iSCSI configuration design


I have a question regarding my setup, and the best possible way to set up iSCSI configuration.

I have 2 HP servers, each with 12*gigabit (2*4 on nics+4 onboard) ethernet interfaces and a HP P2000 G3 iscsi, with 2*4 gigabit interfaces. Also, 2 HP A5120 switches in IRF configuration.

I'm planing to dedicate 4-4 interfaces on the servers to iSCSi traffic. What is the best way to configure them?

I was thinking about creating 2 vmkernel ports and connecting 2-2 teamed NICs to both of them. Then use port agregation on the switches and connect 2 NIC to one and the 2 other NIC to the 2nd switch.

My alternative idea is to create 4 vmk ports and use dedicated NICs for each of them, and just connecting 2-2 NICs to the 2 switches without port groupping.

Which one is better, and is there a better solution?

Any suggestions?


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Hot Shot
Hot Shot

Assume you use Software iSCSI.

For each physical NIC I would use one VMKernel-Port. Then you can use PortBinding Feature to create 4 "paths". Later in the LUN properties of your attached iSCSI LUN you can then use RoundRobin Multipathing Policy to distribute the traffic over the available pNICs. If you just use NIC Teaming on vSwitches you usally do not get the traffic equally distributed over the pNICs.

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