Log Insight is one of those great VMware products that needs to get more airplay as it has quiet a few applications other than a run of the mill log parser…in this post I’ll go through configuring a basic VSAN alert to detect disk failures. Once VSAN has been configured and deployed there is a new set of alerting parameters that VMware Admins need to be aware of that would usually be part of a traditional storage platforms feature set. Like all storage we need to be made aware of any issues with the supporting hardware such as Storage Controllers and Physical Disks. VSAN 6.2 comes with an excellent Health Monitor that allows you to get a quick overview of a VSAN instances state and will alert through vCenter if any issues arise.
While vCenter Triggered Alerting is fine we had a situation recently where a failed disk was missed for a couple of days due to the default vCenter Alarming not configured correctly. The only way we found out about the failed disk was by visually seeing the alert against the vCenter and then taking a look at the VSAN Health Analyzer. While vCenter monitoring is ok, I don’t believe it should be your only/primary source of monitoring and alerting.
Having done a few alerts in Log Insight before, I looked at what Log Insight could provide by way of logging through the recently released VSAN Content Pack.
Using the Diskgroup Failures menu on the VSAN Content Pack Dashboard I searched through to try and locate the previous disk failure. As shown below a Disk Permanent Error had been registered.
Clicking through to the Interactive Analysis on that event you get a more detailed view of the error and the search parameters of the specific log entry.
To create a custom alert that emails when a Permanent Disk Failure occurs I removed the search fields that related directly to the disk and host and clicked on the Create Alert Icon (Red Bell top left of the image)
As shown below configuring the alert is simple and there are a number of different hooks to use as methods of notification. One of the great things about using Log Insight to trigger Alert notification is the suppression mechanisms to stop alert floods.
Apart from creating custom alerts the VSAN Content pack comes with a number of pre-canned alerts that are disabled by default. To view and enable these click on the Manage Alerts button and filter for VSAN.
If you haven’t had a chance to look at Log Insight, take a look at the features page and if you own a vCenter license you already own 25 OSI Pack of Log Insight.