Controller controls all the storage resources within the ViPR virtual data center.

The storage virtualization that ViPR Controller provides enables you to combine several physical storage pools into a ViPR virtual storage pool, or add several physical storage arrays into a virtual array. ViPR System Administrators define policies through the ViPR abstractions of virtual pools and virtual arrays so that ViPR can abstract and pool storage resources based on storage attributes. Once the virtual pools and arrays are set up, storage provisioning tasks are automated and delivered to end users as services through a self-service catalog in the ViPR UI. Policy and management functions are applied in the aggregate, simplifying the process.

ViPR Controller enables software-defined data centers by providing the following features:

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Which storage systems does ViPR Controller discover?

After the ViPR Controller vApp is deployed, the first step in setting up the ViPR virtual data center is to add storage arrays, referred to as storage systems in the ViPR virtual data center.

When a System Administrator adds storage systems to the ViPR virtual data center, ViPR Controller discovers the arrays' physical ports and storage pools and brings them under ViPR Controller management. ViPR Controller uses the physical pools and ports on the storage systems to make the storage devices visible to the hosts. ViPR Controller discovers physical block and file storage, SAN, and hosts and then controls the provisioning and connectivity of these physical assets.

ViPR Controller natively discovers and manages the block and file storage systems listed in the following table. In addition, ViPR Controller can discover many different block arrays via array support through OpenStack (non-native support).

Array support through OpenStack via the ViPR Third-Party Block Storage Provider enables ViPR Controller to discover any third-party block array that an OpenStack block storage (Cinder) driver supports. To view a list of block storage systems that OpenStack Cinder drivers support, click here.

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What are the ViPR Controller interfaces?

ViPR Controller includes three management interfaces (API, UI, and CLI) to provide maximum user flexibility:

  • A comprehensive REST Application Programming Interface (API) that allows developers to write applications without regard to the underlying hardware and software.
  • A web-based User Interface (UI) that provides the ability to configure and monitor ViPR Controller, as well as perform self-service storage provisioning tasks through an intuitive Service Catalog.
  • A Command Line Interface (CLI) that provides an interface for developers and data center administrators to manage storage resources.
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