move toward large file storage needs W r i t i n g
Question 1 research paper
Drawn from chapter 3 of the CompTIA Cloud+ Study Guide (Montgomery, 2016).
Using Storage Provisioning and Creating LUNs
Creating a Logical Unit Number (LUN) on a Storage Area Network (SAN) is necessary to define the storage that the servers attached to the SAN will access. The actual process of creating a LUN depends on the manufacturer. For example, Microsoft’s graphical interface is much different than the command-line utilities found in most Unix or Linux releases. In Windows Server, to create a LUN in the console you would click LUN Management. Then you would click Create LUN in the Actions pane and just follow the wizard prompts to provision a LUN.
Creating Network Shares
In the cloud provider’s datacenter, the storage may very well be consolidated in a small number of large storage systems. This allows for centralized control and management of the storage infrastructure. Multiple companies may share these consolidated storage resources. The SAN administrator at the cloud provider will set up sharing on the drive controllers that defines who is allowed to access certain storage resources and what they are allowed to do to the data they are accessing. Setting up network shares can be done manually or, in the case of a modern cloud datacenter, by using automated provisioning tools that assign the storage when the cloud customer requests computing resources and specifies the type of storage required. The shared files generally are seen as folders in the operating system or appear as a locally attached drive. Some of the common shared types are the Server Message Block (SMB) utilized by Microsoft or the Network File System (NFS) common in all Linux distributions.
Zoning and LUN Masking
It is common to restrict storage on the network to a specific server or a small group of servers. With the use of zoning and LUN masking, the SAN can be restricted to eliminate multiple systems contending for the same storage resources. Also, you would not want a Windows filesystem trying to write to a Linux filesystem; that would corrupt the data on the storage array. When SAN zoning is implemented in a Fibre Channel SAN, access controls are configured that restrict the access allowed to servers and storage devices. For example, an individual server may require access to multiple storage systems, or perhaps multiple servers need to share a single storage device. Zoning is a way of accomplishing these SAN access requirements. When you configure zoning on a SAN switch, it is often called hard zoning since it is performed in hardware. If the zoning is configured to filter on the logical World Wide Names that are assigned to each storage endpoint, then it is referred to as soft zoning. LUN masking accomplishes the same goals as zoning but is implemented at the storage controller or Host Bus Adapter (HBA) level and not in the SAN switching fabric that zoning uses. LUN masking either permits or denies a server from accessing a LUN in the storage array. By defining and configuring LUN masking, you can use server masks to define what LUNs the servers can access even if there are multiple LUNs residing on a single port.
You just learned how to restrict access to storage data by implementing zoning and LUN masking. In this section, you will learn how to make the storage highly available, fault resistant, and less restrictive to the servers accessing the storage systems by using multipathing. Let’s begin by looking at a multipathing solution from a server’s point of view. We can install more than one HBA inside the server. By configuring the HBAs, we can fool the operating system into seeing only one HBA or allow it to use two or more HBAs and automatically fail over or reroute if a HBA should fail. Redundancy is extended to multiple Fibre Channel connections from the HBAs to the SAN switch. Also, multiple SAN switches can be used to create more than one completely separate switching fabric. At the storage controller, multiple Fibre Channel ports serve the same purpose as multiple HBAs in that should one Fibre Channel port fail on a storage controller, the redundant port will take over. Storage is a critical component in any cloud computing environment, and many measures are taken to protect and allow for high availability of the data. Multipathing—or the design of a storage area network to have more than one path from the device initiating a storage request to the device providing the storage service—is a very important consideration of any cloud solution.
Implications of Adding Capacity to a NAS and SAN
With the ever-increasing need for more storage and the move toward large file storage needs, there will come a time when the amount of storage in the cloud provider’s datacenter will need to be expanded. This can be a relatively straightforward exercise, or it may require a lot of reconfiguration and downtime.
Impact to Operations
With enterprise- and service provider–grade storage systems from companies such as EMC, Hitachi, and Network Appliance, the chassis is designed for maximum uptime and minimal impact to the cloud provider’s operations during maintenance tasks such as adding storage capacity. Generally new storage shelves can be added to the enclosure and powered up and configured while the storage system is operating. This will, of course depend on the capabilities of the storage hardware and software being used.
The amount of downtime can range from none at all to a substantial amount depending on the scope of the upgrade project and the capabilities of the storage hardware and software. Downtime for maintenance and changes are scheduled in a change window, which is usually when the load on the systems is the lightest.
You must take into account many factors when adding capacity to your existing SAN. For example, suppose you are considering moving to higher-density drives. Since the storage system will require maintenance, consider upgrading other parts of the system that are reaching capacity and that will require maintenance in the near future. You may have an opportunity to combine several projects into one maintenance window. Can the drives that are being replaced be redeployed to another application in the cloud as a best practice? Another best practice consideration is to select and then stick with a single or just a few storage vendors. This approach allows for increased interoperability and accountability and also reduces the number of tools and utilities that are required to run the SAN. One option would be to have a single storage vendor for Tier 1 storage and another for Tier 2, and so on.
Montgomery, T. (2016). CompTIA cloud study guide: Exam CV0-001. Indianapolis, IN: John Wiley & Sons. ISBN 978-1119243229
For this assignment, in a 3 page APA-formatted paper, address the communication properties, networking protocols, data storage formats, and other concrete technologies utilized by cloud services. Explain how information is stored and accessed in the cloud.
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