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Adventures with iSCSI

AudioI have (hare-brained) plans for a business venture which would involve large amounts of storage. So, I thought I'd have a play around with iSCSI, mdadm, and lvm on a couple of linux boxes to see how it works. What I need is a considerable amount of storage which is available to Windows clients, but that is also expandable, seamlessly.

I'm planning an architecture something like this:

SS1 SS2 ... SSn
 |   |       |
 +---+- ... -+ LAN1
     |
    AS1
     |
 +---+- ... -+ LAN2
 |   |       |
CL1 CL2 ... CLn

  • SS1 ... SSn are storage servers
  • AS1 is the aggregation server
  • CL1 ... CLn are client PCs

Each storage server will have 8-12 SATA disks in RAID6 and made available on LAN using iSCSI.

The aggregation server will combine the storage from the servers into a single volume using LVM and make the whole lot available on LAN2 using Samba.

In theory, I should be able to add additional capacity by simply commissioning a new storage server, adding it to the LVM volume and growing the filesystem.

I'll be testing this over the next couple of days (with much smaller disks, I hasten to add!)

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