Martin County Administration. Information Technology Services. Proposal For. Storage Area Network Systems. Supporting WinTel Server Consolidation

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1 Martin County Administration Information Technology Services Proposal For Storage Area Network Systems Supporting WinTel Server Consolidation February 17, 2005 Version: DRAFT 1.4 Tim Murnane, Systems Administrator II Joe Suma, Systems Administrator II Steve Berrier, Systems Administrator I Jennifer Washington, Computer Hardware Technician Bob Burden, IT Operations Manager

2 TABLE OF CONTENTS OBJECTIVE...3 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY...3 CURRENT ENVIRONMENT... 3 RECOMMENDATION... 3 DETAILED ANALYSIS...4 BACKGROUND & HISTORY... 4 PROBLEM DEFINITION... 4 REQUIREMENTS AND SPECIFICATIONS... 4 ALTERNATIVE SOLUTIONS... 5 ALTERNATIVE 1 (RECOMMENDED SOLUTION)... 5 ALTERNATIVE ALTERNATIVE ALTERNATIVE 4 - SCSI direct attached storage... 7 RECOMMENDATION AND JUSTIFICATION... 8 COST SUMMARY / BENEFIT ANALYSIS /14/2005 Page 2 of 9

3 OBJECTIVE To implement an data storage platform the supports the effective consolidation of Intel/Microsoft based server environment in the Martin County s Information Technology Services (ITS) Data Center. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY CURRENT ENVIRONMENT Martin County s Information Technology Services (ITS)provides world-class computing and communications services in support of the County s services to the community. To deliver those services, ITS Hosting Services has implemented and maintains a computer server platform environment of over 90 mid-range servers based on Intel/Microsoft and Sun Microsystems technologies. Many of the County s software applications run on the nearly 50 Intel/Microsoft-based servers in our data center. The trend had been that the number of Intel/Microsoft-based servers continued to grow as new applications were added to automate County functions. At fifty servers and growing, our Intel/Microsoft-based server environment had become unmanageable with our limited ITS staff. In addition, the capacity of most of those servers was grossly underutilized due to the way applications are typically deployed on a one-application-per-one-physical-server basis. In late 2004, ITS began an migration plan to consolidate our Intel/Microsoft-based servers over time onto a state-of-the-art blade server hardware technology. This plan included deploying a virtual server software technology that supports multiple, separate instances of applications and operating systems on shared hardware servers. The initial deployment of the blade server technology included storage of server data on disks internal to the blade server. Since the blade server configuration support limited internal storage this approach restricts the number of virtual servers that can be deployed on a physical shared hardware server. RECOMMENDATION ITS recommends a plan to implement an entry-level Storage Area Network using IBM eserver BladeCenter Optical Pass-thru Module with our existing Network Appliances Storage System to store sever data external to the blade server hardware to eliminate the constraints of internal disk storage. ITS Technology Investment Plans for the Fiscal Year 04/05 budget supports our proposed plan. The result of this recommendation plan would be enhanced service to our customers by reducing the platform complexity, improving performance, reducing the risk of systems outages, and providing much greater expandability. We recommend this plan be approved. 6/14/2005 Page 3 of 9

4 DETAILED ANALYSIS BACKGROUND & HISTORY Martin County s Information Technology Services (ITS) provides world-class computing and communications services in support of the County s services to the community. To deliver those services, ITS Hosting Services has implemented and maintains a computer server platform environment of over 90 mid-range servers based on Intel/Microsoft and Sun Microsystems technologies. Today, many of the County s software applications run on nearly 50 Intel/Microsoft-based servers in our data center. The trend has been that the number of Intel/Microsoft-based servers continues to grow as new applications are added to automate County functions and add new services. At fifty servers and growing, our Intel/Microsoft-based server environment has become unmanageable with our limited ITS staff. In addition, the capacity of most of those servers is grossly underutilized due to the way applications are typically deployed on a one-applicationper-one-physical-server basis. In late 2004, ITS began an migration plan to consolidate our Intel/Microsoft-based servers over time onto a state-of-the-art blade server hardware technology. This plan included deploying a virtual server software technology that supports multiple, separate instances of applications and operating systems on shared hardware servers. PROBLEM DEFINITION Martin County has a sizeable investment in current Network Appliance data storage products, which currently suits the County's needs. Experience has shown us that many Government entities are required to maintain more and more data on a daily basis. With that being the case scalability is key to maintaining control of this growth both administratively as well as financially. The initial deployment of the IBM BladeCenter blade server technology included storage of server data on disks internal to the blade server. Since the blade server configuration support has limits for internal storage, this approach restricts the number of virtual servers that can be deployed on a physical shared hardware blade server. REQUIREMENTS AND SPECIFICATIONS Any recommendations must give Martin County the ability to grow, but are also easily monitored and very cost-effective. An entry-level Storage Area Network to store sever data external to the blade server hardware must: 1. Provide ongoing expansion of capacity to support the continuing growth and expansion of user applications on Microsoft Windows Server platforms. 2. Increasing reliability, availability and serviceability to meet our current and future ITS service levels. 3. Support existing ITS Data Center standards for data storage and computer servers. 4. Reduce overall costs of server implementation and support over time. 6/14/2005 Page 4 of 9

5 ALTERNATIVE SOLUTIONS The IBM BladeCenter offers multiple options including direct-attached internal SCSI disks and Storage Area Networks (SAN). ITS initially deployed the direct-attached internal SCSI disks, which has limits for server disk storage capacity and thus limits the number of virtual servers that can be deployed on each blade server. The SAN options take advantage of the modules that connect external disk storage, such as our Network Appliances Disk System, directly into the IBM BladeCenter Chassis. Each of these modules is installed into the rear of the BladeCenter chassis. For redundancy we would need to install two modules. With any of these modules we would also have to install an IBM eserver BladeCenter Fibre Channel Expansion Card. An IBM eserver BladeCenter Fibre Channel Expansion Card takes the location of one of the internal hard drives in the Blade Server. This means that if we are planning on running the operating system locally with data residing on the SAN we need the IBM eserver BladeCenter SCSI Storage Expansion Unit to be able to install more than one internal hard drive for redundancy. The available options for SAN connectivity for the IBM BladeCenter are as follows: IBM eserver BladeCenter Optical Pass-thru Module QLogic Enterprise 6-port Fibre Channel Switch Module for IBM eserver BladeCenter IBM eserver BladeCenter 2-port Fibre Channel Switch Module Brocade Entry SAN Switch Modules for IBM eserver Brocade Enterprise SAN Switch Modules for IBM eserver The two options for connectivity to our existing Network Appliance storage device are the IBM eserver BladeCenter Optical Pass-thru Module and the QLogic Enterprise 6-port Fibre Channel Switch Module. ALTERNATIVE 1 (RECOMMENDED SOLUTION) Alternative 1 is to implement a Storage Area Network using IBM eserver BladeCenter Optical Pass-thru Module with our existing Network Appliances Storage System. This option provides an unswitched/unblocked optical connection to each blade server bay and delivers additional flexibility in data center network architectures. It provides easy integration into existing infrastructures that have already standardized on a specific SAN fabric. It transmits and receives network data between blades and works in conjunction with the Myrinet Cluster Expansion Card, Gigabit Ethernet Expansion Card, Fibre Channel Expansion Card and the integrated Gigabit Ethernet controllers. It supports: Auto-sense capability, which allows single design to work in network Self-test and diagnostics capability Little or no configuration is required The Optical Pass-thru Module is a viable option that is much less expensive than the QLogic Enterprise 6 port Fibre Channel Switch Module. However, Optical Pass-thru Module requires several available fibre ports on an existing fibre switch. For redundancy we would need two ports for each Blade Server to connect to your SAN. 6/14/2005 Page 5 of 9

6 This option meets of the requirements as defined above. ALTERNATIVE 2 Alternative 2 is to implement a Storage Area Network using QLogic Enterprise 6 port Fibre Channel Switch Module with our existing Network Appliances Storage System. This Fibre Channel switching option for the IBM eserver BladeCenter integrates an enterprise fabric into the BladeCenter architecture. The QLogic Enterprise 6 port Fibre Channel Switch Module is a viable option for connecting the IBM BladeCenter with the McDATA switch on the Network Appliances storage device. It provides higher bandwidth connectivity (up to 24Gbps ful duplex) between BladeCenter s server blades and storage area networks as well as enhanced connectivity through higher port count: When merging McDATA and IBM eserver BladeCenter fabrics, a maximum of 31 interconnected switches per fabric can be configured. Otherwise, all features are fully supported and comply with industry standards. However, the QLogic Enterprise 6 port Fibre Channel Switch Module can be expensive if we only connect a few Blade Servers to the SAN. This option meets of the requirements as defined above. ALTERNATIVE 3 Alternative 3 is to implement a Storage Area Network using IBM Total Storage Options. IBM offers a full range of disk products within a single TotalStorage family to help small to large-size enterprises select the right solutions for their needs. This family includes the IBM TotalStorage Enterprise Storage Server (ESS) called the IBM TotalStorage DS4000 series and a new low priced entry-level product called the IBM TotalStorage DS300 and DS400. The DS4000 series has been enhanced to complement the entry and enterprise disk system offerings with the DS4000 Storage Manager V9.10, enhanced remote mirror option, DS4100 option for larger capacity configurations, along with support for EXP100 serial ATA expansion units attached to DS4400s. IBM DS4400 delivers superior performance with 2Gbps Fibre Channel technologies. The DS4400 is designed to offer investment protection with advanced functions and flexible features. The DS4400 scales from 36GB to over 32TB to support growing storage requirements. DS4400 offers advanced replication services to support business continuance. The DS4400 is an effective disk system for any enterprise seeking performance without borders. 6/14/2005 Page 6 of 9

7 Data protection with dual redundant components, multiple RAID levels, LUN masking and enhanced management options Storage Consolidation for SAN, NAS and direct-attach environments Investment protection throughout the DS4000 family of storage systems Support for IBM AIX, Microsoft Windows 2000, Windows NT, Novell Netware, Sun Solaris, HP-UX, Red Hat Linux, VMware Scales up to 32.8 terabytes (TB) of capacity using flexible combinations of 36.4GB, 73.4GB and 146.8GB 10,000 rpm drives as well as 18.2GB, 36.4GB and 73.4GB 15,000 rpm drives (2Gbps FC) This option does not meet the requirements as defined above. ALTERNATIVE 4 Alternative 4 is to do nothing. The simplest storage option for IBM BladeCenter and standard Intel servers is utilize internal disk storage. The IBM BladeCenter with both the internal hard drives and the SCSI expansion card provides up to four hard drives per Blade Server. However, this configuration is limited to just three different RAID levels, RAID 0 (Striping with no redundancy), RAID 1 (Mirroring) and RAID 10 (Striping with Mirroring). With RAID 1 & RAID 10 you lose half the disk space for redundancy. Right now the largest disk drives available for internal use on the IBM BladeCenter are 73 gigabytes. This option is not feasible because applications continue to grow and expand and the internal disk capacities limit what we can deploy on the IBM BladeCenter platform. This option does not meet the requirements as defined above. 6/14/2005 Page 7 of 9

8 RECOMMENDATION AND JUSTIFICATION ITS recommends a plan to implement an entry-level Storage Area Network using IBM eserver BladeCenter Optical Pass-thru Module with our existing Network Appliances Storage System to store sever data external to the blade server hardware to eliminate the constraints of internal disk storage. The following diagram depicts the migration plan. ITS Technology Investment Plans for the Fiscal Year 04/05 budget supports our proposed plan. The 3-year cost of ownership is summarized as follows: Fiscal Year Impact Optical Pass-Thru Option FY05 FY06 FY07 Hardware/Software Costs ** $ 29, $ - $ - Annual Maintenance ** $ 4, $ 4, Fiscal Year Totals $ 29, $ 4, $ 4, The result of this recommendation plan would be enhanced service to our customers by reducing the platform complexity, improving flexibility and performance, reducing the risk of systems outages, and providing much greater expandability. We recommend this plan be approved. 6/14/2005 Page 8 of 9

9 COST SUMMARY / BENEFIT ANALYSIS Summary of Options and Costs ATTRIBUTE ALT#1 ALT#2 ALT#3 ALT#4 Current Approach Optical Pass-Thru Option Qlogic Switch Option Entry Level SAN DS400 Internal BladeCenter Disk Storage Solution Fit Good Good Does not meet Does not meet Current Expertise Good Good Good Good Hardware/Software Costs ** $ 29, $ 37, $ 86, $ 36, Annual Maintenance ** $ 4, $ 5, $ 12, $ 5, Total Cost of Ownership - 3 Years $ 38, $ 48, $ 112, $ 46, Other Considerations Fits Martin County Standards Fits Martin County Standards Does Not Fit Martin County Standards Does not fit Martin County Standards Very Flexible Most Flexible Very Flexible Least Flexible Least Expensive Expensive Most Expensive Expensive ** Assumes 7 Blades in BladeCenter Chassis 6/14/2005 Page 9 of 9

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