• Requirements for deploying a UnityVSA

    PDF

    Requirements for deploying a UnityVSA

    Overview of UnityVSA

    UnityVSA (Virtual Storage Appliance) is a software-defined storage platform that provides users with agility and flexibility. UnityVSA is deployed on a VMware ESXi host and is available in two editions - Professional Edition (PE) and Community Edition (CE). Professional Edition is a licensed product available at capacity levels of 10 TB, 25 TB, and 50 TB. Community Edition is a free downloadable 4 TB solution that is recommended for nonproduction use.

    UnityVSA HA

    UnityVSA HA is an enhanced version of single-SP UnityVSA. By adding dual-SP functionality, UnityVSA HA can recover from one SP failure, which significantly increases the applicable use case scenarios of the system. Unlike the single-SP UnityVSA, UnityVSA HA version is only available in Professional Edition (PE). It offers three capacity choices: 10 TB, 25 TB, and 50 TB.

    Unity Cloud Edition

    Deploying Unity Cloud Edition with VMware Cloud on AWS (VMC) provides benefits to both cloud and on-premises storage resources.

    Unity Cloud Edition enables your cloud resources to use UnityVSA features and file management in the cloud storage environment.

    Data mobility between Unity Cloud Edition and on-premises Unity and UnityVSA appliances is the same as data mobility between on-premises appliances. As a result, Unity Cloud Edition enables cloud-based data protection for block and file resources hosted on-premises.

    Figure 1. Unity Cloud Edition integration with VMware Cloud on AWS (VMC)
    UnityVSA integration with VMware Cloud on AWS (VMC)

    Unity Cloud Edition HA can be upgraded without disrupting workloads.

    This document describes how to deploy UnityVSA, UnityVSA HA, Unity Cloud Edition, Unity Cloud Edition HA, and the Tie Breaker Node (TBN) for UnityVSA HA. For information about using UnityVSA or Unity Cloud Edition, see Dell EMC UnityVSA Frequently Asked Questions, which is available from the UnityVSA Info Hub, and see the UnityVSA online help.

    Additional resources

    As part of an improvement effort, revisions of the software and hardware are periodically released. Therefore, some functions described in this document might not be supported by all versions of the software or hardware currently in use. The product release notes provide the most up-to-date information on product features. Contact your technical support professional if a product does not function properly or does not function as described in this document.
    Where to get help

    Support, product, and licensing information can be obtained as follows:

    For product and feature documentation or release notes, go to Unity Technical Documentation at: www.emc.com/en-us/documentation/unity-family.htm.

    For information about products, software updates, licensing, and service, go to Online Support (registration required) at: https://Support.EMC.com. After logging in, locate the appropriate Support by Product page.

    For technical support and service requests, go to Online Support at: https://Support.EMC.com. After logging in, locate Create a service request. To open a service request, you must have a valid support agreement. Contact your Sales Representative for details about obtaining a valid support agreement or to answer any questions about your account.

    Special notice conventions used in this document
    DANGER  Indicates a hazardous situation which, if not avoided, will result in death or serious injury.
    WARNING  Indicates a hazardous situation which, if not avoided, could result in death or serious injury.
    CAUTION  Indicates a hazardous situation which, if not avoided, could result in minor or moderate injury.
    NOTICE  Addresses practices not related to personal injury.
    Note:  Presents information that is important, but not hazard-related.

    General installation requirements and considerations

    These installation requirements and considerations apply to both the single-SP UnityVSA and UnityVSA HA. For requirements specific to the single-SP models, see Requirements for installing a single-SP UnityVSA. For requirements specific to the UnityVSA HA models, see Requirements for installing UnityVSA HA.

    ESXi host requirements

    A 64-bit ESXi host running 6.0 or later is required for installing UnityVSA. For UnityVSA HA, separate ESXi hosts for SPA, SPB, and the Tie Breaker Node (TBN) are recommended. The use of vCenter to manage ESXi hosts is optional for a single-SP deployment and mandatory for a UnityVSA HA deployment.

    Although you can use nested ESXi with a single-SP UnityVSA, deployment, it is not recommended unless it guarantees the exclusive reservation of computing and network resources. Do not use nested ESXi with a UnityVSA HA deployment, because it does not work with HA.

    UnityVSA deployment is also supported on VMware Cloud on AWS.

    VM environment for on-premises deployment

    The ESXi host provides the storage virtualization, which abstracts the physical storage layer from the VM. Datastores are the logical containers that are created on physical storage. Datastores contain the virtual disks that are used by a VM to store its operating system, program files, and other data associated with its activities. You can configure VMs with multiple virtual disks.

    From the standpoint of the VM, each virtual disk looks like a SCSI drive that is connected to a SCSI controller. Whether the actual physical storage is being accessed through local storage or network adapters on the host is typically transparent to the VM.

    A VM is connected to a virtual network by assigning the VM's network adapters to that network's port group. A vSphere switch detects which virtual machines are connected to each of its virtual ports and uses that information to forward traffic to the correct VM.

    For information about configuring and managing a VM environment, see the VMware vSphere documentation.

    Network configuration

    To deploy and configure UnityVSA, you must provide network configuration information. Contact your network administrator to gather network settings information before you install UnityVSA.

    UnityVSA can be configured to use:

    • One IPv4 address (static or dynamic)
    • One IPv6 address (static or dynamic)
    • Both an IPv4 address and an IPv6 address

    To use dynamic addressing, your network environment must include a DHCP server (DHCPv4 for an IPv4 address and DHCPv6 or SLAAC for an IPv6 address). If the network environment is not dynamic, you must assign the management IP address manually.

    If UnityVSA is configured with a single IP address, a DNS server is optional but highly recommended. If UnityVSA is configured with both an IPv4 and IPv6 address, a DNS configuration is required.

    Heartbeat mechanism requirements

    UnityVSA HA and the TBN use Layer 2 Ethernet broadcasts to monitor the heartbeats of connected systems. For UnityVSA HA and the TBN to function, each heartbeat network (HB0 and HB1) must reside on the same Layer 2 broadcast domain and VLAN and have Layer 2 broadcast traffic enabled.

    Considerations for server hardware platforms that do not support CPU instruction set SSE 4.2

    Starting in the UnityVSA 4.3 release, server hardware platforms that do not support CPU instruction set SSE 4.2 are no longer supported. You might encounter an error that prevents you from deploying your new 4.3 or later OVA under the following circumstances:

    • You are running in an ESXi cluster environment.
    • The Enhanced vMotion Compatibility (EVC) settings are set to strict.
    • There is a nonsupported server in your cluster.

    This error can occur even if the server on which you intend to install the UnityVSA supports SSE 4.2. If you deploy a 4.3 or later UnityVSA on a single server and receive this error, choose a newer server platform on which to run ESXi. If you deploy or upgrade a previously running 4.0, 4.1, or 4.2 version of UnityVSA within an ESXi cluster, update your EVC settings so that the UnityVSA can only run on the servers in the cluster whose CPUs support SSE 4.2. Otherwise, you must remove the older, nonsupported servers from your cluster environment.

    For instructions on modifying the EVC setting within an ESXi cluster, see the VMware documentation.

    Note:  Changes to your EVC control require you to power cycle UnityVSA within VMWare. A shutdown, restart, or a reboot of UnityVSA is not sufficient to correct this issue after modifying the EVC settings. Power cycling a UnityVSA is a disruptive operation that should be scheduled in advance.

    Requirements for installing a single-SP UnityVSA

    Installing and configuring a single-SP UnityVSA environment requires a 64-bit ESXi host running version 6.0 or later. The use of vCenter to manage ESXi hosts is optional.

    The following requirements also apply:

    ESXi requirements
    Hardware processor
    Xeon E5 Series Dual Core CPU 64-bit x86 Intel 2 GHz+ (or equivalent)
    Hardware memory
    • 18 GB minimum for ESXi 6.0
    • 20 GB minimum for ESXi 6.5/6.7
    Hardware network
    4x1 GbE or 4x10 GbE (recommended)
    Note:  You can deploy the UnityVSA on a VxRail appliance that has 2 or 4 physical ports. VxRail uses a shared port architecture that may result in lower performance during high traffic windows.
    Hardware RAID
    RAID card 512 MB NV cache, battery backed (recommended)
    UnityVSA SP requirements
    Virtual processor cores
    2 (2 GHz+)
    Virtual system memory
    12 GB
    Virtual network adapters
    6 (4 ports for I/O, 1 for Unisphere, 1 for support use)

    Requirements for installing UnityVSA HA

    Installing and configuring a UnityVSA HA requires a 64-bit ESXi host running version 6.0 or later and a VMware vSphere Enterprise Plus license. The use of vCenter to manage ESXi hosts is mandatory. The hosts should have two unused vmnic ports per ESXi host (if deploying on two different hosts and no existing distributed switch).

    Dell EMC highly recommends that you deploy each UnityVSA HA SP on a separate ESXi host. Single ESXi host configurations are allowed if high availability is not a primary concern. Depending on your choice, the installation requirements are different:

    Both SPs on one ESXi host
    Both SPs on separate ESXi hosts
    ESXi requirements
    Hardware processor
    Xeon E5 Series Dual Core CPU 64-bit x86 Intel 2 GHz+ (or equivalent)
    Xeon E5 Series Dual Core CPU 64-bit x86 Intel 2 GHz+ (or equivalent)
    Hardware memory
    • 30 GB minimum for ESXi 6.0
    • 32 GB minimum for ESXi 6.5/6.7
    • 18 GB minimum for ESXi 6.0 for each host
    • 20 GB minimum for ESXi 6.5/6.7 for each host
    Hardware network
    4x1 GbE, 4x10 GbE, or higher if supported by ESX (recommended)
    4 x 1 GbE, 10 GbE, or higher for I/O and 2 x 10 GbE or higher for the inter-SP network (recommended )
    Hardware RAID
    RAID card 512 MB NV cache, battery backed recommended
    RAID card 512 MB NV cache, battery backed recommended
    Switch requirements
    Hardware switch
    VLAN support is not required.
    VLAN support is required.
    Datastore requirements
    Can be VMware NFS datastores, VMware VMFS datastores, or both
    No shared datastore is required.
    At least 1 datastore shared by both ESXi hosts is required, but it is recommended that you configure 6 or more datastores, as follows:
    • 1 datastore for private system data on SPA, with a minimum free capacity of 60GB.
    • 1 datastore for private system data on SPB, with a minimum free capacity of 60GB.
    • 1 datastore for shared system data, with a minimum free capacity of 40GB.
    • 2 datastores for the storage heartbeat. Each datastore needs to have at least 2MB capacity.
    • 1 or more datastores for storage capacity. The minimum supported capacity is 10GB. For more information, see Add virtual disks to a UnityVSA HA deployment.
    UnityVSA SP requirements
    Virtual processor cores
    2 (2GHz+) for each SP
    2 (2GHz+) for each SP
    Virtual system memory
    12 GB for each SP
    12 GB for each SP
    Virtual network adapters
    9 for each SP (4 ports for I/O, 1 for Unisphere, 1 for system use, and 3 for internal communication)
    9 for each SP (4 ports for I/O, 1 for Unisphere, 1 for system use, and 3 for internal communication)
    vCenter
    Required
    Required
    VLANs
    3 (1 for Common Messaging Interface (CMI) SP-to-SP communication, 1 for Heartbeat 0, and 1 for Heartbeat 1).

    The VLANs must be unique and not used elsewhere on the network.

    3 (1 for Common Messaging Interface (CMI) SP-to-SP communication, 1 for Heartbeat 0, and 1 for Heartbeat 1).

    The VLANs must be unique and not used elsewhere on the network.

    vmnic ports
    VM NIC ports are not required.
    2 unused VM NIC ports if deploying on two separate ESXi hosts with no existing distributed switch.

    Requirements for installing a tie breaker node

    Installing a Tie Breaker Node (TBN) on UnityVSA HA requires a host with at least:

    • 2 GB memory
    • 500 MHz x 2 cores CPU
    • 12 GB disk space
    • 2x1 GbE for the network with UnityVSA HA
    Note:  These requirements are in addition to those required by UnityVSA HA.

    It is recommended that you deploy the TBN VM on a third ESXi host; that is, a host that is not supporting the UnityVSA SPs.