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Vol. 5 No. 2 April 2006

Fine-tune storage networks

Maximum SAN performance requires key components--host bus adapters and Fibre Channel directors--to work in harmony. SANs are among the most mission-critical enterprise networks, so organizations tend to overbuy and overallocate SAN capacity to avert performance problems. Buying more capacity might work sometimes, but it isn't always an option. Storage administrators need to find ways to wring more value out of their SANs, and performance tuning is the place to start. SAN tuning checklist Use this checklist as a guide for performance tuning. Host bus adapters (HBAs) Leave the Fibre Channel (FC) ports at autonegotiate Avoid putting more HBAs on a server than the bus throughput can support Turn on the I/O coalesce parameter in high-performance environments Install the latest HBA firmware and driver Use multipathing software that supports both load balancing and path failover FC switches Keep the highest performing directors at the core of the SAN Connect storage devices and the highest performing applications to the core Benchmark ...

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