Can't you just set the boot order to HBA1 and next HBA2? (not very familiar with booting from SAN)
What happens if HBA1 hasn't got any connection, does it give you an error and decides to try HBA2?
Just my 2 cents
Not sure, I've configured boot from SAN before but never tried to share it with the VMs across two HBAs...I have little experience setting up ESX on blades and am looking to team the two NICs together and share it between the SC, VMotion and the VMs if possible using VLANs...so if anyone has input on that as well it will definitely be appreciated.
Well I've installed loads of blades but never used the Boot from SAN.
Uhm.. you are talking iSCSI SAN?
EMC CX700 FC SAN...
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Then why are you talking about sharing the NIC's with VMotion, SC and VM's?
Or is it like a second question cause it's got nothing to do with booting from SAN
To answer that question about the NIC's, yeah could be possible and definitely the best solution when you only have 2 NIC's in the system. (you could seperate it but then you'll loose all redundancy on the NICs)
Seperating them in VLAN's is best practice for security indeed.
So, in short: Create 1 vSwitch and bound all the functionalities as well as the 2 pNIC's to it.
A second question...sorry for the confusion. I figured I would toss in here instead of a second post. Thanks for the help on the NICs!
Kenneth's response regarding the NICs is right on target. Single vswitch, teamed NICs and separate traffic using VLANs.
As for the HBAs. Since they don't want to isolate the traffic
1 for ESX and 1 for VMsthey can boot from one HBA and the second would basically be for failover. Currently you cannot team/bond HBAs with VI3. However, you can play with the paths and balance the HBAs that way.
Here is a ESX deployment on Dell blades document that you might find helpful http://www.dell.com/downloads/global/solutions/vmware_bladeservers.pdf (or www.dell.com/vmware > support documents)
Regarding BFS, you can have multiple LUNs assigned to both the HBAs. One LUN will have the boot partition and will other Linux partitions for Service Console. The other LUNs can have VMFS partition. This way you have redundant FC path for both VMkernel and the VMs.
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During initial setup assign only the boot LUN to the Storage Group on the Cx700. This will ensure it's Host LUN ID (HLU) is 0.
Configure the HBAs during POST by hitting Ctrl, Q to enter Fast!Util.
Any internal controllers other than the HBAs should have bios disabled. Boot to the SAN and install ESX. Once that's done you can add all the LUNS you want to the Storage Group on the Cx700 and rescan or reboot.
Thanks to everyone that replied! All of this information has been extremely helpful!