Configuring ThinkServer RAID 500 and RAID 700 Adapters. Lenovo ThinkServer

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1 Configuring ThinkServer RAID 500 and RAID 700 Adapters Lenovo ThinkServer October 4, 2011

2 Contents Overview... 4 RAID 500 features... 4 RAID 700 features... 4 RAID Overview... 4 Choosing the RAID Level... 5 RAID RAID RAID RAID RAID RAID RAID Configuring a RAID Array... 8 Viewing and Changing Storage System Properties Adapter Properties Power Save Options Checking Data Consistency Virtual Drive Properties Physical Drive Properties Understanding Options Virtual Drive Properties Strip Size Access Policy Read Policy Write Policy IO Policy Drive Policy Disable BGI Adapter Properties Management Tasks

3 Rebuilding a Drive Driver Installation

4 Overview This paper provides an overview of Lenovo ThinkServer RAID 500 and ThinkServer RAID 700 adapters, and gives basic instructions for using the pre-boot WebBIOS Configuration Utility to setup RAID storage configurations on a supported ThinkServer. RAID 500 features ThinkServer RAID 500 provides the following features: RAID 0, 1, and 10 Support RAID 5 with optional upgrade key PCIe 2.0 x8 host interface Dedicated and Global hot spares with auto rebuild Mixed capacity drives in RAID array Patrol Read (Sector scan and repair) Auto Rebuild Auto Verify & Repair (Consistency check) >2TB HDD Support (Data and Boot volumes) Bad block management RAID Level Migration Online Capacity Expansion Staggered HDD spin-up RAID 700 features ThinkServer RAID 700 enhances the performance of the RAID 500, and includes following additional features: RAID 0, 1, 10, 5, 50, 6, 60 Support Cache Battery Backup Option ibbu08 Advanced power management of configured drives RAID Overview The first step to creating a RAID configuration is to configure the drives into a drive group, which holds one or more partitions known as virtual drives. The virtual drive will be assigned a RAID level, which is seen by the host computer system as a single drive volume. 4

5 Choosing the RAID Level The RAID level selected should be based on consideration of several factors, the most important being performance, fault tolerance, and storage capacity. Not all of these factors can be optimized at the same time. These factors are discussed in each of the following RAID level descriptions. RAID 0 RAID 0 combines hard drives so that all data is divided into manageable blocks called stripes. The stripes are distributed across all the drives in the RAID array. However, data stored in a RAID 0 volume is not redundant. Therefore, if one hard drive fails, all data on the virtual drive is lost. Read/write performance is generally improved, especially for sequential access, because adjacent data can be accessed from more than one hard drive simultaneously. The RAID 0 volume appears as a single physical hard drive with a capacity equal to the size of the smallest hard drive multiplied by the number of drives in the array. Figure 1 - RAID 0 RAID 1 RAID 1 combines even numbers of hard drives so that all data written to one drive is simultaneously written to another drive in the array. This provides complete, real-time redundancy of all data on the first drive, also called a mirror. Performance is minimally impacted by the overhead associated with duplicating the data. The RAID 1 volume appears as a single physical hard drive with a capacity equal to half that of the total drive capacity. 5

6 Figure 2 - RAID 1 RAID 5 RAID 5 uses disk striping and parity data across all drives (distributed parity). RAID 5 provides redundancy, protecting against a single drive failure with the smallest reduction in total storage capacity. High data throughput can be achieved, especially for small random read transactions. Read performance is almost as good as RAID 0 for the same number of disks. Random write performance, however, can suffer due to the overhead of updating parity for each write. The RAID 5 volume appears as a single physical hard drive with a capacity equal to the total drive capacity less the capacity of one drive, which is used to hold the parity data. Figure 3 - RAID 5 RAID 6 RAID 6 is similar to RAID 5 (disk striping and parity), except that instead of one parity block per stripe, there are two. With two independent parity blocks, RAID 6 can survive the loss of two drives in a virtual drive without losing data. There is no performance penalty for read operations, but there is a performance penalty on write operations because of the overhead associated with parity calculations. The RAID 6 volume appears as a single physical hard drive with a capacity equal to the total drive capacity less the capacity of two drives, which are used to hold the parity data. 6

7 Figure 4 - RAID 6 RAID 10 RAID 10 is a combination of RAID 0 and RAID 1, and consists of striped data across mirrored spans. An even number of drives in each RAID 1 span must be used. RAID 10 provides full redundancy within in each span. By striping data across spans, performance is increased by enabling access to multiple drive groups simultaneously. In most cases, RAID 10 provides better throughput and latency than all other RAID levels except RAID 0 (which can have greater throughput). It is the preferable RAID level for I/Ointensive applications. The RAID 10 volume appears as a single physical hard drive with a capacity equal to ½ of the total drive capacity in the configuration. Figure 5 - RAID 10 RAID 50 RAID 50 is a combination of RAID 0 and RAID 5, and consists of both parity and disk striping across multiple drive groups. RAID 50 provides full redundancy within in each span, tolerating a drive failure in each RAID 5 level span. Similar to RAID 10, by striping data across spans, performance is increased by enabling access to multiple drive groups simultaneously. RAID 50 improves upon the performance of RAID 5 particularly during writes, and can have very good read performance. 7

8 Figure 6 - RAID 50 RAID 60 RAID 60 is a combination of RAID 0 and RAID 6, and consists of both parity and disk striping across multiple drive groups. Because RAID 6 supports two independent parity blocks per stripe, a RAID 60 virtual drive can survive the loss of two drives in each of the RAID 6 level spans without losing data. This is the highest level of protection of any of the RAID levels. By striping data across spans, performance is increased by enabling access to multiple drive groups simultaneously. RAID 60 improves upon the performance of RAID 6, despite having a slightly slower write performance than RAID 50 due to the added overhead of more parity calculations. Figure 7 - RAID 60 Configuring a RAID Array This section provides an overview of the steps required to setup and configure a RAID array on the ThinkServer RAID 500 and RAID 700 adapters. Details are the same for RAID 500 and RAID 700 adapters except where noted. Configure RAID using the pre-boot WebBIOS Configuration Utility. The WebBIOS Configuration Utility allows the creation, management, and deletion of RAID arrays from the available physical drives attached to the RAID 500 or RAID 700 adapter. If RAID volumes have already been configured, the Configuration Utility does not automatically change their configuration. The basic steps to create a RAID configuration are as follows: a. Select a configuration method from the Configuration menu (New Configuration, or Add Configuration). b. Create drive groups using the available physical drives. c. Define the virtual drive(s) using the space in the drive groups. 8

9 d. Initialize the new virtual drive(s). 1. Reboot the ThinkServer. At the prompt, type CTRL-H to launch the LSI WebBIOS Configuration Utility. The Adapter Selection screen will be displayed. 2. The Adapter Selection screen displays the RAID adapters installed in the ThinkServer. If the system has multiple ThinkServer RAID adapters, select the Adapter No. to configure. Click Start to continue. The WebBIOS Configuration Utility main screen will be displayed. 3. The WebBIOS screen appears. The right frame shows the virtual drives configured on the controller, physical drives that are connected to the controller, and their status. In addition, the screen identifies drives that are foreign or missing. The left frame provides links to various views of the storage configuration, and allows configuration and management tasks to be initiated. 9

10 4. When a new drive is inserted into a ThinkServer RAID system, if the inserted drive does not contain valid DDF metadata (Disk Data Format records the RAID metadata), the drive displays as JBOD (Just a Bunch of Disks). If the drive does contain valid DDF metadata, its drive state is displayed as Unconfigured Good. A new drive in JBOD drive state is exposed to the host operating system as a stand-alone drive. The operating system can install and run anything on JBOD drives. However, drives in JBOD drive state are not part of, and cannot be included in a RAID configuration. After the drive state is set to Unconfigured Good, the drive state information always remains on the drive, and it can be used for configuration To Convert JBOD drives on the RAID 500 adapter to Unconfigured Good, click the drive from the list. The Drive Configuration page will be displayed. From the Drive Configuration page, Select Make Unconf Good and press Go. Repeat this step for all JBOD drives to be included in a storage configuration. The RAID 700 adapter will display the JBOD Drives to Unconfigured Drives screen to facilitate this conversion (not shown). 6. To create a new RAID array, select Configuration Wizard from the menu options. The Configuration Wizard screen will be displayed. 1 Automatic rebuilds with new drives, or hot spare drives also requires that a drive be in the Unconfigured Good state. 10

11 7. For this example, select New Configuration from the menu and press Next. This will clear any previous configuration and start a new configuration. To keep any existing data on a previously defined storage configuration, use Add Configuration instead of New Configuration. 8. A warning message will be displayed. Select Yes to confirm that any previous storage configuration on the drives will be erased, and to continue with the configuration. The Select Configuration Method screen is displayed. 9. Select Manual Configuration to allow control of all attributes of the drive groups and virtual drives in the new storage configuration. Click Next. The Drive Group Definition screen will be displayed. 11

12 10. The Drive Group Definition screen displays all drives in an Unconfigured Good state that can be used to create drive groups. 11. RAID 700 will also allow Power Save Mode to be configured (None, Auto, Max, Max Without Cache, Controller Defined. In this example, leave the default selection (Controller Defined). See Power Save Options for more information on configuring this feature. 12. Select the drives to add to the drive group from the drive panel and press Add To Array. Repeat this step for all drives to be included in the current group, or hold CTRL key while selecting two or more drives. As drives are selected for inclusion in the drive group, they are highlighted, and added into the right panel. 12

13 13. In this example, a RAID 5 array will be created, so at least three drives must be selected. After selecting the drives for inclusion in the drive group, click Accept DG. 14. If any changes are needed, press Back, or to remove drives from the drive goup, select the drive and press Reclaim. Otherwise click Next. The Span Definition screen will be displayed. 15. The Span Definition screen displays the drive groups that can be added to a span. Under the heading Array With Free Space, select the drive group and click Add to SPAN. 13

14 16. The drive group selected is added in the right frame under the heading Span. Select Next to display the Virtual Drive Definition screen. 17. The Virtual Drive Definition screen is used to select the RAID level, strip size, read policy, and other attributes for the new virtual drives. Move between line items on the Virtual Drive Configuration Menu to select options. Press ENTER to select an option. Change the virtual drive options as needed. See Virtual Drive Properties for information on configuring virtual drive attributes. 18. The RAID drop-down menu lists the possible RAID levels for the virtual drive. In this example, select RAID 5 and press ENTER. Move the cursor to Select Size and type the size of the virtual drive for this array. The maximum capacity of the array that can be used given the physical disks involved is displayed in the text Next LD, Possible RAID Levels. Entering a lower value will allow the creation of multiple virtual drives on these disks. In this example, other configuration items are left at their defaults. Press Accept to finalize the virtual drive configuration. 14

15 19. A warning message may be displayed. Select Yes to accept the virtual drive definition. 20. Click Next to finish defining the virtual drives within this drive group. The Configuration Preview screen is displayed. 21. Check the information in the configuration preview. If the virtual drive configuration is acceptable, click Accept to save the configuration. Otherwise, click Cancel to end the operation and return to the WebBIOS main menu, or click Back to return to the previous screens and change the configuration. 15

16 22. At the prompt, select Yes to save the RAID configuration, or select No to cancel the operation. At this point selecting Yes will cause any previous data on the drives to be lost. 23. Press Yes at the prompt to begin the virtual drive initialization. The Virtual Drives page is shown. 24. Select Set Boot Drive and press Go. 16

17 25. After initializing the boot drive, the current boot drive will be indicated (current = 0). Press Home to return to the WebBIOS Configuration Utility main screen. 26. The Configuration Utility main screen shows the status of the Virtual drive created, and the physical drives that make up the array. This information can be used to confirm the RAID array has been configured properly. Press Exit to leave the WebBIOS Configuration Utility. 27. Select Yes at the prompt to confirm exiting the Utility. 17

18 28. When prompted, press CTRL-ALT-DEL to reboot the system. 29. The system will reboot and display the status of the RAID arrays that are configured on the system. Viewing and Changing Storage System Properties The WebBIOS RAID Configuration Utility allows properties for adapters, logical drives, and physical drives to be managed. 18

19 Adapter Properties Configuring ThinkServer RAID 500 and RAID To view or change adapter properties, select Controller Properties from the menu. There are three Controller Properties screens. 2. The first page displays controller information (RAID 700 shown). This information is read-only. 3. Configurable properties are shown (RAID 700 shown) on the following controller properties pages. See Adapter Properties for more information. It is recommended that these options be left at their default to achieve the best performance. 19

20 4. To make changes to the options on these screens, move between line items to select properties and press ENTER to select options. Click Submit to register them. To return to the default values, click Reset. 5. ThinkServer RAID 700 has an optional battery backed-up cache available. If a battery is installed, the Battery Backup field of the second Controller Properties screen will indicate that the battery is present. Click Present in the Battery Backup field to display the Battery Module page. Power Save Options Advanced power management features are available in the RAID 700 adapter. Power savings is accomplished by reducing power consumption of drives that are not in use by spinning down the unconfigured drives, hot spares, and configured drives. 20

21 1. To view or change Power management settings, select the Manage Powersave link from the Controller properties screen. The Power Save Setting screen is displayed. Select the types of drives to manage and press Next. 2. Select the desired drive standby time and power save mode settings and press Finish. Checking Data Consistency The Check Consistency feature is used on RAID 1, RAID 5, RAID 6, RAID 10, RAID 50, or RAID 60 drive groups to verify the consistency of the data on the physical drives. A consistency check will run automatically in the background at rates as defined in the Controller Properties, automatically corrects any differences found in the data. Consistency checks can be scheduled from the Adapter Properties menu. 21

22 1. To view or change the Consistency Check schedule, select the Supported link from the Controller properties screen. The Schedule CC screen is displayed. Select the desired schedule parameters and press Submit. Virtual Drive Properties 1. To view or change Virtual Drive properties, select Virtual Drives from the main menu. The Virtual Drive Configuration screen will be displayed. 2. Select the virtual drive to view or change, select Properties and press Go. The Properties panel will be displayed. 22

23 3. The Properties (RAID 700 shown) panel of this screen displays the virtual drive s RAID level, state, capacity, and strip size. The Policies panel lists the virtual drive policies that were defined when the storage configuration was created. For more information about these policies, see Virtual Drive Properties. To change any of these policies, make a selection from the drop-down menu and click Change. The Operations panel lists operations that can be performed on the virtual drive. To perform an operation, select it and click Go. Physical Drive Properties 1. To view or change physical drive properties, select Drives from the selection menu. 23

24 2. Highlight the physical drive to view on the list that appears, select Properties and press Go. 3. Drive properties are read only, however the state of the drive can be changed (e.g. make the drive ofline). Use caution when changing the drive state as the integrity of the RAID array may be affected. Understanding Options Virtual Drive Properties The following settings apply to the creation of virtual drives. Strip Size The strip size is the portion of a stripe that resides on a single drive in the drive group. The stripe consists of the data segments that the RAID controller writes across multiple drives, not including parity drives. For example, consider a stripe that contains 64 KB of drive space and has 16 KB of data residing on each of four drives in the stripe. In this case, the stripe size is 64 KB and the strip size is 16 KB. Strip size can be set to 8, 16, 32, 64, 128, 256, 512, and 1024 KB. A larger strip size produces higher read performance. If the server workload regularly performs random read requests, choose a smaller strip size. The default is 64 KB. 24

25 Access Policy The Access Policy defines what read / write access is allowed for a particular virtual drive. Options include: RW: Allow read/write access. This is the default. Read Only: Allow read-only access. Blocked: Do not allow access. Read Policy The Read Policy mode defines how the controller uses cache when reading data from drives. Options include: Ahead: In Read Ahead mode, the controller reads sequentially ahead of requested data and stores the additional data in cache memory, anticipating that the data will be needed soon. This speeds up reads for sequential data, but there is little improvement when accessing random data. Normal: In No Read Ahead mode (known as Normal mode in WebBIOS), read ahead capability is disabled. This is the default. Write Policy The Write Policy defines how the controller uses cache when writing data to drives. Options include: WBack: In Writeback mode the controller sends a data transfer completion signal to the host when the controller cache has received all of the data in a transaction. This setting is recommended in Standard mode. The controller allows Writeback mode to be used with or without a battery. It is recommended to use either a battery to protect the controller cache, or an UPS to protect the entire system. If neither a battery or UPS is being used and there is a power failure, there exists the risk of losing the data in the controller cache. WThru: In Writethrough mode the controller sends a data transfer completion signal to the host when the drive subsystem has received all of the data in a transaction. This is the default. Bad BBU: This option can be selected to force the the controller to use Writeback mode when the controller has no BBU or the BBU is bad. Otherwies, if this option is not selected, the controller firmware automatically switches to Writethrough mode if it detects a bad or missing BBU. IO Policy The I/O Policy indicates whether Cached I/O or Direct I/O is being used. The I/O Policy applies to reads on a specific virtual drive. It does not affect the read ahead cache. Options include: Direct: In Direct I/O mode, reads are not buffered in cache memory. Data is transferred to the cache and the host concurrently. If the same data block is read again, it comes from cache memory. This is the default. 25

26 Cached: In Cached I/O mode, all reads are buffered in cache memory. Drive Policy The Drive Policy specifies whether the virtual drive cache is enabled, disabled, or unchanged from its previous setting. Options include: Enable: Enable the drive cache. Disable: Disable the drive cache. NoChange: Leave the current drive cache policy as is. This is the default. Disable BGI Disable Background Initialization (BGI) defines whether the background initialization of virtual drives is allowed. Options include: No: Background initialization is enabled. This means that a new configuration can be initialized in the background while WebBIOS is used to do other configuration tasks. This is the default. Yes: Background initialization is disabled. Adapter Properties The following table lists the properties applied to all arrays defined on the adapter. Option Description Property Description Options Default Battery Backup This entry indicates whether the selected controller has a BBU. If N/A N/A present, you can click Present to view information about the BBU. Set Factory Defaults Use this option to load the default WebBIOS Configuration Utility Yes, No No settings. Cluster Mode Use this option to enable or disable Cluster mode. A cluster is a Enabled, Disabled Disabled grouping of independent servers that can access the same data storage and provide services to a common set of clients. When Cluster mode is disabled, the system operates in Standard mode. Rebuild Rate Use this option to select the rebuild rate for drives connected to the selected controller. The rebuild rate is the percentage of system resources dedicated to rebuilding a failed drive. The higher the number, the more system resources devoted to a rebuild. 0 to 100 (% of system resources) 30% BGI Rate CC Rate Reconstruction Rate NCQ Coercion Mode S.M.A.R.T. Polling Alarm Control Use this option to select the amount of system resources dedicated to background initialization of virtual drives connected to the selected controller. Use this option to select the amount of system resources dedicated to consistency checks of virtual drives connected to the selected controller. Use this option to select the amount of system resources dedicated to reconstruction of drives connected to the selected controller. Native Command Queuing (NCQ) gives an individual drive the ability to optimize the order in which it executes the read and write commands. Drive coercion is a tool for forcing drives of varying capacities to the same size so they can be used in a drive group. The number you choose depends on how much the drives from various vendors vary in their actual size. 1GB coercion mode is recommended. Use this option to determine how frequently the controller polls for drives reporting a Predictive Drive Failure (S.M.A.R.T.: Self-Monitoring Analysis and Reporting Technology error). Select this option to enable, disable, or silence the onboard alarm tone generator on the controller. 0 to 100 (% of system resources) 0 to 100 (% of system resources) 0 to 100 (% of system resources) Enabled, Disabled None, 128MBway, and 1GBway. Enabled, Disabled 30% 30% 30% Enabled None 300 seconds Disabled 26

27 Property Description Options Default Patrol Read Rate Use this option to select the rate for patrol reads for drives connected 0 to 100 (% of 30% to the selected controller. The patrol read rate is the percentage of system resources dedicated to running a patrol read. system resources) Cache Flush Interval Use this option to control the interval (in seconds) at which the contents of the onboard data cache are flushed. 4 seconds Spinup Drive Count Use this option to control the number of drives that spin up 2 drives simultaneously. Spinup Delay Use this option to control the interval (in seconds) between spinup of 12 drives drives connected to this controller. The delay prevents a drain on the system s power supply that would occur if all drives spun up at the same time. Stop CC on Error Enable this option if you want to stop a consistency check when the Yes, No No controller BIOS encounters an error. Maintain PD Fail History Enable this option to maintain the history of all drive failures. Enabled Controller BIOS Use this option to enable or disable the BIOS for the selected controller. If the boot device is on the selected controller, the BIOS must be enabled; otherwise, the BIOS should be disabled or it might not be possible to use a boot device elsewhere. Enabled, Disabled Enabled Manage Powersave (RAID 700 only) Schedule CC StopOnError Disk Activity Manages settings to reduce power consumption of drives that are not in use by spinning down the unconfigured drives, hot spares, and configured drives. Indicates whether the option to schedule the date and time for a consistency check is supported. Enable this option if you want the boot process to stop when the controller BIOS encounters an error during boot-up. Enable this property if you want to locate a particular disk. This disk can be identified with a continuous blinking of green activity LED. This works only if the disks are installed in an enclosure. Enabled, Disabled Disabled Management Tasks Rebuilding a Drive The RAID 500 and RAID 700 adapter uses hot spares to rebuild failed drives automatically and transparently, at rebuild rates as defined in the Controller Properties. If a hot spare is available, the rebuild can start automatically when a drive fails. If a hot spare is not available, the failed drive must be replaced with a new drive so that the data on the failed drive can be rebuilt. When a new drive has been installed, a rebuild occurs automatically if: The newly inserted drive is the same capacity as, or larger than the failed drive. It is placed in the same drive bay as the failed drive it is replacing. The RAID controller can be configured to detect the new drives and rebuild the contents of the drive automatically. To start an automatic rebuild on a new JBOD drive, the drive state must be changed from JBOD to Unconfigured Good. Driver Installation A ThinkServer RAID 500 or RAID 700 device driver must be installed before the operating system can use a RAID volume, or any hard drives connected to the controller. 27

28 If ThinkServer EasyStartup is used to configure RAID and install the Operating System, the correct drivers will be installed automatically. If installing the Operating System manually, the driver must be provided during the Operating System installation. ThinkServer EasyStartup or the correct drivers for the Operating System being installed can be downloaded from Lenovo s support site at the following link: 28

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