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Storage Musings

Someone asked on WHTAU about SAN stuff and I figured, well, I’ll post it here too.

Ok, talking about SANs this is an area I don’t know much about it… If you grab yourself a fiber channel SAN hock it up to a few of your servers which have the required cards, than the servers are running completely off the SAN and not the internal drives? If that’s the case what sort of options are available to backup the entire first SAN to a second SAN for fail over if the primary SAN dies?

Hmm, SAN discussion.. Yum.

Fibre channel SAN’s typically ship with 2 fibre channel uplink ports (you can get some which have more). There’s a few ways about integrating with your new found space & speed freedom.

In the situation where you don’t buy a set of switches but you do get a set of redundant SANs you generally look at getting 2 servers in failover and direct attaching things in there then sharing the space as required from those host nodes. There’s a number of distributions specifically for this but for performance I’ve always leaned towards Solaris. Nexenta do a Solaris derivation specifically targeted at this market and they allow you to do nfs/smb/iscsi from there. When it comes to CPanel I guess you’d go the iscsi option here and either:

a) Get a iscsi initiator card in there and initiate to your storage pair.
b) Put a bootstrap startup on the hardware itself which then does an iscsi initiation and starts your real OS.

Guess I should also state that iscsi support from Solaris & Linux has shown to be far more stable then iscsi support direct from the storage kit itself. That’s mainly cause the storage kit usually has a crappy CPU and the ‘i’ part of iscsi makes it relatively costly.

Now, the other method (the ‘Enterprise’ way) is if you DO get a pair of fibre channel switches. These cost around 10K each which relative to your SAN purchase isn’t THAT much. You setup your SAN’s so that their connections are redundantly split across your two FC switches (or ‘Fabrics’ as the storage people like to say). Now you’ve got 2 SAN’s connected via diverse paths to two switches.

From there you take your actual hardware and install a dual port FC card (~$700 each) in each host. You set that up to terminate one to each switch (diverse paths to both SAN’s via both fabrics).

For both the iscsi and FC option basically any decent card will offer a BIOS booting option. That’s where your hard drives onbox become irrelevent (except maybe for swap) and the BIOS treats the SAN/FC volumes like a normal hard drive.

Replication wise, as usual, you have the costly and cheap option. The costly option is to get SAN’s with replication capabilities out of the box. They take care of each other and you never have to think about it again (hopefully). Vendors used to charge a lot for this but the new series stuff (Hitachi & Equalogic for instance) have this shipping as standard. If you’re going down this path you want to look for a SAN which has the capability to make ‘virtual fabrics’ seamlessly migrating between the two on failure. Otherwise your boxes are going to need a reboot or reconfiguration if your backend fails.

The cheaper option is to export two independent LUN’s (1 from each SAN) then use whatever replication you want on box. On Linux this is software raid or mirrored LVM, on Solaris this is ZFS (and it’s awesome :)). Then if you have a SAN failure the idea is that all your boxes will register a ‘dead disk’ and recovering involves getting the SAN back to normal and resyncing from the good disk.

Hopefully that answers a few of your questions. There’s some more tidbits in a Cluster 101 doc I did.
Stu

Toshiba M600 Xorg Configuration

Heya,

For those with a Toshiba laptop (one of the ones with a native resolution of 1280×800) and an inbuilt Intel i965, I thought I’d dump my xorg.conf here. I found this device reported a non existent TV output which was stuffing up X’s ability to maintain the correct resolution. Remember, you need to have i915resolution setup correctly as well, in Ubuntu this is available as a package. I have manually set the modes and depth settings and disabled auto but your results may vary.

With this configuration I have compiz working on Xubuntu (ie. XFCE Ubuntu). Now all I need to get working is sound!

Attached configuration file: Xorg configuration for i965 on Toshiba M600

Have a good night!

Stu

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Website moved

Hey all,

Ok, have moved this website to another machine. It’s an IBM xSeries server and I went out and purchased Plesk 7.5 for it too.

SO, it should be better performance and high reliability.

Stuart

Cable and Storm!

Yeah well,

A storm hit us as soon as I posted that thread to Whirlpool. When it finished our Cable worked! Wierd BUT W00P!

Check out some pics from the storm:

Album

Notably:

Lightning Strike 1
Lightning Strike 2

Pretty friggin awesome. And not bad for $70. 😉

NOW… We’ve got CABLE! 🙂 W00P!

Check the extended entry for full results but in summing up:

— telstra.com ping statistics —
4 packets transmitted, 4 received, 0% packet loss, time 3002ms
rtt min/avg/max/mdev = 29.853/32.748/35.462/2.231 ms
[stuart@poohbox stuart]$

— optushome.com.au ping statistics —
4 packets transmitted, 4 received, 0% packet loss, time 3003ms
rtt min/avg/max/mdev = 31.763/32.347/33.727/0.822 ms
[stuart@poohbox stuart]$

— pacific.net.au ping statistics —
4 packets transmitted, 4 received, 0% packet loss, time 3002ms
rtt min/avg/max/mdev = 51.910/53.157/54.927/1.137 ms
[stuart@poohbox stuart]$

— aussiewebhosting.com ping statistics —
4 packets transmitted, 4 received, 0% packet loss, time 3028ms
rtt min/avg/max/mdev = 8.382/11.744/16.309/2.957 ms

— rackshack.net ping statistics —
4 packets transmitted, 4 received, 0% packet loss, time 3001ms
rtt min/avg/max/mdev = 219.777/220.297/220.875/0.615 ms
[stuart@poohbox stuart]$

From bigpond: 08:11:36 (593.05 KB/s) – `linux-2.6.0.tar.bz2′ saved [33255278/33255278]
From pacific.net.au: 08:20:41 (529.33 KB/s) – `linux-2.6.0.tar.bz2′ saved [33255278]
From kernel.org: 08:23:39 (273.25 KB/s) – `linux-2.6.0.tar.bz2′ saved [33255278/33255278]

Stuart

Complementary ping test:

To telstra.com:

[stuart@poohbox stuart]$ ping telstra.com
PING telstra.com (144.135.18.10) 56(84) bytes of data.
64 bytes from 144.135.18.10: icmp_seq=1 ttl=245 time=34.2 ms
64 bytes from 144.135.18.10: icmp_seq=2 ttl=245 time=35.4 ms
64 bytes from 144.135.18.10: icmp_seq=3 ttl=245 time=29.8 ms
64 bytes from 144.135.18.10: icmp_seq=4 ttl=245 time=31.4 ms

— telstra.com ping statistics —
4 packets transmitted, 4 received, 0% packet loss, time 3002ms
rtt min/avg/max/mdev = 29.853/32.748/35.462/2.231 ms
[stuart@poohbox stuart]$

To optushome.com.au (Telstra’s competitor):

[stuart@poohbox stuart]$ ping optushome.com.au
PING optushome.com.au (211.29.132.28) 56(84) bytes of data.
64 bytes from content.syd.optusnet.com.au (211.29.132.28): icmp_seq=1 ttl=53 time=33.7 ms
64 bytes from content.syd.optusnet.com.au (211.29.132.28): icmp_seq=2 ttl=53 time=31.8 ms
64 bytes from content.syd.optusnet.com.au (211.29.132.28): icmp_seq=3 ttl=53 time=31.7 ms
64 bytes from content.syd.optusnet.com.au (211.29.132.28): icmp_seq=4 ttl=53 time=32.0 ms

— optushome.com.au ping statistics —
4 packets transmitted, 4 received, 0% packet loss, time 3003ms
rtt min/avg/max/mdev = 31.763/32.347/33.727/0.822 ms
[stuart@poohbox stuart]$

To pacific.net.au:

[stuart@poohbox stuart]$ ping pacific.net.au
PING pacific.net.au (210.23.129.38) 56(84) bytes of data.
64 bytes from pop1.pacific.net.au (210.23.129.38): icmp_seq=1 ttl=242 time=54.9
ms
64 bytes from pop1.pacific.net.au (210.23.129.38): icmp_seq=2 ttl=242 time=52.5
ms
64 bytes from pop1.pacific.net.au (210.23.129.38): icmp_seq=3 ttl=242 time=53.2
ms
64 bytes from pop1.pacific.net.au (210.23.129.38): icmp_seq=4 ttl=242 time=51.9
ms

— pacific.net.au ping statistics —
4 packets transmitted, 4 received, 0% packet loss, time 3002ms
rtt min/avg/max/mdev = 51.910/53.157/54.927/1.137 ms
[stuart@poohbox stuart]$

Aussiewebhosting.com:

[root@gateway root]# ping aussiewebhosting.com
PING aussiewebhosting.com (203.46.20.69) 56(84) bytes of data.
64 bytes from host1.ausat.net (203.46.20.69): icmp_seq=1 ttl=249 time=12.1 ms
64 bytes from host1.ausat.net (203.46.20.69): icmp_seq=2 ttl=249 time=16.3 ms
64 bytes from host1.ausat.net (203.46.20.69): icmp_seq=3 ttl=249 time=10.1 ms
64 bytes from host1.ausat.net (203.46.20.69): icmp_seq=4 ttl=249 time=8.38 ms

— aussiewebhosting.com ping statistics —
4 packets transmitted, 4 received, 0% packet loss, time 3028ms
rtt min/avg/max/mdev = 8.382/11.744/16.309/2.957 ms
[root@gateway root]#

Rackshack:

[stuart@poohbox stuart]$ ping rackshack.net
PING rackshack.net (207.218.223.142) 56(84) bytes of data.
64 bytes from www.ev1servers.net (207.218.223.142): icmp_seq=1 ttl=43 time=220 ms
64 bytes from www.ev1servers.net (207.218.223.142): icmp_seq=2 ttl=43 time=219 ms
64 bytes from www.ev1servers.net (207.218.223.142): icmp_seq=3 ttl=43 time=220 ms
64 bytes from www.ev1servers.net (207.218.223.142): icmp_seq=4 ttl=43 time=220 ms

— rackshack.net ping statistics —
4 packets transmitted, 4 received, 0% packet loss, time 3001ms
rtt min/avg/max/mdev = 219.777/220.297/220.875/0.615 ms
[stuart@poohbox stuart]$

And finally some speed tests:

[stuart@poohbox tmp]$ wget http://files.bigpond.com:4000/software/linux/kernel/linux-2.6.0.tar.bz2
–08:10:41– http://files.bigpond.com:4000/software/linux/kernel/linux-2.6.0.tar.bz2
=> `linux-2.6.0.tar.bz2′
Resolving files.bigpond.com… done.
Connecting to files.bigpond.com[144.135.23.54]:4000… connected.
HTTP request sent, awaiting response… 200 OK
Length: 33,255,278 [application/x-tar]

100%[====================================>] 33,255,278 593.05K/s ETA 00:00

08:11:36 (593.05 KB/s) – `linux-2.6.0.tar.bz2′ saved [33255278/33255278]

[stuart@poohbox tmp]$

From pacific.net.au:

[stuart@poohbox tmp]$ wget ftp://mirror.pacific.net.au/linux/kernel.org/linux/kernel/v2.6/linux-2.6.0.tar.bz2 –passive-ftp
–08:19:39– ftp://mirror.pacific.net.au/linux/kernel.org/linux/kernel/v2.6/linux-2.6.0.tar.bz2
=> `linux-2.6.0.tar.bz2′
Resolving mirror.pacific.net.au… done.
Connecting to mirror.pacific.net.au[61.8.0.17]:21… connected.
Logging in as anonymous … Logged in!
==> SYST … done. ==> PWD … done.
==> TYPE I … done. ==> CWD /linux/kernel.org/linux/kernel/v2.6 … done.
==> PASV … done. ==> RETR linux-2.6.0.tar.bz2 … done.
Length: 33,255,278 (unauthoritative)

100%[====================================>] 33,255,278 529.33K/s ETA 00:00

08:20:41 (529.33 KB/s) – `linux-2.6.0.tar.bz2′ saved [33255278]

[stuart@poohbox tmp]$

From kernel.org:

[stuart@poohbox tmp]$ wget http://www.kernel.org/pub/linux/kernel/v2.6/linux-2.6.0.tar.bz2
–08:21:39– http://www.kernel.org/pub/linux/kernel/v2.6/linux-2.6.0.tar.bz2
=> `linux-2.6.0.tar.bz2′
Resolving www.kernel.org… done.
Connecting to www.kernel.org[204.152.189.116]:80… connected.
HTTP request sent, awaiting response… 200 OK
Length: 33,255,278 [application/x-bzip2]

100%[====================================>] 33,255,278 273.25K/s ETA 00:00

08:23:39 (273.25 KB/s) – `linux-2.6.0.tar.bz2′ saved [33255278/33255278]

[stuart@poohbox tmp]$

Oh yer… 🙂

Stuart

Cable

Yep, we’re still waiting. 🙂 SO, I begun my rant:

Bigpong from Helstra

I should have known it was too good to be true. 🙁

Stuart

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