Summary: This article describes the prerequisite configuration required, and the actual configuration to use IBM® PowerHA® 7.1 storage area network (SAN) heartbeat. In PowerHA 7.1, the disk heartbeat has been replaced by a SAN heartbeat, which should be included in a resilient PowerHA architecture.
IBM PowerHA System Mirror for AIX is clustering software which gives the capability for a resource or group of resources (an application) to be automatically or manually moved to another IBM AIX® system in the event of a system failure.
Heartbeat and failure detection is performed over all interfaces available to the cluster. This could be network interfaces, Fibre Channel (FC) adapter interfaces, and the Cluster Aware AIX (CAA) repository disk.
In PowerHA 6.1 and earlier versions, heartbeat over FC adapter interfaces was not supported, and instead, a SAN-attached heartbeat disk was made available to both nodes, and this was used for heartbeat and failure detection. In PowerHA 7.1, the use of heartbeat disks is no longer supported, and configuring heartbeat over SAN is the supported method to use in place of heartbeat disks.
For this heartbeat over SAN to take place, the FC adapter in the AIX system needs to be configured to act as a target and an initiator. In most SAN environments, an initiator device belongs to the server which is typically a host bus adapter (HBA) and a target is typically a storage device, such as a storage controller or a tape device. The IBM AIX 7.1 Information Center contains a list of supported FC adapters that can support the target mode. These adapters can be used for heartbeat over SAN.