Notice [8] Undefined index: login in /srv/www/vhosts/en.starwindsoftware.com/frontend/views/helpers/TopestLinks.php on 15
  •  Sign in / Register
  • Contact Us
StarWind is #1 SAN Software to build a SAN for VMware and SAN for Hyper-V

StarWind FAQ

Table of Contents

    General

  1. I have restarted both HA nodes and now both nodes are shown as not synchronized. How can I fix this?
  2. What are prerequisites to install StarWind?
  3. When I write the data to the target I`m not able to see it on other client machine which has the same disk connected. Why?
  4. How can I change Heartbeat or Synchronization Channel IPs?
  5. Why is StarWind not utilizing all the available bandwidth of the network channel?
  6. Where can I find the release information and version changelog?
  7. Where can I get latest version of StarWind?
  8. What cache is better to use, WriteBack or WriteThrough? And what does expiry period mean?
  9. What is heartbeat?
  10. How to upgrade our HA to version 6.0?
  11. How can I extend the iSCSI volume on the client machine?
  12. When I create an HA device in the Add Target wizard, there is the "Specify interfaces for synchronization and heartbeat channels" step. Why does the wizard automatically select all IPs located in the same subnetwork when I select only one that I need?
  13. My HA gets unsynchronized. What should I do?
  14. What is the best way to migrate StarWind HA to new hardware?

  15. Citrix Xen Server

  16. Citrix Xen Server doesn`t see any StarWind target. How can I enable Xen Server-compatible discovery?

  17. Windows Server

  18. Windows Server doesn`t see my HA target as one disk. Why?
  19. Does StarWind supports Cluster Shared Volumes (CSV) in Hyper-V clusters?

  20. VMware vSphere

  21. Does StarWind supports both ESX and ESXi?



    General

  1. Q. I have restarted both HA nodes and now both nodes are shown as not synchronized. How can I fix this?

    A. When you shut down both nodes of the HA cluster incorrectly StarWind is not able to determine which node holds the most recent data . So it simply blocks all the incoming connections until the synchronization begins. If you know which node was shut down last – choose it as the synchronization source in the drop down menu of the HA device - Synchronization. If you are not sure about it – delete the HA targets from the StarWind Management console, mount HA images as basic targets. Please note: custom header size has to be used for image files created with StarWind versions earlier than 5.8. Use following values of the header size: 1024 (for StarWind 5.4 and earlier) or 65536 (for StarWind 5.5 or later). Check which node has the most recent data, remove the target and recreate the HA device running the synchronization in appropriate direction.

    Table of Contents

  2. Q. What are prerequisites to install StarWind?

    A. StarWind requires installing only Microsoft iSCSI Initiator for its work. You can find the installation instructions in the following manual: http://www.starwindsoftware.com/configuring-ha-storage-for-win-server-2003-and-2008.

    Table of Contents

  3. Q. When I write the data to the target I`m not able to see it on other client machine which has the same disk connected. Why?

    A. Unlike file-level protocols like used in NAS, iSCSI is a block-level protocol. Thus it can not arbiter read-write access to the iSCSI device connected to multiple servers. Thus, to provide access to one device from multiple servers the device needs to have a clustered file system. 3rd party arbiter SAN management software (DataPlow SFS, MelioFS, MetaSAN etc) should be used for individual client servers. If using vSphere 3rd party management software is not necessary since VMFS is a clustered file system. At the same time Microsoft failover clustering allows to share single storage device between the nodes of the cluster. For instance, Hyper-V failover clustering is achieved by converting the iSCSI storage to a Cluster Shared Volume (CSV).

    Table of Contents

  4. Q. How can I change Heartbeat or Synchronization Channel IPs?

    A. Change of the IP addresses used for internal HA communication can be performed through the replication manager. Follow the steps below to modify or add additional synchronization or heartbeat channels:

    1. Remove the HA partner on the node 2.
    2. Right-click on the remaining HA target (on the node 1) and click the Replication manager option.
    3. In the wizard that appears, point to the image file on node 2 (which was previously used for the HA device) and specify new IP addresses for the Heartbeat and Synchronization channels.
    4. Connect the modified target to the client servers.


    Please note that the procedure may require fast/full synchronization so it is recommended to perform this change during off peak hours.

    Table of Contents

  5. Q. Why is StarWind not utilizing all the available bandwidth of the network channel?

    A. We recommend you to take a look at our special guide on the forum. It describes instructions and tweaks that you may apply to achieve better performance: http://www.starwindsoftware.com/forums/starwind-f5/recommended-tcp-settings-t2293.html
    If you still face with low performance even after implementing the appropriate tweaks and checking the hardware please contact our support team: http://starwindsoftware.com/support

    Table of Contents

  6. Q. Where can I find the release information and version changelog?

    A. This information can be found in our press release section and on the forum:
    http://www.starwindsoftware.com/news
    http://www.starwindsoftware.com/forums/post16541.html#p16541
    This information is also included in our newsletter.
    Changelog can be found on the forum. It can be also reviewed during StarWind installation process and later as a changelog.txt file in the StarWind installation folder.

    Table of Contents

  7. Q. Where can I get latest version of StarWind?

    A. You can get it on our customer portal any time! Login here

    Table of Contents

  8. Q. What cache is better to use, WriteBack or WriteThrough? And what does expiry period mean?

    A. We highly recommend using WriteBack caching. Write Back caching improves write speed and lowers the latency unlike WriteThrough caching which improves only the read speed. Cache expiry period is the timeframe data is kept in cache from the moment of the last access till the moment it is flushed to the disk.

    Table of Contents

  9. Q. What is heartbeat?

    A. Heartbeat is an advanced mechanism which is used to avoid data corruption in case of synchronization channel failure. If data can`t be transferred through the synchronization channel StarWind checks availability of the second node through the alternate network interface, and shuts down secondary node in case of synchronization channel failure.

    Table of Contents

  10. Q. How to upgrade our HA to version 6.0?

    A. Upgrade of existing HA devices from version 5.7 to version 6.0 requires short downtime of a storage.
    Please, take the following steps to update the existing HA devices:
    1. To prevent data loss, disconnect clients from HA (if it is possible).
    2. Update StarWind service on the first HA node. Wait until the service starts. At this step the HA node is unable to synchronize it’s HA devices and is not accepting the client connections. Client requests are processed by the second HA node. The next step will disconnect the existing client connections.
    3. Update the StarWind service on the second HA node. Wait until the service starts.
    4. Start synchronization on the first HA node. The second node changes its state to "ready" and starts processing client connections. Now you can safely connect to the HA device.
    5. Wait until synchronization is finished. Now the first HA node can process the client connections too.

    If you are currently running version 5.8 in HA mode you can use following steps to upgrade to version 6.0:
    1. Update StarWind service on the first HA node.
    2. Wait until the synchronization is finished.
    3. Update StarWind service on the second HA node.

    Table of Contents



  11. Q. How can I extend the iSCSI volume on the client machine?

    A. Size extend features are supported for basic image file and HA device. In order to extend the device's size go to the StarWind management console, connect to the server where the target is hosted, then select the device you would like to extend, right click on it and select "extend device size" Menu item. In the window appeared choose the new size of the device and press ok. Go to the server where the device is connected to, locate the disk in the disk management chapter of the MMC. Please note that only GPT disks can be extended. Please use the "Convert to dynamic disk" menu item and follow the wizard instructions. When the disk is converted to GPT right click on it and select "Extend volume" menu item. Follow the wizard instructions to complete the extension process.

    Table of Contents



  12. Q. When I create an HA device in the Add Target wizard, there is the "Specify interfaces for synchronization and heartbeat channels" step. Why does the wizard automatically select all IPs located in the same subnetwork when I select only one that I need?

    A. We strongly recommend connecting every data link to a dedicated subnetwork (every synchronization channel and heartbeat). When you select one IP, the wizard automatically reserves all IPs in the subnet. This is intended to protect the StarWind users from misconfiguring HA by assigning Heartbeat and Synchronization Channel to the same data link.

    Table of Contents



  13. Q. My HA gets unsynchronized. What should I do?

    A. Try to set the current sector size value on your RAID array to 512b.

    Table of Contents



  14. Q. What is the best way to migrate StarWind HA to new hardware?

    A. Hardware update does not require downtime. We recommend the following sequence that assumes that Windows, its roles and features are already installed and configured on new Node 1 and Node 2.

    To migrate StarWind HA to new hardware:
    1. Disconnect Old Node 1 targets from all the client servers.
    2. In the StarWind Management Console right-click the HA device on Old Node 2, and select Replication Manager.
    3. In the Replication Manager window remove the replica of HA device. Carry out this procedure for each HA device.
    4. Shut down Old Node 1.
    5. Connect the synchronization links of the Old Node 2 to New Node 1 server.
    6. Turn on New Node 1.
    7. Configure the synchronization links between New Node 1 and Old Node 2.
    8. Install StarWind on New Node 1 and apply the purchased license file to the new installation.
    9. In the StarWind Management Console right-click the HA device on Old Node 2, and select Replication Manager.
    10. In the Replication manager window click the Add Replica button. Follow the Wizard steps to set up the HA device replica on New Node 1. Carry out this procedure for each HA device.
    Note: It is recommended to add the next device replicas after the previous device has finished to synchronize)
    11. After synchronization is finished, connect New Node 1 to the client servers.
    12. Disconnect Old Node 2 targets from all the client servers.
    13. In the StarWind Management Console right-click the HA device on New Node 1, select Replication Manager.
    14. In the Replication manager window remove the replica of the HA device. Carry out this procedure for each HA device.
    15. Shut down Old Node 2.
    16. Connect the synchronization links of the New Node 1 to the New Node 2 server.
    17. Turn on New Node 2.
    18. Configure the synchronization links between New Node 2 and New Node 1.
    19. Install StarWind on New Node 2 and apply the purchased license file to the new installation.
    20. In the StarWind Management Console right-click the HA device on New Node 1, and select Replication Manager.
    21. In the Replication manager window click the Add Replica button.
    22. Follow the Wizard steps to set up the HA device replica on New Node 2. Carry out this procedure for each HA device.
    Note: It is recommended to add the next device replicas after the previous device has finished synchronization.
    23. Wait for the synchronization to finish
    24. After synchronization is finished, connect New Node 2 to the client servers.

    Table of Contents



  15. Citrix Xen Server

  16. Q. Citrix Xen Server doesn`t see any StarWind target. How can I enable Xen Server-compatible discovery?

    A. Please, edit StarWind.cfg file as described in the following manual and restart the service - http://www.starwindsoftware.com/providing-ha-shared-storage-for-xenserver.

    Table of Contents



  17. Windows Server

  18. Q. Windows Server doesn`t see my HA target as one disk. Why?

    A. You need to install MPIO (MultiPath I/O) Feature to make Windows recognize the HA devices properly. You can find how to do it in the following manual http://www.starwindsoftware.com/configuring-ha-storage-for-win-server-2003-and-2008 for Windows 2003(R2), Windows Server 2008 (R2).

    Table of Contents

  19. Q. Does StarWind supports Cluster Shared Volumes (CSV) in Hyper-V clusters?

    A. Yes, StarWind iSCSI target fully supports SCSI-3 required to build a Hyper-V cluster. You can find how to make CSV in the following manual http://www.starwindsoftware.com/cluster-shared-disk-resources-for-hyper-v

    Table of Contents



  20. VMware vSphere

  21. Q. Does StarWind supports both ESX and ESXi?

    A. Yes, StarWind fully supports both hypervizors.

    Table of Contents

Notice [8] Undefined index: login in /srv/www/vhosts/en.starwindsoftware.com/frontend/views/helpers/Counters.php on 27