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Deploying OES 2 SP2 CIFS Server for Cluster Failover



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December 3, 2009 11:41 am

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Table of Contents

Introduction
Background
Proposed Solution
Configuration Steps
     Step 1: Configuring the Novell Cluster Service on OES 2 SP2
     Step 2: Configuring Shared pool on Novell Storage Service
     Step 3: Configuring CIFS User Context
     Step 4: Configuring CIFS shares
     Step 5: Universal Password assignment for CIFS users
     Step 6: Setting Universal Password to the CIFS users
     Step 7: Setting Trustee Rights for a CIFS Shares
Abbrevations used in this document
Conclusion

Introduction

When a large number of authenticated users access the CIFS service on OES 2 SP2 server, it becomes important to optimize the usage of the CIFS service without any failure in accessing it. Traditionally, with Novell OES 2 SP2 cluster feature the end user can access the service seamlessly with out any interruptions even if a server is down.

This AppNote provides the guidelines for deploying CIFS cluster service on OES 2 SP2 Linux Server for seamless access to a number of users. This solution relies on using a multiple OES 2 SP2 Linux servers using a storage.

Intended Audience

This AppNote is intended for those who want the following:

  • Efficient use of their CIFS Service deployed in multiple servers.
  • Service failover capability of cluster service to access CIFS sessions continuously (i.e., Provide 24 x 7 service to the end user even if connectivity to any of the CIFS server is lost).

Pre-requisites/Assumptions

  • Users/Administrators are familiar with OES 2 SP2 Cluster service.
  • Users/Administrators know how to configure Cluster service, CIFS services and usage of storage in cluster.

    Administrators who worked with OES 2 SP2 CIFS can intend to use this solution. In this AppNote we cover at a high level what needs to be configured for making the CIFS service work with Novell OES 2 SP2 cluster.

Background

OES 2 SP2 Cluster Service

Novell Cluster Services is a key component of Open Enterprise Server that helps you manage all the resources on your Storage Area Network (SAN). Novell Cluster Service is integrated with Open Enterprise Server and together, these products enable you to:

  • Deliver non-stop access to storage data and resources
  • Scale to meet expanding storage requirements
  • Reduce storage management costs

Novell Cluster Services greatly simplifies SAN management. For example, you can manage resources on ISCSI or Fibre Channel SANs from any location, using any Java*-enabled Web browser. In addition, Novell Cluster Services is instrumental in building high-availability solutions. These solutions—particularly when coupled with a SAN solution—provide users and services with secure, uninterrupted access to organization’s critical data and applications.

OES 2 SP2 CIFS Service

OES2SP2 CIFS is a Linux implementation technology that allows eDirectory/Active Directory users to access Novell file services through Windows networking. Novell CIFS lets Windows users access a Novell Open Enterprise Server 2 server exactly as they would access a Windows file server without having to install any additional software, such as the Novell Client.

How Service Failover Works

Novell Cluster Services and Novell Storage Services (NSS), which are part of OES 2 SP2 Linux, combine with Novell CIFS to facilitate highly available CIFS access for users. The cluster-enabled CIFS share is automatically dismounted and gets mounted on the other server when the primary server is unreachable by any means. The CIFS sessions which are established by the users continue without interruption as the shared NSS pool is migrated or failed over to a different server in the cluster.

Proposed Solution

To provide high availability of CIFS service to the end user, a Cluster service is configured to access NSS shared pool where all the file resides. The CIFS service is configured to access the data in shared storage.

Figure 1 shows the sample setup used for the purpose of this AppNote.

Here’s the process:

  1. The client maps to the CIFS share by providing the user credentials
  2. The User authenticates to the edirectory or active directory which has been configured for CIFS service
  3. Once the authentication is successful, the access if provided to the user based on the rights assigned to the user
  4. After successful authentication, if for some reason the connectivity to any of the CIFS server is down, the cluster service will migrate the CIFS service to the other server which will server the client requests seamlessly

Figure 1 – Network Diagram to depict CIFS cluster Setup

Click to view.

Network Diagram Information

  • Clients:

    Windows clients used to establish CIFS connection.
  • eDirectory/Active Directory:

    Users of eDirectory or Active Directory authenticates to the server to access the CIFS service.
  • CIFS Servers:

    The servers which are installed and configured with CIFS, NCS and NSS services. These servers are configured with edirectory / active directory for user authentications.
  • Storage:

    ISCSI/SAN storage device is used to store the CIFS data which will be used in clustered configuration.

Configuration Steps

Before starting the configuration all the cluster nodes are installed with CIFS, NCP, NSS components.

Step 1: Configuring the Novell Cluster Service on OES 2 SP2

Install and configure Novell Cluster Service on all the servers to access the shared disk partitions (ISCSI or storage area network-SAN can be used). Novell Cluster Services must be loaded and running while creating and using the shared NSS pools and volumes.

For more information on Novell cluster service configuration refer to link
https://www.novell.com/documentation/oes2/clus_admin_lx/data/ncsinstall.html
and for the information on cluster Management refer to link
https://www.novell.com/documentation/oes2/clus_admin_lx/data/aj7bq8o.html

Step 2: Configuring Shared pool on Novell Storage Service

In order to use NSS pools and volumes, NSS must be installed and running on all server nodes of the cluster. You can use the Storage plug-in for Novell iManager or the server-based NSSMU (NSS Management Utility) tool to create and cluster-enable a shared NSS pool.

For now we will try to use NSSMU utility. Before starting the configuration remember the shared device which has been configured in Cluster.

  1. Start NSSMU by entering nssmu at the server console of the master node of the cluster.
  2. From the NSSMU main menu, select Pools.
  3. On the Pools page, press Insert and enter the new pool name that needs to be created.
  4. Select the shared device on which the pool has to be created.
  5. Specify ‘Activate on Creation’ as ‘Yes’
  6. Specify ‘Cluster Enable on Creation’ as ‘Yes’
  7. Leave the Virtual Server Name and CIFS Server Name with default entries
  8. For ‘IP Address’, enter the IP address that will be assigned to the virtual CIFS server. This IP address will be used for accessing the CIFS service

    IMPORTANT: The IP address for the virtual server must be in the same IP subnet as the server nodes in the cluster where you plan to use it.
  9. For ‘Advertising Protocols’ select NCP and CIFS protocols as YES
  10. Select Apply to create the cluster-enabled pool.

Figure 2 – Configuration of Shared Cluster pool

Click to view.

Continue creating NSS Volumes and database on a Shared Pool which needs to be access through CIFS.

For more information on creation of shared NSS Pools & volumes in cluster setup refer to link
https://www.novell.com/documentation/oes2/clus_admin_lx/?page=/documentation/oes2/clus_admin_lx/data/ncsshvolnss.html

Once the CIFS protocol is enabled for the shared pool the load and unload script files will get automatically modified to handle the CIFS service.

After enabling the CIFS protocol in cluster pool, the load script will contain cifs add entry:

Figure 3 – Load script containing CIFS entry

Click to view.

After enabling the CIFS protocol in cluster pool, the Unload script will contain the CIFS remove entry:

Figure 4 – Unload script containing CIFS entry

Click to view.

Step 3: Configuring CIFS User Context

Install and configure CIFS service on all the servers on the cluster. Once the CIFS service is running perform the following steps on all the servers.

  1. Log into iManager.
  2. In the iManager application left frame, click File Protocols > CIFS.
  3. In the Server field, specify the OES 2SP2 Linux server name.
  4. On the default CIFS server page in iManager click the Context tab to list, add, and delete the CIFS user contexts.
  5. Click Add to include all the user context where the CIFS users recide

Figure 5 – Configuring CIFS user contexts by selecting server

Click to view.

Step 4: Configuring CIFS shares

Perform the following steps by access the CIFS virtual server through iManager.

  1. Log into iManager.
  2. In the iManager application left frame, click File Protocols > CIFS.
  3. In the Server field, specify the OES 2SP2 Linux CIFS Virtual server name.
  4. On the default CIFS server page in iManager click the Shares tab, then click New.
  5. Add all the required CIFS share points on the server which will be used to access CIFS files and folders from the client.

Figure 6 – Configuring CIFS shares by CIFS Virtual Server

Click to view.

As the share points are added on the virtual server. This task need not be performed on all the nodes of the cluster.

Once the Share are configured, the CIFS share can be checked by using “novcifs -sl” command on the server console

Figure 7 – CIFS shares on server console using ‘novcifs -sl’ command

Click to view.

For more information on how to configure CIFS service can be found at the following link
https://www.novell.com/documentation/oes2/file_cifs_lx/data/bdkfk5j.html

Step 5: Universal Password assignment for CIFS users

To login to the CIFS server users should be configured with Universal Password. Universal password for CIFS users can be done using Password Policies. For which

  1. Log into iManager.
  2. In the iManager application left frame, click Password > Password Policies
  3. Identity the CIFS policy which has been used during CIFS configuration for adding CIFS proxy user. After identifying click on assignment of the policy.
  4. In the new pop up window of the “Policy Assignment” browse and add all the CIFS users.

Figure 8 – Assigning CIFS users to the Password Policy

Click to view.

Step 6: Setting Universal Password to the CIFS users:

After assigning the users to the Password Policy, the universal password needs to be set to those users. For which perform the following steps

  1. Log into iManager.
  2. In the iManager application left frame, click Password > Set Universal Password
  3. Select the CIFS user one by one and enter the new password. With which the universal password will be set to the user.

Figure 9 – Setting Universal Password to CIFS users

Click to view.

For more information on Universal Password, refer the following link https://www.novell.com/documentation/password_management32/pwm_administration/data/ampxjj0.html

Step 7: Setting Trustee Rights for a CIFS Shares

To access and perform the file operations on the shared CIFS volumes, the authorized user should have trustee rights. To assign the required rights to the users perform the following steps:

  1. Log into iManager.
  2. In the iManager application left frame, click Files and Folders > Properties
  3. In the properties page browse and select the CIFS shares and click OK
  4. In files and folders, click on Rights tab
  5. Add all the CIFS users by browsing them at “Add Trustee” and assign rights to those users as needed

Figure 10 – Assigning Rights to CIFS users

Click to view.

For more details on as how to assign rights to the Trustees, refer to the following link
https://www.novell.com/documentation/oes2/stor_filesys_lx_nw/data/bs3oqnl.html

Abbrevations used in this document

OES 2 SP2 – Open Enterprise Server 2 Support Pack 2
CIFS – Common Internet File system
NSS – Novell Storage Service
NCS – Novell Cluster service
SAN – Storage Area Network
NSSMU – Novell Storage Services Management Utility

Conclusion

CIFS service can be accessed seamlessly with out any interruptions by using Novell cluster service which provides high availability of a resource.

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