How to initialize a new HP EVA storage array
I’ve been thinking about writing this post for a while and finally got around to doing it. This is something that needs to be done to a new EVA array when they are first installed. I have found that sometimes this work is done by the installing Engineer or you can do it yourself if your setup was not ready when the device was installed.
Before you can start you need to have a few things setup and ready before you can initialize the array. The first thing that must be done is to install HP Command View EVA on a server that is SAN connected and has been zoned in to see the EVA array. This is essential because Command View EVA is used to manage the array.
You can see from the image below that I have logged into Command View EVA and it’s showing my new EVA and from the lower part of the screen in Red that the System is Uninitialized. So the first thing that I like to do is look over the EVA and make sure things match up to what was ordered. Once I am comfortable that everything is as expected I am ready to Initialize the array. To get this started just click on the Initialize button located at the top of the main screen.
After clicking on the Initialize button you will be presented with the following confirmation screen. The system is warning you that any data on drives will be lost. This is not a concern in this situation since this is a new Storage Array.
After clicking OK on the warning screen you will be presented with the following screen that allows you to set several features that will affect how your Array will function. I will not cover them all but the main ones. The first and most obvious is setting the System Name this will be what you want the EVA system name to be. Next is to select the Disk Failure Protection settings, this allows you to select the number of Hot Spare disks that will protect your Disk Groups. The options for this setting are None, Single or Double. This is a setting that should be selected carefully based on your needs. The next setting is the Disk group type setting, depending on your choice here will determine which Raid selections are available for use. With the Standard option you can use Raid 0, 1 and 5, and by selecting the Enhanced option you get the same Raid levels with the addition of Raid 6 to use.
In the section just below the name field you can set the number of disks that will be placed in the Default Disk group that will be created in this process. In the image below it’s showing us there are 74 disks online. In the field I have selected to have 8 place in the group, the remaining 62 disks would be place in the ungrouped disks section. If you know all of the disks are of the same size and class you could just dump them all into the initial group and save time.
The lower part of the screen from above is allowing you to set how the system time will be managed. I have selected to use the Management server which is the Command View server. Once all of your settings are done click the Initialize button at the top of the screen.
After confirming the warning listed above the system will start to initialize. You will seen a screen like the one below. This task can take from a few minutes to more than an hour.
Once the Initialize process completes you will get a confirmation screen like the one below and from the tree view on the left the array now reflects the system name that was assigned to it.
You can see from the image below that I have now expanded the tree to show the disk groups. In the default disk group that was created you can see the 8 disks that I choose to have placed in there. The remaining disks in the array were placed in the Ungrouped Disks section. I will change the name of the Default Disk group and continue to add more disks to the group.
From the image below you can now see the new disk group name. I will next start to add the Ungrouped disks into the group that I created. I won’t go into HP’s strategy to managing EVA arrays I’ll leave that for another post. But the short version is HP recommends creating large disk groups with like sized disks and add them in multiples of 8 disks. Also from the image below when clicking on a disk you can see the firmware version on the disk and its capacity size. You can use a Code Load when you finish grouping the disks to make sure they are all up to date on Firmware.
To add the disk to the group I created you just need to click on the disk and then click the Group button. You will then be asked to confirm the selection.
In this image you are asked to confirm the selection to group the disk. You must type YES and it does have to be in capital letters.
After passing the confirmation screen it will ask you what Disk Group you would like to add the disk to. You can see from the image below that you just choose the correct Group from the drop down list and then click Add Disk button.
And the final step shows that the Operation succeeded and the disk is now in the Disk Group that we selected. Now click OK and continue adding more disks to the group. Unfortunately using the Command View EVA console the disks can only be grouped one by one, so the process can take awhile. If your a scripting person you may be able to use the SSSU command line that HP provides to add disks to a group.
About Brian Suhr
Brian is a VCDX5-DCV and a Sr. Tech Marketing Engineer at Nutanix and owner of this website. He is active in the VMware community and helps lead the Chicago VMUG group. Specializing in VDI and Cloud project designs. Awarded VMware vExpert status 6 years for 2016 - 2011. VCP3, VCP5, VCP5-Iaas, VCP-Cloud, VCAP-DTD, VCAP5-DCD, VCAP5-DCA, VCA-DT, VCP5-DT, Cisco UCS Design