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Swap NFS to FCP Best Practice?

Dear NetApp Gurus,

I'm planning swap NFS to FCP on my filers which running VMware farm

Would you be kind enough to share your expertises with me?

Any Best Practice to recommend?

Is this change need downtime?

What is the pros/cons on SAN vs NFS connectivity?

Any suggested procedure to make the swap?

Thanks in advance & looking forward to hear from you.



Re: Swap NFS to FCP Best Practice?


Please check this doc, It provides some best practice in general:


As far as NFS vs VMFS is concerned, it depends on your usecase: http://communities.vmware.com/message/847826#847826

Also check this: http://vinf.net/2010/03/02/with-the-move-to-esxi-is-nfs-becoming-more-useful-than-vmfs/

>> Any suggested procedure to make the swap?

Did you consider migrating the VMs?



Re: Swap NFS to FCP Best Practice?

Salute to Arun for your correct answer



Re: Swap NFS to FCP Best Practice?

P.S. Arun,

Would fail over performance improve if we swapped from NFS to SAN or would we still be in the same position from a failover standpoint?

Are databases running on NetApp aren’t recommended, because of failover performance ?

. Is this simply something inherent with the NetApp?

How does EMC address the same situation differently that NetApp?

Thanks & Good w/e


Re: Swap NFS to FCP Best Practice?

HI Henry,

Few advantages of NFS:

  • Provisioning is a breeze
  • You get the advantage of VMDK thin Provisioning since it's the default setting over NFS
  • You can expand/decrease the NFS volume on the fly and realize the effect of the operation on the ESX server with the click of the datastore "refresh" button.
  • You don't have to deal with VMFS or RDMs so you have no dilemma here
  • No single disk I/O queue, so your performance is strictly dependent upon the size of the pipe and the disk array.
  • You don't have to deal with FC switches, zones, HBAs, and identical LUN IDs across ESX servers
  • You can restore (at least with NetApp you can), multiple VMs, individual VMs, or files within VMs.
  • You can instantaneously clone (NetApp Flexclone), a single VM, or multiple VMs
  • You can also backup whole VMs, or files within VMs

<source> http://storagefoo.blogspot.in/2007/09/vmware-over-nfs.html (suggest you to go through this blog... whatever he talks makes real sense).

  So if NFS, NetApp does Lead

Still the choice of vmfs vs NFS is under your descretion.

For SAN, EMC has this SRDF mirror (Symmetrix) and Clarrion for considerably small storage. And EMC Centra for NAS.

With NetApp same storage (FAS) can be used for SAN or NAS (Again advantageous here, if you plan to change your environment from NAS to SAN in a future point of time you can use the same storage unlike EMC).

Hope this is useful.



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Re: Swap NFS to FCP Best Practice?

Salute to Arun!

Thanks & Good w/e


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