Storage News Week Issue 6

I’m off to Singapore soon for some (hopefully) awesome training on the new Compellent OS and Fluid Cache for SAN so I will do a writeup about that when I get back. But before that I get to go to the F1 in Melbourne this weekend, can’t wait. First race of the season and Ricciardo should do well. If you are around the track ping me on twotter.

By |March 11th, 2014|News, Storage|0 Comments

Storage News Week Issue 5

Stuff from around the place from these last 7 days. A bit light on as we’ve been busy saying farewell to a lot of friends recently but time to rock out with our sock out. Also, I send out an internal version of this and it was very internal heavy, like a … umm .. no, better not – Danger Zone. Speaking of Danger Zone, I just discovered I had missed the ENTIRE season 4 of Archer. Seems like a sad thing but now I can sit down and watch the whole lot in one sitting. Babu! he remembers me!

By |February 26th, 2014|News, Storage|0 Comments

Dell Enterprise Forum – Seminar Series is travelling around Australia.

The Australian Dell Enterprise Forum (DEF) last year was a fantastic day down in Melbourne. Heaps of good sessions, lots of customers and maybe one or two chilled beverages. The only downside is that because it was down south a lot of customers in the other states and capital cities couldn’t attend.

Update: The Brisbane sessions have been moved to April 10th.

Good news everybody … Dell is running half day DEF sessions around the country and New Zealand over the new three weeks. You can sing up using the this link.


Thursday 10th April (8.00am – 1.00pm) Pullman King George Square


Tuesday 11th March (8.00am – 1.00pm) Intercontinental Hotel


Thursday 20th March (8.00am – 1.00pm) Auckland Pullman

Storage and Server Masterclass

You might have noticed that the DEF Seminar Series only runs for half a day until lunch. After lunch at each location we will be hosting both EqualLogic and Server masterclasses for anyone who is interested. The EqualLogic class is different this time as it will be covering whats new with the lastest PS6210 hardware and SAN HQ v3 monitoring and management.

Register here


Tuesday 4th March Venue: Pullman King George Square. 1:00pm – 4:30pm


Tuesday 11th March Venue: InterContinental. 1:00pm – 4:30pm


Tuesday 18th March Venue: Crown Promenade. 1:00pm – 4:30pm


Thursday 20th March Venue: Pullman. 1:00pm – 4:30pm

I’ll be at the Brisbane one so hope to see you there.


By |February 24th, 2014|DEF, EqualLogic, Storage|0 Comments

Storage News Week Issue 3

Issue 3

This crazy theme I am using doesn’t like it if I just launch into a list of goodness without some verbage before the list. Pity I can’t think of anything to write…

By |February 22nd, 2014|News, Storage|0 Comments

Storage News Week Issue 2

Issue 2

More links and info, mostly Dell stuff but some other bits I see around the web – mainly twitter. Did you know that the original way to resuscitate someone that had drowned was to blow smoke up their ass? link here

By |February 22nd, 2014|News, Storage|0 Comments

Storage News Week Issue 1

Issue 1

One of my new years resolutions was to try and get more information sharing happening within my immediate team. Often I have to work hard to get the right information, either sitting on calls, wading through the web and twitter . So Im now just sending out a little email at work with all the things I find or I get sent. Some is internal stuff but most isn’t but hopefully you’ll find it useful.

This is the first mail from about 3 weeks ago so I’ll post a few today until I catch up.

  • New Best Practices whitepaper: #VMware ESXi NIC Optimization with EqualLogic #DellStorage
  • Launching today is the Compellent Flash and Dense online demo (internal only). If you want to see it in action just holla.
  • Customer facing List of all the Compellent Tech Docs on Techcenter
  • Dell EqualLogic SAN HeadQuarters v3.0 is available for download on the Dell EqualLogic Customer Support site.
  • InfoWorld just awarded its Editor’s Choice award to Compellent Storage Center 6.4.
  • New Best Practices whitepaper: Configuring DCB with #WindowsServer and EqualLogic Storage Arrays #DellStorage
  • The popular Dell Networking MXL and IOA blade interconnects have just gotten even better! We are announcing the FC Flex I/O Module that plugs in the MXL and IOA blades taking their capability to a new height. With just a simple plug-in, this module enables native Fibre Channel alongside Ethernet right from the M1000e chassis.
  • Nexcenta News. SANdisk have just pumped a fair bit of cash into Nexcenta. –
  • The Register week in Storage, a great roundup of whats been happening –
  • ACP – Access Control Policies in EQL v7
  • Want to try out ViPR? Free download from EMC
  • Lighter note. Build with Chrome. Build lego structures around the world in your browser. Pretty cool actually.
  • Interesting Blog – Why EMC shold have bought IBM’s server business
By |February 22nd, 2014|News, Storage|0 Comments

Are you DEF? Dell Enterprise Forum 2013 in Australia only a couple of months away

Click here to register for the event.

It’s that time of year again. Dell is hosting our big Australian tech day in Melbourne on the 19th of November. Last year it was Storage focused, this year it’s been expanded to include the less important but still useful parts of the business like Network & Servers Smile (Can you tell I’m a storage guy?)

Actually, it’s going to be a one day showcase of all things Dell Enterprise from End User Compute to Data Protection to HPC and our new Flash Optimized Compellent.

It’s a traditional tech day format, keynote and then heaps of breakout sessions for different streams depending what you care about.

One thing that is great for this DEF is the amount of big names and Execs from Asia and the US coming over to present like:

  • Mike Clemm – or Mr Compellent to you. He designed the Data Progression technology in Compellent
  • Chad Fenner – I haven’t met chad yet but I’ve been told there is nothing he doesn’t know about blades
  • Emily Rund – ALL things NAS and FluidFS

As well as a bunch of other guys who know their stuff.

I will be helping out with all the blogging and twitter stuff again this year. If you are a Melbourne based tech blogger feel free to reach out to me and we’ll get you involved.One idea at the moment is we will set up either a specific lunch or beers for the bloggers and give them one-on-one time with the guys that drive our product development. You’ll be able to ask the tough questions that you or your readership want answered.

eg. Why does VSAN have a big V? Í’ve had years of writing small ones with vSphere, why mess with me now. It’s like Apple releasing the IWatch, instead of iWatch. WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS??? WHHHHHY?

You get the idea. Best bet to get me is via twitter @danmoz or my email is – yes that is a 1, don’t ask….

See you there.


By |October 3rd, 2013|DEF, DSF, Storage|0 Comments

EqualLogic Software Versions July 2013

Alvin Kho is one of the Dell Enterprise Technologists based in Asia. He maintains a fantastic internal document on all things EqualLogic and  has graciously let me use some of his content on my blog – so many  thanks to Alvin.

There are two sections, all the latest software releases and then a plethora of technical documents and whitepapers to warm you up during the cool winter nights. I’ll try and post new content whenever he does an update .. try.

EQL Software Family and Versioning

This is the main reason I wanted to put this up on the web. A single place to see all the latest recommended versions for EqualLogic software. One of the cool things about EQL is that once you buy it, everything is licensed so you get access to all the software and new features as they are released.

This is a wide table and it breaks the formatting of my site but it’s worth it.

EQL Software Category Latest Version Release Date Comment
Firmware 4.3.x Generation 4.3.8 17-Jan-11  
5.0.x Generation 5.0.8 14-Sep-11 New GUI starting from 5.x. Support VMware VAAI
5.1.x Generation 5.1.2 21-Oct-11 New 3TB drive, Auto-tiering, DCB, FS7500, AD integration features started in this version
5.2.x Generation 5.2.8 17-Jun-13 new 10GbE controller (PS6110 & PS4110 series) support with bug fixes
6.x Generation 6.0.5 17-Jun-13 Added sync replication support plus other features (e.g. UNMAP, snapshot borrowing, etc.)
Language Pack for Group Manager 6.x Generation 6.0 or above 17-Oct-12 EQL Group Manager GUI multiple languages support – including French, German, Japanese, Korean, Simplified Chinese and Spanish
HIT For Microsoft 2.x 2.2.1 Jun-07 Still can support Windows 2000 server
3.x 3.5.1 Jan-11 This is the version added PowerShell support (not for support W2K server)
– if support SQL Server 2000 edition is necessary, using HIT/ME version 3.1.2
4.x 4.5.0 18-Dec-12 Support Windows Server 2012, Windows 8, SharePoint and new features in EQL fw 6
– if support for Exchange 2003, SQL 2005 is necessary, using HIT/ME version 4.0

– not support for Windows Server 2003
HIT For VMware 2.x (ASM/VE) 2.0.5 May-10 Support EQL firmware v3.2 or higher
(Both VMware ESX 3.5 and 4.x are supported by this release)
3.x 3.1.2 28-Jun-12 Support vSphere 4.1 and 5.0 – provide vCenter plug-in appliance support
(not backward compatible to ESX 3.5 and 4.0)
– support EQL firmware 6.0
Virtual Storage Manager for VMware 3.x v3.5.2 2-Apr-13 Support EQL firmware v5.0.2 or higher
VMware vCenter Server™ 5.0, 5.1
VMware ESX™ Server 4.1, 5.0, 5.1
VMware View™ 4.5, 4.6, 5.0
MEM for VMware 1.1.x 1.1.2 3-Dec-12 Design to work with vSphere 4.1, 5.0 and 5.1. Request EQL firmware 5.2 or higher.
SRM for VMware
1.x 1.0.6 16-Jun-12 Support EQL firmware v5.0.2 or higher
Support VMware SRM V4.1.1 and higher (V4.x only)
2.x 2.2.0 11-Sep-12 Support EQL firmware v5.0.2 or higher
Support VMware SRM v5.0 & 5.1
(not backward compatible with previous version of SRM)
HIT for Linux 1.x 1.2.0 1-Nov-12 Support EQL firmware v5.0 or higher (support EQL firmware v6 new features)
(32/64-bit versions of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL)/CentOS: 5.7, 5.8, 6.2, 6.3, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) 11 SP1 and SP2)
Note: when running with RedHat 5.5, there is no "Least Queue Depth" Algorithm
SAN HeadQuarters (SAN-HQ) 2.x 2.6 14-May-13 Support EQL firmware v5.0 or higher (support Win8/2012 with RAID reliability score)
NOTE: The SupportAssist feature is compatible with firmware v5.0.8 or later.
Manual Transfer Utility (MTU) 1.x 1.2.3 2-Aug-12 Support EQL firmware v5.1.x to v6.0.x
SCOM MP For EqualLogic 5.x 5.0 (A00) 20-May-13 Support up to EQL firmware 6.x and new EQL hardware
Support for Microsoft System Center 2012 SP1 Operations Manager and System Center 2012 Operations Manager
Node Side v2.0.7170
(FluidFS v2)
7-Jul-13 Supported Platform – FS7500, FS7600, FS7610
– Before upgrade to new FS Series Firmware version, must first upgrade EQL array(s) to Firmware version 6.0.x or above
EQL Side 6.0.5 10-Apr-13 EQL firmware minimal support level is 5.1.x for FS7500
For FS76x0, minimal support version is 6.0.1 or above


HIT/Microsoft v4.5 does include an SMP Provider for Microsoft Window Server 2012.  However, usage/integration with SCVMM2012 requires two things:

  1. SCVMM2012 SP1 / UR1
  2. HIT/Microsoft v4.6 (which is not GA released yet but soooooon)

Out of everything there, I can’t emphasise enough to upgrade to the latest SAN HQ software. New functionality allows SAN HQ to upload logs directly to support on your behalf. It’s a very welcome feature for sure, actually It’s all very fabulous.

Useful EqualLogic Technical Materials and Whitepapers

Another great list thanks to Alvin, I am merely the cut and paste maestro presenting and prostrating before you. Actually, I thought about formatting and making it more web friendly but I am getting told off because I don’t have the sausages on the BBQ yet so this will have to do.

Document Name URL
Dell EqualLogic Configuration Guide
Dell EqualLogic Compatibility Matrix
EQL RAID Best Practices
EQL Best Practice Networking Guidelines 
Rapid EqualLogic Configuration Portal
Switch Configuration Guides
Master pointer to all SiS whitepapers
EqualLogic Technical Contents
Optimizing your EQL SAN for High Availability
EqualLogic PS Series Architecture: Load Balancers
DC Power Supply Module Installation and Maintenance Supplement
EqualLogic Hybrid Array Load Balancer
EqualLogic & M1000e Best Practices (1GbE)
EqualLogic & M1000e Best Practices (10GbE)
EqualLogic & M1000e Best Practices (Force10 switch)
EqualLogic PS-M4110 Blade array
EqualLogic Auto-Replication
EqualLogic Snapshots and Clones Best Practices
EqualLogic Template Volumes and Thin Clones
EqualLogic iSCSI Connection Characterization
Self Encrypted Drive Management
Mixed Speed with EQL (PowerConnect 6248/8024F)
Mixed Speed with EQL (PowerConnect 8100 Series)
Mixed Speed with EQL (Force10 S4820T)
FS Series Appliances FluidFS NAS Support Matrix
FS76x0 Best Practices with EQL
NDMP Backup on FluidFS using CommVault Simpana
Applications Topics and URL
SQL Server 2012 Best Practices and Sizing Guidelines for Transaction Processing Applications with Microsoft SQL 2012 using EqualLogic PS Series Storage
SQL Server 2012 OLTP I/O Profile Study with Microsoft SQL 2012 using EqualLogic PS Series Storage
SQL Server 2008 Protecting Microsoft SQL Server databases with EqualLogic Synchronous Replication
SQL Server 2008 Enhancing SQL Server Protection using EqualLogic Smart Copy Snapshots
SQL Server 2008 Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Backup and Restore using Dell EqualLogoic
SQL Server 2008 Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Backup and Restore using Dell EqualLogoic and PowerVault DL2200 with CommVault Simpana
SQL Server 2008 Automatic data tiering benefits for OLTP databases with EqualLogic hybrid arrays
SQL Server 2008 SQL Server Database Protection Using Auto-Snapshot Manager / Microsoft Edition: Advanced Operations
SQL Server 2008 DSS (OLAP) Deploying MS SQL Server 2008 DSS on 10GbE EqualLogic Storage
Exchange Server 2010 Deploying Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 with Dell EqualLogic PS Series Arrays
Exchange Server 2010 Microsoft Exchange 2010 on a Hyper-V Virtual Infrastructure Supported by Dell EqualLogic SANs
Exchange Server 2010 Exchange 2010 Data Protection with EqualLogic Auto-Snapshot Manager / Microsoft Edition v4.5
Exchange Server 2010 Sizing MS Exchange 2010 on EqualLogic PS4100-6100 Arrays with VMware vSphere 5
Exchange Server 2010 Supplemental Implementation Guide (MS Exchange 2010 on VMware vSphere)
Exchange Server 2010 Enhancing Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 Data Protection and Availability using EqualLogic Snapshots
SharePoint 2007/2010 SharePoint Data Protection with Auto-Snapshot Manager / Microsoft Edition v4.5
SharePoint 2010 Reference Architecture for a Virtualized SharePoint 2010 Document Management Solution
Oracle 11g R2 Performance Baseline for Deploying Oracle 11g Release 2 Based Decision Support Systems using Dell EqualLogic PS6110XV Arrays
Oracle 11g R2 Sizing and Best Practices for Deploying Oracle 11g Release 2 Based Decision Support Systems with Dell EqualLogic 10GbE iSCSI SAN
Oracle 11g Best Practices for Oracle 11g Backup and Recovery using Oracle RMAN and EqualLogic Snapshots
Oracle DSS (OLAP) Deploying Oracle Decision Support Systems with EqualLogic 10GbE iSCSI SAN
Operating Systems URL
Deploying Windows 2008 with EQL
Windows 2012 & Hyper-V
Deploying Hyper-V with EQL
Hyper-V Protection using Auto-Snapshot Manager/ME
Boot from SAN for Windows Server 2008 R2
MPIO with Windows Server 2008
ESXi 4.1
ESXi 5.1
Boot from SAN for Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.2
Linux (using HIT for Linux)
SuSE Linux
Linux (Red Hat, CentOS, SuSE Linux)

There you go. Not a bad list. Just as a reminder, this list is accurate as of July 2013 – if you are reading this in the future there is probably a more recent doc, and I’m probably older. As always, make sure you check out the sites below as they are the best places to go for Dell Storage.

If you think this is valuable leave a small note in the comments and  we’ll try and do a Compellent version as well.

Cheers Daniel

By |July 3rd, 2013|EqualLogic, FluidFS, Storage|2 Comments

FluidFS has a crack at SPECFS and goes off like a frog in a sock

Sooooo, after ages of asking and asking, we now have some official performance stats from the FS8600 running FluidFS and it looks impressive, especially from a bang for buck approach. The results are great timing with Dell Enterprise Forum happing in the US at the moment and the release of the new FluidFS V3 .

All the results are here

The FS8600 is the FluidFS NAS frontend for Compellent. It’s a scale our NAS so it can use multiple heads and multiple arrays but still present as a single namespace which is awesome if you need massive file systems, high performance or not. For example, at the moment the largest file system can be 1PB but with the upcoming release that will double to 2PB.

All the drives used were SSD, well, actually a mix of SLC and higher capacity eMLC and with the 4 appliance config they hit 494,224 IOPS – a bloody lot. What it showed is what FluidFS is capable of if you can give it enough backend horsepower but to be honest I don’t really see any customers that need that kind of speed, but it’s always good to know it can do it.

Obviously everyone is rather chuffed about the results, you can find the official Dell response here  and a bit more info here.

Some more info about FluidFS V3 below. I’m pre-writing a post for the first time ever and I’ll get in strife and bother if I release these links early. Fingers crossed.

By |June 7th, 2013|Compellent, FluidFS, Storage|0 Comments

Australian EqualLogic Masterclass 2013

Dell is hosting another round of free EqualLogic training for customers and whoever is interested. The sessions last year went really well.

The day is split up into 3 sections for different skill levels. The core technology session is mainly about what is iSCSI, how it works, what is peer scaling … that sort of stuff. If you already know all that stuff then you can just come for the features sessions.

They are being held all over Australia. Below are the initial dates but if the sessions fill up there could be a second session.

I’ll be at the Brisbane session with a working demo of our new DR4100 backup to disk appliances so you can see it in all its deduping glory.

Click here to register for the sessions


09:00am – 09:30am: Registrations and Light breakfast
09:30am – 11:00am: 101 – Core Technology
11:15am – 12:45pm: 201 – Advanced Features
12:45pm – 01:30pm: Light lunch served
01:30pm – 03:00pm: 301 – Advanced Features II

Dates and Locations

Canberra – Wednesday 29 May – Hyatt Hotel. 120 Commonwealth Ave  Yarralumla ACT 2600
Perth – Tuesday 4 June – The Duxton Hotel. 1 St Georges Terrace  Perth WA 6000
Adelaide – Thursday 6 June – Sebel Playford Hotel. 120 North Terrace  Adelaide SA 5000
Melbourne – Wednesday 19 June – Intercontinental Hotel. 495 Collins St  Melbourne VIC 3000
Auckland – Tuesday 25 June – Stamford Plaza Hotel. 22-26 Albert St  Auckland, 1010
Brisbane – Wednesday 10 July – Stamford Plaza Hotel. Edward Street  Brisbane QLD 4000
Sydney – Tuesday 16 July – Dell Solutions Centre. 14 Aquatic Drive, Frenchs Forest NSW 2086

Session Descriptions

EqualLogic MasterClass 101: Core Technology  (9:30am to 11:00am)

This is an entry-level storage course designed for users relatively new to the Dell EqualLogic series of arrays. You will learn what hardware and software features are available with the PS Series Storage Array. In this session we will cover:

  • EqualLogic page-based architecture
  • EqualLogic load-balancing & host MPIO
  • Discuss manual tiering techniques
  • Automatic tiering with firmware 5.1
  • Group Manager snapshots
  • Auto-replication.

EqualLogic MasterClass 201: Advanced Features (11:15am to 12:45pm)

The EqualLogic MasterClass 201 course builds upon our 101 Core technology course and provides the opportunity for students to explore further the advanced features and software included in PS Series Storage Array, namely replication and SAN Headquarters Monitoring Tool. By understanding and utilising these advanced features you will be able to maximise your use of the storage array to fulfill business requirements today and well into the future. 
In this session we will cover:

  • Disaster Recovery using replication
  • Auto-replication
  • Auto Snapshot Manager (Microsoft ed)
  • Auto Snapshot Manager (VMware ed)
  • Off-host backup techniques with EqualLogic
  • Visibility to your EqualLogic Storage by leveraging SAN HQ monitoring

EqualLogic MasterClass 301: Advanced Features II (1:30pm to 3:00pm)

Dell EqualLogic SAN Headquarters (SAN HQ) gives you the power to do more by providing in-depth reporting and analysis tools. With the information you get from SAN HQ, you can better customise, protect, and optimise your storage.
In this session we will cover:

  • Introduction of Storage Blade – networking considerations/DCB
  • Synchronous Replication Implementation
  • Live Demonstration of replication
  • Aysnc Failover/Failback
  • SyncRep Failover/Switch
  • NEW Virtual Storage Manager 3.5
  • Monitor EqualLogic with SAN HQ

Dell EqualLogic MasterClass proudly sponsored by


By |June 3rd, 2013|EqualLogic, Storage|0 Comments
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