Configure volumes to automatically provide more space when they are full

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When FlexVol volumes get full, ONTAP can use various methods to attempt to automatically provide more free space for the volume. You choose which methods ONTAP can use, and in which order, depending on the requirements imposed by your application and storage architecture.

About this task

ONTAP can automatically provide more free space for a full volume by using one or both of the following methods:

  • Increase the size of the volume (known as autogrow).

    This method is useful if the volume’s containing aggregate has enough space to support a larger volume. You can configure ONTAP to set a maximum size for the volume. The increase is automatically triggered based on the amount of data being written to the volume in relation to the current amount of used space and any thresholds set.

    Autogrow is not triggered to support Snapshot copy creation. If you attempt to create a Snapshot copy and there is insufficient space, the Snapshot copy creation fails, even with autogrow enabled.

  • Delete Snapshot copies, FlexClone files, or FlexClone LUNs.

    For example, you can configure ONTAP to automatically delete Snapshot copies that are not linked to Snapshot copies in cloned volumes or LUNs, or you can define which Snapshot copies you want ONTAP to delete first—​your oldest or newest Snapshot copies. You can also determine when ONTAP should begin deleting Snapshot copies—​for example, when the volume is nearly full or when the volume’s Snapshot reserve is nearly full.

If you enable both of these methods, you can specify which method ONTAP tries first when a volume is nearly full. If the first method does not provide sufficient additional space to the volume, ONTAP tries the other method next.

By default, ONTAP tries to increase the size of the volume first. In most cases, the default configuration is preferable, because when a Snapshot copy is deleted, it cannot be restored. However, if you need to avoid growing the size of a volume whenever possible, you can configure ONTAP to delete Snapshot copies before increasing the size of the volume.

Steps
  1. If you want ONTAP to attempt to increase the size of the volume when it gets full, enable the autogrow capability for the volume by using the volume autosize command with grow mode.

    Remember that when the volume grows, it consumes more free space from its associated aggregate. If you are depending on the volume’s ability to grow whenever it needs to, you must monitor the free space in the associated aggregate and add more when needed.

  2. If you want ONTAP to delete Snapshot copies, FlexClone files, or FlexClone LUNs when the volume gets full, enable autodelete for those object types.

  3. If you enabled both the volume autogrow capability and one or more autodelete capabilities, select the first method that ONTAP should use to provide free space to a volume by using the volume modify command with the -space-mgmt-try-first option.

    To specify increasing the size of the volume first (the default), use volume_grow. To specify deleting Snapshot copies first, use snap_delete.