Setup a HP MSA 2312sa SAN for use with ESX 4 cluster

Well today I finally got to break the seal on our new HP MSA 2312sa Storage. Its a lower end SAN configuration that uses SAS drives and controllers. It is supported in vSphere and ESX 3.5 Update 3 and up. The MSA line of storage is the lower end offering from HP and cost was a big reason why the client choose this configuration.

The MSA 2312sa was configured with 4 chassis’s and has redundant controllers. We also have dual port SAS HBA’s in the ESX hosts. Each of the chassis can hold 20 disks, which are available in 450 gb up to 1 tb each at the moment. The 2 tb disks are expect by summer of 2010. The MSA offers a variety of RAID options and the ability to tie a hot spare disk to a specific vDisk or operate as a global spare for all vDisks.

The setup and management of the MSA series is done from a web based console. The console looks a lot like the server iLo screens but on steriods. You can create you vDisks and then cut them into LUN/Volumes that you can then present to your hosts. The console offers both list views and picture options. The picture option shows you what the front or back of the configuration would look like including which lights would be lit at the time.

So far I am pretty impressed on the ease of use for a lower end piece of storage gear. I will write a new blog post on how well it performs once I start loading on some VM’s.

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

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VMware vSphere 4 Ctrl-Alt-Del how to disable

Something to watch out for with the ESX 4 console. If you hit CTRL-ALT-DEL on ESX 4 console, the server will reboot even if there are running VMs and it doesn’t matter if the server is not in Maintenance Mode.

Follow these steps to disable this yourself:

1. Edit /etc/inittab. Any text editors will do- I like nano but vi works just as well.
2. Search for “CTRL-ALT-DELETE” or “ctrlaltdel”
3. Comment out the line “ca::ctrlaltdel:/sbin/shutdown -t3 -r now” with a # symbol.

It should look like:


# ca::ctrlaltdel:/sbin/shutdown -t3 -r now

4. Save and exit the file.
5. To make this take effect without a reboot, run the command:

init q

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Was invited for a sneak peak of the new vSphere client

Last night I was invited for a preview meeting on a conceptual design for the new vSphere client. I am bound by the NDA that I signed so there will be no specific details here. But I can say that there are a lot of super cool things in the works for the client and vCenter server. VMware is really bring the console up to date and providing the types of reporting and searching features that admin’s have been waiting for.

They are also trying to keep a blend of features that will be useful to IT shops and Cloud providers without leaving one behind. I’m sure there is a ton of work left to be done on what they are working on but as it is now, the product is already something that I would love to have in our environment.

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