NFS Best Practices – Part 4: Sizing Considerations

Welcome to the next installment of NFS Best Practices. In this fourth and final best practice section on NFS, I asked a number of our major NAS storage partners some sizing questions. The questions basically fell into 3 different categories:

  1. Do you have a recommended NFS volume size/sweet-spot recommendation?
  2. Do you have a volume block size recommendation that should be configured on the array?
  3. Do you have a recommended number of VMs per NFS datastore?

In fact, the responses from the vendors were all pretty similar. Let’s take a look at what they had to say.

Continue reading

NFS Best Practices – Part 3: Interoperability Considerations

Welcome to part 3 of the NFS Best Practices series of posts. While part 1 looked at networking and part 2 looked at configuration options, this next post will look at interoperability with vSphere features. We are primarily interested in features which are in some way related to storage, and NFS storage in particular. While many of my regular readers will be well versed in most of these technologies, I’m hoping there will still be some items of interest. Most of the interoperability features are tried and tested with NFS, but I will try to highlight areas that might be cause for additional consideration.

Continue reading

NFS Best Practices – Part 2: Advanced Settings

Following on from part 1 of the NFS Best Practices, part 2 is going to look at tuning from a vSphere perspective. As mentioned, our objective is to update the NFS Best Practice white paper which is now rather dated. There are quite a number of tunable parameters which are available to you when using NFS datastores. Before we drill into these advanced settings in a bit more detail, it is important to understand that the recommended values for some of these settings may (and probably will) vary from storage array vendor to storage array vendor. My objective is to give you a clear and concise explanation of the tunable parameters and allow you to make you own decisions when it comes to tuning the values.

Continue reading

NFS Best Practices – Part 1: Networking

There is a project currently underway here at VMware to update the current Best Practices for running VMware vSphere on Network Attached Storage. The current paper is a number of years old now, and we are looking to bring it up to date. There are a number of different sections that need to be covered, but we decided to start with networking, as getting your networking infrastructure correct will play a crucial part in your NAS performance and availability obviously.

Continue reading