Saturday, March 31, 2018

Exadata X7-2 -- Installation &

I have recently done a POC with an Exadata X7-2 1/8 machine, and here is the list of information that I gathered about the deployment of this machine. Note that, I find this information very important, as it is gathered from a real field experience. There is also one very important note about using the script for the initial installation of the machine and that's why, you are seeing the word in the title of this post..

1) Currently, there are some problems with PXE boot based installation(imaging) of Exadata X7-2 machine.. This is what I heard from the guys @ Oracle .. That's why if you are planning to image an Exadata X7-2 environment, go with USB boot.. (again I didn't try the PXE boot, but the guys in Oracle told me so.. So I m here to warn you about it.)

2) X7-2 nodes come with 25Gbit SFP support. The SPF devices are SFP28.. So if you are going to purchase SFP Transceiver modules, choose your SFP Transceiver modules accordingly. Also note that, you can't see the green light on SFP cards, until you active the OS interfaces mapped to them.. So if you put a fiber cable and if you don't see the lights are activated on the SFP cards, don't panic :)

3) Admin network is based on a Cisco Nexus switch (rather than Cisco Catalyst, that we have seen in earlier Exadata generations) .. That's why the configuration of the admin switch is a little different than the earlier..

4) If the Image version of Exadata X7-2 is up-to-date, then there is no need reimage it again. (at least while doing a POC)

Currently the most up-to-date image version is

This information actually, is not from Oracle. But I have seen it.. It worked well.. It is maybe a little bit risky, but it can be used for POCs, as it saves us time for the initial deployment of the machine.

So if the image version that comes with the newly purchased Exadata X7-2 is up-to-date, we may do the following for the installation;

  • We cable and power on the machine.
  • We configure Cisco.
  • We configure Infiniband switches & PDUs.
  • We run OEDA and put its output to db node1.
  • We run by giving OEDA xml output as the input argument. This script is actually for Elastic configurations, but I have seen it is working in standard installations too.. It is used for reconfiguring the Exadata that is delivered with the standard IP addresses and hostnames. As you may already know, Exadata is delivered with default IP address and hostnames .. When it is delivered to the customer environment, it has OS installed on it.. So this can be used to reconfigure the net interfaces, ip addresses, hostname and everyting based on what is written in OEDA xml output.. (imaging do the same, but this script can reconfigure the machine without imaging) So, once is executed successfully, we run onecommand and finish our work.
Pretty interesting , right? It is actually documented for Elastic Configurations, but as I mentioned earlier, I saw it is working even for the standard installations, as well.. Again, I don't recommend this way of installation but this type of an installation may still be used for shortening the deployment time, especially during POCs.

Reference: Elastic Configuration on Exadata (Doc ID 1953915.1)

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