PowerStore is doing great in the marketplace and as such, we are continously improving it and adding more features to it, we are still in the “V1” cycle and as such, some service packs have been released so far.

The list of the service packs enanchments can be found here

Apart from the bug fixes, the service pack 3 contains the following enanchments:

The highlights:

  1. LDAP Integration
  2. DT agentless
  3. Improved replication in low end configuration (PowerStore 1000T etc)

You can see how the LDAP (Active Directory integration) works, below

New Features

The following new features have been introduced in this version of PowerStore.

Functional Area Feature Description Summary of Benefits
Discovery A new method of discovery has been added to PowerStore.

In addition to discovering PowerStore with a direct connection or remotely with the Discovery Tool, you now have the option to discover PowerStore using reserved IP addresses.

For details, see the PowerStore Planning Guide.

PowerStore Appliances can be discovered by providing a reserved IP address.

After discovering PowerStore users can start the initial set up using this temporary IP address, and then they can switch to the management IP after configuration.

The reserved IP address are also available to discover other appliances

Import Agentless import of external storage to a PowerStore cluster

This feature is independent of the operating system and the multipathing solution on the host, and the front-end connectivity between the host and the source system. Agentless import does not require the installation of host plugin software on the host, however, you do need to reconfigure the host application to work with the new PowerStore volumes. Only a one-time host application downtime is required prior to the migration. The downtime only includes renaming or reconfiguring the host application, file systems, and datastores to the PowerStore volumes.

Only an iSCSI connection is supported between the source system and the PowerStore cluster. For Dell PS source systems, all the connections between the hosts and the Dell PS source system and between the hosts and the PowerStore cluster must be iSCSI. For Dell SC, or Dell EMC Unity, VNX2, XtremIO X1, XtremIO X2 source systems, the connections between the hosts and the Dell SC, or Dell EMC Unity, VNX2, XtremIO X1, XtremIO X2 source system and between the hosts and the PowerStore cluster must be either all iSCSI or all Fibre Channel (FC).

For detailed information about this feature, see the Importing External Storage to PowerStore Guide on https://www.dell.com/powerstoredocs . For the most up-to-date supported versions of source systems and operating environment for an agentless import, see the PowerStore Support Matrix.

Installation of host plugin software on the host systems is not required.

Ease of use – The agentless import process is fully orchestrated by PowerStore. A wizard guides the user through the whole process.

Online copying of data between the source system and PowerStore is automated.

Functional Area Feature Description Summary of Benefits
Installation and upgrade PowerStore X model systems now support

VMware vSphere Remote Office Branch Office (ROBO) licenses. vSphere ROBO Enterprise and vSphere ROBO Advanced licenses are supported on PowerStore X model systems, but vSphere ROBO Standard licenses are not supported.

NOTE: A vSphere ROBO license supports a maximum of 25 virtual machines.

A less expensive VMware vSphere ROBO license can be used by customers who do not require more than 25 VMs per PowerStore X model.
Installation and

Upgrade

While upgrading PowerStore T models, Unified health check warnings are generated. The messages are only warnings, and PowerStore will continue with the upgrade. Improve user experience of upgrades for Unified customers.
Monitoring Improved user experience by displaying real-time capacity metrics when the system is in write protect mode. This allows the user to view the actual capacity metrics and decide which resources to delete to free capacity on the appliance. Displaying the accurate metrics consumed by the storage resources allows the user to decide which resources to delete in order to free up capacity on the appliance.
Notifications and alerts When you add an existing or new appliance to your PowerStore cluster, there is a chance that it may be running a different version of the PowerStore OS than the appliances in your cluster. An alert will now appear in PowerStore Manager when appliances within your cluster are running a different version of the PowerStore OS. To ensure that there is no degradation in performance or loss of access to features, it is recommended that you follow the prompts and upgrade the software such that all appliances in your cluster are running the same version of the PowerStore OS.

Users are alerted when an appliance, which is running a different version of operating system, is added to a PowerStore cluster.

The alert text strongly recommends upgrading the appliances in the cluster to a common, and preferably, the latest OS version.

Alerts are raised in the following scenarios:

    When adding a new appliance

If NDU fails to complete and renders the appliances in the same cluster running a different version of operating system.

Notifications and Alerts The user will receive out of space alerts for Network Attached Storage and be notified of which actions are unavailable when an appliance is put in read-only mode due to out of space. At the time the appliance is out of space, users are notified that: file systems will be in read-only mode.

Actions such as volume creation, snap creation, are unavailable because the appliance has been put into read-only mode.

New Features

Functional Area Feature Description Summary of Benefits
Security Directory Services for PowerStore

The Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP), is an application protocol for querying and modifying directory services running on TCP/IP networks. LDAP helps centralize the management of network authentication and authorization operations. Integrating PowerStore Manager users into an existing LDAP environment provides a way to control management access based on established user and group accounts within the LDAP directory.

PowerStore supports the following LDAP server types:

  • Active Directory—a Microsoft directory service. It runs on Windows Server and allows administrators to manage permissions and access to network resources.
  • OpenLDAP—a free, open-source implementation of LDAP.

After you configure the LDAP settings for PowerStore, you can perform user management functions. For example, you can assign access permissions to PowerStore Manager based on existing users and groups, within the context of an established LDAP directory structure.

This feature allows system administrators to connect to authentication services for centralized user management across entire domains. This provides for easier and more flexible management of system user access and authorization to PowerStore appliances.
Service Service script “svc_volume_space_metrics” is now available to retrieve volume family level capacity information when capacity and performance metrics are unavailable due to an out-of-space condition. When capacity and performance data for a volume is unavailable, you can now use the service script to retrieve the following information for a volume:

Volume family ID

Volume family

Volume family logical capacity used

Volume family shared logical capacity used

Volume family unique physical capacity used

Name of the primary volume (name from CP volume config, empty string (“”) if primary volume is deleted).

Type of volumes in the family (block volume, vvol, file

system volume, storage_type in CP volume configuration table)

Number of snapshot volumes in the family

Number of clone volumes in the family

Functional Area Feature Description Summary of Benefits
Virtualization

Connectivity-

Networks

During the initial configuration of a PowerStore X model appliance, best practice settings can be automatically applied to the appliance to enable maximum performance. This new step in the Initial Configuration Wizard will:

  • Ask the user to provide two additional storage IPs, with the wizard automatically:

    Mapping the storage IPs as additional internal iSCSI targets

    Changing the internal ESXi queue depth according to depth according to best practices

  • Allowing the user to change the cluster MTU to 9000, if supported within the customer’s environment, according to best practices

If the best practice settings were not applied during the initial configuration of a PowerStore X model appliance, the steps to apply some of the settings after the initial configuration have been automated. However, not all the configuration steps have been automated. It is strongly recommended that you apply the best practices during the initial configuration of an appliance.

See KB article HOW17288 PowerStore X – Performance Best Practice Tuning or see the

PowerStore Virtualization Integration White Paper for details.

The settings needed to achieve maximum performance on PowerStore X system are now automated during Initial Configuration. Applying these settings during Initial Configuration is highly recommended. However, if the settings are not applied during Initial Configuration, it is now easier to apply these settings after Initial Configuration.

New Features

Functional Area Feature Description Summary of Benefits
Virtualization

Installation and

Upgrade

The PowerStore software upgrade for PowerStore X model appliances includes a required ESXi update for the internal nodes of the appliance. The internal nodes of an existing PowerStore X model appliances must be upgraded to VMware ESXi 6.7 P03, Patch Release ESXi670-202008001 (Build: 16713306) before the appliance can be upgraded to this latest version of the PowerStore OS.

In addition to the ESXi update, other PowerStore X model components are required to be upgraded as well. Download the latest PowerStore X model software upgrade .zip file named PowerStoreX1.0.3.0.5.007.zip from the Dell Digital Locker at https://www.dell.com/support/software

Refer to the Upgrade Considerations in this document for further details.

The internal nodes on a PowerStore X appliance use a newer version of ESXi that contains bug fixes and security fixes.

the release notes can be downloaded by clicking the screenshot below

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