Superdome planning (159 Views)
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Occasional Advisor
Maarten Boot
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎06-11-2007
Message 1 of 13 (159 Views)

Superdome planning

I am currently trying to plan for a possible superdome machine our company may buy.

I found in: Ordering and Configuration Guidelines
HP-UX Virtual Partitions (vPars) T1335CC T1335BC T1335AC Version 07.03.15 of March 2007

on page 14 the nota that a maximum of 4 v-pars are allowd per n-par if using dual path. Can somebody explain why this limit exists?

Looking at supported cards and io bandwith a dual san/dual lan card could be used and there would be enough space in a io-rack for 8 cards (so 8 v-pars)
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Acclaimed Contributor
Torsten.
Posts: 23,129
Registered: ‎10-02-2001
Message 2 of 13 (159 Views)

Re: Superdome planning

Hi,

in the mentioned document I read:

"8 virtual partitions per nPartition, where the nPartition is a
maximum of 8 cells; 128 total per Superdome system for the 128-
way Superdome systems, where the nPartition is a maximum of
8 cells."

(Version 07.06.05 - page 18)
http://docs.hp.com/en/1705/oc.pdf

Hope this helps!
Regards
Torsten.

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Occasional Advisor
Maarten Boot
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎06-11-2007
Message 3 of 13 (159 Views)

Re: Superdome planning

When reading please read all an not part.

the line directly under that states:

Notes:
· The above assumes single path to I/O; if dual path is used, as in many mission critical environments, then the
recommended and maximum numbers may be half of that stated.

So to repeat the question: why half of 8 when dual path
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Acclaimed Contributor
Torsten.
Posts: 23,129
Registered: ‎10-02-2001
Message 4 of 13 (159 Views)

Re: Superdome planning

"When reading please read all an not part."

Please do so!


à · The above assumes single path to I/O; if dual path is used, as in many mission critical environments, then the
recommended and maximum numbers
**** may ****
be half of that stated.

The number of virtual partitions
**** can ****
be limited by the number of available IO slots.


Please notice "may" and "can".


Hope this helps!
Regards
Torsten.

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Honored Contributor
Duncan Edmonstone
Posts: 5,678
Registered: ‎08-05-2000
Message 5 of 13 (159 Views)

Re: Superdome planning

Hi,

I'd say theres a bit of a vague statement after that table:

The above assumes single path to I/O; if dual path is used, as in many mission critical environments, then the
recommended and maximum numbers may be half of that stated.

Note that it states 'may be' - in the case of Superdome it isn't. I think the point this is trying to make is that you have a limited number of PCI slots in some nPars which means you simply can't get 8 vPars in an nPar if you want dual path to everything.

For example, if I build a nPar in a Superdome using just one cell board, then I must use just a single IO cage - thats 12 PCI slots. Now If I wanted to dual path to everything over seperate cards I'd probably use AD193A which gives me a FC port and GbE port per card, but of course I can't get 16 cards into the card cage.

Of course if you're doing HA in Superdome, your would probably look at using 2 cells and 2 IO cages to provide more redundant IO, if I wasn't so bothered about HA, I might use a higer density combo card such as AD194A which gives me 2 FC and 2 GbE ports per slot - depends what I want.

Honestly when it comes to designing Superdome, you should really be talking to HP about how to do it - they will be more than happy to help and they have plenty of people for whom these kind of design choices are bread and butter. I'm sure they will work with you so you can learn and understand the process...

HTH

Duncan

HTH

Duncan
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Acclaimed Contributor
Torsten.
Posts: 23,129
Registered: ‎10-02-2001
Message 6 of 13 (159 Views)

Re: Superdome planning

Totally agree to Duncan.

The Superdome can have 12 ... 192 I/O slots - this will definitively influence the possibilities of different configurations.

Hope this helps!
Regards
Torsten.

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Occasional Advisor
Maarten Boot
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎06-11-2007
Message 7 of 13 (159 Views)

Re: Superdome planning

I agree with the vagueness of the document. I also agree that HP should be able to answer these questions however my contact in Croatia so far has not been able to do so, and avoids the issue by shifting the focus to Integrity Virtual machines IVM instead. If the issue is so importantly stated in the planning document I would like a beter understanding and I agree that it could be as simple as the maximum amount of availble slots (12) in the io-racks.

In this case the original max v-par amount is 8 and I also assume that this is based on the use on 1 io rach per n-par and the limit of 8 free usable slots after the initial basic io needed for a n-par. Using current dusl-san/dual-lan one could still use 8 v-pars and have dual paths for san and lan. IMHO

I am looking for the underlying fact that limits exist here but is seems only mentioned in the planning document and not in the admin manuals of v-par administration (so far I have not found it)

To clarify and provide a context: I intend to use v-pars to isolate Oracle databases for production purposes and IVM for applications. And as long as my customers do not require absolute 24x7x366 uptime and can tolerate short outages for maintenance I am not yet considering clustering.
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Honored Contributor
Duncan Edmonstone
Posts: 5,678
Registered: ‎08-05-2000
Message 8 of 13 (159 Views)

Re: Superdome planning

>> I am looking for the underlying fact that limits exist here but is seems only mentioned in the planning document and not in the admin manuals of v-par administration (so far I have not found it)

Why is there a limit of 8 on the number of vPars per nPar?

-Because HP say there is. This isn't just a 'tested configurations' issue - there are real architectural reasons in the vPar code, in the kernel of HPUX and in hardware config/firmware why we don't go beyond 8 per nPar.

Sorry but thats the way it is.

When you state you want to isolate databases - I can understand wanting to isolate prod from non prod instances, but theres usually no reason not to put multiple prod databases or multiple test databases in the same OS image...

HTH

Duncan

HTH

Duncan
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Occasional Advisor
Maarten Boot
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎06-11-2007
Message 9 of 13 (159 Views)

Re: Superdome planning

Well thats an excellent answer. I love hard facts.

Next question then becomes if the "MAY BE HALF" in the planning document is only based on available IO slots in the IO rack. If so then unless other HA requirements conflict using 8 dual-san/dual-lan cards will allow me to have a max of 8 vpars.

As to test and prod on the same image i agree that technically that could be done on the same HPUX image (be it n-par or v-par).
However there are 2 compelling arguments in my case: First, I have to pass the PCI evaluation (Paying Card Industry) which clearly states that test and production must be completely separate and second I have to be able (requested by by customers) to have multiple performance critical oracle databases that will NEVER influence each other when intensive queries are run. Therefore my "obsession" with v-pars. Currently I have already 3 databases for production and need some future room for new ones hence my concern for the possible limit of 4. looking at how things will grow in the near future I can live with a limit of 6 but not with 4.

(current plans are 4 n-pars in 1 rack each n-par having 2 cells. 2 n-pars for production and an exact duplicate for the test environment so that manual failover could be done in case of prolonged downtime of prod planning that will be the next task)
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Esteemed Contributor
John Collier
Posts: 1,164
Registered: ‎07-15-2002
Message 10 of 13 (159 Views)

Re: Superdome planning

Maarten,

Based on all of the discussion above and the excellent responses, not to mention the excellent logic, I would say that all three of you have made very valid points.

What concerns me is the fact that you have a contact in your area that is apparently unresponsive to your wants and desires and, furthermore, you are willing to allow him to simply sidestep the issue.

These forums are a great place to come to get advice from people who have experience with certain systems, have more practical hands-on experience, and in most cases more common sense than the average salesman, but there is no guarantee that there will be someone here that will be able to explain the technical side of why certain hardware/software configurations work the way they do.

Your logic on how you want to set up your system is very valid and easily understandable, but there is no promise that anybody reading this forum at this time will have done, and therefore have practical experience with, what you want done. You are arguing logic and theory here and asking for technical documents to back up your desires from a volunteer group. To put it bluntly, you are searching for answers in the wrong place.

The only way you can possibly hope to get an exact answer to the types of questions you are asking is to go to a paid expert. You need answers from someone whose job depends on having the correct answers. Honestly, based on your responses to the answers above, I don't think you would be satisfied with anything less.

Bottom line to me is simply this -- A Superdome is NOT a small Investment. If your local contact is a weasel and is avoiding your direct questions, move to another person.

You owe it to yourself and your clients to get the answers you want and need to make an intelligent, informed decision.

HP owes it to you to provide someone to supply such information prior to you committing to such an investment.

Just my $.02
"I expect to pass through this world but once. Any good, therefore, that I can do, or any kindness that I can show to any human being, let me do it now. Let me not defer or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again." Stephen Krebbet, 1793-1855
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Occasional Advisor
Maarten Boot
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎06-11-2007
Message 11 of 13 (159 Views)

Re: Superdome planning

I currently have enough answers to close this thread. A suggestion by HP has been made to also look at using PRM as it is integrated with oracle and can set limits on performance.

I will pursue the v-par details with an expert from HP next to that.

The latest post is a bit strongly voiced for my taste but is is a valid one.

Thanks for all comments and advice. Without a forum like this I would be swimming on my own in these deep waters.

Maarten
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Occasional Advisor
Maarten Boot
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎06-11-2007
Message 12 of 13 (159 Views)

Re: Superdome planning

I currently have enough answers to close this thread. A suggestion by HP has been made to also look at using PRM as it is integrated with oracle and can set limits on performance.

I will pursue the v-par details with an expert from HP next to that.

The latest post is a bit strongly voiced for my taste but is is a valid one.

Thanks for all comments and advice. Without a forum like this I would be swimming on my own in these deep waters.

Maarten
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Esteemed Contributor
John Collier
Posts: 1,164
Registered: ‎07-15-2002
Message 13 of 13 (159 Views)

Re: Superdome planning

> The latest post is a bit strongly voiced for my taste but is is a valid one.

Based on the type of responses you had to some of the previous posts, I will take that as a compliment.

Sometimes my posts are a bit blunt and to the point and I don't always make friends with them, but I will call it pretty much the way I see it.

You seemed like a pretty 'no nonsense' kind of person, so I gave you a pretty straight forward view of things from my vantage point.

Since you bring up things that were a bit strongly voiced for some people's tastes, I will say that I personally thought your responses to Torsten were a bit on the harsh side as well.

Of course, this is an open forum and we don't always have to keep our velvet gloves on here, do we?

Best of luck to you and make it a WONDERFUL day!
"I expect to pass through this world but once. Any good, therefore, that I can do, or any kindness that I can show to any human being, let me do it now. Let me not defer or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again." Stephen Krebbet, 1793-1855
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