A high availability cluster setup of data storage servers is one of the most secure business solutions. It allows for continuous access to the data and may increase performance in an active-active configuration. In general, a cluster is a set of servers that work together but behave like a single system, where each cluster node shares the data by means of the software used in the cluster environment. In this article, we would like to provide you with some basic information in regard to cluster solutions with the ZFS-based Open-E JovianDSS.
Open-E JovianDSS enables building cluster solutions to provide its users with integrated and high-performing data storage standards to achieve an efficient and responsive IT environment. Our cluster solutions are optimized for enterprise environments, as well as for small and medium businesses to reduce various risks and costs to the minimum while improving the performance. Open-E JovianDSS enables building many cluster configurations, below we present only some of the many possible options:
Cluster with multiple JBODs over SAS
Cluster with multiple JBODs over Fibre Channel (FC)
Cluster over Ethernet
A Cluster-in-a-Box is built of two servers and a common set of SAS hard drives (shared with both cluster nodes) configured as a mirror (RAID 1) or as a RAID-Z, all in one server enclosure. Such a solution simplifies the physical setup and deployment of a two-node HA storage cluster since as all the required cable connections are pre-configured between the internal components. In case of a node failure, the other node takes over all resources due to the failover process and serves them with no interruption.
A Cluster-in-a-Box solution is compact and complete, and it can be easily installed in a standard rack. There is an option to scale it up in by adding an external JBOD. For more info, go to the Solution article.
Cluster with multiple JBODs over SAS
A High Availability Cluster with multiple JBODs over SAS with Open-E JovianDSS is a setup with two server heads connected to a shared storage with two (or more) redundant JBODs. The maximum distance between nodes is 33 ft (10 m). The solution enables avoiding Single Points of Failure (SPOF) because the drives are mirrored between JBODs. All hard drives on one node are shared with the other node, by means of a physical connection of HDDs to both nodes. For more info, go to the solution article.
Cluster with multiple JBODs over Fibre channel
A High Availability Cluster with multiple JBODs over Fibre Channel (FC) is a typical cluster setup that works almost exactly the same as over a SAS connection. The choice between a SAS or FC connection depends on what kind of performance, distance between nodes and costs are demanded. In case of a Fibre Channel connection the distance is up to 31 miles (50 km) or more (with FC switches), thus a FC configuration is recommended for (Stretched) Metro Storage Cluster setups where both nodes are placed in different locations. In both the SAS or FC cases, the system can easily be scaled up by adding extra JBODs.
A Cluster over Ethernet is another solution with Open-E JovianDSS that is built of two nodes. Each node in the configuration has its own hard drives attached directly to the node and indirectly served over Ethernet to the other node (after internal conversion of the protocol). It allows for using a commodity server that is made up of only SATA drives which makes the solution very cost-effective. The nodes might be located a very long distance apart as a (stretched) metro storage cluster – 50 miles (80 km) or even more. For further info, read the solution article.