ZFS + iSCSI architecture

bsd at todoo.biz bsd at todoo.biz
Tue Feb 19 22:27:02 UTC 2013


I am about to start deploying a large system (about 18 To which can grow up to 36 To) based on a big Intel platform with lot's of fancy features to have turbo boosted platform (ZIL on SSD + system on dongle if I go for FreeNAS). Since I want to move on quite fast I might decide to use FreeNAS in it's latest version. 

The idea behind all that was to grant 5 or six critical servers access to the NAS so that they can take advantage of : 

1. space available on the NAS

2. ability of the NAS to use ZFS and of clients to support this file system (including snapshots) 

3. Access the server using iSCSI (at least this is what I initially planned). 

4. Mount part of their filesystem using data stored on the SAN (like /usr/local/ or other parts of the system). 

The server accessing the data will be of two types : 

1. 2 x Ubuntu server 10.04 LTS 

2. 4 x FreeBSD (mainly 8 and 9) with jail configured 

I have started reading about iSCSI and potential problems with FreeBSD. 

So my main questions would be : 

• Should I go for iSCSI ? 

• Should I rather choose / prefer NFS ? 

• Should I export a Volume as UFS rather than ZFS (is ZFS supported as a target) ?

The main idea is stability, redundancy of data and ease of maintenance (in a headless FreeBSD / Linux world) before anything else ! 

That's the big pictures, if you have any pointers, advise, they are all welcome. 

It is quite late where I leave, so I will reply to posts in 8 to 10 hours, but I hope to have enough answer(s) to start an interesting thread (as I think this question is very interesting and not so clearly explained (at least in my mind))… 

Thx very much for your infos and feedback. 

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