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SSUG::Digital: 006 – Persistent Storage for Kubernetes and OpenShift environments

6th October 2020 @ 16:00 - 17:00 BST

This episode will discuss the Spectrum Scale Container Storage Interface (CSI). CSI is a standard for exposing arbitrary block and file storage systems to containerized workloads on container orchestration systems like Kubernetes and OpenShift. Spectrum Scale CSI provides your containers fast access to files stored in Spectrum Scale with capabilities such as dynamic provisioning of volumes and read-write-many access.


Download slides here

Episode 2:  Best Practices for building a stretched cluster


Q: ­This slide (titled Spectrum Scale CSI Driver – Architecture) shows CPU architecture is x86­
A: ­Yes, with Spectrum Scale CSI Driver 2.0.0 only x86 is supported. The support for other architectures (IBM Power and IBM Z) will be provided in upcoming releases­ (IBM usual roadmap disclaimers apply).

Q: ­Is the management of storage class available via Ansible?­
A: ­Setting up a storage class is a one-time operation. While it might be done using Ansible (and Kubernetes integration modules), clients usually do the management using the Kubernetes or Openshift CLI or GUI.­

Q: ­Will the slides be provided post this presentation?
A: ­Yes. You will find the chart decks, recordings, Q&A and related information for all past talks including this one at https://www.spectrumscaleug.org/experttalks/.

Q:  Once you have CSI driver support for non x86_64 platforms, will the Spectrum Scale cluster be able to be heterogeneous (AIX, Linux, x86_64 and ppc64le)? Will this cluster support AIX NSD only nodes?­
A: ­ In the first release for non x86_64 platforms, all worker nodes that have Spectrum Scale client installed need to  be of same CPU architecture and the same operating system. If there are AIX NSD nodes, those must be outside of Kubernetes cluster.­ AIX NSD only nodes might be integrated by remote mounting the storage cluster to a client Spectrum Scale cluster that runs the Kubernetes workload.

Q: ­Is Network Load Balancer a per-requisite must have for the CSI deployment?­
A: ­No it isn’t.­

Q: ­ Is there a possibility to have Spectrum Scale clients installed within containers?
­A: ­We are working on a capability called Container Native Spectrum Scale (CNSS) where Spectrum Scale will run inside a container.  The initial release is planned for December 2020.  (Disclaimer: All dates are subject to change; IBM usual roadmap disclaimers apply)­

Q: Do we need to have an x86 “only” Spectrum Scale/OpenShift cluster and a ppc64le “only” Spectrum Scale/OpenShift cluster?
A: ­The requirement of same CPU architecture and same operating system is only for Spectrum Scale Client node which are part of Kubernetes/ Openshift cluster. NSD server can be of other platform (as per Spectrum Scale support matrix at https://www.ibm.com/support/knowledgecenter/STXKQY/gpfsclustersfaq.html)

Q: ­ Any plans for ability to self-provision Spectrum Scale clusters with containers?­
A: ­Container Native Spectrum Scale (CNSS) will have an Operator that will deploy and configure a Spectrum Scale cluster automatically.  It will also remote mount the filesystem from a Spectrum Scale Storage Cluster.

Q: ­One of the issues that we are trying to solve is to isolate Spectrum Scale IO with respect to each tenant/application/user on a single server just like how we can isolate cpu/network with cgroups. Would spectrum scale on containers help us in isolating or qos with storage IO?­
A: ­Running Spectrum Scale in a container or CSI by itself will not address QoS.  A new fileset based QoS capability, with CSI, will be able to handle this in a future release­. (Disclaimer: All dates are subject to change; IBM usual roadmap disclaimers apply)

Q: ­Does OpenStack have to be managed via the web gui. Can it be controlled via a CLI?­
A: ­You are free to use either CLI or GUI.­­­

User group host: Bill Anderson


Speaker NamePhotoBio
Smita RautSmita RautSmita Raut is a Senior Software Engineer with IBM Storage Labs in Pune, India. She works with the IBM Spectrum Scale development team as the architect for persistent storage for containers. In her nine years with IBM, she has lead the development on various projects, including Object protocol for IBM Spectrum Scale and enablement of IBM Spectrum Scale on public cloud. She is an active technical blogger and has published several blogs on object protocol and container storage interface driver.
Harald SeippHarald SeippHarald Seipp is a Senior Technical Staff Member with IBM Systems in Germany. He is the founder and Technical Leader of the Center of Excellence for Cloud Storage as part of the EMEA Storage Competence Center. He is providing guidance to worldwide IBM teams across organizations, and works with customers and IBM Business Partners across EMEA to create and implement complex storage cloud architectures. His more than 25 years of technology experience includes previous job roles as Software Developer, Software Development Leader, Lead Developer, and Architect for successful software products, and co-inventor of an IBM storage product. He holds various patents on storage and networking technology.
Renar GrunenbergRenar Grunenberg is since 27 years at HuK-Coburg. He leads the backup and storage team and is responsible for all the storage and backup stuff in his department and company. Renar has 15 years experience with Spectrum Scale including CES, CSI, ESS and normal core function. In this episode Renar will discuss a use case for Kafka self-service with K8s and Spectrum Scale CSI.
Simon ThompsonSimon Thompson is the Research Computing Infrastructure Architect within Advanced Research Computing at the University of Birmingham. He oversees the infrastructure and systems team, running the University's HPC and research data systems. This involves experimenting (and breaking) new technology. Simon is also chair of the Spectrum Scale user group in the UK.


6th October 2020
16:00 - 17:00 BST
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Digital Event


Spectrum Scale User Group