Skip to main content
Pure Technical Services

Equinix Metal Guide: Configure iSCSI in Bonded Mode

Currently viewing public documentation. Please login to access the full scope of documentation.

Configuring iSCSI is two parts:

  1. Assign VLANs to Equinix Metal server interfaces
  2. Configure network in vSphere.

This article is focused on iSCSI configuration with Hybrid bonded or Layer 2 bonded modes.

Video Demo

Assign VLANs to Equinix Metal server interfaces

To configure iSCSI the servers must have VLAN access to the FlashArray iSCSI ports. In the Equinix console, choose the server and click Network. Scroll down to Layer 2. Click on Add New Vlan.


 Add the two iSCSI VLANs to bond0.

clipboard_e67ab834578edd92b7eb1d04afaad582e.png clipboard_e8904788941a46c6dce66c14e3c771939.png

This will enable network access to the FlashArray iSCSI ports.


Repeat for all hosts that need iSCSI access.

Add iSCSI Port Groups

For each virtual distributed switch, you must add a port group for each iSCSI VLAN. For the FlashArray there will be two iSCSI VLANs, as can be seen in the below image there are indeed two, one with VLAN ID 1016 and 1017.


To create them, go to the Networking view in the inventory list and right click on the the desired VDS (Virtual Distributed Switch) and choose New Distributed Port Group.


Enter in a name for the port group that is clear and click Next. Choose VLAN under VLAN type and enter in the first VLAN ID.

clipboard_e94085c685b7d98aa3c476d9c8bf0612c.png clipboard_e9684d80e8eafcf0e6a77f4d3314414da.png

Click Customize default policies configuration.


Under Teaming and failover change the load balancing to Route based on source MAC hash and also ensure the LAG is the Active uplink and the standard uplinks are moved to unused.


Complete the wizard. Now run the same process for the second VLAN.


Note, if your FlashArray uses jumbo frames (MTU is set to 9000) you must set this on the VDS as well. Right-click on the VDS and choose Settings > Edit Settings.


Under Advanced, change the MTU to 9000 and click OK.



Add VMkernel Ports

For each ESXi host, you need to create a VMkernel adapter for each VLAN that has an IP on that specific VLAN. These vmkernel ports should be added to their respective VDS port groups.

Click on the host and click on Configure > VMkernel adapters > Add Networking.


Choose VMkernel Network Adapter and select the first VLAN port group under Select an existing network.

clipboard_e45b675498b3278a07cc99e5411034e0f.png clipboard_e64253482189c9b8b0b42c76c53c26cc2.png clipboard_ebbf25adf2e6f2fbf861961345b9984b2.png

In the next screen, leave all services unchecked and otherwise defaults. If the FlashArray iSCSI ports are configured for jumbo frames, set the MTU to Custom and 9000 (or what it is set to).

clipboard_eb7eb7bb7bdf6bc2ed39d3696e6b31544.png clipboard_e44a0411516f3530d7f5e62c33dc1fc6f.png

Enter in IP information using an IP that is valid for the chosen VLAN. Override the gateway if needed.


Repeat for the other VLAN.


Configure iSCSI Targets

The Software iSCSI adapter comes enabled by default in Equinix deployments, but it does come bound to an existing VMkernel port. This needs to be removed from the iSCSI adapter for brand new server deployments.

In the vSphere Client, click on the host in the Hosts & Clusters inventory view, then Configure > Storage Adapters and select the Software iSCSI target then Network Port Binding.


Find the existing VMkernel port and click Remove.


Confirm the removal.


Now you can configure the FlashArray iSCSI information. To do so, right-click on the cluster and choose Pure Storage > Add/Update Host Group.

clipboard_e086ebc9f039a56f497fd9839d6c2712f.png clipboard_efb7ac65520a78e1776517dbe7c66c505.png

In the screen that appears choose the correct FlashArray (if there is more than one). If this is are no hosts in this cluster yet configured on the selected FlashArray, this will create a host group and configure each host. If some hosts are configured but others not, it will configure the "new" hosts and add them to the pre-existing host group. Click Create.


This will do the following:

  1. Add software iSCSI adapter (though this is created by default in Equinix so it will be skipped).
  2. Add FlashArray iSCSI targets and add best practices
  3. Create host group (if not created already)
  4. Create host for each new host and add IQN
  5. Add host(s) to host group.

Confirm Connectivity

To confirm connectivity, click on the host in the Hosts & Clusters inventory view, then Configure > Storage Adapters and select the Software iSCSI target. Click on static discovery. If there are no targets that mean network connection between the host and the FlashArray iSCSI targets is not correct.


Furthermore if you login to the FlashArray web interface, you can verify uniform connectivity by looking at Health > Connections > Host Connections. The host will be listed. You can click on it to see the details.


If you click on the host for more details you can see some additional information.


If the status is anything besides Redundant, investigate connectivity. There should be:

  • More than one connection on each controller
  • Connections on both controllers
  • Equal number of connections on both controllers

You can also click on the cluster object in vCenter and go to Configure > Pure Storage > Host Connections to see if any host is not configured.