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FAS3210, Controllers and Aggregates . . . Oh My!

All:

I have a newly installed FAS3210.

NetApp Release 8.0.2

Two full shelves of disks

1 - 24 300 GB SAS

1 - 24 1 TB SATA

It is currently configured (by a consultant) as follows:

Controller 1

3 disk aggr0 (SAS)

8 disk aggr1 (SAS)

8 disk aggr2 (SATA)

Controller 2

3 disk aggr0 (SATA)

8 disk aggr1 (SAS)

8 disk aggr2 (SATA)

After doing some reading and trying to wrap my head around it all, I wanted to ask all of you a few questions.

Why configure it in this fashion?  My consultant said it allows better performance allowing both controllers to provide access.  I think it will force me to buy more disk space sooner.  I spec'd this with a certain amount available space in mind for virtualization.  This configuration effectively splits my space into multiple spaces which need to be managed separately.  The reason for the different disk types was for replication from another FAS3210 and Backup 2 disk storage.

Would the following be a better configuration?

Controller 1

3 disk aggr0 (SAS)

21 disk aggr1 (SAS)

Controller 2

3 disk aggr0 (SATA)

21 disk aggr1 (SATA)

Do I need to use RAID-DP on the root aggr0?  I read somewhere that it was suggested to go to RAID4 on aggr0.

Thanks in advance!

Re: FAS3210, Controllers and Aggregates . . . Oh My!

I would lean toward the latter but without info on why they set up the system this way. More spindles per aggr the better... There was a recent change where raid4 can now hot firmware update so 2 drive root is ok now. And for smaller systems no separate root. Some never separate root.

Re: FAS3210, Controllers and Aggregates . . . Oh My!

The answer from Scott is pretty much spot on…

To be honest, without more info very hard to say if the current config or your proposed one is the best way to go…technically both are fine and will run without problem…

If these are all the disks you are ever going to have…then actually just to big aggr0’s one with SAS on one controller one with SATA on the other would be fine…

However the idea of balancing load etc across both controllers, maybe very valid, depends on the requirement really…

Had this debate on the forums with someone else recently and in the end, only so much advice people from a far can give, without fully understanding the environment…

But everything you asked is fine… either of those setup is acceptable..

Hope that help

Paul.