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Configuring the Fusion-io ioDrive and ioDrive Duo on ESX 4.x (Partner Verified and Support) (2010426)

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This article provides information about Partner Verified Support for configuring Fusion-io ioDrive devices with ESX 4.x and ESXi 4.1.

Note: The Partner Verified and Supported Products (PVSP) policy implies that the solution is not directly supported by VMware. For issues with this configuration, contact Fusion-io directly. See the Support Workflow on how partners can engage with VMware. It is the partner's responsibility to verify that the configuration functions with future vSphere major and minor releases, as VMware does not guarantee that compatibility with future releases is maintained.

Disclaimer: The partner product referenced in this article is a software module that is developed and supported by a partner. Use of this product is also governed by the end user license agreement of the partner. You must obtain the application, support, and licensing for using this product from the partner. For more information, see Commercial Support.

Note: The preceding link was correct as of May 8, 2015. If you find the link is broken, provide feedback and a VMware employee will update the link. 


Overview of Product

Fusion-io offers two unique solid state storage devices:
  • The ioDrive is a revolutionary new solid state technology that dramatically increases bandwidth and application performance, reduces latency, and simplifies your IT infrastructure, all while slashing capital and operating costs.
  • The ioDrive Duo doubles the performance and capacity available on a single device.

Installation Details

  1. Install the firmware and utilities RPMs in ESX4.x Service Console.

    This step requires ESX 4.x. You can then install ESXi 4.1 when the firmware is updated and the devices are low-level formatted.

    From the ESX 4.x Service Console, run these commands as root:

    rpm -i fio-util-
    rpm -i fio-firmware-41936-1.0.noarch.rpm

  2. Update the ioDrive firmware. When still logged into the Service Console as root, run this command to update ioDrive firmware:

    fio-update-iodrive /usr/share/fio/firmware/iodrive_41936.fff

  3. Install the ioDrive driver. From ESX 4.x Service Console logged in as root:
    1. Place the driver CD in the CD-ROM drive of the ESX host.
    2. Mount the driver CD.
    3. Navigate to <cd mount point>/offline-bundle/ and locate the file.
    4. Run the esxupdate command to install drivers using the offline bundle:

      esxupdate – --nosigcheck --nodeps –nocache --maintenancemode update

  4. Disable ioDrive driver on next boot, reboot ESX 4.x host. When still logged in as root from ESX 4.x Service Console, run the commands:

    esxcfg-module -d iomemory-vsl
    esxcfg-boot –b

  5. Low-level format ioDrive(s). When rebooting completes, log back into ESX 4.x Service Console and run these commands as root:

    vmkload_mod iomemory-vsl auto_attach=0
    fio-format –b 512 /dev/fct0

    For an ioDrive Duo, or if multiple ioDrives are populated, run this command:

    fio-format –b 512 /dev/fct1

    As necessary, repeat the command with /dev/fct1, /dev/fct2, etc.

  6. Re-enable the ioDrive driver. When still logged in as root from ESX 4.x Service Console, run these commands:

    esxcfg-module -e iomemory-vsl
    esxcfg-boot –b

Configuration Details

To add the datastore(s) to vSphere using the vSphere Client GUI:

Note: At this point, it is possible to install ESXi 4.x, but the driver needs to be installed again after installing ESXi 4.x using the vihostupdate utility.
  1. Log in to vSphere client as an administrative user.
    1. In Hosts and Clusters select the ESX host.
    2. Click the Configuration tab.
    3. Click Storage in the Hardware section.
    4. Select Add Storage, and follow the wizard to add ioDrive as a datastore.
    5. Repeat the Add Storage step for each ioDrive installed.

  2. Present the virtual hard disk drive to the virtual machine. Log in to vSphere client as an administrative user.
    1. In Hosts and Clusters select the ESX host.
    2. Select the virtual machine to add ioDrive storage to (alternatively, create a new virtual machine stored on the datastore specified in step 1).
    3. Edit the virtual machine.
    4. Add Hardware and select the virtual HDD.
    5. Select the datastore specified in step 1 when adding the virtual HDD.

Additional Information

For related information, see Fusion-io ioMemory CIM Provider for ESXi 4.x (2003719).

Request a Product Feature

To request a new product feature or to provide feedback on a VMware product, please visit the Request a Product Feature page.


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