Azure Disk Pools with Azure VMware Solution


Diagram depicting how disk pools works, each ultra disk can be accessed by each iSCSI controller over iSCSI, and the Azure VMware Solution hosts can access the iSCSI controller over iSCSI.

Azure Disk Pool is a new offering (preview at the moment) to make Azure disks available over ISCSI. You can create an disk pools and add several disk to this disk pool. Then you create an ISCSI target you can connect to different initiators.
So this is a great option to use this as additional datastores for Azure VMware Solution.

For informations about regions, restrictions and billig please check the Microsoft documentation pages under:

First an overview about the documentation of Azure Disk Pools from Microsoft:

Planning Guide:

DiskPool Setup:

Attach Disks to VMware Cluster:

Here is a short documentation about the configuration:

Register your subscription for the preview

Register your subscription to the Microsoft.StoragePool provider, to be able to create and use disk pools.

  • Sign in to the Azure portal.
  • On the Azure portal menu, search for and select Subscriptions.
  • Select the subscription you want to use for disk pools.
  • On the left menu, under Settings, select Resource providers.
  • Find the resource provider Microsoft.StoragePool and select Register.
  • Find the resource provider Microsoft.Storage and select Register.
  • Once your subscription has been registered, you can deploy a disk pool.

Define a storage subnet within the AVS Cloud

For your disk pool to work with your client machines, you must delegate a subnet to your Azure disk pool. When creating a disk pool, you specify a virtual network and the delegated subnet. You may either create a new subnet or use an existing one and delegate to the Microsoft.StoragePool/diskPools resource provider.

  • Go to the virtual networks pane in the Azure portal and select the virtual network to use for the disk pool.
  • Select Subnets from the virtual network pane and select +Subnet.
  • Create a new subnet by completing the following required fields in the Add subnet pane: – Subnet delegation: Select Microsoft.StoragePool
Create Disks
  • Open Azure Portal.
  • Search for Disks 
  • Create a new Disk +CREATE (must be a premium SSD !)
  • Choose the following „basic“ options (Availability Zone can not bei „NONE“)
must be a premium ssd (restriction you can see on MS documentation pages)
  • Advanced Options (max shares need a minimum of 2):
  • Now – Review and Create – you can create multiple disk to add them into one Diskpool

Set Permission (wirte and read) per Disk
  • Open each disk and choose Permission (IAM)
  • Add a new role (you need owner rights for this) 
  • Select Role – Virtual Machine Contributor
  • Assign the Role to SotragePool Resource Provider

Create the „Disk Pool“

>> Before you begin to create an disk pool please check you DSv3 vCPU Quota <<

This could happen on the deployment if you have not enough vCPU

16 vcpus, 64 GiB memory. (the minimum is 16 free vCPU on DSv3) – Check → subscription → quota → Standard DSv3 Family CPU → >16 free

Now you can create the disk pool

  • Login to the Azure Portal
  • Search for „disk pool“
  • Click on +create to create an new or additional disk pool
  • Fill out the * fields and choose the “Network” for disk pools (availability zone must be the same as on the disks)
  • Add disks to the disk pool
  • Choose your disks – if they are not shown check the informations in the brown field and the availability zone – should not be set to “NONE
  • Activate ISCSI for the diskpool
    • enable checkmark
    • give a target name
    • the disk status has to be on „enable“
    • ACL mode is dynamic
  • click review+create – well DONE … your diskpool is ready to use.
Connect ISCSI Disks (LUNs) to AVS as ISCSI Datastore

Overview Picture:

So the next section is more „console“ related – so you should have PowerShell enabled in the AzurePortal

If this is done you can start to configure avs and connect the disk pool

So let´s start:

  • Check if the subscription is registered to Microsoft.AVS:
    az provider show -n „Microsoft.AVS“ –query registrationState
  • If it’s not already registered, then register it:
    az provider register -n „Microsoft.AVS“
  • Check if the subscription is registered to CloudSanExperience AFEC in Microsoft.AVS:
    az feature show –name „CloudSanExperience“ –namespace „Microsoft.AVS“az feature show –name „CloudSanExperience“ –namespace „Microsoft.AVS“
    • If it’s not already registered, then register it:
      az feature register –name „CloudSanExperience“ –namespace „Microsoft.AVS“az feature register –name „CloudSanExperience“ –namespace „Microsoft.AVS“
    • The registration may take approximately 15 minutes to complete and you can check the current status it:
      az feature show –name „CloudSanExperience“ –namespace „Microsoft.AVS“ –query properties.state
    • Check if the vmware extension is installed:az extension show –name vmware
      • If the extension is already installed, check if the version is 3.0.0. If an older version is installed, update the extension:
        az extension update –name vmware
      • If it’s not already installed, install it:
        az extension add –name vmware
  • Now connect the Disk Lun to the datastore:
    az vmware datastore disk-pool-volume create –name iSCSIDatastore1 –resource-group MyResourceGroup –cluster Cluster-1 –private-cloud MyPrivateCloud –target-id /subscriptions/11111111-1111-1111-1111-111111111111/resourceGroups/ResourceGroup1/providers/Microsoft.StoragePool/diskPools/mpio-diskpool/iscsiTargets/mpio-iscsi-target –lun-name lun0
  • An Example for our LAB:az vmware datastore disk-pool-volume create –name iSCSIDatastore1 –resource-group avs-sddc-shared-cc-02-rg –cluster Cluster-1 –private-cloud avs-sddc-shared-cc-02 –target-id /subscriptions/11111111-1111-1111-1111-111111111111/resourceGroups/avs-sddc-shared-cc-02-rg/providers/Microsoft.StoragePool/diskPools/avs-sddc-diskpool-01/iscsiTargets/avs-cluster-01 –lun-name avs-sddc-cc-diskpool-0

So if this was successful you can check you vCenter for an new ISCSI Datastore – It should look like this … 

  • Display your Datastores with PowerShell on Azure
    az vmware datastore -h

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