DH2i DxEnterprise 20.0 Software: MSSQL HA Instances for Linux on Azure Quick Start Guide

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MSSQL HA Instances for Linux on Azure

This quick start guide describes how to set up and configure a MSSQL HA (FCI) with shared disk solution for DxEnterprise running in Azure. Using this guide, the user will create an availability set and virtual machines, configure Azure shared disks, and create and configure an Azure load balancer that will allow access to the resources assigned to the DxEnterprise Vhost.

Setup Virtual Machines

Create the Availability Set and Virtual Machines

  1. Login to the Azure Management Portal.
  2. Search for Availability Sets using the top search bar, then select Add.
  3. Assign the availability set to a resource group and give it a name.
  4. Select Review + Create in the bottom-left corner, then select Create.
  5. Search for DxEnterprise in the top search bar and select one of the DxEnterprise offers available under Marketplace.
  6. Under Select a software plan, choose an operating system and select Create.
  7. Configure a virtual machine template and assign it to the availability set.
    1. Assign the VM to the same resource group as the availability set and give it a name.
    2. Under Instance Details > Availability options, select Availability set.
    3. A new drop-down box will appear. Select the availability set created in step 4.
    4. Setup an authentication type.
    5. Under Networking, select Create New and set the SKU of the public IP address to standard.

      NOTE: There is an option under network settings to place the virtual machine behind an existing load balancing solution. Do not select this option.

    6. Select Review + Create, then Create.
  8. Repeat steps 7a-f for additional VM(s).
  9. The availability set has been created with VMs assigned to it. Return to the Azure homepage by selecting Microsoft Azure in the top-left corner.

Install DxEnterprise, Join Cluster, and Install SQL Server

Configure Storage

Present Storage

Present storage to the nodes. DxEnterprise supports any storage that is SCSI-3 Persistent Reservation compliant. The examples provided below are specific to Azure Shared Disks.

NOTE: Please ensure proper presentation of storage to nodes. If storage not managed by the DxEnterprise cluster is presented to the nodes, it is possible to overwrite or corrupt data held on that storage.

Create and Configure Azure Shared Disk

On July 16, 2020, Microsoft announced the general availability of Azure Shared Disks. Azure Shared Disks is the industry’s first shared block storage in the cloud. Azure Shared Disks are available both on Ultra Disks and Premium SSDs.

NOTE: There are various limitations for Azure disks that can be used as shared disks. For example, the VMs and the disks must be residing in the same Availability Zone for regions that support Availability Zones, Availability Sets, or Proximity Placement Groups. It is important to provision resources appropriately as they cannot be changed after creation.

  1. Before an Azure shared disk can be used, the VMs must have its Ultra disk feature enabled. From the Azure Portal, go to the Disk property of the VM and enable Ultra Disk Compatibility.

    The Ultra Disk feature can also be enabled via the Azure CLI:

    • az vm update -g <resource_group> -n <vm_name> ‐‐set additionalCapabilities.ultraSSDEnabled=1
  2. To deploy an Azure disk (e.g. Ultra Disk) as a shared disk that is shareable across multiple VMs, modify the max-shares parameter to a value greater than 1.
    • az disk create -g <resource_group> -n <disk_name> ‐‐size-gb <desired_size> -l <location> ‐‐sku UltraSSD_LRS ‐‐max-shares <number_of_VMs_sharing>
  3. Once the shared disk is created with max-shares set to a value greater than 1, it can be attached to the VMs via the Azure CLI:
    • az vm disk attach ‐‐resource-group <resource_group&gt;  ‐‐vm-name <vm_name> ‐‐name <disk_name>

Configure Disk(s) in DxEnterprise

DxEnterprise leverages native file system (NTFS/ext4/xfs) and shared storage technology to coordinate access to a pool of disk resources in the cluster. Managing a disk puts that disk under DxEnterprise control.

  1. To manage a disk, use the sudo dxcli add-disk command. The sudo dxcli get-disks command can be used to retrieve a list of disk IDs.

    Syntax

    dxcli add-disk <disk_id> [label]

    Parameters

    Name Description Required
    disk_id The ID of the disk. True
    label The unique label for the disk. False

    Example

    sudo dxcli add-disk 50842140-be32-d3a7-45d4-3999bf3ad3a8 “Cluster Disk 1”

  2. Create a volume on the managed disk by using the sudo dxcli create-volume command.

    Syntax

    dxcli create-volume <disk_id>,<size_in_bytes>

    Parameters

    Name Description Required
    disk_id The ID of the disk. True
    size_in_bytes The size of the volume to create in bytes. True

    Example

    sudo dxcli create-volume 50842140-be32-d3a7-45d4-3999bf3ad3a8,1073741824

  3. Retrieve the volume ID using the sudo dxcli get-disk-detail command.

    Syntax

    dxcli get-disk-detail <disk_id>

    Parameters

    Name Description Required
    disk_id The ID of the disk. True

    Example

    dxcli get-disk-detail 50842140-be32-d3a7-45d4-3999bf3ad3a8

  4. Format the volume on the managed disk using the sudo dxcli format-volume command.

    Syntax

    dxcli format-volume <volume_id> <fstype> <label> <block_size> <quick_format:true|false> <compression:true|false> [optional_parameters]

    Parameters

    Name Description Required
    volume_id The ID of the volume. True
    fstype The file system type. [FAT|FAT32|exFAT|EXT3|EXT4|NTFS|UDF|ReFS|XFS] True
    label The label for the volume. True
    block_size The block size in bytes. [512|1024|2048|4096|8192|16384|32768|65536] True
    quick_format:true|false Whether or not to perform a quick format. True
    compression:true|false Whether or not to enable compression. True
    optional_parameters Optional parameters from format.com False

    Example

    sudo dxcli format-volume 3409ed39-60c1-4f49-8186-dfface26e2a1 EXT4 Volume1 4096 quick_format:true compression:false

  5. Assign a mount point for the volume using the sudo dxcli set-mountpoint command.

    Syntax

    dxcli set-mountpoint <volume_id> <mount_point>

    Parameters

    Name Description Required
    volume_id The ID of the volume. True
    mount_point The mount path. True

    Example

    sudo dxcli set-mountpoint 3409ed39-60c1-4f49-8186-dfface26e2a1 /mnt/volume1

Create and Configure a DxEnterprise Vhost

Create a Vhost

DxEnterprise uses Virtual Hosts (Vhosts) to provide failover support and high availability. A Vhost virtualizes the network name and IP address associated to a particular SQL Server Instance, file share, and/or service. Instead of using the network name and IP address of a physical server, a Vhost is created and assigned a unique name/virtual IP-address pair. Clients access the databases associated with an instance via the Vhost name or IP address; they do not need to know which node is running the SQL instance. When a Vhost is configured, the user will need to specify at least one node to participate in the Vhost. It is recommended to create A and PTR records for each Vhost in DNS for resolution as well as add Vhost entries to each node’s local hosts file.

To add a Vhost, use the sudo dxcli cluster-add-vhost command.

Syntax

dxcli cluster-add-vhost <vhost> <vips> <nodes> [autofailback] [priority[1-5]] [ilb_ports]

Parameters

Name Description Required
vhost The name of the Vhost. True
vips The virtual IP(s) for the Vhost (comma separated list for multiples). The use of a loopback address (127.0.0.1) is supported, but must be preceded by an asterisk (*). True
nodes The node(s) to add to the Vhost (comma-separated list for multiples). True
autofailback Set autofailback option, or leave blank if autofailback is not desired. False
priority The priority order of failover between Vhosts (1 is the highest and 5 is the lowest). False
ilb_ports Port(s) to use for internal load balancer probing (comma-separated list for multiples). False

Example

sudo dxcli cluster-add-vhost vhost1 192.168.1.10 dxemssql1, dxemssql2

Manage a Vhost Diskgroup

A diskgroup is a logical set of disks that are added to a Vhost. When a disk is added to a Vhost diskgroup, the disk will be set online on the active node and offline on all other nodes. If there is a failure of a disk within the diskgroup, the Vhost will failover onto the next available node in the cluster.

To assign a disk to a Vhost, use the sudo dxcli vhost-set-diskgroup command.

Syntax

dxcli vhost-set-diskgroup <vhost> <disk_ids>

Parameters

Name Description Required
vhost The name of the Vhost. True
disk_ids A full list of pipe (|) delimited disk IDs to add to the diskgroup. True

Example

sudo dxcli vhost-set-diskgroup VHOST1 50842140-be32-d3a7-45d4-3999bf3ad3a8

Add a SQL Instance to a Vhost

When a SQL Server instance is added to a Vhost, DxEnterprise virtualizes the network name and IP address associated with the SQL Server instance creating a Virtual SQL Server instance. Clients can then access the Virtual SQL Server instance via the Vhost\instance name.

  1. OPTIONAL: This step is only required if the SQL Server sysadmin (SA) account credentials will be provided in step 2. Encrypt the SQL Server sysadmin password using sudo dxcli encrypt-text command.

    Syntax

    dxcli encrypt-text <value>

    Parameters

    Name Description Required
    value The text to be encrypted. True

    Example

    dxcli encrypt-text Passw0rd

  2. Assigning a SQL Server instance to a Vhost creates a managed instance. To add a SQL instance to a Vhost, use the sudo dxcli add-instance command. Insert the encrypted SQL sysadmin password from the previous step for the sql_pass parameter.

    Syntax

    add-instance <vhost>\<instance> <port> <sql_data_path> <sql_log_path> [sql_login] [sql_pass] [keep]

    Parameters

    Name Description Required
    vhost The name of the Vhost. True
    instance The name of the SQL instance. True
    port The port to be used. True
    sql_data_path The path for the SQL data. True
    sql_log_path The path for the SQL logs. True
    sql_login A sysadmin user for the SQL instance. If using Windows authentication, the credential must be supplied in UPN format (e.g. user@domain.com). False
    sql_pass The encrypted password for the SQL sysadmin user. False
    keep Specify this parameter to keep the current SQL data. False

    Example

    sudo dxcli add-instance vhost1\mssqlserver 1433 /mnt/volume1/data /mnt/volume1/log sa Gks+GJplFmUbTLlBy4wPmw==

(Optional) Configure Azure Load Balancer

To configure an Azure Load Balancer, please view the quick start guide.

References

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