Powering up and down a storage array may not be done in the order you think

Powering up a single server is easy. Turn on the direct attached storage, then turn on the server.  Done.  When powering your storage array down or back up there is quite a bit more to it than that.

The proper procedure for powering down your array is:

  1. Power off the servers.
  2. Power down the storage processors.
  3. Once the storage processors have powered down completely you can power down the disk drive shelves.
  4. Power down the switches.

The proper procedure for powering up your array is:

  1. Power on the switches
  2. Power on the disk shelves
  3. Power on the storage processors
  4. Power on the hosts

Now the good news on the power up is that you can do steps 1, 2 and 3 together.  The switches will take 1-2 minutes to boot up and become operational.  The disk shelves will come online within a few seconds.  The storage processors will take 8-10 minutes to come online (I’m talking about an EMC CX array here, different arrays will have different power up times).

On the power down process there aren’t a whole lot of shortcuts you can take.  Which is usually a problem, because if you have to power down the array there is usually a major power problem going on, which involves no power coming into the array.

Hopefully you never need to know this information, but if you do need to this is useful information to have.



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