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Best practices for high availability groups

Contributors netapp-madkat netapp-lhalbert

Before attaching StorageGRID as a FabricPool cloud tier, you should use the StorageGRID Grid Manager to configure a high availability (HA) group.

What is a high availability (HA) group?

To ensure that the Load Balancer service is always available to manage FabricPool data, you can group the network interfaces of multiple Admin and Gateway Nodes into a single entity, known as a high availability (HA) group. If the active node in the HA group fails, another node in the group can continue to manage the workload.

Each HA group provides highly available access to the shared services on the associated nodes. For example, an HA group that consists of interfaces only on Gateway Nodes or on both Admin Nodes and Gateway Nodes provides highly available access to the shared Load Balancer service.

To create an HA group, you perform these general steps:

  1. Select network interfaces for one or more Admin Nodes or Gateway Nodes. You can select the Grid Network interface (eth0), Client Network interface (eth2), or a VLAN interface.

    Important If you plan to use a VLAN interface to segregate FabricPool traffic, a network administrator must first configure a trunk interface and the corresponding VLAN. Each VLAN is identified by a numeric ID or tag. For example, your network might use VLAN 100 for FabricPool traffic.
  2. Assign one or more virtual IP (VIP) addresses to the group. Clients applications, such as FabricPool, can use any of these VIP addresses to connect to StorageGRID.

  3. Specify one interface to be the Primary interface and determine the priority order for any Backup interfaces. The Primary interface is the active interface unless a failure occurs.

If the HA group includes more than one interface and the Primary interface fails, the VIP addresses move to the first backup interface in the priority order. If that interface fails, the VIP addresses move to the next backup interface, and so on. This failover process generally takes only a few seconds and is fast enough that client applications should experience little impact and can rely on normal retry behaviors to continue operation.

When the failure is resolved and a higher priority interface becomes available again, the VIP addresses are automatically moved to the highest priority interface that is available.

Best practices for high availability (HA) groups

The best practices for creating a StorageGRID HA group for FabricPool depend on the workload, as follows:

  • If you plan to use FabricPool with primary workload data, you must create an HA group that includes at least two load-balancing nodes to prevent data retrieval interruption.

  • If you plan to use the FabricPool snapshot-only volume tiering policy or non-primary local performance tiers (for example, disaster recovery locations or NetApp SnapMirror® destinations), you can configure an HA group with only one node.

These instructions describe setting up an HA group for Active-Backup HA (one node is active and one node is backup). However, you might prefer to use DNS Round Robin or Active-Active HA. To learn the benefits of these other HA configurations, see Configuration options for HA groups.