RedLogic Tech Blog series

Submitted by Robin van Altena on Wed, 07/22/2020 - 22:07
 
 
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RedLogic Tech Blog series
At RedLogic we like to share our knowledge. You can find us at many events as speakers on various VMware related topics. We also organize inhouse events for our Dutch clients and Tech Days for exchanging technical knowledge between colleagues. We feel it’s time to also share our extensive knowledge with other tech enthusiasts all over the world. At the moment we work hard on developing a technical blog website, creating a platform for our experts to share their knowledge with you. Below the first of many blog posts, stay tuned for more.
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Identify NVMe disks in a HPE vSAN environment

Replacing a failed disk or identifying an internal disk to be replace is always a delicate task, because we don’t want to introduce additional failures. Especially in vSAN enabled clusters with different failure to tolerate settings. Of course, a vSAN enabled server can be placed into maintenance mode with full data migration and VMware has done a great job in creating visibility of the used components in a vSAN environment, including the identify disk led.

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Maintenance Mode
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But sometimes things just don’t add up and you need additional conformation to be absolutely sure that the correct disk is replaced. Therefore I was looking for a way to match the information displayed on the ILO page of a HPe DL380 Gen10 with the information displayed in vCenter for a vSAN NVMe disk.

On the ILO page the model and serial number are shown for a given NVMe disk.

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NVMe disk
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In vCenter the model number for a NVMe disk can be easily retrieved, but unless you have completely different disks in the servers, the model number isn’t very useful.

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NVMe in vCenter
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The NVMe disk as presented in vCenter shows as t10.NVME__<model number>_______<GUID>. This GUID can’t be found in the ILO. So how can we retrieve the serial number for a specific NVMe disk?

From the ESXi command line several commands can be used to retrieve information about a disk drive. Since this is a vSAN host I started with the known vSAN commands:

esxcli vsan storage list

With this command the model number can be easily found, but the serial number isn’t listed

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vSAN NVMe
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After some google work and a discussion with a HPe employee we found that with the command

Esxcli nvme device list

the NVMe disks with related vmHBA numbers where listed. When the vmhba adapter is added to the previous command the serial number of the disk is listed

esxcli nvme devicve get -A vmhba1

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NVMe from ESXCLI
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The last step is to relate the vmhbax number to the correct disk.

This can be done with the command

esxcfg-scsidevs -A

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ESXCFG
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Hopefully these steps provide you with some additional guidance and insurance when replacing or identifying NVMe disks.

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