Category Archives: Dell EMC Elect

How to enable a replica-LUN on Unity

EMC Unity

LUN-replication on Unity works slightly different than it previously did on VNX or even Clariion. In these older generations, when you deleted the mirrorview Mirror Group, both the primary and secondary LUNs became usable as separate entities.

In Unity the secondary LUN is a different beast. First of all: in Unity you can only set up replication from the primary Unity/LUN. The process on the source-Unity will create a LUN-replica and a replication session on both Unitys.

But what happens when you need hosts to access the secondary LUN? A failover works as designed and the previous secondary LUN becomes writable, but when you break the replication session, the replica-LUN has a flag that needs to be reset, but you’ll need the CLI to do that. This is how I did it:

  • In Unisphere I listed all LUNs and I made sure to include the “CLI ID” column
  • I noticed the ID of the LUN I need to grant access to is “res_56”
  • I started PUTTY and made sure logging to a file was configured so I could easily browse / search the possibly large amount of data some commands can produce, especially “-detail” commands tend to be very explicit
  • Log in as the “service” user to the Unity command line

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How to expand a LUN on VNX using the CLI

Once in a while you come across a storage system that cannot be managed through the GUI or you just want to script or use the CLI to perform management tasks on a VNX. Recently I came across an old VNX2 which GUI wasn’t responding the way I’d like, so I decided to use the CLI instead.

In this particular case I needed to expand a LUN.

First I listed the current size:

naviseccli -h [SPA/B ip#] -user [user] -password [password] -scope [scope] getlun [LUN#]

Then I expanded the LUN to the new size:

naviseccli -h [SPA/B ip#] -user [user] -password [password] -scope [scope] lun -expand -l [LUN#] -capacity [new capacity] -sq [mb/gb/tb/bc]

Pay attention to the number and the prefix! It could be a lot of work if you needed to resize a LUN from 50GB to 60GB and instead GB, you used TB…..

And finally I checked if the new size was actually available:

naviseccli -h [SPA/B ip#] -user [user] -password [password] -scope [scope] getlun [LUN#]

Sometimes CLI is so much easier than the GUI!

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How to remove an offline VNX from a Unisphere domain

When decommissioning a VNX, I recently forgot to remove the array from the existing domain. After the VNX was “unracked and unstacked” I saw my mistake and tried to remove it from the domain by using the “add/remove systems” in Unisphere, but the remove-button was grayed out. Even engineering mode didn’t help me.

There is another way to remove unwanted VNXs from a domain! You might have guessed it already, because it’s by using the command line!

First you’ll have to find out what existing VNX is the domain master. This can be done in Unisphere by looking up the current master. Click on “Domains” followed by “Select Domain Master”.

The outcome will show you the list of domain in the domain as well as the current master.

Now you can open a command line box and enter the following command to deleted the unwanted VNX from the domain:

naviseccli -Address -User -Password -Scope 2 domain -remove

Changing the time of Cisco DCNM

You’ve just deployed the DCNM appliance and you notice that the reports are displayed in the PDT timezone format. How do you change this into your own timezone?

For this you can log on to the command line of the appliance using SSH.

Check if DNS is working by performing a ping to your favorite NTP server.

To edit your timezone settings use your favorite editor (like “vi”).

vi /etc/ntp.conf

# Use public servers from the pool.ntp.org project.
# Please consider joining the pool (http://www.pool.ntp.org/join.html).
server 0.centos.pool.ntp.org iburst
server 1.centos.pool.ntp.org iburst
server 2.centos.pool.ntp.org iburst
server 3.centos.pool.ntp.org iburst

If you want to use your own NTP server, put a hashtag in front of the 4 example servers in the config file and put your own NTP server in.

# Use public servers from the pool.ntp.org project.
# Please consider joining the pool (http://www.pool.ntp.org/join.html).
ntp.mycompany.com iburst

The “iburst” parameter will try 8 times to collect new time info if necessary, instead of the default, which is only once per interval.

To change the timezone, remove the /etc/localtime file and create a new symbolic link to the file you need.

rm /etc/localtime

The list of location files can be found here:

/usr/share/zoneinfo

for example “Europe/Amsterdam” would be the file /usr/share/zoneinfo/Europe/Amsterdam. You can simply list the available locations by listing the available files in these folders.

ln -s /usr/share/zoneinfo/Europe/Amsterdam localtime

Now restart the NTP daemon:

service ntpd restart

And check the current date and time:

[email protected] etc]# date
Tue Jun 19 13:22:06 CEST 2018
[[email protected] etc]# date
Tue Jun 19 13:26:00 CEST 2018
[[email protected] etc]#

Dell Technologies World 2018, here I come!

It’s that time of the year again: Las Vegas time! This year I once again got an invite from Dell EMC to visit this yearly conference. It’s less than two weeks before the event, but I already have a full agenda: from networking with the Dutch in the “Dutch Delegation” to a super secret meeting with the Dell EMC Customer Council and maybe even some interviews!

Remember last year? Well, here’s a quote of mine as a reminder:

Let’s see if we can do some more of that this year 😉

So what are my plans this time?

I’m very lucky to get a direct flight for once. I’ll be flying from Köln this time on a Saturday and it’s a direct flight as well! I’ll be traveling with a few colleagues of mine and some of them are DT World / Las Vegas virgins, so that’s going to be a culture shock for them!! Anyway, we’re here to help them get through it all in one piece so they’ll get the most efficient use of their time during one of the most interesting technology events this year.

What are my expectations and plans for this year? Well, I’m always looking out for big announcements, like the mega launch back in 2013 with the VNX2 in Milan or any other really cool new products. And it’s been a while since we had a really cool announcement. I’m hoping for news on a possible merger between the Dell SC-series and EMC Unity. There’s much to improve in that area, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed for that. And when was the last time we got a new VMAX? That must have been back in 2014 or so! Unity was in 2016, XtremeIO X2 was in 2017, but where did DSSD go? Every competitor now has NVMe storage, but what about legacy EMC products? I’m expecting a lot in this area and “in memory computing” as well. There was a lot going on back in 2014, but the hype is over, or is it? I’m dying to see new developments in the flash side of things. Will flash finally be able to catch up to the current CPU speeds and remove SAAB (storage as a bottleneck)?

So what does my agenda look like?

Saturday April 28

  • Flying on Saturday afternoon April 28 and checking in in the Linq hotel
  • Hanging out, have dinner with my fellow Open Line coleagues and try to stay awake until 10 or 11PM
  • A subset of the Open Line delegation is going to a party at the Hakkasan at MGM Grand, but I’m skipping that. It starts at 10:30 PM and with the 9 hour time difference and the very busy week ahead, that’s a tad too much for me. I’m getting old, yes, I know.

Sunday April 29

  • Sleeping a bit late on Sunday, get breakfast and get ready for the first Dutch Delegation activity: Scooter ride through Red Rock Canyon
  • I’m skipping the BBQ under the stars in Red Rock canyon because of the…
  • Customer Reference group appreciation event at the TopGolf
  • Drinks at Gilley’s bar with my fellow Open Line colleagues

Monday April 30

  • Breakfast in the Sands basement from 7 to 8:30 / get ready for 4 days of hectic DT World
  • 10AM: Keynote with Michael Dell
  • 11:30AM: Analyst lunch
  • 1PM: green screen interview
  • Breakout sessions / labs
  • 6PM: Grand opening of the Solutions Pavillion
  • 9:30PM: meet-up with old and new friends

Tuesday May 1

  • Breakfast with my friend Gina Minks
  • Breakout sessions / labs
  • VCE exam
  • Proven Professional party at the Public House from 16:30 – 18:30
  • 8PM – 10PM: Partner appreciation party at the Wynn Club XS

Wednesday May 2

  • Breakfast in the Sands basement from 7 to 8:30
  • Breakout sessions / labs
  • Dell EMC Heroes reception (Palazzo C/D) from 3PM to 5PM
  • Solutions Expo Happy Hour from 4PM to 5PM???
  • Customer appreciation party featuring: STING!!!! from 8PM to 10:30PM

Thursday May 3

  • TAP – VMAX Technical Advisory Panel 8AM to 12PM
  • The last set of breakout sessions
  • Visiting Las Vegas North Premium Outlets to get the shopping list completed for my women back home
  • Closing Dutch Delegation happy hour

Friday May 4 (Star Wars day = May the 4th be with you)

Saturday May 5 (Revenge of the fifth)

  • Mini road trip to … Red Rock Canyon / Hoover dam / Valley of Fire?
  • We might even choose from this wonderful list: https://www.jenreviews.com
  • Dinner with the last survivors
  • Flying home at 10PM or so (luckily a direct flight once again)

Sunday May 6

  • 6PM Arriving “home” in Köln, Germany
  • 7PM picking up lugage and driving home
  • 8PM: home at last

Cisco DCNM server unresponsive

Cisco MDS

You’re running a DCNM virtual appliance and when you’re trying to log on, it looks like the appliance’s webserver is no longer active.

Connect to the Linux prompt of the appliance and do the following:

Stop DCNM services:

/usr/local/cisco/dcm/dcnm/bin/stopLANSANServer.sh

Open the psql prompt:

/usr/local/cisco/dcm/db/bin/psql dcmdb

log on with root password (user root is assumed)

Type the command:

VACUUM FULL ANALYZE VERBOSE;

This will produce tons of output, but just let it run and eventually it all ends and you just need to start the DCNM services again.

When done, quit the psql prompt:

dcmdb=> \q

Start DCNM services:

/usr/local/cisco/dcm/dcnm/bin/startLANSANServer.sh

Source: cisco.com

Reclaim thin provisioned space in VMware datastore

We were using a portable storage array as temporary storage array to store data from an older array that had to be reconfigured. Capacity was quite an issue and everything would barely fit (with dedupe and compression doing its best on the Dell EMC XtremIO we were using for this), but we discovered that provisioned space wasn’t immediately reclaimed, so we got a bit into trouble when space wasn’t immediately reclaimed when data was deleted from a VMware version 5 datastore.

We were facing two options:

  • Datastore VMFS version 6: Unmap automatically every 12 hours (not 100% sure about this interval)
  • Datastore VMFS version 5: Unmap manually from the ESXi command line:

esxcli storage vmfs unmap -l XIO-05-VMFS-013

Before:

After running the command “esxcli storage vmfs unmap -l XIO-05-VMFS-013” and a few hours of patience and waiting:

Source: : https://kb.vmware.com

Dell EMC Elect 2017: the list

Dell EMC Elect

It’s been a while since my last post and there’s no good reason why I didn’t post this earlier, except that life’s been very very busy for me lately. But then again, so it is for all of us, right?

Anyway, last week, on March 29 to be precise, the judging was over and we presented the new list of Elect members. After the merger of Dell Rockstar and EMC Elect, we had to come up with a new program that would combine both groups and form a representative list of professionals who share their passion for the Dell EMC enterprise environment. Being a part of the founders, again, me and the other founders discussed the name of the new group and how we would judge the nominees. I wrote a post on that a little while ago actually. This new advocacy program will be know as the

Dell EMC Elect

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The king is dead, long live the king: Dell EMC Elect is born!

Dell EMC Elect

Now that Dell and EMC have merged, both advocacy programs have ended as well. No more Dell Rockstar and EMC Elect, but a brand “new” program has emerged!!

As an EMC Elect founder I loved being part of the EMC Elect from the very beginning in Q4 of 2012, but times are changing and a new era has started: I guess that’s how life changes as well and this time it was a good change! The advocacy program we’ve all been proud of, whether that was the Dell Rockstar or the EMC Elect, was booming! I can only speak of the Elect and being able to talk to people about it, as a real advocate should be doing, was great.

Michael Dell finally meets the Elect

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