[Gluster-users] Best practices?

Brian Candler B.Candler at pobox.com
Tue Jan 24 16:10:15 UTC 2012

On Tue, Jan 24, 2012 at 09:11:01AM -0600, Greg_Swift at aotx.uscourts.gov wrote:
> We have to have large numbers of volumes (~200).  Quick run down to give
> context.
> Our nodes would have around 128TB of local storage from several 32TB raid
> sets.  We started with ext4, so had a 16TB maximum.

Aside: http://blog.ronnyegner-consulting.de/2011/08/18/ext4-and-the-16-tb-limit-now-solved/

> So we broke it down
> into nice even chunks of 16TB, thus 8 file systems. Our first attempt was
> ~200 volumes all using the 8 bricks per node (thus 1600 process/ports)
> We had issues, and Gluster recommended
> reducing our process/port count.

So just checking I understand, the original configuration was:

/data1/vol1 .. /data1/vol200
/data8/vol1 .. /data8/vol200

Terminology issue: isn't each serverN:/dirM considered a separate 'brick' to
Gluster?  I would have thought that configuration would count as 1600 bricks
per node (but with groups of 200 bricks sharing 1 underlying filesystem)

> First we dropped down to only using 1 brick per volume per node, but this
> left us in a scenario of managing growth

Like this?

/data1/vol1   .. /data1/vol25
/data2/vol26  .. /data2/vol50
/data8/vol175 .. /data8/vol200

I see, so you have to assign the right subset of volumes to each filesystem. 
I guess you could shuffle them around using replace-brick, but it would be a

> So we determined to move to XFS to reduce from 8 partitions
> down to 2 LVs.  Each would be 64TB each 

/data1/vol1   .. /data1/vol200
/data2/vol1   .. /data2/vol200

i.e. 400 ports/processes/(bricks?) per server.

> We then ran into some performance
> issues and found we had not tuned the XFS enough, which also deterred us
> from pushing forward with the move.

I don't have any experience with XFS, but the Gluster docs do recommend it
as the one most heavily tested.

I saw an old note here about tuning XFS to include extended attributes in
the inode:
(although the values shown seem to be defaults to mkfs.xfs nowadays)

Did you find any other tuning was required?

This is all extremely helpful - many thanks for sharing your experiences. 

BTW I am just in the process of setting up two test systems here. Somewhat
smaller than yours, but they are based on this chassis:
with Hitachi low-power 3TB drives.



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