In Part I, I covered SmartConnect Basic, an included feature of OneFS, that handles connections to Isilon node IP addresses based on a Round Robin connection policy.
What do you do if you want a more dynamic, more resilient, and better load balanced solution? You implement SmartConnect Advanced. Remember, that SmartConnect Advanced requires an additional license.
So why is SmartConnect Advanced so much better than SmartConnect Basic? From a previous post, I mentioned:
SmartConnect Basic has the following features:
- Static IP allocation to nodes
- Connection Policy Algorithms
- Round Robin (which node is next)
- No Rebalancing
- No IP Failover
I posted an article on VMware vSphere and EMC Isilon (VMware vSphere and EMC Isilon – One datastore or many?) and covered some of the basics of SmartConnect when used with NFS datastores. I talked about some of the abilities of SmartConnect, but didn’t really cover how to configure it.
As mentioned in my previous post, SmartConnect Basic handles Round Robin IP distribution as nodes are added to a cluster, while SmartConnect Advanced handles advanced IP distribution as nodes are added, removed, or are unavailable, to the cluster. In addition to managing IP addresses for a cluster, through DNS delegation, SmartConnect provides IP addresses for address resolution when connecting to a FQDN, rather than an IP address.
SmartConnect Basic is included with the OneFS operating system without an additional licensing requirements. SmartConnect Basic does provide the ability to use a DNS round-robin connection policy to distribute connections to all nodes in a SmartConnect Zone.
Additionally, as nodes are taken offline for maintenance, or in the event of a failure, are no longer made available from the SmartConnect Zone. This is not a high availability mechanism, but rather a process that indicates that a node, or IP address, is no longer available to answer requests. To truly leverage the round-robin benefits of SmartConnect Basic, clients have to continually perform DNS look-ups to determine if a destination node is available.
Configuring SmartConnect Basic
Configuring SmartConnect Basic is very straightforward. SmartConnect is a network component, click on Cluster > Networking from the Isilon Action menu in the Administrative Web Interface.