VMware hosts require few mandatory FA bits setting before SAN storage to be provision. Apart from FA bits a series of procedure require from installing HBAs, HBA Firmware and drivers, zoning, mapping, masking devices, to configure kernel files and devices.

Let’s assume we have already identified Symmetrix FA port for VMware host and completed zoning on switch. It is better to have separate FA pair for VMware host. (You can connect VMware host to 2 pair FA if you have enough FA resources available and going to deploy critical application which require more performance).

You can identify the FA port available on Symmetrix:

symcfg list –connections.


Verify port flag settings-

symcfg list –fa -p -v

( FA-Number and Port where your host connected/zoned)


The following FA bits/flag require being set/Enable:

                     i)    Common Serial Number (C)


                    ii)    VCM State (VCM) --- (ACLX for V-MAX)


                    iii)    SCSI 3 (SC3)


                    iv)    SPC 2


                    v)     Unique World Wide Name (UWWN)


                   vi)     Auto-negotiation (EAN)


                   vii)    Point to Point (P)

Note :- FA bit/flag requirement may vary depending on Symmetrix, but most of times you require to enable above bit for VMware host.

Create a command file for setting FA port flags, call it faflags.cmd with the below entry:

# For C-Bit

set port FA:Port Common_Serial_Number=enable;


set port FA:Port Common_Serial_Number=enable;

# For VCM-Bit

set port FA:Port VCM_State=enable;


set port FA:Port VCM_State=enable;

# For SC3-Bit

set port FA:Port scsi_3=enable;


set port FA:Port scsi_3=enable;

# For SP-2-Bit

set port FA:Port SPC2_Protocol_Version=enable;


set port FA:Port SPC2_Protocol_Version=enable;


# For UWWN-Bit

set port FA:Port Unique_WWN=enable;


set port FA:Port Unique_WWN=enable;

# For EAN-Bit

set port FA:Port Auto_Negotiate=enable;


set port FA:Port Auto_Negotiate=enable;

# For PTOP-Bit

set port FA:Port Init_Point_to_Point=enable;


set port FA:Port Init_Point_to_Point=enable;

Once you prepare command file, you can commit the file:

symconfigure –sid preview –f  faflags.cmd

Verify port flag settings once again, required FA flags should have be enabled by now-

symcfg list –fa -p -v

You are ready to provision SAN storage for VMware host now…

CLARiiON Flare release 29 (04.29.000.5.001) introduce support for several new features as follow:

1) Virtualization-aware Navisphere Manager - Discovery of VMware client always were difficult in earlier release but Flare 29 enables CLARiiON CX4 users and VMware administrators to reduce infrastructure reporting time from hours to minutes. Earlier releases have allowed only a single IP address to be assigned to each iSCSI physical port. With Flare 29, the ability to define multiple virtual iSCSI ports on each physical port has been added along with the ability to tag each virtual port with unique VLAN tag. VLAN tagging has also been added to the single Management Port interface. It should be noted that the IP address and VLAN tag assignments should be carefully coordinated with those supporting the network infrastructure where the storage system will operate

2) Built-in policy-based spin down of idle SATA II drives for CLARiiON CX4 - Lowers power requirements in environments such as test and development in physical and virtual environments. Features include a simple management via a “set it and forget it” policy, complete spin down of inactive drives during times of zero I/O activity, and drives automatically spin back up after a "first I/O" request is received.

3) Virtual Provisioning Phase 2 - Support for MirrorView and SAN Copy replication on thin LUNs has been added.

4) Search feature – Provides users with the ability to search for a wide-variety of objects across their storage systems. Objects can be either logical (e.g., LUN) or physical (e.g., disks).

5) Replication roles - Three additional roles have to be added in Navisphere: “Local Replication Only”, “Replication” and “Replication/ Recovery”.

6) Dedicated VMware software files - VMware software files (i.e. NaviSecCLI, Navisphere Initialization Wizard) are now separate from those of the Linux Operating System.

7) Software filename standardization - all CLARiiON software filenames beginning with FLARE Release 29

8) Changing SP IP addresses - SP IP addresses can now be changed without rebooting the SP. Only the Management Sever will need to be rebooted from the Setup page, which results in no storage system downtime.

9) Linux 64-bit server software – Native 64-bit Linux server software files simplify installation by eliminating the need to gather and load 32-bit DLLs.

10) Solaris x64 Navisphere Host Agent – Release 29 marks the introduction of Solaris 64-bit Navisphere Host Agent software. This Host Agent is backward compatible with older FLARE release.

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Sr. Solutions Architect; Expertise: - Cloud Design & Architect - Data Center Consolidation - DC/Storage Virtualization - Technology Refresh - Data Migration - SAN Refresh - Data Center Architecture More info:- diwakar@emcstorageinfo.com
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