Performing a VMAX3/PowerMax Storage Array Profile

Live Optics Agent

Overview

 Live Optics supports the profiling of several hardware storage arrays.  One of these is the Dell EMC VMAX families.  Using the Live Optics collector, configuration and performance data is captured, analyzed and compiled into a Project for viewing.  This document outlines the process to produce a VMAX3/PowerMax array storage profiles.

Pre-Requisites

Before the Live Optics array profile is executed, the array configuration and performance data needs to be gathered using the VMAX3/PowerMax storage array management interfaces. Configuration data is stored in the symapi_db.bin (or equivalent) file. Performance data is stored on the array in DCF files.

  • symapi_db.bin is required in order to view the configuration of the array.
  • symapi_db.bin and DCF files are required in order to view the workload of the VMAX3/PowerMax.

 

Collecting performance data

DCF Performance data can be collected in the following ways:

      • Connecting via Dell Support Assist.
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Notice, there are multiple .zip files.

To import the data into Live Optics these zip files will need to be added to a single zip. For example using the selected entries above performance_data_compressed_file.zip would contain:

  • 20190321_0900_TO_20190321_1300_000496800999.zip
  • 20190321_1300_TO_20190321_1700_000496800999.zip
  • 20190321_1700_TO_20190321_2100_000496800999.zip
  • 20190321_2100_TO_20190322_0100_000496800999.zip
  • 20190322_0100_TO_20190322_0500_000496800999.zip

 

Validating Collected Data

Live Optics will validate the data provided to ensure it is correct before it is uploaded to a Live Optics Project. These validations include:

  • The symapi bin file selected is a valid file
  • The symapi file contains data for at least one valid VMAX3/PowerMax array
  • The DCF performance files chosen are for the selected VMAX3/PowerMax array
  • The DCF .zip files are within a single compressed file
  • The date range will be no more than 7 consecutive days, automatically selecting the most recent 7 days when more existPulling the files directly from the array

Live Optics does not recommend extracting VMAX3 DCF Performance Files without assistance from qualified Dell EMC Customer Engineer.

If your VMAX3/PowerMax is connected to Dell Support Assist with an unrestricted access policy, contact your Dell EMC Systems Engineer and ask them to open a request to collect the VMAX3/PowerMax data.

Alternatively If your VMAX3/PowerMax is not connected to Dell Support Assist or your Dell Support Assist connection is restricted, open a Service Request at MyService360 to extract the VMAX3/PowerMax Metrics Files (.DCF).   

 

 Bundling DCF Performance Data

Once extracted, consolidate the metric files into one or more .ZIP files and place them in a dedicated folder.

An example of a DCF bundle can be seen below:

 

Quick-Start Directions

1. Click Get Started

2. Click Get Started

3. Click Yes, I Agree to accept the End User License Agreement (prompted only on first execution)

4. Click Yes, it is correct after verifying your identity is correct (prompted only on first execution)

5. Select Storage from the left menu

6. Select VMAX/PowerMax

7. Select VMAX3/PowerMax

8. Click Next

9. Select one of

  • Collect Config & Performance
  • Collect Config Data only

10. Click Browse for File, browse and select the SYMAPI_DB.bin file, click Open

11. Click Next

12. Select a VMAX3/PowerMax array from the list

13. Click Next

14. Click Browse for File, browse and select the a zip file that contains the DCF performance files, click Open

15. Click Next

16. Select the Upload Option, either upload automatically (recommended) or upload later

17. Click Next

18. If upload automatically was selected, enter the project name to be created, click Next

19. After the files are processed and optionally siokit created, click Quit to exit the application

 

Detailed Instructions

Step 1: Download the Live Optics Windows collector software
  • There are two methods to download the collector software.
  • An email you received from your systems consultant inviting you to Live Optics by clicking the Download Collector link.
  • In the Live Optics portal, select Collectors from the left menu, then Download Collector.
  • Either option will bring you to the Download Collectors page. To perform storage array profiles, download the Windows collector.  Note, the Windows collector requires .NET 4.5 or greater to be installed on the host running the collector.
  • Click the Download button to start the download. A file named LiveOptics.zip will be downloaded.
  • Once the file download completes, extract the contents of the zip file on the host where you wish to run the software. The Live Optics collector does not install like a typical Windows application.  Extracting the zip file is all that is needed to run the collector.  Note, the collector can be run on any host with IP connectivity to the storage arrays you wish to profile. 

Step 2: Run Live Optics collector software

  • Open the directory where you extracted the files from the zip download and double-click LiveOpticsDotNet4_5.exe.
    • Select Language and click Get Started

     

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    Click the Yes, I Agree button to accept the End User License Agreement
                  • Note, this appears the first time you run the collector software. Each subsequent time you will not be asked this question.

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    Confirm your name/company is correct and click Yes, it is correct. If you were invited to run Live Optics, your systems consultant information will also be listed.
                  • Note, this appears the first time you run the collector software. Each subsequent time you will not be asked this question.

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    Choose to Opt-In or Opt-Out of Software updates and click Next. This setting can be changed at any stage when running the collector.

     

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    Step 3: Select Storage from the list of profile types.

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    Step 4: Select VMAX/PowerMax from the list of storage array models, and click Next

    Step 5: Select VMAX3/PowerMax from the list of storage array models, and click Next

     

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    Step 6: Click Collect Config & Performance or Collect Config Data Only and click Next

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    Step 7: Click Browse for File to choose a VMAX3/PowerMax configuration symapi_db.bin file. Click Next to continue.

    NOTE: the impl file is not a supported format.

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    Select a symapi_db.bin file and click Open

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    The name and path of the file is displayed when it is selected

    Click Next to continue when a file is selected.

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    The selected file is validated for correctness. The following error messages can be displayed:

                  • Unrecognized file format (including impl file)

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    symapi file does not contain any VMAX3/PowerMax arrays.

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    Step 8: Select VMAX3/PowerMax array from the list. Multiple arrays can exist in one symapi_db.bin file. Click Next to continue.

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    Step 9: Select Performance files for VMAX3/PowerMax array.

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    The duration of performance data will be displayed. If it is more than 7 consecutive days, then the most recent 7 days will be processed from the performance data provided

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    NOTE: a single .zip file can be selected that contains DCF zip files

    A zip file can be created by selecting all the performance files and adding them to a zip file.

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    The selected zip file is validated for correctness. The following error messages can be displayed:

                  • Verify the single zip file contains DCF .zip performance files

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    Step 10:  Select the method to upload to the Live Optics web site for processing

                  • Selecting the default, Upload my collection data to the Live Optics web portal automatically, is the recommended method. This option will automatically upload the collected data to the Live Optics portal and start processing. Use this option when the host running the collector has Internet access. Once selected, click Next.

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    Enter the name of the project for your array profile. Click Next.

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    The files are processed and uploaded to the web portal. During the upload, a status bar indicates the progress.  As storage array data can be quite large, the upload may take some time to complete depending on the speed of your Internet connection.

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                  • The collector will indicate when the upload has completed. Click Quit to close the collector
                  • You will receive an email from Live Optics when your project is ready for viewing on the web portal.

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    Selecting I will upload later (requires upload of generated SIOKIT file) will process and save your array data to an encrypted file with the name [hostname]_VMAX.siokit. The file is written to the same folder from where the collector was executed. Use this option when the host running the collector does not have Internet access.

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                  • After the collection process completes, the file will need to be uploaded to the web portal for processing using the collector.

    Step 11: Uploading the SIOKIT file (applies only if selected I will upload later (requires upload of generated SIOKIT file)

                  • The Live Optics web portal supports directly uploading .siokit files that are less than 100MB. If your file is large than 100MB, use the collector to upload the file.  The following outlines the steps for uploading using the Windows collector.
                  • Copy the .siokit file along with the downloaded collector files (or download again) to a host with Internet access.
                  • Duble-click on LiveOpticDotNet4_5.exe to start the collector.
                  • From the upper right menu bar, select Upload SIOKIT.

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                  • Click Browse for File. Select the .siokit file.
                  • Enter the name of the project for your array profile. Click Upload.

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    The file is uploaded to the web portal. During the upload, a status bar indicates the progress.  As storage array data can be quite large, the upload may take some time to complete depending on the speed of your Internet connection.

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                  • The collector will indicate when the upload has completed. Click Quit to close the collector.
                  • You will receive an email from Live Optics when your project is ready for viewing on the web portal.

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    Step 12: View Project Results

                  • Log in to the Live Optics web portal (https://www.liveoptics.com)
                  • Your recent projects are listed on your dashboard. Select your project.

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    The project details page appears. From here you can download the report in PowerPoint format (PPT) containing all the array details, share your project with other Live Optics users such as your systems consultant, or delete your project.  The page also shows the Project ID and the current status of your project.

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