March 12, 2013
by Lubos Rendek
Whether you are administrating a small home network or an enterprise network for a large company the data storage is always a concern. It can be in terms of lack of disk space or inefficient backup solution. In both cases GlusterFS can be the right tool to fix your problem as it allows you to scale your resources horizontally as well as vertically. In this guide we will configure the distributed and replicated/mirror data storage. As the name suggests a GlusterFS’s distributed storage mode will allow you to evenly redistribute your data across multiple network nodes, while a replicated mode will make sure that all your data are mirrored across all network nodes.
What is GlusterFS
After reading the introduction you should have already a fair idea what GlusterFS is. You can think of it as an aggregation service for all your empty disk space across your whole network. It connects all nodes with GlusterFS installation over TCP or RDMA creating a single storage resource combining all available disk space into a single storage volume ( distributed mode ) or uses the maximum of available disk space on all notes to mirror your data ( replicated mode ). Therefore, each volume consist of multiple nodes, which in GlusterFS terminology are called bricks.
Although GlusterFS can by installed and used on any Linux distribution, this article will primarily use Ubuntu Linux. However, you should be able to use this guide on any Linux Distribution like RedHat, Fedora, SuSe, etc. The only part which will be different will be the GlusterFS installation process.
Furthermore, this guide will use 3 example hostnames:
- storage.server1 – GlusterFS storage server
- storage.server2 – GlusterFS storage server
- storage.client – GlusterFS storage client
Use DNS server or /etc/hosts file to define your hostnames and adjust your scenario to this guide.