Evaluation and testing of Nexsan SATABeast with B60E expansion

Unpacking and Installation

See photos and some comments here: https://picasaweb.google.com/ben.meekhof/NexSanEvaluation

Initial setup - host system setup

Host system is umfs03.
  • Kernel 2.6.38-UL1
  • 2 x Qlogic QLE2562 (dual ports, 8Gb/s)
  • 2 x 6 core Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU X5670 @ 2.93GHz with HT enabled
  • 64GB 1333Mhz RAM

Multipathing setup

See Nexsan multipathing configuration documentation for actual config used
  • prio_callout directive changed to "prio alua" in our version of multipath
  • aliases set in multipath.conf in order of lowest to highest LUN (mpatha-mpathh)


The Nexsan SATABeast and B60E? are connected to our Dell headnode via 2 QLogic ISP2532 8Gb FC HBAs. Each HBA has 2 channels (to attach to the 2 different controllers on the SATABeast). We are running the Nexsan with All LUNS available on all paths. That means the host system can see 4 different paths to each storage location. We need to properly configure UMFS03 with Linux Multipathing to manage the possible paths to the storage locations.

There are a number of relevant links to check below as references. Since we are running a kernel > 2.6.32 we need to update our device-mappper-multipath RPM to something newer than 0.4.7 which is available for SL5.x. I found device-mapper-multipath-0.4.9-23.0.8.el5.src.rpm at http://oss.oracle.com/el5/SRPMS-updates/ and it rebuilds fine on UMFS03.

I installed the resulting 3 RPMS: device-mapper-multipath-0.4.9-23.0.8.el5.x86_64.rpm, device-mapper-multipath-libs-0.4.9-23.0.8.el5.x86_64.rpm and kpartx-0.4.9-23.0.8.el5.x86_64.rpm on UMFS03 via rpm -Uvh .

This link has a quick overview on setting up multipathing on linux: http://jang.blogs.ilrt.org/2009/03/27/braindump-of-fc-multipathing-on-linux/. There are some older relevant links at http://www.areasys.com/pdf/dataon/dns1x00/DM0002.pdf and http://www.dell.com/downloads/global/power/ps3q06-20060189-Michael.pdf

First thing to do was to edit the /etc/multipath.conf and add a blacklist_expection: blacklist_exceptions { # device { # vendor "IBM" # product "S/390.*" # } devnode "^sd[b-z].*" }

Since /dev/sda is in use we leave it blacklisted but allow any /dev/sd[b-z] devices (which will be the Nexsan LUNs). (NOTE this was over-ridden by the new find_multipath option).

Once the unit had configured the LUNs (see below) we were able to see the multipath setup via multipath -v2 -d.

Next we chkconfig multitpathd on so it can startup on reboots.

I list the details on configuring /etc/multipath.conf in configuring multipath.conf.

Once the multipath was setup we have one /dev/dm-n device per configured LUN (8 in our case). I then used a simple script to create 8 mount points and format the LUNs with XFS. Doing mount -a -t xfs then resulted in these mounts:

/dev/mapper/mpatha     22T   34M   22T   1% /dcache
/dev/mapper/mpathb     22T   34M   22T   1% /dcache1
/dev/mapper/mpathc     22T   34M   22T   1% /dcache2
/dev/mapper/mpathd     19T  129G   19T   1% /dcache3
/dev/mapper/mpathe     19T   34M   19T   1% /dcache4
/dev/mapper/mpathf     19T   34M   19T   1% /dcache5
/dev/mapper/mpathg     19T   34M   19T   1% /dcache6
/dev/mapper/mpathh     19T   34M   19T   1% /dcache7

Changes for test series 2 (Nexsan recommended)

Filesystems were re-created with explicit sunit,swidth:
For 12 disk vols on SATABeast main chassis:
mkfs.xfs -f -L umfs03_3 -d sunit=256,swidth=3072 /dev/mapper/mpathc
For 14 disk vols on B60E?:
mkfs.xfs -f -L umfs03_4 -d sunit=256,swidth=2560 /dev/mapper/mpathd

Mounts as above.

Initial setup - Nexsan system

  • Management: https://192.41.230.194 or https://10.10.1.194
  • Disk Model: Hitachi HUA722020ALA330, Capacity: 2000399 MB, Firmware: JKAOA3EA, Type: SATA
  • SATAbeast - 3 x 14 disk RAID6 (21.8 TiB/volume, total 65.4 TiB - metric 24TB/volume, total 72TB)
  • B60 - 5 x 12 disk RAID6 (18.1 TiB/volume, total 90.5 TiB - metric 20TB/volume, total 100TB)
  • AutoMAID disabled
  • APAL Enclosure mode
  • Write cache enabled, FUA off, 1983MB per controller (mirrored)
  • Cache optimization setting: Mixed sequential/random
  • Cache streaming mode off
  • Host fiber access mode: Point to Point
  • Initial array building step (simultaneous for all) started 4-30-2011 12:30pm, finished XXXX

Total usable capacity: 155.9 TiB, 172 TB

Dual controllers can be setup in non-redundant mode or using multipath in All Ports All Luns mode (APAL). We plan to test with APAL mode enabled.

Screenshots

  • Screenshot of quickstart setup:
    nexsan-sb-quickstart.png

  • Configuration created:
    nexsan-sb-setup.png

  • B60 expansion configuration:
    nexsan-b60-setup.png

Test Results

  • According to Nexsan, the standalone version of the B60 with controllers built in can achieve higher performance numbers than the SATABeast we evaluated:
    "For the E60 w/ E60X SATA RAID5 sequential writes of more than 950MB/s or more than 1400MB/s (This is the difference of cache mirroring enabled/disabled) and sequential reads of more than 2500MB/s"

See http://linat05.grid.umich.edu/nstest for iozone automatic tests on single volume. (varying over range of size and record size)

Throughput test, 64GiB file, 512KiB record size, iteration from 1 to 24 threads beginning with 1 thread per volume up to using all 8 configured volumes throughput_test3.xls throughput_test3.out
throughput_test3.png


Throughput with all tests, 64GiB file, 4KiB records, 6 threads throughput_test4_alltests_6threads.xls, throughput_test4_alltests_6threads.out:
throughput_test4.png

Test Results - series 2

    Changes made from series 1:
  • Write cache changed to non-mirrored mode
  • Cache optimization setting: Sequential
  • sunit,swidth on XFS as noted previously

Throughput with all tests, 64GiB file, 4KiB record size: throughput_test5_all_reconfig.xls, throughput_test5_all_reconfig.out
throughput_test5_all_reconfig.png


Cache streaming mode enabled for next test

Throughput test, 64GiB file, 512KiB record, up to 24 threads, series2: throughput_test6_reconfig.xls, throughput_test6_reconfig.out
throughput_test6_reconfig.png

Scripts/files used

-- BenMeekhof - 30 Apr 2011
Topic attachments
I Attachment Action Size Date Who Comment
Nexsan_Linux_Multipathing-V1.pdfpdf Nexsan_Linux_Multipathing-V1.pdf manage 770.9 K 27 May 2011 - 13:29 BenMeekhof Nexsan multipathing directions
fss-setup-filesystems-Nexsan-rec.shsh fss-setup-filesystems-Nexsan-rec.sh manage 0.6 K 17 May 2011 - 13:49 BenMeekhof xfs format for series 2
multipath.confconf multipath.conf manage 4.6 K 17 May 2011 - 19:52 BenMeekhof multipathing setup used for tests
nexsan-b60-setup.pngpng nexsan-b60-setup.png manage 52.9 K 30 Apr 2011 - 15:47 BenMeekhof B60 expansion configuration
nexsan-sb-quickstart.pngpng nexsan-sb-quickstart.png manage 37.3 K 30 Apr 2011 - 15:46 BenMeekhof Screenshot of quickstart setup
nexsan-sb-setup.pngpng nexsan-sb-setup.png manage 33.5 K 30 Apr 2011 - 15:46 BenMeekhof Configuration created
sample_test.outout sample_test.out manage 19.2 K 01 May 2011 - 19:57 BenMeekhof iozone output of test
sample_test.xlsxxlsx sample_test.xlsx manage 3.9 K 01 May 2011 - 19:48 BenMeekhof Quick test of throughput with 1GB file (raid init ongoing).
test_throughput_1GB.pngpng test_throughput_1GB.png manage 20.1 K 01 May 2011 - 19:34 BenMeekhof Graph of 1GB throughput test
throughput_test3.outout throughput_test3.out manage 19.3 K 06 May 2011 - 21:16 BenMeekhof Throughput test, 64GiB file, up to 24 threads, iozone output
throughput_test3.pngpng throughput_test3.png manage 14.4 K 06 May 2011 - 21:16 BenMeekhof Throughput test, 64GiB file, up to 24 threads, graph image
throughput_test3.xlsxls throughput_test3.xls manage 24.5 K 07 May 2011 - 02:44 BenMeekhof Throughput test, 64GiB file, up to 24 threads
throughput_test4.pngpng throughput_test4.png manage 14.8 K 09 May 2011 - 15:59 BenMeekhof Throughput with all tests, 64GiB file, 4KiB records, 6 threads
throughput_test4_alltests_6threads.outout throughput_test4_alltests_6threads.out manage 5.1 K 09 May 2011 - 15:59 BenMeekhof Throughput with all tests, 64GiB file, 4KiB records, 6 threads
throughput_test4_alltests_6threads.xlsxls throughput_test4_alltests_6threads.xls manage 22.5 K 09 May 2011 - 15:59 BenMeekhof Throughput with all tests, 64GiB file, 4KiB records, 6 threads
throughput_test5_all_reconfig.outout throughput_test5_all_reconfig.out manage 5.1 K 16 May 2011 - 20:21 BenMeekhof Throughput with all tests after recommended configuration changes
throughput_test5_all_reconfig.pngpng throughput_test5_all_reconfig.png manage 14.6 K 16 May 2011 - 20:25 BenMeekhof Throughput with all tests after recommended configuration changes
throughput_test5_all_reconfig.xlsxls throughput_test5_all_reconfig.xls manage 22.5 K 16 May 2011 - 20:21 BenMeekhof Throughput with all tests after recommended configuration changes
throughput_test6_reconfig.outout throughput_test6_reconfig.out manage 19.3 K 17 May 2011 - 13:35 BenMeekhof Throughput test, 64GiB file, 512KiB record, up to 24 threads, series2
throughput_test6_reconfig.pngpng throughput_test6_reconfig.png manage 13.4 K 17 May 2011 - 13:35 BenMeekhof Throughput test, 64GiB file, 512KiB record, up to 24 threads, series2
throughput_test6_reconfig.xlsxls throughput_test6_reconfig.xls manage 25.5 K 17 May 2011 - 13:35 BenMeekhof Throughput test, 64GiB file, 512KiB record, up to 24 threads, series2
Topic revision: r17 - 27 May 2011 - 13:31:09 - BenMeekhof
 

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