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Prepping CISCO CATALYST 3560X to be used for EqualLogic PS4210X,

I am receiving a EqualLogic PS4210X this week. It will be serving storage to 2 Dell PowerEdge R620's.  What type of configuration is normally used to connect these type of devices. I recall in a past work place having a separate vlan for the storage. Is there any other special considerations to keep in mind?

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Hello,

One thing to be aware of is that the 3560 switche are usually considered “wiring closet” and not “data center” switches.  They typically are not used in iSCSI SAN situations (largely due to the buffers for each port are small compared to data center switches).

If you have to use this switch for your iSCSI SAN and are doing a lot of large block IO (greater than 8K), then you will want to consider a more powerful switch).

If you have mostly random, small block IO, then the 3750 might fit your needs as long as this IO profile does not change in the future.

The few items to consider;

  • The switches should be configured for iSCSI traffic exclusively and dedicated to the SAN network.  Avoid using any of the other ports unless for administration (i.e., do not pass LAN or other user traffic across the switch).
  • Configure a separate VLAN for iSCSI and DO NOT use the default VLAN, the default VLAN is implementation and should be reserved just for administrative traffic (this is true regardless if setting up iSCSI).  It is recommended that user traffic be configured on VLANs other than VLAN 1, primarily to prevent unnecessary user broadcast and multicast traffic from being processed by the Network Management Processor (NMP) of the supervisor.
  • Plug your Host iSCSI and Array cable connections staggered across two or more ASIC’s to avoid over subscribing the port and ACIS’s buffers.

For specific configuration, you should be able to use most of the commands from the EqualLogic Rapid Configuration portal (see the 3750, and note that some commands may not be available with the 3560)

http://en.community.dell.com/techcenter/storage/w/wiki/3615.rapid-equallogic-configuration-portal-by-sis

 

Use the configuration Guide for general information and setup guidelines:

http://en.community.dell.com/techcenter/storage/w/wiki/2639.equallogic-configuration-guide

 

The Storage Technical Solutions Publications and Resources is useful as well:

http://en.community.dell.com/techcenter/storage/w/wiki/2632.storage-infrastructure-and-solutions-team-publications

-Joe

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Highlighted
Beginner

Hello,

One thing to be aware of is that the 3560 switche are usually considered “wiring closet” and not “data center” switches.  They typically are not used in iSCSI SAN situations (largely due to the buffers for each port are small compared to data center switches).

If you have to use this switch for your iSCSI SAN and are doing a lot of large block IO (greater than 8K), then you will want to consider a more powerful switch).

If you have mostly random, small block IO, then the 3750 might fit your needs as long as this IO profile does not change in the future.

The few items to consider;

  • The switches should be configured for iSCSI traffic exclusively and dedicated to the SAN network.  Avoid using any of the other ports unless for administration (i.e., do not pass LAN or other user traffic across the switch).
  • Configure a separate VLAN for iSCSI and DO NOT use the default VLAN, the default VLAN is implementation and should be reserved just for administrative traffic (this is true regardless if setting up iSCSI).  It is recommended that user traffic be configured on VLANs other than VLAN 1, primarily to prevent unnecessary user broadcast and multicast traffic from being processed by the Network Management Processor (NMP) of the supervisor.
  • Plug your Host iSCSI and Array cable connections staggered across two or more ASIC’s to avoid over subscribing the port and ACIS’s buffers.

For specific configuration, you should be able to use most of the commands from the EqualLogic Rapid Configuration portal (see the 3750, and note that some commands may not be available with the 3560)

http://en.community.dell.com/techcenter/storage/w/wiki/3615.rapid-equallogic-configuration-portal-by-sis

 

Use the configuration Guide for general information and setup guidelines:

http://en.community.dell.com/techcenter/storage/w/wiki/2639.equallogic-configuration-guide

 

The Storage Technical Solutions Publications and Resources is useful as well:

http://en.community.dell.com/techcenter/storage/w/wiki/2632.storage-infrastructure-and-solutions-team-publications

-Joe

View solution in original post

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Beginner

All good information, one last question though the switch they sent me 3560-X according to DELL's compatibility guide that will not work this model of switch?  Are there any special hacks I can do?

 

How can I find out what ACIS support which ports for a 3560-X?

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I believe that the following command will show you the interface port and what the ASIC/ASIC_PORT is assigned to it:

show platform pm if-numbers

In the display, the column "port" displays the [ASIC]/[ASIC_PORT], ex. "1/3" would be ASIC 1 Port 3 (on that ASIC).

This is detailed in the Command reference guide  (Appendix C Page C27):

http://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/td/docs/switches/lan/catalyst3750x_3560x/software/release/15-0_2_se/command/reference/3750xcr.pdf

So at that point you can map out what interface is on what ASIC/PORT, and distribute the Host/Array connections accordingly.

Joe

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Also, ensure you enable flow control on all NICs/HBAs on the host, all Switch iSCSI ports, and if both can be supported also enable jumbo frames.

 

-Joe

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