Symmetric Mentoring Workshop (I can still teach with lab)

Course Logistics:

Start Date:                           End Date:    


Days:  Choice of 5 Full Days (including one day for Practical Exam) or 8 Days of Deep Dives and 1 day for Practical Exam

Course Prerequisites:

Attendees should have prior experience with EMC Products.  The prime purpose of the visit is to provide knowledge and experience in the design of Symmetrix solutions encompassing EMC Best Practices.  The class consists of VP, FAST, SRDF, Migrations, Replication and Performance analysis using Symmmerge and Tier Advisor (which are tools that presales should be using to determine what array the customer needs when upgrading or switching from another vendor to EMC array). Basic architectural understanding of the Symmetrix VMAX product will also be covered.  This workshop deals with the theory of how EMC products work so that the students will understand the inner working of each EMC product.  Each student will need to be speed certified by the end of the first week of class, however it is recommended that they get speed certified before the workshop.

The class is taught using a real lab, which is updated every few months with the latest code (so class has to be scheduled accordly).  Because it is a real lab the students also learn how to clean up the lab, which is not taught in any training class and provides some fun exercise’s as building SRDF and cleaning it up is totally different.

What you will learn:

  1. Unisphere will be the main tool used (not symcli as this is the tool that EMC is promoting) Or (If preferred we can use CLI)
  2. Where is information stored to support EMC products such as TS Kits (Service offering review), Product Guides, and white paper’s.
  3. Tools site, tools that are available, Speed site, their location on EMC.
  4. Review of tools available to support EMC solutions.
  5. Design and Architecture concepts
  6. Designing a VP environment.
  7. Design solutions for FAST and FAST VP
  8. Design for timefinder, SRDF solutions for STAR, SRDF/A, SRDF/S, Concurrent and Cascaded
  9. Migration strategies and choices – how to choose the correct solution
  10. Mentoring on how to deliver solutions to Customers.


Unit 1 – Introductions and Agenda Review                                                 

  • Meet the Team
  • Agenda Overview

Unit 2 – Symmetrix Architectural Concepts                        

  • How to access and utilize IE tools and documentation, escalation processes
  • Symmetrix VMAX Family Architecture and Enginuity
  • Review Disk Layout, Software, Connectivity, Management and Performance
  • VMAX 10, VMAX20, VMAX 40
  • eLicensing for VMAX
  • VMAX Cloud Overview
  • Xtrem integration overview

Unit 3 – Service Field Validation                                                                                 

  • Review of the existing service kits
  • Best practices for meeting performance requirements for a solution
  • Understanding customer requirements for design and best practices on customer interactions

Unit 4 – Design and Architecture concepts                                                             

  • Configuring the Symmetrix for production
  • Discuss Symmetrix solutions design parameters
  • Port groups, Initiator groups, Storage Groups and Masking view for Auto Provisioning
  • Solutions Enabler for command structure and syntax; Unisphere and SPA discussion
  • In lab zone devices to hosts for lab work

Unit 5 – Lab Introduction                                                                                               

  • Form teams for arrays
  • Login to Arrays
  • Day 1 afternoon

Unit 6 – Design for Virtual Provisioning                                                                   

  • Review elements of building Virtual Provisioning
  • Benefits and best practices for VP
  • Build VP in Lab using Unisphere

Unit 7 – Design FAST and FAST VP                                                                 

  • Look at differences between FAST and FAST VP
  • Best practices for FAST VP
  • Design FAST VP environment in lab
  • Review why it is important to go back to customer within two months to go over policies
  • Work in lab on VP design
  • DAY 2

Unit 7 – Continued, build  FAST VP in lab using EMC best practices

Unit 8 – Migration Design (to be supplemented by VPLEX VM when available)                                                                                        

  • Introduction to Migration Design and Products
  • Host migrations such as LVM, PPME Host, Open Migrator
  • Array migations
    • PPME
    • Open Replicator
    • Open Migrator
    • FLM
  • Lab complete Open Replicator Migration (depending on time)  
  • DAY 2 afternoon

Unit 9 – Replication Design SRDF and Timefinder                                    

  • SymRDF Migrator
  • SRDF types – SRDF/S, SRDF/A, Concurrent
  • Cascaded
  • STAR design
  • Local replication design – Snaps; clones; space efficient clones
  • In Lab build SRDF/S and SRDF/A (up to group which they would like to build)
  • DAY 3

Unit 9 Continued – work in the lab building

  • Each group will demo on how to take SRDF/S or SRDF/A apart and clean up lab
  • DAY 3 afternoon

Unit 10 – Tools and their usage                                                                                   

  • Tier Advisor Overview and practical usage (including how skews work)
  • Symmerge Overview and practical usage
  • Discuss other tools for SA design use
  • DAY 4

Unit 11 – Documents and Tools                                                                       

  • Find tools & updates on SPEED and EMC Websites
  • Find Documents on Powerlink
  • Find document viewer and Symmetrix System viewer and discuss
  • How to access and utilize tools and Documentation
  • Tools for SA work
  • DAY 4 afternoon

UNIT 11 – Continued working with performance tools

            Using Tier Advisor design VMAX

            Using Tier Advisor on how to merge arrays

            Working with Symmmerge

                        Do performance testing of arrays

                        Work on how to merge arrays and their performance

                        Go over devices (EFD,FC and SATA) and how they effect performance

  • UNIT 12Health Check – Verifying a Customer’s Environment
    • How to do health check including


Team will have to design a plan for a new VMAX that is being sold to replace an old DMX.  They need to put together a design document that will tell the customer how they are going to migrate the array, what type and how many drives are needed for new VMAX (size, number), how to setup FAST VP, SRDF S/A (which one), and performance diagrams for the customer

Each team will have 4 hours to work on the design and get ready to present to the customer on day 10.  The customer has allotted 30 minutes for the team to show their design after which the customer will ask questions.  

  • The teams should be prepared to draw diagrams on white board of how everything will work together
    • Powerpoint (not to exceed 6 slides) on performance and expectations
    • Explain how to setup FAST VP, (pools, storage groups)
    • SRDF S/A best practices (distance, network, bilateral)  DSE,
    • EMC’s best practices for each product
    • Each team will have 4 hours to do design work

Each team will be given a set of circumstances that they have to use to do a Practical design for moving a DMX to a VMAX

  • Symapidb.bin file
    • Bin file
    • Btp files
    • Ttp files

 Configurations of the DMXs:

  •             FC Drives      (how many total and used)
  •             SATA drives  (how many total and used)
  •             Some DMX’s are using SRDF/S, while some are using SRDF/A
  •             Some DMX’s will have thin devices
  •             Some DMS’s will have thick devices
  •             Some customers will decide to use VP
  •             Some customers will decide to use FAST VP
  •             Some customers will allow some downtime (migration)
  •             Some customers will ask for no or very little downtime (migration)

Teams will have to decide the following

  1. How to migrate the data
    1. Suggest to the customer and ensure they have a DR  plan that will work
    1. How many EDF drives are needed  (what kind and why)
    1. How many FC drives are needed     (what kind, sizes and why)
    1. How many SATA drives are needed  (what size, how many, skew expected)
    1. Will VP be used or will FAST VP be used (have to show customers what expectations are using and not using)
    1. What Tools they used to figure out their design
    1. How will Fast be setup
      1. Pools
      1. Storage groups
      1. Policies
      1. Priority
      1. Recommendations for how big and how many pools should be setup (explain possible DL and best practices)
      1. How to setup policies and ensure they do not cause issues in the future (return visit, instructions, training of customer)
  • Explain to the customer why the should come back and do a health check in the future
  • DAY 5

Practical Exam

Each team will do a formal presentation to the customer using the white board to explain best practices and why they chose their design:

Each team will have up to 30 minutes for their presentation (must be between 25 – 30 minutes) not under 25, not over 30 minutes.  Not including questions from the customer

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