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Short answer, yes. Carve out space for everything from NVMe drives. . . . that are in a Flash System SAN.


Internal NVMe are cool and fast too. BUT they must be mirrored so you use twice as much. They sit inside the box and thus are much more difficult to replace if needed.

The SAN can add entire drawers on the fly. The SAN Can upgrade the internal firmware on the fly. The SAN can ugprade drive firmware on the fly. The SAN supports easy hot swapping of NVMe modules. The SAN can do flash copy whether that is for backups or for test partitions or test upgrades or or or. The SAN can do remote copy from Grand Rapids to Indianapolis (Not sure why I picked those cities. Hmmm.) The SAN can add new modules to a live RAID 6 set and include it fully in RAID. On the fly. The SAN does RAID6 with distributed hot spare so all modules are in use for performance.

AND When you upgrade from POWER9 to POWER10 the migration is fantabulously quick. PWRDWNSYS. IPL. DONE. However long that takes in your environment that's the rub.

Once you go SAN you don't go back. The flexibility, scalability and performance are much better than internal disk of any sort.

You already have VIOS supporting Ethernet and external Fiber so you've crossed much of that barrier.

I would agree that NEVER host internal disk with VIOS. It was never fun, often a disaster (Multiple customers lost entire systems for various reasons.)

- DrF.

On 5/12/2022 4:02 PM, Rob Berendt wrote:
On our P8 and our P9's we have two pairs of VIOS on each system. Each VIOS partition has 2 drives mirrored to each other in the system unit. So in the P8 partition VIOS31 has two drives in one mirrored pair and partition VIOS32 has two drives in another mirrored pair.
VIOS serves up ethernet and fiber channel.
IBM i disk is all in expansion units. It is all owned by a hosting partition of IBM i and is then guested out to other partitions of IBM i and AIX.
No plans on using external (SAN) disk for our Power systems.
We do not have VIOS serving up internal disk. "Way back" it was a performance killer for internal disk and we wiped the power system and started over. IDK if that is still a concern.

With the huge NVMe stuff available is there some way to carve out space for VIOS and IBM i on the same NVMe card? Or is there a better alternative?

Rob Berendt
IBM Certified System Administrator - IBM i 6.1
Group Dekko
Dept 1600
Mail to: 7310 Innovation Blvd, Suite 104
Ft. Wayne, IN 46818
Ship to: 7310 Innovation Blvd, Dock 9C
Ft. Wayne, IN 46818

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