Monthly Archives: October 2021

Introduction to Fibre Channel (FC) If you are new to Fibre Channel SAN technology you should take the time to familiarise yourself with the basic terminology. Fibre Channel (FC) was developed in the late 1980s and became an American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standard in 1994 with it’s physical topology as well as logical topology and protocols are all defined by the ANSI T11 standard. As the name suggests, it was designed to be based on fibre optic cabling as the physical transport to overcome some of the limitations of the SCSI physical layer. Fibre Channel can actually run on copper cables over short distances, where Fibre Channel can easily go 10KM. A storage area network (SAN) is a specialised high-speed network that connects host servers to high-performance storage subsystems. The SAN components include host bus adapters (HBAs) in the host servers, switches that help route storage traffic, cables, storage…

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In this blog we will learn how to change the Round Robin Path Selection Policy (VMW_PSP_RR) on FC and iSCSI LUNs in a VMware environment to better balance the I/O load across all active storage paths. Modifying the IOPS limitation to 1 will improve performance where an active storage path might have several queued I/Os. In addition, setting the limitation to 1 allows other active storage paths to service I/O requests.  This will have the benefit of reduced latency and increased throughput. ESXi Round Robin PSP supports two types of limits: IOPS limit: The Round Robin PSP defaults to an IOPS limit with a value of 1000. In this default case, a new path is used after 1000 I/O operations are issued. Bytes limit: The bytes limit is an alternative to the IOPS limit. The bytes limit allows for a specified amount of bytes to be transferred before the path…

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I’ve been running Plex in a CentOS 7 VM for over 5 years and it’s been extremely stable, I’ve had no issues, not even one. Currently Plex is hosted on VMware ESXi 7.0.2 host with two 4 vCPUs and 6GB of vRAM and it works well with H264. I’ve decided to re-rip all of my blu-rays and then transcode them to H265 which will give me a better quality file that takes less space than the same file in H264 takes. When I need to transcode video to sync to a mobile device for a trip or transcode H265 to H264 for devices that don’t support H265 the processor consumes a lot of CPU on the VM. I could just add more vCPUs to the VM but I have a limit on how many vCPUs I have, and there are more efficient ways to transcode video. I did some research…

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The Scope I’m going to setup Fibre Channel storage network to connect ESXi 7 hosts to a TrueNAS Core storage server using a Cisco MDS series switch. I’ve chosen to use Fibre Channel for my VM datastores because of it’s great performance and reliability and the fact that it works so well with VMware ESXi. Fibre Channel will connect the TrueNAS Core storage server (target) and ESXi servers (initiator) over a fabric. In this setup, I’ve got one Cisco MDS DS-C9148-16p-K9 switch, two Dell R720 ESXi 7 servers and one TrueNAS storage server. All of the servers will have QLogic HBAs with link a speed of 8Gbs. I will create 2 logical networks using VSAN’s to replicate having to separate switches. Although the Cisco MDS 9148-16p-K9 switch has 48 Fibre Channel ports, only 16 of them can acquire port a license by default and the remaining ports have to be activated…

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