Today I want to build a Nutanix CE All-Flash 4 Node Cluster together with you. The first part is about the Hardware/Software Requirements, Image Deployment on the USB-Sticks for the operation system and the third part is about configuring the cluster completely and doing some tests.
Attention: I will run the 4 node Nutanix CE cluster with unsupported NVMe SSD drives. In case of doubt you should rely on SATA SSD Drives!
Attention 2: if you want to install NVME only cluster, you have to use the image version ce-2017.07.20-stable! The ce-2018.05.01-stable unfortunately contains a bug in svmboot.iso which prevents the CVM from finding the NVME drives after deployment.
Update: the current version ce-2019.02.11-stable.img.gz still has the bug!
OK, let’s get started and find all the basics together.
Nutanix CE Hardware Requirements:
- Intel CPU with VT-x Support and minimum of 4 core (2 core goes directly to the Controller VM!)
- 16 GB of System memory (for deduplication/compression feature) or 8GB for a minimal Setup
- Intel-based NIC (1Gbit or more) (or Broadcom NIC)
- min. 500 GB HHD/SSD for Cold Tier
- min. 200 GB SSD for Hot Tier
- min. one 8GB boot device (USB, SATA…)
- more Requirements can be found here
- 4x Intel NUC NUC8i7HVK Hades Canyon
- 4x Kingston HyperX Impact HX424S14IBK2/32 32GB (2 x 16GB) RAM Kit
- 8x Samsung MZ-V7P512BW 970 PRO Interne SSD 512GB NVMe M.2
- 4x SanDisk Ultra Fit 32 GB USB 3.1
- Nutanix CE Full-Disk Image
- MAC/Linux no additional Software Required
- For windows I prefer Win32 Disk Imager
Nutanix CE Image Download and Unpack
We need the newest Nutanix Community Edition from here. At the time of writing this posts is the latest version AOS 5.6. (Or Image from 2017.07.20 for NVMe Only Setup)
unfortunately the ISO is not available due to technical problems, so we use the full disk image
We need a USB stick with at least 8 GB of memory (it’s certainly possible to use less, but the file system needs some space to grow).
after we have downloaded the tar.gz, we have to unpack it:
MacOS / Linux Way:
gzip -dk ce-2018.05.01-stable.img.gz
d = Decompress
k = do not delete the .gz file
you can use 7-Zip or WinRAR to unpack the gz File.
Now you should have a file called ce-2018.05.01-stable.img.
(option 1) Beam the img-File to the USB-Drives (MacOS)
In this step we transfer the contents of the IMG file to the USB drives we have provided for the AHV operating system.
With Linux and MacOS we can do this directly from the console:
Identification of the correct drive, IMPORTANT 🙂
So that we can also identify the correct USB drive, we use diskutils by:
In my case Disk3 is my USB stick to which the contents of the IMG file should be transferred. To be on the safe side, we use diskutil info /dev/Disk3 to check whether it is actually our USB drive.
diskutil info /dev/Disk3
Now we can be sure that we do not accidentally write to the wrong drive. 🙂
Lets beam the IMG-File to the USB-Drive:
diskutil unmountDisk /dev/disk3
sudo dd if=ce-2018.05.01-stable.img of=/dev/rdisk3 bs=1m
This will now take some time depending on the USB drive speed.
I have now done this for all 4 USB drives.
The example shows a 16 GB USB drive. In my case I used a 32GB USB3.1 drive, which wasn’t really more expensive.
(option 2) Beam the img-File to the USB-Drives (Windows)
The first step is to install and start the Win32 Disk Imager.
In the Win32 Disk Imager interface we select (1) the IMG file downloaded and unpacked above and the correct drive with the USB drive (2). Click on Write/Schreiben (3) to start the copy process.
If everything is set correctly, the copy operation starts.
After a few minutes the copy process should be finished.
Now we have finished all preparations and in part 2 we will configure the Intel NUCs accordingly (BIOS/UEFI, BIOS Downgrade, cabling, first boot and setup of the cluster).