Posts Tagged ‘performance’

Drive Support Package (DSP) 1.21 is available!

Travis Martin

Travis Martin

Travis Martin

Latest posts by Travis Martin (see all)

Isilon Drive Support Package (DSP) 1.21 is available and can be downloaded from the Dell EMC Online Support website.  See the Isilon Drive Support Package 1.21 Release Notes for complete product information, including known issues.

Download Information

System Requirements

You can update drive firmware by installing a drive support package only if your cluster meets the following system requirements:

Supported OneFS Versions

Your cluster must be running OneFS 7.1.1 or later. Use the following table to match your node type (left-side column) with the version of OneFS that you are running to determine which procedure you should follow to update your drive firmware. See the “System Requirements” section in the Isilon Drive Support Package 1.21 Release Notes for specific installation steps.

DSP and OneFS support table

Supported Nodes

The following nodes support drive support packages for updating drive firmware. See the OneFS requirements in the table above.

  • 108NL
  • HD400
  • S200, S210
  • X200, X210
  • X400, X410
  • NL400, NL410
  • F800
  • H400, H500, H600
  • A200, A2000

What’s New and Resolved

New features

  • Update the HGST Ultrastar C10K1200 300GB, 600GB, 900GB, and 1.2TB to firmware version AD40
  • Update the HGST Ultrastar 7K6000 2TB and 4TB to firmware version A5EITD40
  • Update the HGST Ultrastar 7K6000 6TB to firmware version APEITD40
  • Update the HGST Ultrastar He8 8TB to firmware version A4EITD40
  • Update the Seagate Enterprise 6TB to firmware version KFH5

Resolved Issues

The following issue has been resolved in the latest drive support package:

  • A No_SSD version of the drive support package was necessary to address the L3 cache corruption issue that is described in ETA 200097. There is now only one version of the drive support package. However, you must perform a simultaneous drive firmware update if you are running one of the following versions of OneFS:
    • OneFS 7.1.1.0 – 7.1.1.3
    • OneFS 7.2.0.0 – 7.2.0

If you are running one of those versions of OneFS, the procedure for performing a simultaneous drive firmware update is included in the Isilon Drive Support Package 1.21 Release Notes.

Upgrade Instructions

Refer to the “Known Issues” and “System Requirements” sections of the Isilon Drive Support Package 1.21 Release Notes before upgrading. Drive support package installation and drive firmware upgrades are strongly recommended. Each node in a cluster that requires a drive firmware upgrade must be upgraded individually (one node at a time).

Quick Start Lab Guide for adding capacity or performance in the EMC Isilon OneFS Simulator

Kirsten Gantenbein

Kirsten Gantenbein

Principal Content Strategist at EMC Isilon Storage Division
Kirsten Gantenbein
Kirsten Gantenbein

The EMC Isilon OneFS Simulator is a great resource for trying out OneFS on a virtual infrastructure. The OneFS Simulator is a free version of OneFS 7.2 that you can download for non-production purposes. In this simulated OneFS environment, you can get an idea of what it’s like to administer a full Isilon cluster installation.

After downloading and setting up the OneFS Simulator, take a look at our recently published Quick Start Lab Guide. This lab guide walks you through exercises for using the OneFS Simulator. The featured exercise in this guide helps you add capacity, CPU, and memory to your virtual EMC Isilon cluster by adding another node.

Leave feedback about this lab guide

This is the first lab guide for the OneFS Simulator that we’ve published. Please let us know what you think. If you like this guide, have feedback about the format, or suggestions for other quick start guides, please leave a comment or send an email to isicontent@emc.com.

Get help with OneFS Simulator set up

If you need help with the initial set up of OneFS Simulator on your virtual environment, watch this video:

Start a conversation about Isilon content

Have a question or feedback about Isilon content? Visit the online EMC Isilon Community to start a discussion. If you have questions or feedback about this blog, or comments about the video specifically, contact us at isi.knowledge@emc.com. To provide documentation feedback or request new content, contact isicontent@emc.com.

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The EMC Isilon Uptime Bulletin, reinvented

Kirsten Gantenbein

Kirsten Gantenbein

Principal Content Strategist at EMC Isilon Storage Division
Kirsten Gantenbein
Kirsten Gantenbein

When we launched the EMC® Isilon® Uptime Bulletin in 2013, each issue was published in a PDF format that could be downloaded from the EMC Online Support site. Because the Uptime Bulletin contains timely information, such as OneFS target code, tips, and the latest firmware releases, we wanted to deliver this information to our customers in a more direct way.

Beginning this year, new Uptime Bulletin content is published to the Uptime Information Hub on the Isilon online community. You can now locate useful information about best practices, OneFS patches, and the latest OneFS and firmware releases, at a glance. The Uptime Information Hub is continuously updated with new information. So be sure to bookmark this page and check it regularly.

New uptime OneFS topic articles

Every quarter, we develop Uptime Bulletin articles that offer tips and best practice information about using OneFS. Here is a summary of new articles that you can now read on the Uptime Information Hub.

  • OneFS MRs and How We Drive Continuous Improvements
    ToddDillon

    Todd Dillon

    Todd Dillon, Senior Director of Software Engineering, explains how Isilon Storage Division uses the EMC Total Customer Experience process to triage every customer-impacting event in OneFS that happens worldwide. Learn how this three-phase process helps to drive continuous improvements with quality assurance (QA) and how maintenance releases (MRs) are determined.

  • Planning OneFS Upgrades with Global Namespace Acceleration (GNA) Nodes
    GNA is a OneFS feature that helps you increase performance by using solid state drives (SSDs) to store metadata for read-only purposes. If you use the GNA feature and are planning to upgrade to OneFS 7.0 and later, there are important considerations you need to make. Learn how to verify that your cluster meets minimum requirements for GNA before you upgrade.
  • Performance Monitoring and Planning
    uptime performance article
    Basic performance measurement knowledge of your current Isilon cluster can help you in understanding how adding new volumes or workloads will impact performance. This article walks you through how to perform a workload analysis, and provides best practice information about when to perform this type of analysis.

If you have article feedback or comments, please leave a comment on the Isilon community.  You can also review the PDF versions of past issues of the Uptime Bulletin by visiting the EMC Online Support site.

Start a conversation about Isilon content

Have a question or feedback about Isilon content? Visit the online EMC Isilon Community to start a discussion. If you have questions or feedback about this blog, contact us at isi.knowledge@emc.com. To provide documentation feedback or request new content, contact isicontent@emc.com.

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How EMC Isilon InsightIQ helps keep your cluster running smoothly

Kirsten Gantenbein

Kirsten Gantenbein

Principal Content Strategist at EMC Isilon Storage Division
Kirsten Gantenbein
Kirsten Gantenbein

We highlighted a crucial cluster maintenance task in a recent blog post: monitoring cluster performance and storage capacity. Now, we’d like to take a closer look at InsightIQ™—a remarkably useful tool for monitoring your EMC® Isilon® cluster. As a licensed software module for the OneFS® operating system, InsightIQ makes it possible for you to monitor one or more clusters.

InsightIQ provides charts, graphs, and customized reports to help you understand how your cluster is performing. To learn how InsightIQ 3.0 works, watch the EMC Isilon InsightIQ Overview video, where Corporate Systems Engineer Jason Sturgeon describes the architecture of InsightIQ and shows you how to use InsightIQ reports.

How reports can help with monitoring

InsightIQ enables you to create customized reports to display data about clusters over specific periods of time. There are two general types of reports: performance reports and file system reports.

Performance reports

By monitoring cluster performance and data usage, you can help to ensure that your cluster runs smoothly. In the InsightIQ overview video, learn how to create a performance report to check cluster activity and a file system report to visualize data usage over time.

For example, if your cluster is running slowly, you can run a performance report and review the external network throughput rate. In the following figure, the performance report shows that one node is handling more network traffic than other nodes. With this information, you can redirect network traffic to other nodes and improve cluster performance.

A performance report that shows which node is handling the majority of network traffic.

A performance report in InsightIQ 3.0 that shows which node is handling the majority of network traffic.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

File system report

InsightIQ reports can also help you to monitor cluster data usage by generating a file system report. The video describes a use case where you can explore data growth in a directory over time. For example, after running a file system report you might notice that a directory is storing a large amount of data (see the following figure). If this data hasn’t been accessed for a long time, you can approach the directory owner to determine whether this data can be deleted to increase storage capacity.

A file system report that shows a directory storing a large amount of data.

A file system report in InsightIQ 3.0 that shows a directory storing a large amount of data.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For more information about reporting capabilities in InsightIQ, refer to the InsightIQ documentation on the EMC Online Support site (login required).

Start a conversation about Isilon content

Have a question or feedback about Isilon content? Visit the online EMC Isilon Community to start a discussion. If you have questions or feedback about this blog, contact us at isi.knowledge@emc.com. To provide documentation feedback or request new content, contact isicontent@emc.com.

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How EMC Isilon storage improves performance for EDA workflows

Kirsten Gantenbein

Kirsten Gantenbein

Principal Content Strategist at EMC Isilon Storage Division
Kirsten Gantenbein
Kirsten Gantenbein

200248437-001To develop the chips that go inside advanced technologies, such as smartphones and personal computers, engineers often rely on electronic design automation (EDA) software tools for chip design and testing.

As EDA projects and designs increase in complexity, the amount of project data increases as well. Similar to most industries, the EDA industry is facing challenges with managing the exponential growth of unstructured data while optimizing performance and storage efficiency.

The new technical white paper, “EMC Isilon NAS: Performance at Scale for Electronic Design Automation,” highlights how Isilon scale-out network attached storage (NAS) can alleviate the bottlenecks and inefficient use of storage space for EDA workflows running on traditional storage systems. The primary audience for this white paper includes engineers and executives working in the EDA industry. However, anyone that uses workflows requiring high levels of concurrent running jobs may also find this white paper to be useful.

For example, during the frontend phase of the EDA digital design workflow, EDA applications read and compile millions of small source files to build and simulate chip design. Jobs are typically run concurrently against a deep and wide directory structure, which creates a large amount of metadata overheard and high CPU usage on the storage system. This white paper illustrates how Isilon scale-out storage is more effective than traditional data storage at alleviating workflow performance issues, such as:

  • Metadata access: Using a centralized metadata server can become a bottleneck. Average metadata operations for a typical EDA workflow include 65 percent metadata access, 20 percent writes, and 15 percent data reads. Isilon uses a distributed metadata architecture and can store all metadata on solid-state drives (SSDs), reducing the latency for metadata operations when running concurrent jobs. For more information about EMC® Isilon® OneFS® SSD caching, refer to the white paper, “EMC Isilon OneFS SmartFlash: File System Caching Infrastructure.”
  • Run times for concurrent jobs: All nodes in an Isilon cluster work in parallel. OneFS automatically distributes jobs using SmartConnect™ to each node instead of running all the jobs against a single controller or requiring the manual distribution of jobs to controllers. Isilon recommends that you work with an Isilon representative to determine the number of nodes that will best serve your workflow.

You can learn more about Isilon scale-out NAS architecture, storage efficiency, and data management by referring to “EMC Isilon NAS: Performance at Scale for Electronic Design Automation.”

Start a conversation about Isilon content

Have a question or feedback about Isilon content? Visit the online EMC Isilon Community to start a discussion. If you have questions or feedback about this blog, send an email to isi.knowledge@emc.com. To provide documentation feedback or request new content, send an email to isicontent@emc.com.

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Understanding Global Namespace Acceleration (GNA)

Colin Torretta

Colin Torretta

Senior Technical Writer
Colin Torretta

Latest posts by Colin Torretta (see all)

With the proliferation of solid state drives (SSDs) in data centers across the world, companies are finding more and more ways to take advantage of the high speed and low latency of SSDs in unique and exciting ways. Within the EMC® Isilon® OneFS® operating system, one of the innovative ways Isilon is using SSDs is for Global Namespace Acceleration (GNA). GNA is a feature of OneFS that increases performance across your entire cluster by using SSDs to store file metadata for read-only purposes, even in node pools that don’t contain dedicated SSDs.

GNA is managed through the SmartPools™ software module of the OneFS web administration interface. SmartPools enables storage tiering and the ability to aggregate different type of drives (such as SSDs and HDDs) into node pools. When GNA is enabled, all SSDs in the cluster are used to accelerate metadata reads across the entire cluster. Isilon recommends one SSD per node as a best practice, with two SSDs per node being preferred. However, customers with a mix of drive types can benefit from the metadata read acceleration with GNA regardless of how SSDs are placed across the cluster. When possible, GNA stores metadata in the same node pool containing the associated data. If there are no dedicated SSDs in the node pool, however, a random selection is made to any node pool containing SSDs. This means as long as SSDs are available somewhere in the cluster, a node pool can benefit from GNA.

For more information about GNA, see the “Storage Pools” section of the OneFS web administration and CLI administration guides.

Important considerations when using GNA

Here are some important considerations to keep in mind when determining whether GNA can benefit your workflow.

  • Use GNA for cold data workflows. Certain workflows benefit more from the performance gains that GNA provides. For example, workflows that require heavy indexing of “cold data”—which is archive data on stored on disks that is left unmodified for extended periods of time—benefit the most from the increased speed of metadata read acceleration. GNA does not provide any additional benefit to customers who already have solely SSD clusters, because all metadata is already stored on SSDs.
  • SSDs must account for a minimum of 1.5% of the total space on your cluster. To use GNA, 20% of the nodes in your cluster must contain SSDs, and SSDs must account for a minimum of 1.5% of the total space on your cluster, with 2% being strongly recommended. This ensures that GNA does not overwhelm the SSDs on your cluster. Failure to maintain these requirements will result in GNA being disabled and metadata read acceleration being lost. To enable GNA again, metadata copies will have to be rebuilt, which can take time.
  • Consider how new nodes affect the total cluster space. Adding new nodes to your cluster affects the percentage of nodes with SSDs and total available space on SSDs. Keep this in mind whenever you add new nodes to avoid GNA being disabled and the metadata copy being immediately deleted. SSDs must account for a minimum of 1.5% of total space on your cluster.
  • Do not remove the extra metadata mirror. When GNA is enabled, an SSD is set aside as an additional metadata mirror, in addition to the existing mirrors set by your requested protection, which is determined in SmartPools settings. A common misunderstanding is that the SSD is an “extra” mirror and it can be safely removed without affecting your cluster. In reality, this extra metadata mirror is critical to the functionality of GNA, and removing it causes OneFS to rebuild the mirror on another drive. See the graphic below for information on the number of metadata mirrors per requested protection when using GNA. For more information about requested protection, see the “Storage Pools” section of the OneFS Web Administration Guide.
The number of metadata mirrors required by GNA per requested protection level in OneFS.

The number of metadata copies required by GNA to achieve read acceleration per requested protection level in OneFS.

 

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Two EMC World 2014 sessions about EMC Isilon cluster performance

Kirsten Gantenbein

Kirsten Gantenbein

Principal Content Strategist at EMC Isilon Storage Division
Kirsten Gantenbein
Kirsten Gantenbein

EMC World 2014 is here! This event features many valuable EMC® Isilon® sessions that can help you learn more about your cluster. For example, you can learn about advanced troubleshooting techniques, get a hands-on demonstration of Isilon OneFS 7.1, or learn how to deploy Hadoop on an Isilon cluster in a lab setting.

You can also learn how to maximize the performance of your Isilon cluster by attending these sessions:

“Highest Performance Scale-Out NAS”

Are you new to Isilon and want to better understand which Isilon nodes are best suited for a particular storage workload? Kip Cranford, Technical Marketing Manager, will provide a performance overview of the Isilon scale-out NAS product family in his session, “Highest Performance Scale-Out NAS.” He’ll cover the different performance and capacity characteristics of Isilon S200, X200, and X400 nodes and describe how these characteristics are best suited for specific storage workloads.

If you’re unable to attend EMC World and would like to learn more about Isilon node types, watch the video, “EMC Isilon Site Preparation and Planning: Node Selection” for more information.

“Maximizing Performance from Your Isilon Clusters”

If you’re already familiar with OneFS and want to improve the performance of your current cluster, attend the session, “Maximizing Performance from Your Isilon Clusters.” Dan Sledz from Isilon Engineering will cover important performance concepts and techniques that apply to your Isilon environment, such as:

  • Caching
    Learn about the importance of caching in OneFS and how memory is shared on a node.
  • Flash Storage
    Learn how OneFS stores meta-data on Flash storage, and the strategies for caching.
  • Streaming
    Learn how to maximize streaming reads.
  • Tuning
    Learn tuning techniques to apply to your cluster.

For more information about EMC World

For more information about session dates, times, and locations, visit the Session Catalog on the EMC World 2014 website.