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Contributor
Contributor

NPIV & MSCS

Hi All,

Just wanted to clarify the statement in this document (http://www.vmware.com/pdf/vsphere4/r41/vsp_41_mscs.pdf), it sounds to me that an envirmoment using NPIV is not supoprted with MSCS. Is it refering to NPIV at the VM level or NPIV in any part of the FC fabric?

Example, An ESX host connected to a brocade switch in AG mode (NPIV) connected to a Director in turn connected to the storage array. Is this supported?

vSphere MSCS Setup Limitations
Before you set up MSCS, review the list of functions that are not supported for this release, and requirements and recommendations that apply to your configuration.
The following environments and functions are not supported for MSCS setups with this release of vSphere:

  • N-Port ID Virtualization (NPIV)

Thanks

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7 Replies
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VMware Employee
VMware Employee

Haha wow cant believe someone else is asking the same question,

I got an official response from VMware on this.

I was having issue with all the MSCS virtuals not failing the disks over, now it ended up being a device called a SANTAP that caused the issues but leading up to that I had a week long sev 1 ticket running with vmware about this as everything was setup correctly. even tho they insisted i keep re checking.

Then when reading the exact document got me thinking we use flex 10 and NPIV has to be enabled on the Fabric end so I put it to vmware support.

The exact response I got was "that clustering guide is pointing to the Virtual machine setting. NPIV is not supported on MSCS cluster on virtual machine level."

In the end the person I was dealing with was not really a good help, but did clear up that small part.

Ended up being storge putting a device in that wasnt in the design and I was ripping my hair out wondering why MSCS virtuals wernt failing over!!

hope that helps

Cheers

________________________________________ Blog: http://virtualiseme.net.au VCDX #201 Author of Mastering vRealize Operations Manager
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User Moderator
User Moderator

IMO - from a technical point of view - the current implementation of NPIV only adds complexity to a setup. Since you have to present the LUN's to the hosts and create RDM's anyway, there's no benefit in using NPIV.

André

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Enthusiast
Enthusiast

a.p , I agree NPIV at the VM level seems a little useless but I'm sure someone will find a use for it...

Does anyone else want to pipe on on this one before I open the flood gates. NPIV is in use in my fabric only, I do not plan to use NPIV at the VM level so I don't see how it should cause an issue but saying that I don't want to do anything that is not supported. I want to sleep well. and that statement is wide open.

I have also contacted VMware and they didn't really elaborate much so I am a little confused still. Hoping somone from VMware can answer or modify the document.

Blog: www.dcinfrastructure.blogspot.com
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VMware Employee
VMware Employee

Look at it this way, its a vmware document, NPIV at the fabric level isnt their concern, there concern lies within the settings vmware has control over and the only NPIV setting they have is at the VM settings.

Its safe to assume that its at the vm level.

But like a few people here I thought hey could they meen NPIV at the fabric level as well, My response from vmware was no, only the machine setting as previously mentioned, understand if people dont want to take my word for it, but hey my environment is fully supported with 50+ MSCS clusters in the environment.

@ap

*EDIT*sorry you answered my question anyway after re reading, didnt realise you still needed rdms when using npiv

Cheers

________________________________________ Blog: http://virtualiseme.net.au VCDX #201 Author of Mastering vRealize Operations Manager
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Expert
Expert

it should refer to the NPIV on the virtual machine level, to do microsoft cluster, RDM will do, I don't think the NPIV is useful in general deployment on the virtual machine level. NPIV on fabric is common deploy especially on blade server deployment, that will not be the case that is not supported by vmware.

Craig vExpert 2009 & 2010 Netapp NCIE, NCDA 8.0.1 Malaysia VMware Communities - http://www.malaysiavm.com
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Hot Shot
Hot Shot

tend to agree with others NPIV seems to be extra configuration mess from a vmware side of things.

about the only advantage I see for it is from a SAN Storage lun monitoring

I got the following link  from Satyavmware

http://www.storage-switzerland.com/Articles/Entries/2009/6/11_Using_NPIV_to_Optimize_Server_Virtuali...

it is a very good explanation of npiv implementation on vmware

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VMware Employee
VMware Employee

Philip Brindley wrote:

tend to agree with others NPIV seems to be extra configuration mess from a vmware side of things.

about the only advantage I see for it is from a SAN Storage lun monitoring

I got the following link  from Satyavmware

http://www.storage-switzerland.com/Articles/Entries/2009/6/11_Using_NPIV_to_Optimize_Server_Virtuali...

it is a very good explanation of npiv implementation on vmware

another benifit is that you can vmotion the virtual using NPIV, which would be handy.

________________________________________ Blog: http://virtualiseme.net.au VCDX #201 Author of Mastering vRealize Operations Manager
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