b1izzard
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Contributor

Passthrough HBA and ESXi raid 1

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I have 4 HP DL380 gen 8 servers I am planning on setting up vSAN on.  This is new to me, so I am at the point where I am just researching this.  It has a P420i controller that has the capability for passthrough which from what I am reading is the preferred way to set this up (vs a raid 0 for every single disk).  The problem is that it appears to be one or the other...that is either passthrough or HP raid.  So my question how is this normally accomplished?  Do some install a 2nd controller just for the ESXi host OS raid 1, and passthrough for the other controller?   I can't imagine that using passthrough mode that people install ESXi on a single disk if that is even possible.  I did see there is a Dell controller that gives you the ability to do both raid and passthrough, but that doesn't help for my HP's.   Is there an HP controller that does this as well?  What is normally done to solve this conundrum?  Thanks

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daphnissov
Immortal
Immortal

You wouldn't use that controller to host a disk on which you'd then install ESXi. That controller should be dedicated to vSAN, and using pass-through (JBOD) is the recommended method. ESXi would need to be installed on a SATADOM drive, internal flash, or something else.

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daphnissov
Immortal
Immortal

You wouldn't use that controller to host a disk on which you'd then install ESXi. That controller should be dedicated to vSAN, and using pass-through (JBOD) is the recommended method. ESXi would need to be installed on a SATADOM drive, internal flash, or something else.

b1izzard
Contributor
Contributor

Thank you daphnissov for taking the time to reply.  That is definitely helpful.  After researching this further it looks like I have a ways to go to figure out the best path for this.

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depping
Leadership
Leadership

you typically would use SD / USB / SATADOM / M.2 for ESXi and then use the disk controller purely for the vSAN disks. Passthrough is most definitely typically recommended for vSAN, as it makes maintenance much easier in my opinion. You can find a lot of details on the topic of vSAN on storagehub.vmware.com, and I would recommend going through some of those documents.

b1izzard
Contributor
Contributor

Thank you Duncan

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