Notes - Building New ESXi Host for iSCSI with Jumbo Frames

My notes from setting up ESXi 4.1 and ESXi 5 for iSCSI datastores.

  1. Install OS, configure Mgmt NIC and Mgmt IP Address
  2. Test vSphere client Access
  3. Open Console Session
    TroubleShooting Options, Local ESXi Shell
    Alt-F1 to access shell
  4. Create iSCSI vSwitch
    esxcfg-vswitch -a iSCSI
  5. Enable Jumbo Frames
    esxcfg-vswitch -m 9000 iSCSI
  6. Verify Info
    esxcfg-vswitch -l
  7. Create VMkernal Ports for each iSCSI connection. *Each iSCSI connection should be on it's own subnet **MTU can only be set during creation of vmk for ESXi 4.1
    a) esxcfg-vswitch -A iscsi1 iSCSI
    b) esxcfg-vmknic -a -i -n -m 9000 iscsi1
    c) repeat for each iSCSI conneciton
    d) Verify with "esxcfg-vswitch -l" and "esxcfg-vmknic -l"
  8. Assign iSCSI network adatpers
    a) esxcfg-vswitch -L vmnic0 iSCSI
    b) repeat for each iSCSI vmnic
    c) Verify with "esxcfg-vswitch -l"
  9. Create 1:1 vmnic:vmk binding. Easiest from the vSphere client.
    a) Open Properties for the iSCSI switch
    b) Edit the "iscsi1" vmk port
    c) Click "NIC Teaming" tab and check "Override switch failover order"
    d) Move all adapters down to "Unused Adapters" except the one physical NIC to use with this VMK
    e) Repeat for each iSCSI VMK port
    f) Verify one-to-one vmk/vmnic ration with "esxcfg-vswitch -l"
  10. Enable iSCSI Software Initiator
    esxcfg-swiscsi -e
  11. Bind VMK ports to the iSCSI Software Initiator
    a) Note the vmhba## in the vSphere client Storage Adapters for the iSCSI Software Initiator
    b) esxcli swiscsi nic add -n vmk# vmhba## (ESXi4.1)
    esxcli iscsi networkportal add -n vmk# -A vmhba## (ESXi5)
  12. Configure iSCSI Software Initiator for Dyanmic Discovery of Storage Appliance