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I'm a developer/SQL type person that has inherited an iSCSI SAN/Vmware setup in the past year. HP Lefthand P4500 SAN. Single iSCSI switch - HP Procurve 2810. Dell Equallogic PS6010E 10gb SAN (not used yet.) About 60 VMs on 4 HP DL380 G8 hosts with 96gb memory each.

The 2810 was upgraded to dual Dell Powerconnect 6248 1gb switches - LAGged together. We have dual Dell Powerconnect 8231f 10gb switches to add to the mix, which will also be LAGged together, and then each LAGged to one of the 6248's each, to form a 4-switch circle in one iSCSI subnet that provides both 1gb and 10gb options for storage and hosts.

Is there a good app I can use to understand what's going on overall on those 4 switches - a visual dashboard, and a way to drill down into it for problems? I'm comfortable with Wireshark for looking at things, and command line stuff, but looking for a way to get a higher level view of this setup and what's going on with it in a less detailed way, but a way that will help show if it's having problems that require me to look deeper.

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2 Answers

  • Does your environment have a monitoring solution in place now?
  • What types of problems do you want to recognize?
  • What do you want to be able to see?

I don't proactively monitor my VMware environment's network switches post-installation because serious networking issues usually manifest themselves in VM and storage performance. That becomes the trigger.

But if you have no monitoring solution now, this is a good time to investigate network monitoring systems... I like Observium and OpenNMS, but there are plenty of others.

But since you also have vSphere (assuming Standard or Enterprise), you can see some of this from the vSphere level. Please note the version(s) of vSphere and ESXi involved.

Another interesting option now (if your environment supports it) is the vCenter Operations Suite.

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Since you've standardised on Dell kit, you could use Dell OpenManage Essentials which is free.

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