HP releases Storevirtual Lefthand OS 12.5

Just this morning I noticed that Lefthand OS 12.5 was now available for the HP Storevirtual platform. I was surprised by this as I hadn’t seen any announcement about it.

Anyway, taking a look at the release notes the minor update has the following new enhancements:

  • Two-node quorum
  • Support for iSCSI split network
  • Support for VSA on RHEL 6.6 and CentOS 6.6
  • MEM driver for vSphere 6.0
  • SCVMM 2012 R2 support

Additionally there are a number of bug fixes.

See here for the full release notes: http://h20564.www2.hpe.com/hpsc/doc/public/display?docId=c04735172&lang=en-nz&cc=nz

The most interesting enhancement is the Two-node quorum which I’m hoping to test shortly. This is great news for people wanting to deploy VSA for ROBO environments and is a timely release with the upcoming announcement of VSAN 6.1 at VMworld 2015 which is rumored to bring metro clustering (something Storevirtual already supports).

Anyway, stay tuned for further updates on Lefthand OS 12.5!

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HP Storevirtual LefthandOS 11.0

Just this morning while browsing the Storevirtual CMC updates FTP share I noticed an announcement file detailing the new LefthandOS 11.0.

Anyway, it is due for release in October according to the blurb and will come with the following new features:

  • Sub-volume auto-tiering with Adaptive Optimization (Exclusive feature for HP StoreVirtual VSA)
  • Support for Microsoft System Center Virtual Machine Manager
  • Smarter Centralized Management Console and Online Upgrades
  • Easier configuration and more granular control of application-managed snapshots with Application Aware Snapshot Manager for Microsoft and VMware environments

The first thing the caught my eye was the auto-tiering! This would be a great addition to the VSA product and from what I have found on the internet it seems that the auto-tiering will be automated and not rely on a schedule like the 3PAR gear. Sadly at this stage the feature won’t apply to existing physical models which I can understand why. It would be nice to breathe some life into them though!

Also the updates to the CMC will be greatly welcomed. Lets hope that it works better than the previous iterations and fingers crossed that it brings in full support for internet proxy authentication!!!

Anyway, when it’s released i’ll test the upgrade and post about the experience 🙂

HP Lefthand OS 10.0 upgrade issue with certain management group password strings

A few weeks ago HP released the new Lefthand OS 10.0 for their StoreVirtual products. I’ve since upgraded my VSA clusters successfully,  however, when attempting this on a test P4300 cluster I ran into some weird issues.

During the upgrade (which now has a nice progress window) the first node in the cluster would upgrade OK but upon rebooting would not reconnect to the CMC. When trying to log into the direct console on the upgraded node it would not accept my Management Group (MG) password. I had no other option but to forcibly cancel the upgrade and I rebuilt the failed node.

After attempting a subsequent upgrade, the same problem occurred. This time I noticed in the status bar in the CMC that it was failing to log into the newly upgraded node and said the username and password was incorrect! As a result I logged a job with HP.

The response I received was rather interesting…as it turns out they have had several incidences similar and are related to MG passwords containing the characters ‘~‘ or ‘$‘.

So, this got me thinking…if the password is corrupted by the upgrade, what happens if I try logging in with a partial password? I tried several combinations on my test cluster until VIOLA, I could log in with the first part of the password leading up until the special character!

To clarify this, lets say our MG password was abc123$def, after the upgrade the CMC will fail to reconnect. You should be able to log into the node using abc123, i.e. we’ve dropped the $ symbol and anything after that. I’m not sure what happens if your password begins with those characters…could be interesting as the CMC does not allow a blank password!

I would imagine HP will release a patch for this in the coming weeks, in the meantime you could change your MG passwords prior to the upgrade 🙂
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HP LeftHand CMC 10.0 Changes

HP’s Lefthand / P4000/ StoreVirtual product has had a major version upgrade with it’s announcement of Lefthand OS 10.0. This release will be the first to drop the SAN/iQ moniker in favor of the company name that created the product before HP’s aquisition a few years ago.

The release of this software upgrade was slated for the 4th December if I’m not mistaken but interestingly their FTP site now has the updated patches/upgrades as of the 26th of November.

I had the chance to download the new files (with some difficulty, I get the feeling their FTP site is taking a hammering at the moment!) and have since installed the new version of their Centralised Management Console or CMC.

Going into this upgrade I had high hopes for its new support for an internet proxy for the downloading of patches, something that has really let the product down previously in my opinion. In any case, the new version now allows you to specify a SOCKS proxy…yay!

Now, the bad news…

It does not allow you to specify any authentication for the proxy…argh!!!! In our environment this is a real pain from a security perspective and as such is not going to help. For now it will be back to downloading the media from an alternative location and copying it to the CMC. This in itself can prove to be tedious, particularly when the CMC decides that the downloaded media is corrupt and needs to re-download it! Oh well…baby steps eh 😛

CMC 10.0 Proxy Setting

On a more positive note, the new version now supports ActiveDirectory integrated authentication. So far I can’t see where this is configured but I’m guessing you’ll need to have your nodes upgraded to version 10 first…i’ll post an update on this shortly.

Further to this there is now an additional SAN status page panel showing all active tasks which should prove to be extremely useful, something that was lacking previously, especially when managing multiple clusters from a single CMC by more than one administrator. Again I’ll post more on this when I see it in action. In the meantime here’s a shot of the Active Tasks pane, not very exciting but gives you an idea.

CMC 10.0 Active Tasks

So that seems to be about it for now, I’d be keen to hear from any others that have found more new features that I’ve missed. Once I’ve fully downloaded all of the new patches I’ll upgrade one of my test VSA clusters and post about that, hopefully I’ll then be able to integrate the cluster security into AD 🙂

Thanks for reading!