Nimble Storage Fibre Channel Array Setup

Since Nimble Storage introduced Fibre Channel, I’m sure that many of our customers and prospects want to use their new FC array.
In this post, I will cover how to setup your new FC array and indicate what has changed in the setup manager as well as in the WebUI of the array.

All Fibre Channel arrays will be shipped with the Nimble OS version as it is the first OS which supports FC.
Once you have unpacked your new array, racked and cabled it, power it on. For the initial setup, you will need the Nimble Setup Manager on your local machine. The Nimble Setup Manager is part of the Nimble Windows Toolkit and can be downloaded from InfoSight. If you do not have an InfoSight login yet, please register as a new user.

Note: You will need your array serial number to register successfully.

After you started the Nimble Setup Manager, it will find your storage array and ask you to accept the EULA.
Next, you will be asked if you want to add this array to an existing group or set it up as  a standalone array.


In this setup, we decided to not join an existing group. Specify the array & group name and some additional management settings and hit next.



In the next screen you have to specify your subnet labels. Since this is a Fibre Channel array, you do not need to specify a data subnet. However, we have chosen to create a data subnet dedicated for replication.


Finally, we can see our actual FC ports and as you hover over each single FC port, you can see the operational speed.
By the way, don’t forget to set your diagnostic IPs. Those come in handy if you ever have to engage Support.


The next screen should look familiar again as it is the same for every Nimble Storage array. Specify the domain name and your DNS server.


Also, this screen should look familiar. Nothing has changed here. Specify your time zone and a NTP server.


This is the final step for the initial setup. Make sure to setup an unauthorized SMTP relay on your mail server for your new array.
Also, please check the box for Send event data to Nimble Storage Support. A lot of Nimble’s case automation and pro-active wellness relies on email alerts.
If you think you don’t need email alerts and all this pro-active wellness stuff, watch this video and see what you’ll miss out on. I highly recommend enabling those alerts!

Additionally, make sure Autosupport is enabled and works. Autosupport data is also playing a big role in Nimble’s pro-active wellness & InfoSight.
Once you are done, hit Finish and your array is ready for some action.


Go to Manage -> Arrays and select your array name. It will open this part of the WebUI and you can see your Ethernet and FC ports as well as the usual details.


Heading over to Administration -> Network Configuration. Select the active configuration and select the Interfaces-Tab. Here, you can see all your FC port including their WWPNs and the WWNN.
For the guys new to FC, WWPN = World Wide Port Name & WWNN = World Wide Node Name.


Additional to the new Interfaces-Tab, Nimble Storage also changed the Initiator Group UI in order to accommodate FC Initiators/WWPNs.


All images have been provided by Rich Fenton, one of Nimble’s Sales Engineer from UK.

Nimble Storage Fibre Channel

On Monday, November 17th, Nimble Storage announced official Fibre Channel support. This is another big milestone achieved by the team at Nimble. Fibre Channel will be available for the CS300, CS500 and CS700. The CS210 and CS215 will not be supported.



Below are some screenshots of what’s new in the WebUI:


As you can see above, fc9 and fc10 are the FC ports on both controllers. Hovering over those ports will show the location of them.



Additionally, the Initiator Groups have been modified to accommodate WWPNs


Adding new WWPNs is as easy as we’re used to it from the iSCSI initiator.


Overall, nothing special has been added to the WebUI. Everything has been kept simple as we expected and as we love the nimble device. This is most certainly opening up a bigger market share for Nimble Storage.

Over the next days, I’ll provide more details about Nimble’s FC integration