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Implementing Cisco HyperFlex Solutions

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  • About
  • Description
  • Sample Content
  • Updates


  • Thoroughly covers HyperFlex Edge, HyperFlex Standard, HyperFlex stretched clusters, and Intersight integration
  • Explains key concepts with extensive configuration examples, topologies, verification steps, and best-practice guidelines and recommendations
  • Presents straight-from-the-trenches “do’s and don’ts” for designing complex solutions and achieving maximum efficiency
  • Shows how to deploy HyperFlex technologies quickly across a wide variety of datacenter environments

  • Copyright 2021
  • Dimensions: 7-3/8" x 9-1/8"
  • Pages: 368
  • Edition: 1st
  • Book
  • ISBN-10: 0-13-660191-X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-13-660191-3

Cisco HyperFlex solutions enhance data center efficiency, agility, and resiliency by tightly integrating core infrastructure (compute, storage, networking, and system management), increasing automation, and simplifying lifecycle management. This authoritative, comprehensive guide brings together knowledge, detailed configuration options, and real-world case studies for successfully deploying Cisco HyperFlex technologies in environments of all types.

Three expert authors present easy-to-understand overviews of key Hyperconverged Infrastructure (HCI) concepts, show how HyperFlex technologies apply them, and present detailed reference examples with topologies, configurations, and verifications for each major feature. Drawing on extensive experience helping Cisco customers adopt HyperFlex, they present best practices for optimizing design, streamlining deployment, avoiding pitfalls, and maximizing value.

This guide will be indispensable to every IT and network professional, manager, or consultant involved in planning, deploying, or operating Cisco HyperFlex or evaluating any HCI solution. Reflecting current trends in HCI deployment, it will be valuable in both small-scale environments and large-scale data centers.

  • Explore how and why data centers have evolved from traditional to converged and hyperconverged infrastructure
  • Review the essentials of HyperFlex hyperconverged infrastructure connectivity
  • Understand HyperFlex Data Platform architecture, components, topologies, and supported hardware
  • Compare HyperFlex standard, stretch, and edge clusters, and understand their respective roles
  • Install and deploy each type of Cisco HyperFlex cluster, including preparation, prerequisites, and components
  • Manage HyperFlex via HyperFlex Connect: HX storage cluster status, components, encryption, replication, and more
  • Maintain HyperFlex: clustering, virtual machine management, native snapshots, ReadyClones, and more
  • Scale HyperFlex clusters, replace hardware, and upgrade software
  • Configure and manage advanced HyperFlex Data Platform disaster recovery features
  • Integrate supported third-party data protection solutions, including Veeam Availability Suite, Cohesity, and Commvault
  • Utilize the cloud-based Cisco Intersight platform to deploy HyperFlexAnywhere, including edge and standard clusters

Online Sample Chapter

Advanced Features

Table of Contents

Preface xix

Introduction 1

Introduction to HCI 3

Cisco's HCI Solution: HyperFlex Overview 4

Deployment Options of Cisco HyperFlex 6

Cisco HyperFlex Advantages 7

Chapter 1 Overview of Data Center Products 15

Cisco Unified Computing System 15

UCS-B Series Products 16

Cisco UCS Manager (UCSM) 20

UCS-C Series Products 22

UCS-S Series Products 23

Cisco Intersight Cloud-Based Management (SaaS Solution) 23

HyperFlex Data Platform 24

HyperFlex Hybrid Nodes 25

HyperFlex All Flash Nodes 26

HyperFlex Edge for Remote and Branch Offices 27

Cisco HyperFlex HX-Series System Management Components 28

Cisco MDS 9000 Multilayer Director SAN Switches 29

Cisco MDS 9700 Series Multilayer Director 30

Cisco MDS 9500 Series Multilayer Director 31

Network Switches 31

Nexus 5000 Series Products 31

Nexus 9000 Series Products 33

Hypervisors 36

VMWare vSphere Hypervisor 37

Microsoft Hyper-V 38

Summary 39

Chapter 2 HyperFlex Architecture 41

HyperFlex Architecture Components 42

Storage Controller Virtual Machine 42

HX Services 43

IO Visor 44

Log Structure File System 44

Data Optimization 45

HyperFlex Cleaner 45

Cluster Resource Manager (CRM) 46

Zookeeper 46

HyperFlex HX-Series Node Overview 47

HX220 M5/M4 Series 47

HX240 M5/M4 Series 49

HXAF220c-M5N All-NVMe 51

All Flash, Hybrid, and All-NVMe 51

Cisco HyperFlex Compute-Only Nodes 52

Physical Installation 52

Supported Media 54

Physical Topology 58

HyperFlex Standard Cluster/HyperFlex Extended Cluster Topology 58

HyperFlex Stretch Cluster Topology 63

HyperFlex Edge Cluster Topology 64

Summary 73

Chapter 3 Installing HyperFlex 75

Installation Prerequisites 76

Cisco HyperFlex HX-Series System Components 77

Cisco UCS Fabric Interconnects (FIs) 78

Cisco Nexus Switches 78

HyperFlex Software Versions 78

Host Requirements 79

Disk Requirements 79

Browser Recommendations 81

Port Requirements 81

HyperFlex External Connections 87

UCS/Fabric Interconnect Network Provisioning 88

Configuration for HyperFlex 3.5 88

Network Settings 91

VLAN and vSwitch Requirements 91

Cisco UCS Requirements 92

Hypervisor Requirements 93

Storage Cluster Requirements 94

vCenter Configuration Requirements 95

System Services Requirements 96

CPU Resource Reservation for Controller VMs 96

Memory Resource Reservation for Controller Virtual Machines 97

Controller VM Locations 97

Auto-Support Requirements 100

Single Sign-On Requirements 101

Installing Cisco HyperFlex System Servers 101

Physical Connectivity Illustrations for Direct Connect Mode Cluster Setup 101

Installation Workflow 103

Deploy the HX Data Platform Installer OVA by Using the vSphere Web Client 104

Configuring and Deploying a Standard HyperFlex Cluster 107

Installing HyperFlex Edge/Robo Cluster (ESXi, 3 Node) 120

HyperFlex Edge Deployment Options 121

Installation Overview 121

Configuring and Deploying a HyperFlex Edge Cluster (Gigabit Ethernet Only) 123

Configuring and Deploying a HyperFlex Edge Cluster (10 Gigabit Ethernet Only) 128

HyperFlex Edge Postinstallation Tasks 129

Installing a HyperFlex Stretch Cluster (ESXi) 130

Preinstallation Checklist 130

Deploying the Witness Node 134

HyperFlex Stretch Cluster Network IP Addressing 136

HyperFlex Stretch Cluster Guidelines 138

HyperFlex Stretch Cluster Limitations 138

HyperFlex Stretch Cluster Installation 139

HyperFlex Stretch Cluster Postinstallation 150

Summary 150

Chapter 4 Managing HyperFlex 151

Logging in to HyperFlex Connect 151

Local Access 151

Role-Based Access Control 152

Dashboard Page 154

Settings Page 155

Alarms Page 160

Events Page 162

Activity Page 163

Performance Page 164

System Information Page 165

Datastores Page 169

Virtual Machines Page 171

Upgrade Page 172

Web CLI Page 174

Replication 175

Replication Pairing 176

Encryption 177

Summary 181

Chapter 5 Maintaining HyperFlex 183

HyperFlex Licensing 184

Registering a Cluster with Smart Licensing 184

Registering a Cluster with Smart Software Licensing Through a Controller VM 188

Virtual Machine Management 189

HX Data Platform Native Snapshots Overview 190

ReadyClones 199

Datastores 205

Scaling HyperFlex Clusters 207

Node Expansion 207

Expanding a Stretch Cluster 213

Removing Nodes 217

Increasing Storage Capacity by Adding Drives 225

Hardware (Disk) Replacement 225

Replacing SSDs 225

Replacing or Adding HDDs 229

Upgrading HyperFlex Software 230

Upgrading HyperFlex 230

Pre-Upgrade Workflow 231

Downloading UCS Infra, B-Series, C-Series, and Storfs Bundles 232

Verifying the Pre-Upgrade UCS Server Firmware (C-Bundle) Version 234

Pre-Upgrade Validation 235

Hypercheck Utility 242

Upgrading UCS Infrastructure Firmware 248

Upgrade Procedure 252

Post-Upgrade Check 261

Summary 261

Chapter 6 Advanced Features 263

Data Protection 263

Replication Overview 265

Port Requirements for Replication 265

Replication Considerations 266

Recovery Considerations 267

Replication Networking Overview 267

Replication Network Considerations 269

M*N Connectivity Between Clusters 269

Configuring a Replication Network in HX Connect 270

Replication Pair Overview 273

Procedure for Creating Replication Pair 274

Protecting Virtual Machines 276

Creating Protection Groups 277

Protecting Virtual Machines 279

Disaster Recovery Overview 281

Compatibility Matrix for Disaster Recovery Operations 281

Testing Virtual Machine Recovery 282

Recovering Virtual Machines 284

Plan Migration 285

HyperFlex Backup 286

Veeam Availability Suite 286

Changed Block Tracking 288

Cohesity 289

Cohesity Protection 289

Cohesity Recovery 290

Commvault 290

Summary 291

Chapter 7 Deploying HyperFlex Anywhere with Cisco Intersight 293

Cloud-Based Management 293

HyperFlex Cluster Policies in Intersight 296

Cisco HyperFlex Edge Cluster Deployment 297

Intersight Arbitrator Overview for 2-Node 298

Physical Topology 299

Cisco HyperFlex Edge Single-Switch Configuration 299

Cisco HyperFlex Edge Dual-Switch Configuration 300

Logical Topology 301

Installing Cisco HyperFlex Edge with the Cisco Intersight Platform 304

Standard UCSM Managed HyperFlex Cluster Deployment 321

Summary 322

Index 323

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