Tuesday, February 12, 2013

VMware SRM 5 with NetApp SRA 2.0.1

 I was working with a customer this week setting up their SRM environment. Let me tell you about some of the hurdles I went through with Netapp's latest SRA in their environment. First off I would like to start with recommending reading this pdf before starting your endeavor down the road of Netapp SRA 2.0.1 which can save you time in the long run.

Confirm Replication configuration is Supported

 NetAPP SRM Guide - Make sure to pay particular attention to Section 5.5 "Supported Replication Layouts"

Unfortunately, my client had a configuration that was unsupported on many of his Virtual Machines with windows page vmdk's split off to another consolidated PAGE datastore that was not on the same Array Pair as most of the systems in his environment (Fan out setup).

Enabling SSL for Netapp SRA 2.0.1

Another issue we ran into was that his FAS controllers were only using SSH for remote connections and did not have HTTP enabled. This meant that I needed to configure his SRA to use SSL to connect. I made a copy of those notes here . (For step 6 I had to find another repository for the Net-SSLeay module) The one Netapp recommends doesn't have that module.

Paired Array Manager Not Found

After reviewing the array pairs I was able to identify that the Host and target Hostnames were showing FQDN for some of the connections but not others. After doing some research I came across the following Netapp community post which winded up resolving the issue. Fix here Updating the snapmirror.conf file with the snapmirror connections corrected the problem. It turned out my client was using onecommand to create his snapmirrors which didn't update the snapmirror.conf file that netapp's SRA parses.

Unable to Enable Array Pair

I received this error "“Internal error: std::exception ‘class Dr::Xml::XmlValidateException’ “Element ‘SourceDevices’ is not valid for content model: ‘(SourceDevice,)’” when enabling the Array Pair the first time. After doing some research it appears that SRA 2.0.1 for Netapp has a known bug. Workaround to fix it is to populate the volume include attribute when editing the SRA or going with the older version 2.0 for netapp SRA. You can read about the bug here . While the recommendation is to add to the exclude list. I was able to get around this issue by adding to the include list since there were less volumes on the customer's array that were snapmirror than not.


After working through these issues we were able to get his environment up and running and provided a test failover for his test environment, planned migration, and disaster execution without issues. I would have to say I am very unimpressed with Netapp's latest SRA for SRM when comparing to some of the other versions I have used such as Dell Equallogic.