Help setting up vSphere/vCenter Cluster & Vsan

d1enonly

New Member
Dec 16, 2016
12
2
3
33
Hi I've been reading through the website for quite sometime now. and this is my first time joining and posting on this forum. (recommended by someone)

I need some help and guidance setting up a vSphere Cluster, im not well verse in Vmware products as this is my first time setting up them. The servers that i would be working on would be used for production purposes in my company. Hopefully someone can guide me as i go through configuring the servers.

I have 3 Dell PowerEdge Servers R730XD
2 x Intel Xeon E5-2630 v4 2.2G
128GB of RAM
16 x 1.2TB SAS 10K each host is on RAID10 and has a now a capacity of 6.5TB each.
2 NIC
2 10Gb

My objective is to create a 3 node cluster and Run 16 virtual machines on top of it. vCenter would be 1 of them.
I haven't gotten far in setting this up, as i would just be starting Installing the ESXI on the three Host.
Hopefully someone can guide me on this.
 

Attachments

  • Like
Reactions: whitey

whitey

Moderator
Jun 30, 2014
2,774
869
113
39
Gonna need to get your ESXi hosts deployed, vCenter up (use Linux based VCSA, hope you have a datastore to stash this prior to vSAN availability), config backend network to support vSAN (jumbo if your net env supports it), then enabled vSAN through the web client at the cluster level. That's fairly high level but vSAN config is a hand-holding experience mostly these days. If you run into a wall, ping me in this thread or PM me.

Edit: gonna need to put some though into your 'Disk Group' layout strategy as well and on that note first thing you will need to do is blow away those RAID10 configs as vSAN will want raw/native disk access to those, depending on your disk HW ctrl (HBA highly desired, RAID card like a Perc 730 CAN work, less desired, required raid0 setup on EACH AND EVERY disk), then vSAN can work it's magic when enabled.
 
Last edited:

whitey

Moderator
Jun 30, 2014
2,774
869
113
39
Pssst, @d1enonly you're the perfect candidate to buy my Dell Micron P320H Express flash PCIe SSD's, they were MADE for that system/chassis and would be great cache devices for that vSAN config to inject some life into those 1.2tb spinners :-D just sayin'... :-D HAHA

/end shameless plug
 

d1enonly

New Member
Dec 16, 2016
12
2
3
33
Gonna need to get your ESXi hosts deployed, vCenter up (use Linux based VCSA, hope you have a datastore to stash this prior to vSAN availability), config backend network to support vSAN (jumbo if your net env supports it), then enabled vSAN through the web client at the cluster level. That's fairly high level but vSAN config is a hand-holding experience mostly these days. If you run into a wall, ping me in this thread or PM me.

Edit: gonna need to put some though into your 'Disk Group' layout strategy as well and on that note first thing you will need to do is blow away those RAID10 configs as vSAN will want raw/native disk access to those, depending on your disk HW ctrl (HBA highly desired, RAID card like a Perc 730 CAN work, less desired, required raid0 setup on EACH AND EVERY disk), then vSAN can work it's magic when enabled.
trying my best to catch up with the relative technical terms :)
to start with, i have now completed installing my esxi on all three host, now im making a VM and install windows server 2012 after than im thinking of installing vcenter on it (not sure if this a great idea)

is it correct that after this is a i need to create a "datacenter" then add my three exsi host and create cluster?
or i need to create my vsan first before i create datacenter/cluster?

as regards with the vsan thing does that mean that the hardware RAID configuration i have now will not be compatible in creating the vsan? my raid controller is a perc h730

i appreciate the response , please bear with me as i am really ZERO knowledge setting up this vpshere thing.
 

d1enonly

New Member
Dec 16, 2016
12
2
3
33
Pssst, @d1enonly you're the perfect candidate to buy my Dell Micron P320H Express flash PCIe SSD's, they were MADE for that system/chassis and would be great cache devices for that vSAN config to inject some life into those 1.2tb spinners :-D just sayin'... :-D HAHA

/end shameless plug

Thanks for the suggestion, i will look into this.
my current challenge is doing the primary configuration for the vpshere. honestly i dont know how and what are the things i need to consider in creating the VSAN, havent done this before
 

whitey

Moderator
Jun 30, 2014
2,774
869
113
39
Do yourself a favor and take the VCSA route (Linux based vCenter appliance), quite a bit easier to deploy than the M$ based vCenter version. Order of operations is in my first post. Let us know when you get your vCenter up and we can go from there.
 
  • Like
Reactions: wildchild

d1enonly

New Member
Dec 16, 2016
12
2
3
33
Do yourself a favor and take the VCSA route (Linux based vCenter appliance), quite a bit easier to deploy than the M$ based vCenter version. Order of operations is in my first post. Let us know when you get your vCenter up and we can go from there.

Hi was now able to setup three esxi host, created a windows server2012 r2 datacenter VM on ESXI1
what would be my next step?
 

d1enonly

New Member
Dec 16, 2016
12
2
3
33
Just to give an update on this thread, and to give further details.

All my ESXi 6.5.0 is installed on a 16GB SD Card (Dell IDSDM)
 

Rand__

Well-Known Member
Mar 6, 2014
5,573
1,216
113
So you do not have room for the vcsa vm, this will complicate things.

You might want to consider adding a drive to one of the hosts as a temporary measure to get the vsan going and then migrate the vcsa to the vsan.
Not sure though whether running vCenter on vSan is recommended nowadays.
 

whitey

Moderator
Jun 30, 2014
2,774
869
113
39
Sorry guys, I think I tapped out on this one, there is a massive amount of pre-research that could/should occur here and some basic fundamental/core underpinnings that need to be understood by the OP prior to taking on this feat. There is an absolute WEALTH of free/well-documented knowledge on the subject direct from VMware and prominent Virtualization bloggers out there as well that cover this topic end-to-end.

Myself and others have advised the OP to install the VCSA several times, think gent desired to take the M$ vCenter path. Also suggested 'having another spot...local/NFS...temp or not' to have a 'landing-zone' for vCenter initially.

SMH, gotta crawl before you walk before you run before you sprint. :-D

EDIT: Running vCenter on top of vSAN is certainly recommended granted you have 'burned-in' your vSAN config and are confident that the underlying vSAN network/env is stable. Also not a bad idea to have it backed up via array snapshots/replication schedules or a virt backup product such as Veeam/etc. just as a double CYA.

2cents whether ya'll wanted it or not :-D
 
  • Like
Reactions: maze and wildchild

d1enonly

New Member
Dec 16, 2016
12
2
3
33
Sorry guys, I think I tapped out on this one, there is a massive amount of pre-research that could/should occur here and some basic fundamental/core underpinnings that need to be understood by the OP prior to taking on this feat. There is an absolute WEALTH of free/well-documented knowledge on the subject direct from VMware and prominent Virtualization bloggers out there as well that cover this topic end-to-end.

Myself and others have advised the OP to install the VCSA several times, think gent desired to take the M$ vCenter path. Also suggested 'having another spot...local/NFS...temp or not' to have a 'landing-zone' for vCenter initially.

SMH, gotta crawl before you walk before you run before you sprint. :-D

EDIT: Running vCenter on top of vSAN is certainly recommended granted you have 'burned-in' your vSAN config and are confident that the underlying vSAN network/env is stable. Also not a bad idea to have it backed up via array snapshots/replication schedules or a virt backup product such as Veeam/etc. just as a double CYA.

2cents whether ya'll wanted it or not :-D

Hi Whitney, i very much appreciate the input as regards with the VSAN thing. as what i figured on an article it is not recommended in my current setup as it will definitely require an SSD drive.

now i just created a cluster and tom. will create a Datastore Cluster, yes i should have done prior research on this.

as regards with the VCSA , pls understand that im still trying to grasp the concepts of the whole vmware thing.
will all honesty i still dont understand the main diff in impact if i go with the typical windows vcenter and vcsa.
 

d1enonly

New Member
Dec 16, 2016
12
2
3
33
Appreciate all the help from all tjhe people who took time to read and have inputs into this thread.

I will still continue setting this thing up. i already ordered a NAS to improve my home lab.
 

whitey

Moderator
Jun 30, 2014
2,774
869
113
39
Appreciate all the help from all tjhe people who took time to read and have inputs into this thread.

I will still continue setting this thing up. i already ordered a NAS to improve my home lab.
Dunno what NAS you bought but I personally would have taken the AIO NAS route by getting a couple 2-4 ssd drives and adding a LSI HBA, passthru to FreeNAS/Omni/etc., share out to vSphere/ESXi, and plop vCenter VM on that (NFS or iSCSI) storage. That way you could have your vSAN eventually and a CYA network accessible NAS for backup/replication/balancing workloads out if needed or for vSAN maint. GOTTA be less cost than a SOHO/SMB NAS and more perform-ant as well I'd bet.

2cents.

@Marsh William IS indeed a master of MANY things Virt/scripting/cli but my fear is while his methods are meant to streamline configurations in many cases you will have to understand the fundamentals (or would be better off served) before you leverage his gold nuggets. What time this gent will take to come up to speed on vSphere PowerCLI could be spent much more productively learning vSAN foundations/concepts. THEN take it to the next level and script that shizzle, in a nested vSphere env w/ vESXi and another VCSA instance until you've mastered/tested extensively the 'soup-to-nuts' :-D
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: wildchild

dwright1542

Active Member
Dec 26, 2015
367
73
28
48
Sorry guys, I think I tapped out on this one, there is a massive amount of pre-research that could/should occur here and some basic fundamental/core underpinnings that need to be understood by the OP prior to taking on this feat. There is an absolute WEALTH of free/well-documented knowledge on the subject direct from VMware and prominent Virtualization bloggers out there as well that cover this topic end-to-end.

Myself and others have advised the OP to install the VCSA several times, think gent desired to take the M$ vCenter path. Also suggested 'having another spot...local/NFS...temp or not' to have a 'landing-zone' for vCenter initially.

SMH, gotta crawl before you walk before you run before you sprint. :-D

EDIT: Running vCenter on top of vSAN is certainly recommended granted you have 'burned-in' your vSAN config and are confident that the underlying vSAN network/env is stable. Also not a bad idea to have it backed up via array snapshots/replication schedules or a virt backup product such as Veeam/etc. just as a double CYA.

2cents whether ya'll wanted it or not :-D
Amen to that. I didn't even respond. Its akin to saying "Hey, I'd like to rebuild the heads in my Ferrari, can you tell me how to do that on a forum?"

@d1enonly You've got quite a bit of hardware there. It's clear you should really be hiring a consultant to help you out with this. What you're trying to accomplish isn't describable in a forum setting without you having a solid working knowledge of VSAN and the requirements. This isn't to impune you, rather it's to save yourself from a possible setup timewaste, and a later disaster. The fact that you don't have HBA's nor required Flash means you tripped over step 1. Do your organization a favor and hire a consultant, or take the class and then do the setup.

-D
 
  • Like
Reactions: whitey