VMware VAAI support for HP P2000 G3 & HP MSA 2040

This posting is ~6 years years old. You should keep this in mind. IT is a short living business. This information might be outdated.
Information: Beginning with the TS251R004 firmware release, the HP MSA VAAI plug-in is no longer supported as the HP MSA controller firmware now uses T10 compliance in an ESX Environment documented in TS251R004.

The HP P2000 G3 and the HP MSA 2040 are two widely used entry-level storage arrays. The P2000 G3 is VAAI capable since firmware version T230. But, contrary to the HP MSA 2040, you have to install the software plug-in for VMware VAAI if you use the P2000 G3. According to the “HP MSA 2040 Storage Configuration and Best Practices for VMware vSphere” whitepaper the MSA 2040 supports VAAI nativly without an additional plugin.

The HP MSA 2040 array natively supports these three primitives, which means an additional MSA plug-in is no longer required with vSphere 5.0 and higher to receive the benefits of VAAI integration.

The problem

Today I ran into this problem while visiting a new customer, which uses several HP ProLiant DL380 G7 with a P2000 G3 and VMware vSphere 5.5. The vSphere client told me that “Hardware Acceleration” was unknown.I checked these options (Configuration tab, click Advanced Settings under Software):

All options were set to 1 which means that they are enabled. A quick check with esxcli confirmed this:

That wasn’t what I expected… But I missed to check what kind of image the customer used to install the ESXi 5.5 hosts. In the end the solution was simple: The customer used the VMware vanilla 5.5 image, not the HP customized image. The HP image includes the P2000 G3 VAAI plugin-in, the vanilla image doesn’t include it.

The solution

In this case we had to install the VAAI plug-in. The installation is nothing fancy and it’s a one-liner. Download the plug-in, upload it to the host into the tmp directory, connect using SSH and run:

Please note that you have to extract the ZIP file after the download! There’s a ZIP file inside the ZIP file. After a reboot the VAAI support should be active:

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Patrick Terlisten

vcloudnine.de is the personal blog of Patrick Terlisten. Patrick has a strong focus on virtualization & cloud solutions, but also storage, networking, and IT infrastructure in general. He is a fan of Lean Management and agile methods, and practices continuous improvement whereever it is possible.

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3 thoughts on “VMware VAAI support for HP P2000 G3 & HP MSA 2040

  1. Alfons

    Hi Patrick,
    We also do have some HP ProLiant DL380 G7, but we do not use a P2000. We only have internal storage. Hardware Acceleration is also Unknown. But I cannot find any VAAI plug in for the DL380. Is VAAI also useful for internal storage? If so, which plug ins can I install? The link in your article is dead. :-(

    Reply
    1. Patrick Terlisten Post author

      Hello Alfons,

      unfortunately, there is no VAAI plugin for local storage. VAAI has various benefits, but it depens on you environment. If you only have a few VMs running, and you rarley clone VMs, then VAAI will not provide a benefit.

      Reply

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