You are on page 1of 12

Can you describe SAN in your won word?

A storage area network (SAN) is a high-speed special-purpose network (or subnetw ork) that interconnects different kinds of data storage devices with associated data servers on behalf of a larger network of users. Typically, a storage area n etwork is part of the overall network of computing resources for an enterprise. A storage area network is usually clustered in close proximity to other computin g resources such as IBM Power5 boxes but may also extend to remote locations for backup and archival storage, using wide area network carrier technologies such as ATM or SONET . A storage area network can use existing communication technology such as IBM s opt ical fiber ESCON or it may use the newer Fibre Channel technology. Some SAN syst em integrators liken it to the common storage bus (flow of data) in a personal c omputer that is shared by different kinds of storage devices such as a hard disk or a CD-ROM player. SANs support disk mirroring, backup and restore, archival and retrieval of archi ved data, data migration from one storage device to another, and the sharing of data among different servers in a network. SANs can incorporate subnetworks with network-attached storage (NAS) systems. So you mention NAS, but What is NAS? Network-attached storage (NAS) is hard disk storage that is set up with its own network address rather than being attached to the department computer that is se rving applications to a network s workstation users. By removing storage access an d its management from the department server, both application programming and fi les can be served faster because they are not competing for the same processor r esources. The network-attached storage device is attached to a local area networ k (typically, an Ethernet network) and assigned an IP address. File requests are mapped by the main server to the NAS file server. Network-attached storage consists of hard disk storage, including multi-disk RAI D systems, and software for configuring and mapping file locations to the networ k-attached device. Network-attached storage can be a step toward and included as part of a more sophisticated storage system known as a storage area network (SA N). NAS software can usually handle a number of network protocols, including Microso ft s Internetwork Packet Exchange and NetBEUI, Novell s Netware Internetwork Packet Exchange, and Sun Microsystems Network File System. Configuration, including the setting of user access priorities, is usually possible using a Web browser. What is SMTP and how it works? SMTP (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol) is a TCP/IP protocol used in sending and re ceiving e-mail. However, since it is limited in its ability to queue messages at the receiving end, it is usually used with one of two other protocols, POP3 or IMAP, that let the user save messages in a server mailbox and download them peri odically from the server. In other words, users typically use a program that use s SMTP for sending e-mail and either POP3 or IMAP for receiving e-mail. On Unixbased systems, sendmail is the most widely-used SMTP server for e-mail. A commer cial package, Sendmail, includes a POP3 server. Microsoft Exchange includes an S MTP server and can also be set up to include POP3 support. SMTP usually is implemented to operate over Internet port 25. Do you have any idea about NAT?

Allows a company to combine multiple ISDN connections into a single Internet connection. WinDump can be used. there s no possibility of conflict with IP addresses used by other comp anies and organizations. Dynamic addressing simplifies network administration because the software keeps track of IP addresses rather than requiring an administrator to manage the task. BSD. the device s IP address can even change while it is still connected. A NAT box located where the LAN meet s the Internet makes all necessary IP address translations. called Protocol Data Units. SNMP works by sending messages. Since they re used intern ally only. Many ISPs use dynamic IP addressing f or dial-up users.Short for Network Address Translation. store data a bout themselves in Management Information Bases and return this data to the SNMP requesters. to d ifferent parts of a network. What is software RAID Levels do? Redundant Arrays of Independent Disks (RAID) is formally defined as a method to store data on any type of disk medium. a device can have a different IP address every time it connects to the network. What does SNMP stands for? Short for Simple Network Management Protocol. a protocol for assigning dynamic IP addresses to devices on a network. Explain DHCP and its uses to an environment? Short for Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol. In some systems. With dynamic addressing. a set of protocols for managing co mplex networks. DHCP also sup ports a mix of static and dynamic IP addresses. What are the benefits of fibre channel SANs? . Mac OS X. This means that a new computer can be added to a network without the hassle of manually assigning it a unique IP address. LDAP The Light Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) defines a standard method for accessi ng and updating information in a directory (a database) either locally or remote ly in a client-server model. it s a port of tcpdump to Window s. called Agents. It allows the user to intercept and display TCP/IP and other packets being transmitted or received over a network to which the computer is attached. Tcpdu mp works on most Unix-like platforms: Linux. Solaris. What do you know about TCPDump? TCPdump is a common computer network debugging tool that runs under the command line. NAT serves three main purposes: Provides a type of firewall by hiding internal IP addresses Enables a company to use more internal IP addresses. On Windows. an Internet standard that enables a local -area network (LAN) to use one set of IP addresses for internal traffic and a se cond set of addresses for external traffic. You must have a root or super user authority to use TCPdumps in UNIX like envrio nment. SNMP-compliant devices. HP-UX and A IX among others.

ANSI standard approval occurred in 1994. Heterogeneous SAN management provides a single point of control for all devices on the SAN. bu siness-critical data center environments. Fibre Channel SANs also greatly reduce the number of physical devices and disparate systems that m ust be purchased and managed. 4 GB) communications and is the foundation for the majority of SAN installations throughout the world. particularly in high-performance. and performance. usually in the corporate dat a center. How is fibre channel different from ISCSI? Fibre Channel and iSCSI each have a distinct place in the IT infrastructure as S AN alternatives to DAS. and restore data more quickly. What environment is most suitable for fibre channel SANs? Typically. reduced management costs. scalability. cons olidation. In addition. 4 GB Fibre Channel systems are ideally suited for applications that need to quickly transfer large amounts of data suc h as remote replication across a SAN. lowering costs and freeing personnel to do other tasks. higher reliability due to fe wer SAN components (switch and HBA ports) required. modeling and re ndering. The result is a faster. iSCSI is generally used to provide SANs for business appl ications in smaller regional or departmental data centers. as well as applications that require high-bandwidth perfo rmance such as medical imaging. investm ent protection with backward compatibility to 2 GB. higher data ava ilability. Fibre Channel SANs provide significant advantages ov er direct-attached storage through improved storage utilization. and large deployments began in 1998. widely deployed technology with a proven tr ack record and a very large installed base.Fibre Channel SANs are the de facto standard for storage networking in the corpo rate data center because they provide exceptional reliability. more scalable. Fibre Channel is a mature. including LAN-free and server-free backup models. How long has fibre channel been around? Development started in 1988. Fibre Channel SANs are most suitable for large data centers running b usiness-critical data. and highly scalable capacity and performanc e. By providing flexible connectivity options and resource sharing. What are the benefits of 4gb fibre channel? Benefits include twice the performance with little or no price increase. What customer problems do fibre channel SANs solve? The increased performance of Fibre Channel enables a highly effective backup and recovery approach. the availability of SAN kits. Fibre Chan nel SAN solutions can easily scale to meet the most demanding performance and av ailability requirements. The reduced costs of Fibre Channel c omponents. and the ability to replicate . 4 GB technology is shipping today. Fibre Channel generally provides high performance and hi gh availability for business-critical applications. . and widely deployed solution for high-speed (1 GB. which can dramatically lower capital expenditures. Fibre Channel SANs continue to grow an d will be enhanced for a long time to come. back up. 2 GB. In contrast. and more reliable backup and recovery solution. What is the future of fibre channel SANs? Fibre Channel is a well-established. and large databases. safe. and large databases. and the next generation of Fibre Channe l (4 GB) are helping to fuel that growth. the Fibre Channel roadmap includes plans to double performance every three years. streaming media. streaming video on demand.

RAID 0 does not implement error chec king so any error is unrecoverable. R5. and LANs are tune d for a fast user response to messaging requests. Provides improved performance and additional storage but no fault tolerance. R0 Striped set without parity/[Non-Redundant Array]. For environments consisting of many midrange or low-end servers. R4. Generally customer chooses R5 to achieve better redundancy and speed and it is c ost effective. givi ng this type of arrangement huge bandwidth. but greater risk of data loss R1 Mirrored set without parity. Define RAID? Which one you feel is good choice? RAID (Redundant array of Independent Disks) is a technology to achieve redundanc y with faster I/O. advantageous for server-less backups. arbitrated loop. the data is broken into fragments. Name some of the SAN topologies ? Point-to-point. More disks in the array means higher bandwid th. . With a SAN. Using RAID 1 with a separate controller for each disk is sometimes called duplexing. The fragments are written to their respective disks simultaneously on the same sector. an IP SAN solution often delivers the most appropriate price/performance. Provides fault tolerance from disk errors and failure of all but one of the driv es. we can have the . The number of fragm ents is dictated by the number of disks in the drive. There are Many Levels of RAID to meet different needs of the customer which are: mirrored [RAID 1] (duplicate copies on separate drives) . Fibre Channel is a better f it than iSCSI. What s the need for separate network for storage why LAN cannot be used? LAN hardware and operating systems are geared to user traffic. Increased read performance occurs when using a multi-threaded operating syst em that supports split seeks. and switched fabric topologies. which becomes more likely with more disks in t he array. R6. R1.parity protected [RAID 5](extra data written to identify errors). These can be used in combination to deliver the balance of performance and relia bility that the user requires. Arr ay continues to operate so long as at least one drive is functioning. This allows smaller sections of the entire chunk of data to be read off the drive in parallel. very small performance reduction when writing. R3. or . the storage units can be secured separately from the servers and tot ally apart from the user network enhancing storage access in data blocks (bulk d ata transfers). Any disk failure destroys the array.When should I deploy fibre channel instead of ISCSI? For environments consisting of high-end servers that require high bandwidth or d ata center environments with business-critical data. What are the advantages of RAID? Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks Depending on how we configure the array.striped [RAID 0] (interleaved across several drives). R10. A single disk failure destroys the entire array because when data is w ritten to a RAID 0 drive.

This mechanism provides an improved performance and fault tolerance similar to R AID 5. Each disk ope rates independently which allows I/O requests to be performed in parallel. Upon drive failure. The key difference from RAID 1+0 is that RAID 0+1 creates a second strip ed set to mirror a primary striped set. but the array is not destroyed by a single drive fa ilure. drive f ailure requires replacement. so any disk failure saves data loss. This RAID level is most preferred for high performance and high data protection because rebuilding of RAID 1+0 is less time consuming in comparison to RAID 0+1. The single parity disk is a bottle-neck for writing since every write requires updat ing the parity data. One minor benefit is the dedicated parity disk allows the p arity drive to fail and operation will continue without parity or performance pe nalty. so any disk failure saves the data loss but it makes whole stripe unava ilable. but with a dedicated parity disk rather than rotated parity stripes. Du al parity gives time to rebuild the array without the data being at risk if one drive. files can be distributed between multiple disks. In a fai led disk situation RAID 1+0 performs better because all the remaining disks cont inue to be used. but no more. R6 Striped set with dual distributed Parity. What is the difference between RAID 0+1 and RAID 1+0? RAID 0+1 (Mirrored Stripped) In this RAID level all the data is saved on stripped volumes which are in turn m irrored.R3 Striped set with dedicated parity/Bit interleaved parity. thoug h data transfer speeds can suffer due to the type of parity. Distributed parity requires all drives but one to be present to operate. The key difference from RAID 0+1 i s that RAID 1+0 creates a striped set from a series of mirrored drives. The error detection is achieved through dedicated parity and is stored in a separate. In this RAID level if one disk is failed full mirror is marked as inactive and data is saved only one stripped volume. R4 Block level parity. Provides fault tolerance from two drive failures. any subsequent reads can be calculated from the distr ibuted parity such that the drive failure is masked from the end user. This becomes increasingly important because l arge-capacity drives lengthen the time needed to recover from the failure of a s ingle drive. R5 Striped set with distributed parity. especia lly for high availability systems. The array can sustain multiple drive losses so long as no mirro r loses both its drives. Identical to RAID 3. Single parity RAID levels are vulnerable to data loss until the fai led drive is rebuilt: the larger the drive. When JBOD s are used? Just a Bunch of Disks . This makes larger RAID groups more practical. The array continues to operate with one or more drives failed in the same mirror set. single disk u nit. fails before the rebuild is complete. but does block-level striping instead of byte-level stripin g. RAID 1+0 (Stripped Mirrored) In this RAID level all the data is saved on mirrored volumes which are in turn s tripped. array continues to operate wit h up to two failed drives. but if drives fail on both sides o f the mirror the data on the RAID system is lost. The array will have data loss in the event of a second drive failure and is vulnerable un til the data that was on the failed drive is rebuilt onto a replacement drive. In this setup. the longer the rebuild will take.

but do n t include the mirroring. striping. . FC Controllers. which are cost effective & which are to be used for the client s requirements.It is a collection of disks that share a common connection to the server. manageable unit of storage JBOD: Just a Bunch of Disks Drives independently attached to the I/O channel Scalable. NAS Network attached Storage It accesses data on file level and produces space to host in form of shared netw ork folder. Server clustering. SAN Storage Area Network It accesses data on block level and produces space to host in form of disk. While answering people do NOT portray clearly what they mean & what advantages e ach of them have. LAN-free backup. but requires server to manage multiple volumes Do not provide protection in case of drive failure What is a HBA? Host bus adapters (HBAs) are needed to connect the server (host) to the storage. Storage consolidation. Heterogeneous data sharing. or parity facilities that RAID systems do. striping Self-contained. JBOD s. Differentiate RAID & JBOD? RAID: Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks Fault-tolerant grouping of disks that server sees as a single disk volume Combination of parity-checking. What are the advantages of SAN? Massively extended scalability. Greatly enhanced device connectivity. SAN is Fabric based and NAS is Etherne t based. What is a typical storage area network consists of ntation in a small business setup? if we consider it for impleme If we consider any small business following are essentials components of SAN: Fabric Switch. mirroring. What is the difference b/w SAN and NAS? The basic difference between SAN and NAS. but these capabilities are available with host-based software. Server-less (active-fabric) backup. Disaster recovery Remote mirroring.

0.Small Computer System Interface. 4. McData. 13. What is the most critical component in SAN? Each component has its own criticality with respect to business needs of a compa ny. 2. IBM Tivoli Storage Manager. 5. How do you install device drivers for the HBA first time during OS installation? In some scenarios you are supposed to install Operating System on the drives con nected thru SCSI HBA or SCSI RAID Controllers. if you are installing windows. SCSI. you need to press F6 during the instal lation of OS and provide the driver disk or CD which came along with HBA.There a re switches starting from 16 port to 32 ports which connect 16 or 32 machine nod es etc. HBA Host Bus Adaptor. 10.Can you briefly explain each of these Storage area components? Fabric Switch: It s a device which interconnects multiple network devices . Which one is the Default ID for SCSI HBA? Generally the default ID for SCSI HBA is 7. 8. that time you need to supply drivers e xternally. 3. Veritas Volumemanger. If you are installing Linux you need to type What is Array? Array is a group of Independent physical disks to configure any Volumes or RAID volumes. Highest priority of SCSI is ID 7 and lowest ID is 8. linux dd for installing any driver. 15. What is the highest and lowest priority of SCSI? There are 16 different ID s which can be assigned to SCSI device 7. vendors who manufacture these kind of switches are Brocade. 12. CA Unicenter. 1. 9. 11. but most of the OS will not be up dated with drivers for those controllers. 6. Can you describe at-least 3 troubleshooting scenarios which you have come across in detail? SCENARIO 1: How do you find/debug when there is error while working SCSI devices ? In our daily SAN troubleshooting there are many management and configuration too ls we use them to see when there is a failure with target device or initiator de vice. 14. How is a SAN managed? There are many management software s used for managing SAN s to name a few: Santricity. .

Which are the 4 types of SAN architecture types ? Core-edge.? There are many possibilities that might cause this problem. In those cases you repl ace the disks with working ones. Cascade. Another reason might be slots you connected your controller to a slot which migh t not be supported. How many minimum drives are required to create R5 (RAID 5)? You need to have at least 3 disk drives to create R5. Generally you can see this because in most of the testing companies they use sam e hardware to test different series of same hardware type. or some of the drives taking long time to spin-up. One more probable reason is if you have flashed the firmware for different OEM s o n the same hardware. To get rid of this the flash utilities will be having option to erase all the pr evious and EEPROM and boot block entry option. Try to connect with other types of slots. You can always flash back to exact hardware type. In such case s these utilities will not come to help. Which command is used in linux to know the driver version of any hardware device ? dmesg. With serial port debug connector cable you can collect the debug information with hyper term inal software. but the POST information while booting the server is sho wing as 500X what could be the problem? First you should make sure your hardware is of which series. you can find out th is in the product website. One of the reason mi ght be you are using bad drives that cannot be repaired. even the vendor information on th e Tape drive says 700X. . SCENARIO 3: I am using tape drive series 700X. What they do is they flash the different series firmware. Can you name some of the states of RAID array? There are states of RAID arrays that represent the status of the RAID arrays whi ch are given below: Online. Use that option to rectify the pr oblem. Full-Mesh. To debug this kind of information most of the controller will be implemented with 3-pin serial debug port. Partial-Mesh. SCENARIO 2: I am having an issue with a controller its taking lot of time to boo t and detect all the drives connected how can I solve this.Some time it is even hard to troubleshoot some of the things such as media error s in the drives.

some of them a re: DLT: Digital Linear Tape technology for tape backup/archive of networks and serv ers. What is HA? HA High Availability is a technology to achieve failover with very less latency. Storage virtualization is commonly used in a storage area network (SAN). and Seag ate. 4 bytes). and in less time. What are the protocols used in physical/datalink and network layer of SAN? Ethernet. Data Payload (encapsulate SCSI instruction can be 0-2112 bytes in length). Describe in brief the composition of FC Frame? Start of the Frame locator Frame header (includes destination id and source id. and recovery more easily. CRC (error checking. DLT technology addresses midrange to high-end tape backup requirements. regardl ess of their physical layout or location. a new standard tape format developed by HP. by disguising the actual complexity of the SAN. Storage virtualization helps the storage administrator perform the tasks of backup. Virtualization is the pooling of physi cal storage from multiple network storage devices into what appears to be a sing le storage device that is managed from a central console.Degraded. Failed. Can you name some of the available tape media types? There are many types of tape media available to back up the data. So to achieve this. Its a practical requirement of data centers these days when customers expect th e servers to be running 24 hours on all 7 days around the whole 365 days a year usually referred as 24x7x365. SCSI. What is storage virtualization? Storage virtualization is amalgamation of multiple n/w storage devices into sing le storage unit. archiving. AIT: Advanced Intelligent Tape. The management of storage dev ices can be tedious and time-consuming. It is the techniqu e of managing and presenting storage devices and resources functionally. 24 bytes/6 words). Rebuilding. a redundant infrastructure is created to make sure if one database server or if one app server fails there is a replica Database or Appserver ready to take-over the operations. End of Frame (1 byte). IBM. LTO: Linear Tape Open. What is virtualization? Virtualization is logical representation of physical devices. Fibre Channel. End customer never experiences any outage when there is a HA network infrastructure. a helical scan technology developed by Sony for .

tape backup/archive of networks and servers. What is a Fabric? Interconnection of Fibre Channel Switches. Single disk array can support multiple points of connection to the network. of 25 mts). . What is the type of Encoding used in Fibre Channel? 8b/10b. as the encoding technique is able to detect all most all the bit errors What are the main constrains of SCSI in storage networking? Deployment distance (max. Can we assign a hot spare to R0 (RAID 0) array? No. What is the difference between LUN and WWN? LUN: Unique number that is assigned to each storage device or partition of the s torage that the storage can support. con trollers. Fibre Channel IP (FCIP). specifically addressing midrange to high-end backup requirements. Broadcast Servers. What are the services provided by Fabric to all the nodes? Fabric Login. since R0 is not redundant array. What are different types of protocols used in transportation and session layers of SAN? Fibre Channel Protocol (FCP). failure of any disks results in failure of the entire array so we cannot rebuild the hot spare for the R0 array. Fabric Address Notification. Registered state change notification. Number of devices that can be interconnected (16). Name the features of SCSI-3 standard? QAS: Quick arbitration and selection. Domain Validation. SNS. What is Multipath I/O? Fault tolerant technique where. there is more than one physical path between the CPU in the computer systems and its main storage devices through the buses. Internet SCSI (iSCSI). switches and other bridge devices connecting them. CRC: Cyclic redundancy check. What is disk array? Set of high performance storage disks that can store several terabytes of data.

What are the two major classification of zoning? Two types of zoning are: Software Zoning. What are different levels of zoning? Port Level zoning. What is the purpose of disk array? Probability of unavailability of data stored on the disk array due to single poi nt failure is totally eliminated. What is zoning? Fabric management service that can be used to create logical subsets of devices within a SAN. How does FC Switch maintain the addresses? FC Switch uses simple name server (SNS) to maintain the mapping table.WWN: 64bit address that is hard coded into a fibre channel HBA and this is used to identify individual port (N_Port or F_Port) in the fabric. Loop. What are the 5 states of Arbitrary Loop in FC? Loop Loop Loop Open Initialization. FC Framing and Flow control. Port Selector. Switched Fabric Loop. What are the different topologies in Fibre Channel? Point-to-Point. . FC Upper Level Protocol Mapping. Arbitrary Loop. arbitration. FC Encoder and Decoder. Hardware Zoning. Monitoring. Device Level zoning. This enables portioning of resources for management and access con trol purpose. Protocol Level zoning. What are the 3 prominent characteristics of SAS Protocol? Native Command Queuing (NCQ. WWN Level zoning.) Port Multiplier. What are the layers of Fibre Channel Protocol? FC Physical Media. FC Common Services. LUN Level zoning.

.Close Loop. What is LUN Masking? A method used to create an exclusive storage area and access control. What is hot-swapping? Devices are allowed to be removed and inserted into a system without turning off the system. And this c an be achieved by storage device control program. What is snapshot? A snapshot of data object contains an image of data at a particular point of tim e.