StarWind Virtual Storage Appliance is a pre-configured Linux-based virtual machine with StarWind Virtual SAN installed. It creates a VM-centric and high performing storage pool for VMware Cluster. It was designed to satisfy the growing portion of Linux users by eliminating licensing cost.
This guide is intended for experienced system administrators and IT professionals who would like to install and use StarWind VSA as a shared storage back-end. It describes the deployment and configuration process of the StarWind Virtual Storage Appliance with VMware vSphere.
StarWind Virtual Storage Appliance
Linux virtual machine that has StarWind Virtual SAN installed and configured.
Virtual Machine requirements
StarWind Virtual Storage Appliance VM requires to have at least 4 virtual processors with 2 GHz reserved, at least 4 GB of RAM, 3 NIC ports dedicated as separate vSwitches for management, StarWind synchronization and iSCSI traffic to ensure the proper functioning of VSA.
Deployment quick steps
1. Download zip archieve that contains StarWind Web Management Appliance.
2. Extract virtual machine files
3. Deploy a virtual machine to the vSphere. Right click on the host and select “Deploy OVF template” from a drop down menu.
4. On the first step of the wizard, point to the location of the OVF template. Select VSA files and click next.
5. Specify the name and location for the StarWind VSA VM.
6. Select a resource for the StarWind VSA VM.
7. Review information about the VM.
8. Select storage for the VM.
9. Select Networks for the VM.
10. Click finish and start the deployment process.
By default, the StarWind VSA virtual machine will receive IP address automatically via DHCP. It is recommended to create a DHCP reservation and set a static IP address for this VM. In order to access StarWind VSA from the local network, the virtual machine must have access to the network. In case you do not have a DHCP server, you can connect to the VM using the VMware console and configure static IP address manually.
11. After the installation is completed, add a new virtual disk to the StarWind VSA VM. (Make sure it is Thick Provisioned Eager Zeroed)
12. Next, open a web browser and enter the IP address of the VM, which it had received via DHCP (or had it assigned manually).
Alternatively, you can log in to the VM via the VMware console and assign static IP address.
13. Log in to StarWind Virtual Storage Appliance using the following default credentials:
14. After the successful login, on the left side bar, click Accounts.
Choose a user and click Set Password.
15. On the left side bar, click Networking.
Here, Management IP address of the StarWind VSA Virtual Machine, as well as IP addresses for iSCSI and Synchronization networks can be configured.
16. Connect to StarWind VSA using StarWind Management Console. In StarWind Management Console, click Add Server.
Type the IP address of the StarWind VSA on the pop up window.
17. Click on the URL on the appeared window.
On the left side bar, click Storage.
Find the Virtual Disk you have added.
Hint: The disk you have added will not have any partitions and filesystem.
Create XFS partition. Mount point should be as following: /sw_storage/%yourdiskname%
18. On the storage page of the disk, navigate to the Filesystem tab. Click Mount.
19. Connect to StarWind VSA from the StarWind Management Console. Click Yes.
Choose the disk you have recently mounted.
20. Preconfiguration process is now finished.
Additional information on how to work with StarWind devices can be found here:
Information about StarWind VMware HyperConverged scenario can be found here:
StarWind Virtual Storage Appliance has been deployed and configured successfully. Now, you can create and connect the shared storage to your cluster and work with it.