A new IBM SVC, Storwize (Spectrum Virtualize) v7.5 brings VVols, HyperSwap…

IBM made an announcement last week that a new IBM Spectrum Virtualize Software V7.5.0 is coming soon (5th June 2015), which will bring supports for the features like vSphere VVols, HyperSwap, Microsoft ODX…

If you haven’t heard yet, IBM replaced Storwize family naming earlier this year with Spectrum Virtualize Software. Therefore no reason to panic, it is not a different product, just an update with different name.

VVols and ODX Support

As a Virtualization guy I’m excited especially because of vSphere 6.0 VVols support and Microsoft Offloaded Data Transfer (ODX) which is Microsoft’s answer to VMware VAAI – you can learn more about the differences although they are pretty much the same things here.

Note: The ability to manage VVols is subject to a forthcoming release of Spectrum Control Basic Base and a subsequent compatible modification level of Spectrum Virtualize Software V7.5 which will provide the appropriate vStorage APIs for Storage Awareness (VASA).

 

Which basically means we will have to wait till Spectrum Control Base (former IBM Storage Integration Server) will be updated as well to test it out :/.

HyperSwap

Another cool feature would be HyperSwap, which should enhance functionality of the IBM SVC Stretch cluster. It will bring more protection and can become a true HA and Disaster Recovery solution for a stretched clusters (or in VMware world – vSphere Metro Storage Clusters), note till now a stretched implementation of the IBM SVC has provided High Availability, but it wasn’t suitable for a DR solution because of its implementation:

HyperSwap capability enables each volume to be presented by two I/O groups. The configuration will tolerate combinations of node and site failures, using a flexible choice of host multipathing driver interoperability based on that available for the IBM Spectrum Virtualize family of products already. The use of FlashCopy (no FlashCopy licensing is required for the use of HyperSwap) helps maintain a golden image during automatic resynchronization. As remote mirroring is used to support the HyperSwap capability, Remote Mirroring licensing is a requirement for using HyperSwap on the IBM Spectrum Virtualize family of products.

 

While the capabilities of HyperSwap have similarities to the SVC Stretch Cluster, they use different underlying technologies to obtain those similar results, and not all the environment configuration variations available with SVC Stretch Cluster are necessarily available for HyperSwap. Review your environment configuration needs with your IBM sales representative.

 

HyperSwap is available for use with the SAN Volume Controller, Storwize V7000, and Storwize V5000 hardware platforms.

Another enhancements:

  • Direct 16 Gbps Fibre Channel support (except for AIX)
  • Revised licensing rules for SVC Real-time Compression Software (you will be paying only for size after compression)
  • FlashCopy bitmap space increase – means more FlashCopy instances (all models of the SVC, Storwize V7000 Generation 2 meaning the 2076-524 (prior models of Storwize V7000 are not compatible), and Storwize V5000 hardware platforms.)

Availability

Planned and supported geography translations will be available for web download by June 5, 2015, at the following websites:

What can I say? I can’t wait to test it by myself 🙂 and lets hope there won’t be any bugs 😛

Source: http://www-01.ibm.com/common/ssi/ShowDoc.wss?docURL=/common/ssi/rep_ca/1/877/ENUSZP15-0231/index.html&lang=en&request_locale=en#toc

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Dusan has over 6 years experience in Virtualization field. Currently working as Senior VMware plarform Architect at one of the biggest retail bank in Slovakia. He has background in closely related technologies including server operating systems, networking and storage. Used to be a member of VMware Center of Excellence at IBM, co-author of several Redpapers. His main scope of work consists from designing and performance optimization of business critical virtualized solutions on vSphere, including, but not limited to Oracle WebLogic, MSSQL and others. He holds several IT industry leading certifications like VCAP-DCD, VCAP-DCA, MCITP and the others. Honored with #vExpert2015 and 2016 awards by VMware for his contribution to the community. Opinions are my own!

About Dusan Tekeljak

Dusan has over 6 years experience in Virtualization field. Currently working as Senior VMware plarform Architect at one of the biggest retail bank in Slovakia. He has background in closely related technologies including server operating systems, networking and storage. Used to be a member of VMware Center of Excellence at IBM, co-author of several Redpapers. His main scope of work consists from designing and performance optimization of business critical virtualized solutions on vSphere, including, but not limited to Oracle WebLogic, MSSQL and others. He holds several IT industry leading certifications like VCAP-DCD, VCAP-DCA, MCITP and the others. Honored with #vExpert2015 and 2016 awards by VMware for his contribution to the community. Opinions are my own!
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9 Comments

  1. My comment was deleted ?

  2. vVols was removed from the 7.5.0.0 release 🙁

  3. Spectrum Control Base is expected around September 2015. VVOLs will be enabled with a SVC/Storwize firmware update around that time.

  4. So the Spectrum Virtualize 7.5 (and virtualize arrays) is able to provide: VAAI, VASA, VMWare 6.0 but only the VVOL feature was postponed for next release, right?

    • Hi Renan,
      This is also available for older versions as well. VAAI is included in SVC since version 6.2 (although it had some bugs at the beginning). For VASA you need to have a special component (provider) installed on a linux server so called Spectrum Control Base (Former IBM Storage Integration Server) which has been out for some time as well, also if you do have TPC server in your environment, that one can act as VASA provider too.

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