Behind the Scenes: Episode 153 – VVols and VMware Best Practices in ONTAP

Welcome to the Episode 153, part of the continuing series called “Behind the Scenes of the NetApp Tech ONTAP Podcast.”


This week on the podcast, ONTAP Virtualization TME Karl Konnerth (@konnerth) joins us to give us the latest in VMware best practices for ONTAP, as well as a primer on VVols and what the latest functionality is in vSphere 7.2! 

For more information, read Karl’s recent blog about VVols & ONTAP or check out the updated technical report

Finding the Podcast

You can find this week’s episode here:

Also, if you don’t like using iTunes or SoundCloud, we just added the podcast to Stitcher.

I also recently got asked how to leverage RSS for the podcast. You can do that here:

Our YouTube channel (episodes uploaded sporadically) is here:

TECH::Spring cleaning for your NAS environment

The other day, I was on a customer call, helping with some NAS/netgroup configuration. We were running some tests connecting to a LDAP server to fetch netgroups when I noticed that a netgroup of 100 hosts only returned four IP addresses. FOUR!

There wasn’t anything broken from the storage side. Instead, it was the netgroup – of the 100 hosts, only 4 still existed in DNS.


April mis-configurations bring disrupted summer vacations

Every spring, I like to clean out the garage, clean the grill grates, and eventually, spray off the thick coat of North Carolina pollen that has caked itself on. If I were to let this stuff go all year, I’d probably be featured on some reality show like Hoarders.

The same mentality could be applied to your NAS environment maintenance.

  • Removed hosts from the network? Remove them from DNS.
  • Removed hosts from DNS? Remove them from netgroups.
  • Removed netgroups? Remove them from export policies and rules.
  • Changed IP addresses? Make sure those changes are applied everywhere.

If you don’t keep up with your NAS environment, you might be getting calls from your users and/or customers at hours or times you don’t appreciate. Once, on my on-call weekend when I was in support, I had to work a case at 3AM. At the beach. In a hotel parking lot. Stealing wi-fi.

The root cause? Someone mis-configured something.

The fact that I was at the beach and had to be in a hotel parking lot stealing wi-fi was due to my own poor planning. Everyone loses!

Centralize and organize

Some environments still use flat files for hosts, netgroups, etc. While that’s ok, you should start considering consolidating those files into a centralized name service like LDAP, NIS, DNS, etc. After all, it’s a lot easier to make a change on one server than on 600.

If you move away from flat files, you make your life easier, bottom line. And you make your spring cleaning efforts that much more bearable.

What else can you do?

Along with spring cleaning/regular maintenance of your name services, be sure to follow best practices for your NAS environment. For clustered Data ONTAP, I’ve recently published an update to TR-4379: Name Service Best Practices, which covers best practices for many scenarios. For example… Using short hostnames? Don’t. Use FQDNs whenever possible. Shortnames force the DNS client to figure out the DNS zone, which add latency to requests.

Also, pro-tip: If you’re on-call, try to remember not to also be on vacation.