Oracle Linux / Oracle VM
Hardware Certification Program

Oracle VM Certified Storage Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Post Date: January 2019

Contents

  1. What is Oracle VM certified Storage?
  2. Does participation in the certification program require agreement from the storage vendor?
  3. What is Oracle VM Storage Connect?
  4. I don't see my storage system listed on the HCL. Can I still get support?
  5. Does Oracle provide me with the testing tools? What will I need?
  6. Is storage that is certified with Oracle VM also certified with Oracle Linux and Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel?
  7. What is the difference between a “Certified for Joint Support” HCL status and a “Certified for Oracle Support” HCL status?
  8. How long does it typically take to run the certification test suite?
  9. Where will the certified storage systems be published?
  10. How do I get started?
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  1. What is Oracle VM certified Storage?

    Oracle VM certified storage is a storage system that has been tested using the Storage Connect for Oracle VM Certification Test Kit. All test results have been audited by Oracle and storage systems posted here are supported for use with the indicated versions of Oracle VM. The storage certification program enables established storage partners, which are generally Independent Hardware Vendors (IHVs) and resellers with OPN Gold membership, to qualify their storage systems for use with Oracle VM software using an Oracle supplied storage qualification test kit. The output of this program is the Hardware Compatibility List (HCL), which documents storage compatibility with Oracle VM.

    Through this qualification, Oracle and its storage system partners are able to ensure that Oracle and the storage system partners are equipped to provide collaborative support to customer using the storage in an Oracle VM environment.

    Under certain circumstances, customers may also participate in the certification program with sponsorship from an Oracle VM Sales Representative.

    Please see the Server HCL FAQ for information about certifying servers with Oracle Linux and Oracle VM, and for general questions about the Oracle Linux / Oracle VM Hardware Certification Program.

    Please see the Hypervisor HCL FAQ for information about guest certifications virtualized environments.

  2. Does participation in the certification program require agreement from the storage vendor?

    The way support is delivered for Oracle VM with the storage system will vary depending upon the involvement of the hardware vendor in the certification process.

    • If an IHV partner having an established partnership with Oracle performs the qualification test, the resulting certification will benefit from all of the program features including collaborative support from Oracle and the IHV.
    • If a reseller or customer performs the qualification test in cooperation with their hardware vendor, and the hardware vendor has an established partnership with Oracle and approves, the resulting certification will benefit from all of the program features including collaborative support from Oracle and the IHV.
    • If a reseller or customer performs the qualification test without cooperation from their hardware vendor, or if the hardware vendor does not have an established partnership with Oracle, the certification will still be published in the HCL and Oracle VM will be fully supported on that hardware by Oracle. However, the effort must be sponsored by an Oracle VM sales representative, customers deploying this certified storage system with Oracle VM will not have the benefit of a joint support relationship between Oracle and the hardware vendor, and the hardware vendor may not consider this a supported environment.
  3. What is Oracle VM Storage Connect?

    Oracle VM Storage Connect is an application programming interface (API) into Oracle VM. It allows storage vendors to provide plug-ins that enable the advanced storage features and administration capabilities of their storage system within the graphical user interface (GUI) of Oracle VM. Oracle VM Storage Connect enables administrators to directly manage storage operations through Oracle VM Manager, a component of Oracle VM 3.

    By integrating virtualized server and storage management operations into a single GUI-based tool, Oracle VM Storage Connect enables Oracle VM administrators to directly configure and manage the storage attached to their Oracle VM server pools. They can fully leverage their investments in advanced storage functionality, such as de-duplication and fast clone, and streamline the deployment and management of virtual infrastructure and applications in data center and cloud environments.

    A list of vendor plugins is available here.

  4. I don't see my storage system listed on the HCL. Can I still get support?

    The list of storage systems on the Hardware Certification List (HCL) is always expanding. If the desired storage system meets the basic requirements indicated below but is not listed on the HCL, Oracle will accept service requests (SR) but a resolution to hardware driver or other hardware-specific issues cannot be guaranteed. SR work will continue normally, unless or until it is determined that resolution of the issue requires a new or updated driver, or unless resolution of your issue requires certification issues to be resolved first.

    In the case of a hardware driver issue, a severity 2 or 3 bug will be opened. Support will work with development to deliver the new or updated driver if feasible. In the case of other types of certification issues, progress towards a resolution cannot continue unless the IHV decides to certify the hardware. The SR will be closed and a severity 2 bug will be opened to track any progress made with the request to the IHV for certification with Oracle VM. In either case, a resolution is not guaranteed and a time to resolution cannot be predicted.

    The following basic requirements must be met in order to get support on storage systems not listed in the HCL:

    • The storage must be connected to the server using the NFS, Fibre Channel, or iSCSI protocol
    • The driver being used must be a standard driver shipped by Oracle with Oracle VM
    • Multipath configuration is supported for fibre channel devices (beginning with Oracle VM 3.0) and iSCSI devices (beginning with Oracle VM 3.2). Please refer to your Oracle VM documentation for more details.
  5. Does Oracle provide me with the testing tools? What will I need?

    Oracle provides a test kit that is downloaded by the participant and run against their storage system. At this time Oracle has two test kits: one for certifying servers with Oracle Linux and Oracle VM, and one for certifying storage with Oracle VM via Storage Connect.

    Your hardware requirements will vary depending on the features of the server or storage you are certifying, but the requirements are minimal. Oracle will outline hardware requirements after you engage with the program team (contact information included below).

  6. Is storage that is certified with Oracle VM also certified with Oracle Linux and Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel?

    The storage certification program is specific to Oracle VM. The certification test suite verifies that the Storage Connect layer of Oracle VM communicates and functions properly with the target storage system. The storage certification program does not extend to Oracle Linux because Oracle Linux uses standard Fibre Channel, iSCSI and NFS protocols, storage adapters and drivers, and does not depend upon an API like Storage Connect to communicate with storage systems.

  7. What is the difference between a “Certified for Joint Support” HCL status and a “Certified for Oracle Support” HCL status?

    Certified for Joint Support: Oracle Linux or Oracle VM was rigorously tested on the hardware or hypervisor (referred to as platform) with the participation and/or approval of the platform partner, and both Oracle and the partner fully support the environment. Customers deploying Oracle Linux or Oracle VM on this platform benefit from streamlined joint support. If a customer encounters any problem with Oracle Linux or Oracle VM that involves the underlying platform, the customer will open a service request with Oracle Support. Oracle Support will engage the partner if necessary, and seamlessly manage a joint resolution. For support on Oracle platforms, no third-party vendors are involved in the support process. These configurations are fully supported by Oracle.

    Certified for Oracle Support: Oracle Linux or Oracle VM was rigorously tested with the same standards as Certified for Joint Support and Oracle fully supports Oracle Linux and Oracle VM on this platform, however a collaborative support program is not in place with the partner for this platform, and the partner may not consider this a supported environment. Oracle provides support for Oracle Linux and Oracle VM, but a resolution to issues related to underlying platform drivers or other platform-specific issues cannot be guaranteed.

  8. How long does it typically take to run the certification test suite?

    The time required to complete the storage certification testing depends upon the storage technology being tested, and on the version of Oracle VM being certified. If running the test suite manually using the test plan, the amount of time is very dependent on the tester's experience and may take a few hours. With Oracle VM 3.2, an automated test suite is available; If running the automated test suite with the documented configuration for all three protocols (NFS, iSCSI, and FC), test execution will take approximately 60 minutes. In either case, the total time required configuring the hardware, storage manager, and dom0 environments will depend upon the individual's familiarity with the storage system and environment being tested.

  9. Where will the certified storage systems be published?

    Certified storage systems are published on the Oracle Linux and Oracle VM hardware certification website, and on the corresponding IHV’s website.

  10. How do I get started?

    Please contact us at hcl-info_ww@oracle.com for more information about joining the Oracle Linux / Oracle VM Hardware Certification Program.