Policy-Based Validation of SAN Configuration

Historically, storage has been directly connected to servers for fast local access and easy configuration. In recent years, storage area networks (SANs) have been defined as an alternative storage paradigm that allows storage to be shared among servers using fast interconnects. One of the key challenges of SAN management is the large number of configuration problems that are encountered. These configuration problems can be addressed by SAN management software. But hard-coding the SAN configuration into the management software is not a viable option since it is not possible to easily modify or replace old configuration rules and specify new policies and guidelines. In this paper, we propose a novel policy-based SAN configuration validation system that can be used to specify, store, and evaluate interoperability policies for SANs. We also introduce five new operators for collection policies that are useful for evaluating a wide variety of practical SAN configuration policies found in practice. The policy-based SAN configuration checking approach proposed in this paper is discussed within the context of device interoperability checking. However, this approach is extensible as it can also be used to enforce performance, reliability, and security-related configuration checking.

By: Dakshi, Agrawal, James Giles, Kang-Won Lee, Kaladhar Voruganti, Khalid Filali-Adib

Published in: Proceedings of Fifth IEEE International Workshop on Policies for Distributed Systems and Networks. Los Alamitos, CA, , IEEE Computer Society. , p.77-86 in 2004

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