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Supporting HP and Compaq UNIX servers on a SAN

Hi Chris,

We're a mixed shop here running applications on HP9000, AlphaServers, Wintel and Linux boxes. Our AlphaServers have got a storage array for clustering using the RA7000 from Compaq. The HP environment is using the FC60 storage array and both are connected through FC switches.

Now we want to start a SAN which can integrate the HP, AlphaServers and Linux and another for the Wintel systems.

So far I haven't seen any information that this is possible. Are there any vendors who have storage systems that will support HP and Compaq UNIX servers on a SAN?

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Sure, the Hitachi 9000 series, the Sun SE9000 series, the HP XP512 or XP48, Compaq StorageWorks, IBM Shark, EMC Sym 8000 series, etc.

Finding a single storage array that will accommodate almost every OS out there is the simple part. Connecting disparate vendors' arrays to the SAME severs are the hard part. This is due to certified HBA driver versions that will be supported by all the vendors in question. This usually only becomes a major problem though when you are using "dual pathing" software on the hosts for HBA failover. Every vendor uses different code for this.

In your scenario, what I would do is upgrade the RA7000 to an RA8000 and connect it to the switches, then connect the FC60 to the same switches. Now on the switches create three zones, one for the HP servers, one for the Alphaservers and a third for the Linux servers. Zone the Compaq storage to Compaq and Linux and the FC60 to HP. This will LOGICALLY separate all the environments from seeing each other, and should work great. The RA8000 will also support your Wintel systems. Just zone the Wintel servers to the RA ports and set your LUN types in the array to either NT or True64 or VMS, whichever your Alphaservers are running.

Chris

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This was first published in April 2002

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