During our testing with HP’s ProLiant DL380 G7 server and HP’s 82E 8Gb Fibre Channel (8GFC) adapter, we encountered some connectivity issues with our internal infrastructure. With daily changes to our test lab infrastructure to accommodate the different tests we perform, there is always the possibility of something getting damaged along the way.
Deploying HP 8GbFC adapters with VMware ESXi 5.0 is a straightforward install since our Emulex lpfc820 drivers are already inbox . However, we did experience intermittent problems with our LUNs disconnecting and then reconnecting. With Emulex OneCommand® Manager vCenter Server plug-in, there is an option to track up and down link connectivity. This feature is not on by default. When enabled, we noticed our link status in the Tasks & Events tab from vCenter Server showing one of our ports disconnecting often. First, we tried replacing the SFP and we still experienced the intermittent disconnect. Next, we replaced the Fibre cable and the problem was solved. The description in the Task & Events tab will provide the WWWN of the Fibre Channel ports with a link down and up status. The image below illustrates the link up status after the cable was replaced.
For more information, check out the latest technical whitepaper from HP, which covers some of the features with ESXi 5.0. The deployment guide entitled, VMware vSphere 5.0: 8Gb/s Fibre Channel SANs with HP ProLiant DL380 G7 Servers and HP 3PAR Utility Storage, can be downloaded from the Implementer’s Lab