2010
11.22

You may know that HP and Microsoft have formed a virtualisation alliance around Hyper-V.  One of HP’s key pieces in the puzzle the the iSCSI SAN formerly known as LeftHand, the P4000 series.

Cluster Shared Volume (CSV) can be backed up using a software VSS provider (i.e. Windows VSS) but this is slow.  When using DPM 2010, it’s recommended to use serialised backups.  If your hardware vendor support it, you can use their hardware VSS provider to take a snapshot in the SAN and then DPM (or whatever backup product) will use that feature for the backup.

Now back to the P4000.  Up until recently, the HP supplied DSM for MPIO was version 8.5.  The SAN/iQ software on the P4000 was also at 8.5.  Lots of people were using the 8.5 hardware VSS provider in the SAN to backup CSVs.  It seems that this was unsupported. by HP (nothing to do with MS).  In fact, it can even cause disk deadlock in a Hyper-V cluster, and lead to 0x0000009E blue screens of death (BSOD) on cluster hosts.  And that’s just the start of it!

HP did release DSM 9.0 and SAN/iQ 9.0 recently for the P4000.  These add support for using the hardware VSS provider for backing up a CSV.

EDIT #1

So the SAN/iQ 9.0 release docs say that previous versions of SAN/iQ supported CSVs.  However, the Application Snashot Feature (hardware VSS provider/backup application) of the 8.5 release could not support quiecsed snapshots of CSVs.  In other words, it wasn’t supported to use DPM (or anything else) to perform a storage/host level backup of LeftHand with SAN/iQ 8.5 using the HP hardware VSS provider.  It is supported with v9.0.

4 comments so far

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  1. HI Aidanfinn Great Blog!, my company recently deployed Windows 2008 R2 on HP C7000 enclosures (BL460 Blades) and HP P4000 SANs. I’ve been trying to locate the Hardware VDS provider for the mentioned SAN and have opened a CASE with HP whose leveltier 3 support are looking into it. As your are familiar with both Hyper-V clustering and the P4000 SAN do you have any insight on whether VDS is supported on the mentioned SAN?. I’ve downloaded the pack that gives us MPIO and VSS provider support but no VDS in sight. Thanks

    • No idea I’m afraid.

  2. Aidan

    Have you came across any issues monitoring P4000 through the HP storageworks MP in Operations Manager. My SAN version is version 9. I have followed the MP to the letter. I have snmp catcher software thats show the traps arriving. I am receiving traps from other snmp appliances. I have added the nodes in as network devices though there is an error stating:

    The device is not responding to SNMP GET – what does this involve

    The community string has changed and this Monitor has not been updated – how do I update the monitor to point to that community string change?

    any help would be great.

    many thanks

    Conor

    • I haven’t monitored a P4000 so I can’t say.

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