Disks not visible to ESXi host

I have (4) new Dell PowerEdge R730xd Ready Nodes that I’m using for a new vSAN 6.6 cluster.

The systems are up to date on drivers and firmware. The controller is a PERC H730 mini, which is supported for pass-through. I installed the hypervisor on the SD card and checked to see if I could see the SSDs from vCenter. The drives weren’t visible.

SSD disks not visible to host

I SSH’d in the host and ran:

~ esxcli storage nmp device list

It only returned the SD card.

To get your disks to show up in your host, you have to reset the controller. First, put the host into maintenance mode.

Log into the iDRAC. Overview > Storage>Controller > Troubleshooting tab.

Under the actions drop down, select Reset Configuration.

Reset Controller in iDRAC

You’ll get a warning. Click OK to confirm.

System Alert Warning

Once the process is started, you can monitor the job queue’s progress.

When the reset is done,  you set the disks to Non-Raid.

Under Storage > Physical disks> Setup Tab, you click on the down arrow under Action-Assign to all.

Select Convert to Non-Raid and click apply. You can monitor the progress in the job queue.

Setting Physical Disks to Non-Raid Mode

Once it has completed, take the host out of maintenance mode and check the storage devices.

You should now be able to see all of your disks that are now available to the host for vSAN

Disks are now visible on the host.

Updating the Drive Firmware on EqualLogic arrays

When you’re updating the firmware on EqualLogic arrays, this is also a good time to update the firmware on the hard disks as well. Check the recommended hard disk drive firmware on the eql support site (login required). Compare your hard drives revision number against the ones listed under the ‘affect hard drives’ section of the page. Open either group manager or San HQ and review the current firmware revision.

Confirm current drive firmware version

In group manager, Group + Members + Array + Disks tab.

version of your disk drives

In SanHQ, Default Server + Select Group + Hardware /Firmware + Disks

disk_fw_list_sanhq

If you find your disks drives require a firmware upgrade, plan to update.

FTP the firmware update to the array

Download the firmware update kit from the EQL support site.  FTP to the array.  Here is an example:

Open the connection to the array via IP or hostname and log in with an account that has admin privileges, like grpadmin.

Change to binary mode and ‘put’ the kit_vxxxx_DriveFW_xxxxxxxxxx.tgz file on the array. Once the transfer is complete, close and bye.

ftpupL

Run the update

Now, SSH into the array and begin the update.

Type ‘update‘ and confirm that you’d like to proceed with the update.

update

Depending on the number of drives in your array, this will only take a few minutes.

update-done

yes

Confirm new firmware version

Check group manager or SAN HQ and confirm your new hard drive firmware version.

newfw-sanhq newfw-group

 

 

 

 

Updating the firmware on Dell EqualLogic arrays with Dell Update Storage Manager

The Dell Storage Update Manager (DSUM) is a great new tool that makes updating your array firmware, drive firmware  and language packs easier. Launched summer 2014, this application that can be installed locally or ran remotely via a java based app, is your new recommended way to update your groups.  To use it, you must be running at least v5.0.0 PS series firmware or FS series firmware 3.0.0 or higher.  This wizard will walk you through assessing the current state of your groups and guide you through the updates step by step.

To download the application, login to your EQL support account. Also, download your firmware, disk drive firmware and your language packs (if applicable). To run the java web app, follow this link

http://psonlinehelp.dell.com/dell-storage-update-manager/

and open with Java web start launcher.

launch java app

Log into your group with administrative credentials.

Dell Storage Update Manager Login

Once logged in, you can review the status of your group firmware, disk drive firmware and language packs.

group inventory overview

Click on Update plan to being the update wizard.

selectupdates

Here is where you select the updates to be installed.

update plan summary

Review  the updates you’ve selected. The Update plan summary will give you an estimated time for the updates to completed.

Getting Started

On the getting started screen, you’ll get a quick reminder to perform the update when their is low activity and during a pre-planned maintenance windows.  Check the box to confirm you understand the ramifications.

Preparing your update files

Upload the files needed to update your array, drives, and language packs.

Prepare your group

The app will review if their are any issues detected on your group that may prevent updates from running. Some issues that may prevent an update are:

  • RAID is in a degraded state
  • There are active errors or warnings in the log file
  • There are disk errors or issues
  • Controller issues
  • Space issues
  • High I/O
  • Replication is occurring
  • Volumes are migrating

Install Updates

The next screen in the wizard is the 1st step in updating your array’s firmware. Review the information and click install update.

The installation begins and will display the progress  and the current status. you can also review this information in group admin under group operations.

  • The 1st step is the FTP transfer of the zip file to the array.
  • The 2nd step is the actual update.
  • The 3rd step is the update pending restart.

step1

step2

step3

Once the update is complete and pending a restart, click ‘restart’ to proceed.  You’ll be  warned about the restart and it’s ramifications. Repeat for each array.

restart

complete

The update is complete. The HIT Kit compatibility screen with remind you to confirm that all EqualLogic software in use in your environment  is at the versions listed.

hit

Follow the subsequent prompts for updating the drives and language pack (if aplicable)

Once all installs are done, you’ll get the ‘installation complete’ screen that summarizes what took place.

installcomplete

update successful

Updating Java to 1.7 Breaks Dell EqualLogic VSM

I loathe updating Java because you never know what it will break. This morning, it was the Dell EqualLogic VSM plug-in for vCenter.

Upon launching the plug-in, I got these errors:

Image

Image

I thought to disable the current version and enable the previous version, but there is a way to add this URL as an exception.

Launch the Java control panel (I’m running 2008 R2) and click on the security tab.

Click the edit Site List button:

Image

Add the URL in the above mentioned error, by clicking Add, then typing in the URL.I also added the IP to vcenter as well. Click OK.

Image

Image

One more warning about the HTTP location you’ve entered. Just click continue. Apply the changes and close the java applet. Be sure to close the vCenter client as well.

Launch the client and log into VSM as usual.

Update- info on Windows 7

In Windows 7, there is no exception list under the security tab. To add your site to an exception list, you can create an exception.sites file and add the URL.

win7-java-securitytab

Browse to this location: C:\Users\username\AppData\LocalLow\Sun\Java\Deployment\security

If  there is a file named exception.sites, add the URL to that file. One URL per line.

If not, you can create it and add your URL.

exception-site

 

Configure and Install the Multipath Extension Module for vSphere and EqualLogic

The MEM (Multipath Extension Module)  by EqualLogic (EQL) handles path selection and load balancing to the storage array. Upon install, it will add another path selection policy called ‘dell_psp_eql_routed’ in addition to the 3 default policies. Using this PSP is ideal when you’re datastores reside on EQL since the module is written by EQL, it has been designed to perform more efficiently in regards to path selection and load balancing to the array.

Here is how I installed and configured MEM on my esxi hosts. I’m running ESXi 5.1 Update 1 with vSphere CLI installed on vCenter.

Prerequisite: Be sure to configure an iSCSI vSwitch for multipathing before installing MEM. Please read  TR1075 for more information on how to configure the vSwitch.

Download MEM from EQL support site. Login is required. Review the release notes, TR1074 as well as the installation & user guide before proceeding.

On the vCenter server,  launch vCenter client. From the home screen, open Update Manager and click on the patch repository tab. Click import patches and browse to the MEM offline bundle zip  and click next to upload.

import-mem-offline-bundle

browse-mem

upload-mem

Next, create a baseline. Enter a name and description for your new baseline, select ‘Host Extension’ then click next.

newbaseline1

Add the extension to the baseline. Click next.

newbaseline2

Review your  setting and click finish.

newbaseline3

Your newly created baseline is now listed under the Baselines and Groups tab.

baseline-and-groups

Now it’s time to install. Begin by putting your host into maintenance mode.Click the update manager tab of the host and click attach.

attachbaseline

Check the box next to the MEM install and click attach.

attachbaseline2

Highlight the attached baseline and click scan.
scanhost

Confirm that you’re scanning for patches and extensions. Remove the check next to upgrades. Click scan.

confirmscan

The host will now be labeled as non-compliant. Click remediate in the lower right corner.

remediate

Click next twice in the remediate wizard if you’re accepting the defaults. On the schedule window, type in a new task name and description (optional) and select a remediation time. I did mine immediately, but this task can be scheduled for a later time. Click next.

remediate-sched

Edit any host remediation options and click next. Edit any cluster remediation options and click next. Review your remediation settings and click finish.

review-remediate

Monitor the recent tasks pane to see the status of the installation. Upon completion, the host will be listed as compliant in the update manager tab.

compliant

 

Reboot.

From a system with vMware vSphere CLI installed on it, run the following command to verify the MEM installation. You will need the setup.pl script in order to run it. It’s included in the MEM download.

Enter the following command using your esxi hostname or IP:
# setup.pl --server=esxhostname_or_IP --query

Enter the credentials for the host. After a few moments, the command will display the version of the MEM installed, the default PSP that is now set as well as the vmkernal ports used by MEM.
verifymem

To list the new Dell EQL PSP as well as the defaults, use the following command:

# esxcli --server esxhostname_or_IP storage nmp psp list

Enter the credentials for the host.
listpsps

Multipathing is available immediately after installation. You can see the paths to the disk as well as the new PSP. On the host, go to the configuration tab+ hardware+storage+right-click the datastore + properties+ managed paths.

after-paths

This is what it looked like before the install:

before-paths

Here you can see that there were 2 active connections to each controller, however, only 1 was being used for I/O. Once MEM is installed, there are redundant active connections to each controller and the load is more evenly balanced.

As I mentioned before, the MEM is totally functioning, however, in order to use the new esxcli commands that are available to manage and report on, you’ll have to restart the hostd agent on the esxi host.

Enable SSH on your host and log into it.

Restart the hostd service:

# /etc/init.d/hostd restart

restart-hostd

The new commands are now available. To list them:
# esxcli equallogic

eql-cmds

Log out of the host and disable SSH.

Done!
For more information on Dell’s MEM, read this great blog post from Cormac Hogan of vMWare.