(Program Services Discontinued as of April 1, 2007)
The IBM TotalStorage SAN File System is a member of the TotalStorage
Virtualization Family of storage solutions. The SAN File System combines
software, hardware, and optional services into an integrated solution
designed to provide a network-based heterogeneous file system for data
sharing and policy-based storage management in an open environment.
The SAN File System software is designed to support high performance
data sharing for heterogeneous servers accessing SAN-attached storage.
It provides a common file system for UNIX and Windows servers, with a
single global namespace providing data sharing across servers. The SAN
File System is designed to support the local file system interfaces on
UNIX and Windows servers and can be used without requiring any changes to
your applications or databases that use a file system to store data. The
SAN File System is designed as a highly scalable solution supporting both
very large files and very large numbers of files without the limitations
normally associated with Network File System (NFS) or Common Internet
File System (CIFS) implementations.
The SAN File System software is designed to lower the cost of storage
management and enhance productivity by providing centralized storage and
data management for supported servers using the SAN File System. It
provides policy-based storage management through the use of customer
defined rules that specify what storage is used when a file is created.
Storage can be virtualized into storage pools organized by service class,
and files are automatically placed on the appropriate storage resource,
therefore, reducing administrative overhead.
The SAN File System software has the potential to reduce the overall
amount of storage required in many environments by allowing storage
resources to be shared more efficiently across servers. A common pool of
free space and temporary space can be shared across all of the servers,
thus lowering the amount of free space and temporary space that is
required. In addition, because files can be shared across servers,
storage can be saved by reducing the need to maintain duplicate copies of
The SAN File System software also has the potential to improve
application availability by reducing or eliminating application downtime
for storage and data management tasks. It allows storage volumes to be
added, replaced, or removed without disrupting application processing.
Application downtime for data backups can be reduced through the use of
the file-based FlashCopy function.
The SAN File System is a member of the IBM TotalStorage Virtualization
Family and is a modular implementation of IBM solutions designed to help
address the complexities and cost of managing files and database systems
in SAN-based storage. The SAN File System is designed to be added to
existing SANs with minimal disruption.
In addition to the SAN File System, the Virtualization Family includes
the IBM TotalStorage SAN Volume Controller, and the IBM TotalStorage SAN
Integration Server. IBM has also previewed the IBM TotalStorage Multiple
Device Manager. The following provides a brief description of each:
SAN File System: designed to improve access to and management of
files and databases on a SAN
SAN Volume Controller: addresses block level management issues and
is packaged as an appliance
SAN Integration Server: addresses block level management issues and
is packaged as a fully integrated storage server
Multiple Device Manager: allows you to manage IBM devices and
integrate with Tivoli SAN and SRM management to provide an integrated
storage management solution
Combined, the Virtualization Family is designed to address the overall
problem of managing complexity of the storage environment and allows you
to realize the full benefits of your SANs.
The IBM TotalStorage Virtualization Family of storage solutions is
designed to help reduce both the complexity and costs of managing your
With the SAN File System you have the potential to reduce storage and
data management costs and enable faster and simpler deployment of an
e-business on demand environment. The SAN File System is designed to
improve productivity and reduce the pain for IT storage and server
management staff by centralizing and simplifying management through
policy-based storage management automation;
provide higher storage utilization by reducing the amount of
duplicate data and through the sharing of free and temporary space across
improve application availability and lower failover costs by reducing
or eliminating application downtime for storage and data management
simplify and lower the cost of data backups through application
server free backup and leveraging built in file-based FlashCopy images;
allow data sharing and collaboration across servers with high
performance and full locking support.
The IBM TotalStorage SAN File System -- What It Does
The SAN File System is designed as a highly available file system for
SAN-attached storage that provides file sharing and centralized storage
management for UNIX and Windows servers. The SAN File System is intended
to combine the benefits of file sharing across servers provided by
Network Attached Storage (NAS) with the benefits from high performance
data access provided by Storage Area Networks (SAN).
The SAN File System will be delivered as an integrated solution
consisting of software, hardware and optional services.
SAN File System Hardware
The SAN File System hardware (4146 Model T30) consists of a cluster of
IBM TotalStorage SAN File System Metadata Server engines (4146 Model 1RX)
and a master console. The SAN File System Metadata Server engines are
based on IBM eServer xSeries 345 servers with hardware added for
increased redundancy. The SAN File System hardware combines servers into
a cluster designed for high availability. The cluster consists of a
minimum of two and up to a maximum of eight SAN File System Metadata
The master console also runs on an IBM eServer xSeries server. It is
designed to provide a unified point of service for the entire SAN File
System cluster, simplifying access to, and administration of, metadata
servers. The master console has Remote Support and IBM Service Alert
(Call Home) capabilities to provide fast, efficient, secure service. It
makes a Virtual Private Network (VPN) connection readily available, that
you can initiate and monitor to enable hands-on access by remote IBM
support personnel. It also provides a common point of residence for the
IBM Tivoli Storage Area Network Manager, IBM Director, and other tools
associated with the capabilities just described, and it can act as a
central repository for diagnostic data.
SAN File System Software
The SAN File System software consists of two components: the software
that runs on the SAN File System metadata servers and software that runs
on your administrative servers, called the SAN File System Client
The SAN File System metadata servers provide metadata, information
about the files, to the SAN File System Client software running on your
administrative servers. Once the SAN File System Client software has the
metadata, then the SAN File System Client software accesses the file data
directly via the SAN.
The SAN File System metadata servers also provide the management
support for the SAN File System. The SAN File System software includes a
task-oriented GUI that can be accessed from a Web browser, a command line
interface that can be used to create scripts for frequently used
commands, and an application programming interface that can be used by
other storage and data management applications to manage or monitor the
SAN File System. The Application Programming Interface (API) is based on
the Common Information Model (CIM) and is encoded in XML with common
methods and syntax to the Storage Networking Industry Association's
(SNIA) Storage Management Interface Specification (SMI-S).
The SAN File System Client runs on your administrative servers. SAN
File System software V1.1 supports administrative servers running
Microsoft Windows 2000 Server, Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server,
IBM AIX Version 5.1, 32-bit, and IBM AIX 5.1, 32-bit, in HACMP
environments. The SAN File System Client for AIX uses the virtual file
system interface within the local operating system to provide file system
interfaces to the applications running on IBM AIX 5.1. The SAN File
System Client for Microsoft Windows 2000 Server and Advanced Server uses
the installable file system interface within the local operating system
to provide file system interfaces to the applications running on
Microsoft Windows 2000 Server and Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server.
The SAN File System is designed to support the local file system
interfaces on UNIX and Windows servers. This means that the SAN File
System is designed to be used without requiring any changes to your
applications or databases that use a file system to store data.
Refer to the following Web site for additional information:
The SAN File System software provides the following functions:
Uniform Global Namespace
Policy-based File Space Provisioning
Storage Quota Management
Data Copy Migration Tool
Uniform Global Namespace: All of the supported
administrative servers connected to the SAN File System are able to
access the same data using SAN File System's uniform global namespace. A
uniform global namespace provides the capabilities for all clients to
have a consistent view of the SAN File System directory and files which
can enable enhanced workflow and collaboration between applications
running on multiple servers.
Storage Pools: The SAN File System provides the capability
to assign storage volumes to storage pools where the storage pools can
represent different classes of service for storage. Volumes can be added
to a storage pool without impacting application processing. Data can be
moved between volumes without impacting availability or performance.
Policy-based File Space Provisioning: Storage
administrators will be able to create rules for the SAN File System to
determine what storage pool is used to allocate space for a file when the
file is created. The storage administrator can use any of the file
attributes (such as file name, file type, date created, user ID or group
ID, and so on) to create these rules. Through the use of the policy
based rules, the SAN File System automates the task of allocating space
on the desired storage volumes.
Storage Quota Management: The SAN File System provides
storage capacity to applications and servers creating new files or
extending existing files. The SAN File System allows the storage
administrator to define the amount of storage to be used by a specific
server or by a specific application (defined as a fileset) and can help
the storage administrator monitor the storage utilization by alerting
them when the storage reaches a pre-defined capacity. The use of storage
quotas can prevent an application from using more storage than permitted.
The SAN File System allows for storage utilization quotas to be set
higher than the physical storage available to the system or applications.
This allows for simplified management of the system by allowing
administrators to dynamically add storage without having to reset
application level policies. Both hard and soft quotas are supported
along with threshold alerts for integration with systems management
Locking: The SAN File System is designed to provide file
level locking to the SAN File System clients running on your
administrative servers. This function provides data sharing with
integrity across heterogeneous application servers. The file level
locking uses the same locking permissions (read, write, execute, and so
on) that are provided by the local operating systems for locking within
one server. In addition to locking the entire file, the SAN File System
also supports the ability to do a lock a byte range within a file.
Caching: The SAN File System clients cache the metadata
that they get from the SAN File System metadata servers. This allows the
applications running on a server to continue to access the file data
without additional requests to the metadata servers and also allows
applications on one server to share files without additional requests to
the metadata servers. The caching of the metadata provides for high
performance data access over the SAN without requests flowing to the
metadata server. It can also provide continuous access to open files
even if a temporary condition prohibits communication with the metadata
Volume Drain: The SAN File System provides a volume drain
function that allows you to remove or upgrade storage volumes without
disrupting application processing. The volume drain function moves the
data off of the specified volume onto other volumes in the same storage
pool. The SAN File System manages the access to the data that is being
moved so there is no need to stop application processing during the
volume drain. Data can be moved between volumes without impacting
availability or performance.
FlashCopy Image: The SAN File System provides a file-based
point-in-time copy function called FlashCopy image. The FlashCopy image
is a logical point-in-time image of a Fileset, a set of files. A copy of
the data block is made upon the next update after the FlashCopy image.
The FlashCopy image only requires storage for changed blocks, therefore,
reducing the amount of storage needed. The SAN File System supports 32
FlashCopy images for each Fileset. The files can be restored to any one
of the FlashCopy images.
File-based backup and restore products can back up files using the
FlashCopy image while the applications are online and updating a later
version of the files. The file-based FlashCopy image can help
significantly reduce maintenance windows for data backups and can also
help reduce the amount of storage space needed for on-line data backups.
File Copy Migration Tool: The SAN File System provides a
file copy migration tool that you can use to copy files into the SAN File
System. The file copy migration tool runs on your administrative servers
that are the SAN File System clients. The file copy migration tool
includes a planning option that creates an estimate of the time needed to
copy the files into the SAN File System.
Section 508 of the U.S. Rehabilitation Act
SAN File System software is capable, when used in accordance with
IBM's associated documentation, of satisfying the applicable requirements
of Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act provided that any assistive
technology used with the product properly interoperates with it.
SAN File System software requires SAN File System hardware, 4146-T30,
to be ordered. The hardware consists of two to eight SAN File System
Metadata Server engines (4146 Model 1RX) and a master console.
SAN File System software V1.1 can be configured with the following
IBM TotalStorage Enterprise Storage Server (ESS) models:
IBM TotalStorage SAN Volume Controller with the storage devices
supported by the SAN Volume Controller.
IBM TotalStorage SAN Integration Server with the storage devices
supported by the SAN Integration Server.
Note: The master console must be in proximity with the SAN File System
server. If such location is not feasible, the customer must supply an
extra keyboard and display for SAN File System access to the master
For updated and current support levels, refer to the SAN File System
Support Web site, at:
SAN File System supports connectivity with Intel-based servers running
Microsoft Windows 2000 Server and Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server,
and with RISC-based servers running AIX. The clients run on a supported
version of the following operating systems:
For IBM AIX 5.1, either 32-bit uni-processor or 32-bit multi-
processor with maintenance level 3 installed. For AIX 5.1F, the bos.mp
(multi-processor) or bos.up (uni-processor) package must be at level
220.127.116.11 or higher. For AIX 5.1G, the package must be at level 18.104.22.168
or higher. AIX 5.1 32-bit HACMP environments are supported at the
specified maintenance level.
For Microsoft Windows:
Microsoft Windows 2000 Server with Service Pack 4, or later
Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server with Service Pack 4, or later
The application servers, connected to the SAN File System, need either
single-pathing or multi-pathing device drivers to communicate with the
storage devices used with the SAN File System. A single-pathing device
driver provides the means for basic communication between a server and a
storage subsystem. A multi-pathing driver allows multiple fibre channel
paths to be connected to the storage subsystem and to be managed for
functions such as redundant path failover and load balancing. The
single-pathing device drivers are the standard device drivers for the
supported storage subsystems. The multi-pathing device driver supported
by Enterprise Storage Server and SAN Volume Controller is the IBM
Subsystem Device Driver (SDD). The SAN File System metadata servers will
be delivered with SDD pre-installed. If SDD is also in use on the
application servers, the version used on the application servers must be
supported by the SAN File System.
Current software support summaries, including specific release and
firmware levels, are maintained at:
Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) must be installed and
available for configuration and use by the SAN File System. The LDAP
server must be provided by the customer.
Anti-virus software must be installed on the master console.
Version 1.1 of the SAN File System:
Has the limitation that only one type of storage at a time can be
supported directly with the SAN File System, either Enterprise Storage
Server or SAN Volume Controller or SAN Integration Server. SAN File
System does not limit the number, or combination, of storage devices
supported by the current release of SAN Volume Controller or or SAN
Integration Server when used with the SAN File System.
Is restricted to 126 Logical Unit Numbers (LUNs) for both metadata
storage and user data storage when using single-pathing and 63 LUNs for
Has limited file sharing between UNIX and Windows environments
because of the difference in file access control between the two types of
Requires the shutdown and restart of the SAN File System software on
the affected metadata server when installing maintenance upgrades on the
metadata servers. SAN File System software can be upgraded one metadata
server at a time or across the entire cluster. Filesets being served by
the affected metadata server will be unavailable until the metadata
server rejoins the SAN File System cluster, making maintenance disruptive
to affected applications. An upgrade of the SAN File System server
software is expected to require no more than 5 minutes per metadata
Should have application software that runs on your application server
installed on the application server's local file system and not in the
SAN File System.
IBM Tivoli Storage Area Network Manager is included with the master
console and has base support for up to 64 ports. Support for more ports
can be obtained by contacting IBM and licensing IBM Tivoli Storage Area
Configuration guidelines and notices of temporary or unforeseen
problems which can affect operations are documented in the SAN File
System Software Release Notes, furnished publications for this product,
and/or as listed under configuration requirements and guidelines at:
Planning for and provision of the power and environmental support of
the co-requisite SAN File System hardware is a customer responsibility.
Planning considerations for SAN File System Software are listed in the
IBM TotalStorage SAN File System: Planning, Installation, and
Configuration Guide, GA27-4316.
The SAN File System is designed to provide performance that is
comparable to that of file systems built on direct-attached, high
The SAN File System is a solution where all data read and written go
directly to the storage subsystem instead of through another file server,
and only metadata operations such as create, delete, allocate, and look-
up go to the metadata server. Because of this architecture, most
applications are expected to see only a moderate difference in
performance from direct-attached storage while experiencing the benefits
that the SAN File System has to offer. Some I/O operations and workloads
that generate large amounts of metadata transactions will see a
difference in performance because of the distributed nature of the
system, but, in almost all cases, the performance is designed to be
better than a NAS only solution. Application servers have a wide range
of I/O workloads and patterns, and thus each will perform slightly
differently in practice.
Direct storage access is just one of the advanced performance features
found in the SAN File System. Other performance features included with
the SAN File System are aggressive client side metadata caching, load
balancing through name space partitioning across the metadata servers,
and file striping across the volumes in a storage pool.
Although the SAN File System software comes preinstalled on the
hardware, the SAN File System is designed to be set-up and configured by
trained personnel, either IBM Services or authorized Business Partners.
Alternatively the customer may obtain education from IBM Services to
facilitate the setup and configuration.
The installation services available are those for initial set-up and
configuration, including system set-up, client install, and definition of
policies and data migration as well as customer education. In order to
ensure a successful installation, inclusion of the "IBM SAN File System
Implementation Services" is critical.
In addition to the installation offering, there are two additional
services, "IBM Storage Strategy and Planning" and "IBM Technology
Assessment and Consulting Services for Storage Virtualization", that can
assist you in defining a storage virtualization strategy for your
Refer to the following Web site for additional information on
Each new order of SAN File System software and the co-requisite SAN
File System hardware comes with publications. The Publications CD-ROM
contains an Information Center, the Overview e-learning module,
displayable softcopy publications as PDF files, and license information.
In addition, a printed copy of the following publications is included in
the hardware shipment to facilitate the installation process:
IBM TotalStorage SAN File System:
Planning, Installation, and
IBM TotalStorage SAN File System:
Basic Configuration for Quick
The Information Center is an online, topic-based user assistance that
is a single-source of customer-based information for SAN File System. It
provides search, index, and printing capabilities. It can be launched as
a separate Web-browser window from the SAN File System console or
downloaded from the publications CD.
The Publications CD-ROM is shipped with new orders of the SAN File
System hardware and can be ordered directly from the IBM Publications
Center using order number GK2T-0541.
The Publications CD contains:
IBM TotalStorage SAN File System: GK2T-0539
IBM TotalStorage SAN File System:
PDF files - refer to Displayable
IBM TotalStorage SAN File System: GC30-9703
IBM TotalStorage SAN File System: GX27-4057
Statement of Limited Warranty
IBM TotalStorage Translated GA27-4338
Below is the order number for the Publications CD-ROM:
Title Order Number
IBM TotalStorage SAN File System: GK2T-0541
Publications Version 1
Release 1 (CD-ROM)
The IBM TotalStorage SAN File System software administration interface
uses the security features of Microsoft Windows 2000 Server Edition, in
conjunction with Web Secure Shell (SSH) and Secure Socket Layer (SSL)
protocols and WebSphere.
The customer is responsible for evaluation, selection, and
implementation of security features, administrative procedures, and
appropriate controls in application systems and communication facilities.
(R), (TM), * Trademark or registered trademark of International
Business Machines Corporation.
** Company, product, or service name may be a trademark or service
mark of others.