VBLOCK SOLUTION FOR SAP APPLICATION HIGH AVAILABILITY

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1 Vblock Solution for SAP Application High Availability Table of Contents VBLOCK SOLUTION FOR SAP APPLICATION HIGH AVAILABILITY Version 2.0 February

2 Copyright 2013 VCE Company, LLC. All Rights Reserved. VCE believes the information in this publication is accurate as of its publication date. The information is subject to change without notice. THE INFORMATION IN THIS PUBLICATION IS PROVIDED "AS IS." VCE MAKES NO REPRESENTATIONS OR WARRANTIES OF ANY KIND WITH RESPECT TO THE INFORMATION IN THIS PUBLICATION, AND SPECIFICALLY DISCLAIMS IMPLIED WARRANTIES OR MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. 2

3 Contents Introduction... 5 About this document... 5 Solution overview... 5 Objectives... 6 Audience... 6 Feedback... 6 Technology overview... 7 Vblock Systems... 7 Vblock System Vblock System SAP ERP Central Component... 8 VMware High Availability... 8 Symantec ApplicationHA... 8 Architecture overview... 9 Architecture diagram... 9 Hardware components Software components Design considerations ApplicationHA configuration Storage and layout Disk/file systems layout Solution validation Test case 1: High availability during a hardware failure Test procedure Test results Test case 2: Operational ability Test procedure Validation results Test case 3: Restart a failed SAP instance using Symantec ApplicationHA Validation steps Validation results Test case 4: Restart a failed Oracle database instance using Symantec ApplicationHA Validation steps Validation results Test case 5: Restart a virtual machine using Symantec ApplicationHA Validation steps Validation results

4 Conclusion Next steps References Symantec SAP

5 Introduction Events, such as the global economic crisis, virtualization, and cloud computing, have fundamentally changed the way in which IT projects are evaluated. No longer can IT just rely on building a business case purely on cost savings. Mission-critical applications such, as SAP, are under greater scrutiny in terms of demonstrating tangible business value after implementation. This phenomenon provides a quandary for system integrators, lead architects, and general managers of applications on how to plan, design, and implement business continuity. Vblock Systems combine industry-leading compute, network, storage, virtualization, and management technologies into prepackaged units of infrastructure, which enables you to accelerate value add by focusing on business outcomes such as high availability capabilities and organizational efficiency rather than just products. About this document This paper describes the methodology used to install, configure, operate, and test a high-availability Vblock System solution for SAP systems using Symantec ApplicationHA. This document: Describes the technologies, hardware and software components, and architecture used in the solution. Provides design considerations and best practice recommendations for implementation. Solution overview Vblock Systems deliver leading-edge technology, while minimizing SAP operational and deployment risk. Vblock Systems include built-in high-availability capabilities, such as Cisco s Unified Computing System (UCS) service platform to restore any failed blade and VMware vsphere High Availability to automatically restart a virtual machine (VM) on other production servers with spare capacity in case of ESXi host failover. This solution uses the infrastructure high availability capabilities in a SAP application environment, VMware High Availability, and Symantec ApplicationHA on Vblock Systems. Symantec ApplicationHA provides monitoring capabilities for applications running inside the virtual machines hosted on ESXi hosts managed by a VMware vcenter Server. Symantec ApplicationHA adds a layer of application awareness to the core high-availability functionality offered by VMware virtualization technology. Symantec ApplicationHA is based on Veritas Cluster Server (VCS) and internally uses similar concepts, such as agents, resources, and service groups. The solution decreases the number of manual actions that SAP administrators and IT operations must perform for their organization to maintain a high degree of operational excellence as required by SAP best practices. This paper describes the overall solution configuration and SAP system refresh processes on Vblock System 700 model MX. 5

6 Objectives The objective of this paper is to validate the following use cases in a real-life scenario on a Vblock System 700 (valid for Vblock System 300 as well): Demonstrate deployment and enablement of the Vblock Solution for SAP Application High Availability in a virtualized environment. Use VMware High Availability with SAP to provide easy-to-use and cost-effective high availability for SAP. Validate the Vblock Solution for SAP Application High Availability for mission critical SAP applications such as enterprise resource planning (ERP), customer relationship management (CRM), supply chain management (SCM), supplier relationship management (SRM), Enterprise Portal, Process Integration, and Business Information Warehouse (BW). Show the overall cost saving due to server cost reduction to provide high availability, because no cluster needs to be set up. The combination of VMware High Availability and other high-availability features of the Vblock System 720 provides SAP organizations with a powerful (yet cost-effective) high-availability solution to increase application uptime. This is accomplished by minimizing unplanned downtime and service interruption while eliminating dedicated (or standby) hardware, and additional installation software. This improves business continuity without increasing total cost of ownership (TCO). Audience This paper is intended for system administrators, network administrators, and architects, as well as technical engineering staff, IT managers, IT planners and other IT professionals who are evaluating, acquiring, managing, operating, or deploying SAP in a virtualized data center environment. All Vblock System existing and potential customers with a current or future SAP implementation will also benefit from the information in this paper. Feedback To suggest documentation changes and provide feedback on this paper, send to Include the title of this paper, the name of the topic to which your comment applies, and your feedback. 6

7 Technology overview The solution uses the following hardware and software components and technologies: Vblock Systems SAP VMware High Availability Symantec ApplicationHA Vblock Systems The Vblock System from VCE is the world's most advanced converged infrastructure one that optimizes infrastructure, lowers costs, secures the environment, simplifies management, speeds deployment, and promotes innovation. The Vblock System is designed as one architecture that spans the entire portfolio, includes best-in-class components, offers a single point of contact from initiation through support, and provides the industry's most robust range of configurations. Vblock System 720 The Vblock System 720 is an enterprise, service provider class mission-critical system in the Vblock System 700 family, for the most demanding IT environments supporting enterprise workloads and SLAs that run thousands of virtual machines and virtual desktops. It is architecturally designed to be modular, providing flexibility and choice of configurations based on demanding workloads. These workloads include business-critical enterprise resource planning (ERP), customer relationship management (CRM), and database, messaging, and collaboration services. The Vblock System 720 leverages the industry s best director-class fabric switch, the most advanced fabric based blade server, and the most trusted storage platform. The Vblock System 720 delivers greater configuration choices, 2X performance and scale from prior generations, flexible storage options, denser compute, five 9s of availability, and converged network and support for a new virtualization platform that accelerates time to service and reduces operations costs. Vblock System 320 The Vblock System 320 is an enterprise and service provider ready system in the Vblock System 300 family, designed to address a wide spectrum of virtual machines, users, and applications. It is ideally suited to achieve the scale required in both private and public cloud environments. The Vblock System 320 has been engineered for greater scalability and performance to support large enterprise deployments of mission-critical applications, cloud services, VDI, mixed workloads and application development and testing. The Vblock System 320 delivers greater configuration choices, 2X performance and scale from prior generations, flexible storage options, denser compute, five 9s of availability, and converged network and support for a new virtualization platform that accelerates time to service and reduces operations costs. Every Vblock System 320 is available with the marketleading EMC VNX storage arrays. For more information, go to 7

8 SAP ERP Central Component SAP NetWeaver ERP Central Component (ECC) 6.0 was used to validate the solution. The SAP ERP application is integrated ERP software. It targets business software requirements of mid-size and large organizations in most industries and sectors. ECC 6.0 allows for open communication within and between all company functions, as well as with other businesses outside the firewall due to its services oriented architecture (SOA). VMware High Availability VMware High Availability provides easy-to-use, cost-effective high availability for applications running in virtual machines. In the event of physical server failure, affected virtual machines are restarted automatically on other production servers with spare capacity. In the case of operating system failure, VMware High Availability restarts the affected virtual machine on the same physical server. Symantec ApplicationHA Symantec ApplicationHA provides monitoring capabilities for applications running inside virtual machines hosted on ESXi hosts managed by a VMware vcenter Server. Symantec ApplicationHA adds a layer of application awareness to the core high-availability functionality offered by VMware virtualization technology. It integrates with VMware High Availability by using the VMware Application Awareness Application Programming Interface (API) to restart the virtual machine if application restarts do not succeed. Symantec ApplicationHA is based on Veritas Cluster Server (VCS) and internally uses similar concepts such as agents, resources, and service groups. 8

9 Architecture overview In this solution, Symantec ApplicationHA is installed on SAP systems using the following options: Central System SAP Central Instance and Database Instance run on the same host/virtual machine. The operating system used is RHEL 5.5 and the database used is Oracle Because it is a central system, the SAP central instance and Oracle database instances are installed on the same host/virtual machine. Two other options exist for installing Symantec ApplicationHA on SAP systems, but these are beyond the scope of this paper: Distributed system: SAP Central instance and Database instance run on separate hosts/virtual Machines. High-availability system Central Instance, Database Instance, and additional instances that are required for a highavailability system, such as Central Services Instance for ABAP (ASCS Instance) and Enqueue Replication Server Instance (ERS Instance) for ASCS Instance, run on separate hosts/virtual machines. Architecture diagram A VMware cluster should have two or more ESXi servers in it to turn on the high-availability feature. For this solution, three virtual machines that are hosted on three Cisco UCS Servers and EMC Storage Array are used. This solution demonstrates SAP operation and application monitoring by Symantec ApplicationHA. 9

10 Figure 1 shows the overall architecture of the solution validation environment. Figure 1. Validated architecture 10

11 Install the SAP Central System, the Symantec ApplicationHA Console, the VMware vcenter, and the Symantec ApplicationHA plug-in on a virtual machine. Note: Refer to the vsphere administrator guide for detailed information on how to perform the following steps. 1. Create the VMware cluster with three ESXi servers. 2. Turn on the VMware High Availability for the VMware cluster. The Symantec ApplicationHA agents for SAP and Oracle are installed on the virtual machine on which the SAP Central system (Central Instance and Database Instance) is running. Hardware components The following table describes the hardware used to validate this solution. Category Compute Components Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS): 4 x UCS 5108 chassis 3 x UCS blade B200 Series M2 blades Each blade: 8 x CPU core and 96 GB memory 2 x 6140 XP fabric-interconnects Network 2 x Nexus 7010 Ethernet switch 2 x Cisco MDS 9506 FC switch Storage EMC Symmetrix VMAX with 2-engines Software components The following table lists the software resources used in testing this solution. Name and version VMware vsphere 4.1 VMware vsphere 4.1 VMware View Client 4.5 Oracle Enterprise Server Microsoft Windows 2008 Red Hat Enterprise Linux EMC SMC SAP ERP 6.0 IDES Symantec ApplicationHA 5.1 SP2 for Linux Configuration According to vcard Managing all the VMware virtual machine s VDI client Installed with SAP installation Symantec ApplicationHA Console + vcenter Configured according to SAP documentation Standard Install on the virtual machine with Central System option Configure Symantec ApplicationHA Agent on the SAP ERP VM 11

12 Name and version Symantec ApplicationHA 5.1 SP2 for Windows Symantec ApplicationHA licenses Ethernet IP addresses Configuration Configure Symantec ApplicationHA Console For Symantec ApplicationHA Console and Agent Based on availability 12

13 Design considerations This section contains the design considerations and sizing requirements for implementing SAP high availability on Vblock Systems. ApplicationHA configuration The Symantec ApplicationHA Console: Integrates with vsphere Client, which integrates with Symantec ApplicationHA View Has vcenter privileges to provide discretionary access control (DAC) Offers single sign-on to virtual machines under Symantec ApplicationHA control Can be installed on a virtual machine or a physical machine The Symantec ApplicationHA installation is a three-step process: 1. Install the Symantec ApplicationHA Console and configure the vcenter plug-in on the vcenter server. 2. Install the Symantec ApplicationHA guest components inside each virtual machine where application monitoring will be enabled. The guest component includes Heartbeat components integrated with VMware High Availability, as well as components for monitoring application status. 3. Configure application monitoring from the vcenter GUI. Refer to the product information for installation details. Figure 2 provides an overview of the Symantec ApplicationHA installation. Figure 2. Symantec ApplicationHA installed in the architecture 13

14 Storage and layout Storage on the Vblock System 700 used in this solution validation is provided by the Symmetrix VMAX Series architecture featuring the scalable Virtual Matrix interconnect design. The Virtual Matrix is redundant and dual active, and supports all global memory references, messaging, and management operations, including internal discovery and initialization, path management, load balancing, failover, and fault isolation within the array. The Symmetrix VMAX array contains from one to eight VMAX engines. Each VMAX engine contains two integrated directors. Each director has two connections to the VMAX Matrix Interface Board Enclosure (MIBE) through the system interface board (SIB) ports. Because every director has two separate physical paths to every other director through the Virtual Matrix, this is a highly available interconnect with no single point of failure. This design eliminates the need for separate interconnects for data, control, messaging, environmental, and system test. A single highly available interconnect suffices for all communications between the directors, which reduces complexity. The Symmetrix VMAX design is based on an individual Symmetrix VMAX engine with redundant CPU, memory, and connectivity on two directors for fault tolerance. Symmetrix VMAX engines connect to and scale out linearly through the Virtual Matrix Architecture, which allows resources to be shared within and across VMAX engines. Disk/file systems layout The following table provides the storage configuration details for this solution: Size (GB) RAID type VMAX VP pool Purpose Disk type to host Disk type on VMAX 20 5 N/A ESXi boot/os physical Thick 20 5 N/A ESXi boot/os physical Thick 20 5 N/A ESXi boot/os physical Thick sap_r5 VM boot/os/bin vmdk Thin VM boot/os/bin vmdk Thin VM boot/os/bin vmdk Thin sap_r5 VM boot/os/bin vmdk Thin 14

15 Solution validation This section describes the testing performed to validate the SAP high availability use cases. Each testing scenario is explained, followed by the test results and conclusions. Five test cases are validated for this solution. The following table lists the test cases and the objective for each. Test Description Objective 1 During a hardware failure, test the ability of VMware High Availability to migrate a virtual machine from the failed ESXi server to another available ESXi in the cluster, and the ability of ApplicationHA to start the SAP and Oracle instances. 2 Test the operational ability of starting and stopping SAP using Symantec ApplicationHA from vcenter. 3 Restart a failed SAP instance using Symantec ApplicationHA. 4 Restart a failed Oracle database instance using Symantec ApplicationHA. 5 Using Symantec ApplicationHA, restart the virtual machine when the application restart attempts have reached the configured maximum. Demonstrate the ability of VMware High Availability to migrate a virtual machine from the failed ESXi server to another available ESXi in the cluster, and the ability of Symantec ApplicationHA to start the SAP and Oracle instances. Demonstrate the operational ability of the Symantec ApplicationHA in the vcenter to start and stop the SAP application. Demonstrate high availability for SAP applications. In case of an application failure, one can maintain availability by using Symantec ApplicationHA to restart a failed SAP application instance. Demonstrate high availability for Oracle applications. In case of an application failure, maintain availability by using Symantec ApplicationHA to restart a failed Oracle database instance. Demonstrate a restart Symantec ApplicationHA of the Virtual Machine and the SAP application. Test case 1: High availability during a hardware failure This test case demonstrates that high availability is provided by VMware High Availability and Symantec ApplicationHA during a hardware failure. This scenario tests the abilities of: Symantec ApplicationHA to migrate a virtual machine from the failed ESXi server to the other available ESXi in the cluster Symantec ApplicationHA to start the SAP and Oracle instances 15

16 Test procedure 1. Navigate to the SAP HA Summary tab. Verify the SAP system s Host current status. It is hosted on the ESXi server: hugo222.mordor.vce. 2. Right-click the SAP_Source listing and click Settings to open the SAP HA Settings window. Verify the Turn On VMware HA check box is selected. Click OK. 16

17 3. Navigate to the Cisco UCS Manager to verify the ESXi server status. 4. Click Service Profile to verify the ESXi server profile on which the SAP system virtual machine host is running. 17

18 5. Click Shutdown Server in the service profile window to simulate the hardware failure. Confirm the shutdown by clicking OK in the confirmation window. 6. The server starts the shutdown process. Click OK to continue. 7. When the server fails, verify that the SAP system virtual machine host migrated to the available ESXi server in the cluster. 18

19 8. Verify that the virtual machine operating system has started and comes up on the new ESXi. 9. Verify that when the guest operating system is up, then Symantec ApplicationHA starts the Oracle and SAP processes according to the dependency list. 10. Visually confirm that the SAP application, along with all of its processes, is available again on the new ESXi host. Test results The test results confirm that during a hardware failure, VMware High Availability and Symantec ApplicationHA maintain high availability. 19

20 Test case 2: Operational ability In this scenario, the operational ability of Symantec ApplicationHA from the vcenter is tested to demonstrate the operational ability of the Symantec ApplicationHA in the vcenter to start and stop the SAP application. Test procedure This scenario involves two stages: Stage 1: Verify application status and then stop the application. Stage 2: Start the SAP application. Verify application status and stop the application 1. In the vcenter-vsphere Client, access SAP HA. 2. Click the Symantec ApplicationHA tab and verify the application status is online. In the Cluster, click the Symantec ApplicationHA tab to verify the SAP application is online and is running in the SAP_Source virtual machine. 3. Navigate to the SAP_Source listing, and click the Symantec ApplicationHA tab. Choose the Component List tab and verify that the SAP and Oracle processes are running. 20

21 4. Choose the Component Dependency tab to view the component dependency relationship. 5. From the Symantec ApplicationHA tab in the vcenter, click Stop Application. 6. A confirmation dialog opens. Click OK. 21

22 7. The SAP and Oracle instances are stopped and can be viewed in the Symantec ApplicationHA tab. 8. The SAP application is stopped and not available through the SAP GUI. 22

23 Start the SAP application 1. Navigate to the Symantec ApplicationHA tab and click Start Application. A task status dialog appears indicating the application is starting. 2. View the Component List tab to verify the running application components. 3. View the logs to verify the status of the SAP and Oracle processes on the RHEL host. 23

24 Validation results Validation testing confirms that Symantec ApplicationHA in the vcenter can be used to start and stop the SAP application. Test case 3: Restart a failed SAP instance using Symantec ApplicationHA This test is performed to demonstrate the ability to maintain high availability in the case of an application failure by using Symantec ApplicationHA to restart a failed SAP application instance. Validation steps 1. Go to the Shell window and display the running processes. 24

25 2. The SAP instance failure scenario is simulated by terminating the SAP message server process. The message server process ID is Navigate to the Shell window and provide the command, kill Visually confirm that the message server process is no longer there. 3. Verify that the application is no longer available in the SAP GUI. Click Yes to read the detailed error description. 4. From vcenter, navigate to the Symantec ApplicationHA tab. You can verify that the SAP application Status now shows Faulted and the Symantec ApplicationHA is starting the SAP instance. 25

26 5. In the Symantec ApplicationHA tab, verify that the Status is changed to online, indicating that the application successfully restarted. 6. On the RHEL Host, verify that the SAP Message Server process is active with a new process ID. In this case, the ID is Verify that the SAP system is available again in the SAP GUI. This confirms that when using Symantec ApplicationHASymantec ApplicationHA, a failed SAP application is restarted. 26

27 Validation results The test results show that by using Symantec ApplicationHA, you can successfully restart a failed SAP application. Test case 4: Restart a failed Oracle database instance using Symantec ApplicationHA This test is performed to demonstrate you can maintain high availability by using Symantec ApplicationHA to restart a failed Oracle database instance in case of an application failure. Test case 4 is similar to test case 3, except it tests high availability for the Oracle database instance rather than the SAP application instance. Validation steps The following steps show how the test was performed. 1. Stop the running Oracle database instance by killing the process in the message server. 2. The message server process ID is Navigate to the shell window and provide the command, kill The message server process is no longer there. 3. Navigate to the Symantec ApplicationHA tab. You can visually verify that Oracle database is shown as Not accessible. Symantec ApplicationHA now restarts the Oracle database instance. 27

28 4. Verify that Symantec ApplicationHA has successfully started the Oracle instance and the status is changed to Accessible. 5. On the RHEL Host, the Oracle pmon server process is active with a new process ID. This confirms that high availability has been maintained for Oracle applications. Validation results The test results show that high availability is provided. By using Symantec ApplicationHA, you can successfully restart a failed Oracle database application. Test case 5: Restart a virtual machine using Symantec ApplicationHA The test demonstrates a restart of the Virtual Machine and SAP application by Symantec ApplicationHA. Symantec ApplicationHA will restart the virtual machine when the application restart attempts have reached the allowable maximum. 28

29 Validation steps 1. Navigate to the Symantec ApplicationHA Settings window. In the Settings list, you can see that App.RestartAttempts is a configurable parameter. Click OK. 2. Kill the SAP message server process several times to cause the Symantec ApplicationHA restart attempts to be maximized. 29

30 3. Verify that Symantec ApplicationHA restarts the application. This is followed by the failure of the SAP instance. 4. Verify that the Symantec ApplicationHA restart attempts reach the configured maximum. 30

31 5. Symantec ApplicationHA sends a signal to VMware to gracefully restart the virtual machine. a. The screen shows that the system is shutting down. b. The screen shows that the related processes are being terminated. 31

32 c. Verify the system is restarting. 6. Confirm that the virtual machine operating system has started. 32

33 7. Verify that Symantec ApplicationHA has started the SAP and Oracle instances, and that the virtual machine has been restarted. This confirms that Symantec ApplicationHA has successfully restarted the virtual machine after the maximum restart attempts. Validation results The test results show that a restart of the virtual machine and SAP application is provided. Using Symantec ApplicationHA, you can successfully restart a virtual machine after the maximum restart attempts have been made. 33

34 Conclusion The Vblock Solution for SAP Application High Availability enables IT organizations to maintain high availability of SAP applications, providing business continuity. It decreases the number of manual actions that SAP administrators and IT operations must perform in their organization to maintain a high degree of operational excellence as required by SAP best practices. This solution demonstrates high availability and organizational efficiency without increasing TCO. The validations performed for the Vblock Solution for SAP Application High Availability demonstrate the following results: Confirmation of the Symantec ApplicationHA operational ability in the vcenter to start and stop the SAP application. Demonstrated high availability for SAP applications. In case of an application failure, maintain availability by using Symantec ApplicationHA to restart a failed SAP application instance. Demonstrated high availability for Oracle applications. During an application failure, high availability is maintained by using Symantec ApplicationHA to restart a failed Oracle database instance. Demonstrated restart of the virtual machine and SAP application by Symantec ApplicationHA that successfully restarted the virtual machine when the application restart attempts have reached the allowable maximum. Demonstrated high availability provided by VMware High Availability and Symantec ApplicationHA during a hardware failure. Confirmed ability of VMware High Availability to migrate a virtual machine from the failed ESXi server to the other available ESXi in the cluster, and confirmed ability of Symantec ApplicationHA to start the SAP and Oracle instances. Validated high availability for mission-critical SAP applications such as ERP, CRM, SCM, SRM, Enterprise Portal, and Process Integration. These business modules are included in the SAP ECC that was in the validation architecture. The modules are installed in the NetWeaver stack that is part of ECC. Demonstrated implementation of VMware High Availability and Symantec ApplicationHA on Vblock Systems results in a reduction in the number of physical servers, licensing, setup, training, and management, thereby reducing TCO overall while improving availability and business continuity. Next steps To learn more about this and other solutions, contact a VCE representative or visit 34

35 References Symantec Refer to the following links for the Symantec documentation. Symantec ApplicationHA information Symantec Connect SAP To read the SAP documentation on SAP Service Marketplace, type service.sap.com/instguides into your browser and press Enter. When the Windows Security dialog appears, enter your user name and password then, click OK. Note: To access this documentation SAP requires that you have registered and have a user id and password. Contact SAP to set up your user id. Once logged on, select: SAP Installation Guides > Installation & Upgrade Guides (left menu) > SAP Business Suite Applications > SAP ERP 6.0 to access the documentation. 35

36 ABOUT VCE VCE, formed by Cisco and EMC with investments from VMware and Intel, accelerates the adoption of converged infrastructure and cloud-based computing models that dramatically reduce the cost of IT while improving time to market for our customers. VCE, through the Vblock Systems, delivers the industry's only fully integrated and fully virtualized cloud infrastructure system. VCE solutions are available through an extensive partner network, and cover horizontal applications, vertical industry offerings, and application development environments, allowing customers to focus on business innovation instead of integrating, validating, and managing IT infrastructure. For more information, go to Copyright 2013 VCE Company, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Vblock and the VCE logo are registered trademarks or trademarks of VCE Company, LLC and/or its affiliates in the United States or other countries. All other trademarks used herein are the property of their respective owners.

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