Replacement VMware VSA | StorMagic SvSAN

For small and remote branch offices I was looking for a Replacement of VMware VSA.
Our architecture decision for small remote branch office was to use VMware VSA, but it was discontinued and it is not possible to order it anymore.

End of Availability
VMware is announcing the End of Availability of all vSphere Storage Appliance versions, effective April 1, 2014. After this date you will no longer be able to purchase this product.

On VMworld 2014 I was searching for “something” and was hoping to find a clever replacement ….

Replacement VMware VSA | StorMagic SvSAN

How it works:

  • mirroring internal storage between hosts,
  • providing the shared storage to enable the advanced hypervisor features such as HA, Failover, vMotion, DRS.

Installation:

  • I downloaded StorMagic SvSAN vCenter plugin and did installation directly on vCenter Server
  • Next step is to login to vSphere web interface, click on Datacenter > Manage> StorMagicdeploy_svsan
  • Before Clicking on Deploy a VSA onto a host, you need to think about your network, I created a dedicated  VM Network vSwitch for iSCSI and Mirror traffic and assigned 2 physical 1 GB adapters, then I used existing VM Network vSwitch fortraffic management. Exactly as recommended in this picture.
  • network_design
  • NETWORK- can work with 1, 2 or 3 virtual switches
  1. Combined Management, iSCSI, Mirror Trafic
  2. Management dedicated vswitch, 2 vswitch for iSCSI, Mirror Traffic
  3. all 3 types of traffic used a dedicated vswitch
  • Next consideration is about the DISKs – StorMagic recommend 2 disk in RAID1 for VSA appliance and 3+ disks in RAID5 for creation of shared volume. (The design shown in picture)StorMagic_SvSAN_design
  • Shared volume can be directly mapped if supported by the controller.
  • Scenario with only RAID5 or only RAID1 is working too.
  • My installation was on 1 disk no RAID with VSA on same disk as the shared volume.
  • Now we are ready to click Deploy a VSA onto a host
  • The deployment Wizard opens and lets you chose the host, storage, configure IP addresses
  • You will need to repeat all steps for the second VSA appliance and go to Manage VSAsmanage_vsa
  • You can create additional storage by assigning a new disk or extending the existing disk on VSAs.
  • Now we are ready to Create a shared datastore. Wizard will ask you to setup a name and size. Then set up mirroring, eventually caching and sharing between hosts.manage_datastore
  • We are done shared storage is available and we can enable HA, DRS, vMotion
  • No need for manual creation of iSCSI targets all is done automatically.

Benchmark:

I used following system IBM x3850 M2, 4xXeon Dual Core 7140N 3.3GHz/667MHz/16MB L3, 128 GB RAM

Disk: IBM 73GB 15k U320 SFF SAS

Benchmark with VM directly on this disk, before installation of SvSAN showed following values:

nosvsanAfter SvSAN installation and mirrored drive creation I did svMotion VM to this new datastore and benchmark showing values:

svsan1

Summary:

+ Installation is very straightforward through deployment of the appliance, configuration is done by the installer (only IPs needs).

+ VMware integration with the vcenter plugin and vSphere web interface management.

+ Small footprint of VSA appliance VM 1 CPU, 1 GB RAM.

– Absence of space saving techniques like compression or deduplication.

 StorMagic SvSAN
InstallationvCenter plugin, vSphere web client for management, vSphere ovf appliance (Linux) for VSA.
VM RequirementsLinux based appliance, 1 CPU, 1 GB RAM, 20 GB disk, 1 to 3 vNICs
vSwitch Requirments1 to 3
LicensingPer storage used 2TB/4TB/8TB/16TB/unlimited
MirroringSynchronous
CachingSupported
Deduplication-
vmware, hyper-vSupported

Links:

stormagic_logo&mono_tile

The following two tabs change content below.

Roman Macek

VMware & Virtualization SME
Roman grew up with Microsoft server administration in 2006 he switched to VMware. He focuses on designing of solutions for hybrid cloud, business continuity, high availability, disaster recovery, backup and vdi. He has background and mindset in hardware and VMware operating systems administration. He holds certifications from Microsoft, VMware and other industry vendors. VCAP5-DCD, VCAP5-DCA, VCP5, VCP5-DT, MCITP, MCTS, vExpert 2015/16.

About Roman Macek

Roman grew up with Microsoft server administration in 2006 he switched to VMware. He focuses on designing of solutions for hybrid cloud, business continuity, high availability, disaster recovery, backup and vdi. He has background and mindset in hardware and VMware operating systems administration. He holds certifications from Microsoft, VMware and other industry vendors. VCAP5-DCD, VCAP5-DCA, VCP5, VCP5-DT, MCITP, MCTS, vExpert 2015/16.
Bookmark the permalink.

One Comment

  1. Pingback: TheVirtualist hosted StorMagic, a provider of SvSAN solution

Leave a Reply