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I am setting up an iSCSI environment for a Windows Server. I will be using 2 Dell Poweconnect 7024s , 1 Dell PS6000, and a Windows Server (2008 R2). I have more experience in fiber switches and EMC VNX series SANs than I do with the Powerconnect and PS series products, so I have a few questions.

1)The PS6000 has 2 controller cards (the greens) with 4 Ethernet ports each. In this documentation, Section 4.5.1, the image shows all 4 ports of each card connected to the iSCSI network I believe. Additionally it looks like one of the preferred methods to setup these SANs is via the Remote Setup Wizard.

Question: Do people generally not have a dedicated IP/management port to each SP for remote management on these? Is the preferred method to use all 4 ports per controller for iSCSI network traffic, and then just manage the SAN via the Windows Server that will be connected to it? Or should I be able to setup 1 of those ports, possibly the last one of each card, as a separate remote management port?

2)In all diagrams of this setup it seems like I have to have the switches either stacked or LAGed. In the same document, figure 19 in section 4.3.1, shows stack or LAG.

Question: Do I have to have these switches stacked or LAGed for redundancy, or can they remain not connected?

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I have found the answers to this.

  1. While having a dedicated port/IP on these controller modules is possible it's not required. These CMs work in an active passive mode. Generally you can install the remote management software on the server that will be using the iSCSI and is in the same network (iSCSI traffic). Two cat-5 will go from ETH0/1 to 1 switch, and the other 2 ports on the CM, ETH2/3, will be connected to a different switch.

  2. Yes you have to stack or LAG switches you use with iSCSI. Stacking seems to be the preferred method.

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Yes for the love of god stack them –  SpacemanSpiff Dec 5 '12 at 21:25
    
Wait a second - Do NOT stack the PowerConnect switches. You will be unable to perform firmware updates without taking the whole stack down. –  Doug Luxem Dec 19 '12 at 1:17
    
Not a big deal. If you don't stack or LAG them, then you own't have a happy iSCSI setup. –  Chadddada Dec 21 '12 at 14:33

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