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SUSE Enterprise Storage 6

Release Notes

SUSE Enterprise Storage provides a distributed storage architecture for many use cases that runs on commodity hardware platforms. SUSE Enterprise Storage combines Ceph with the enterprise engineering and support of SUSE. This document provides an overview of high-level general features, capabilities, and limitations of SUSE Enterprise Storage 6 and important product updates.

These release notes are updated periodically. The latest version is always available at https://www.suse.com/releasenotes. General documentation can be found at: https://documentation.suse.com/ses/6/.

Publication Date: 2021-07-23, Version: 6.0.20210723

1 About the Release Notes

The most recent version of the Release Notes is available online at https://www.suse.com/releasenotes.

Entries can be listed multiple times if they are important and belong to multiple sections.

Release notes only list changes that happened between two subsequent releases. Always review all release notes documents that apply in your upgrade scenario.

2 SUSE Enterprise Storage

SUSE Enterprise Storage 6 is an intelligent software-defined storage solution, powered by Ceph technology (https://ceph.com/), which enables you to transform your enterprise storage infrastructure. It provides IT organizations with a simple-to-manage, agile infrastructure with increased speed of delivery, durability, and reliability.

Accelerate innovation, reduce costs, and alleviate proprietary hardware lock-in by transforming your enterprise storage infrastructure with an open and unified intelligent software-defined storage solution. SUSE Enterprise Storage allows you to leverage commodity hardware platforms for enterprise-grade storage. SUSE Enterprise Storage 6 is an extension to SUSE Linux Enterprise.

2.1 What Is New?

SUSE Enterprise Storage 6 introduces many innovative changes compared to SUSE Enterprise Storage 5.5. The most important changes are listed below:

  • Ceph release.  SUSE Enterprise Storage 6 is based on Ceph Nautilus v14.2.1.

  • Ceph Dashboard.  The Ceph Dashboard replaces openATTIC for managing and monitoring Ceph through a web interface. Inspired by and derived from openATTIC, it provides the same functionality, plus more.

  • iSCSI Target Management.  The ceph-iscsi framework replaces lrbd for managing iSCSI targets.

2.2 Additional Release Notes Documents

SUSE Enterprise Storage is an extension to SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 15 SP1. Make sure to review the SUSE Linux Enterprise Server release notes in addition to this document: https://www.suse.com/releasenotes/x86_64/SUSE-SLES/15-SP1/.

2.3 Support and Life Cycle

SUSE Enterprise Storage is backed by award-winning support from SUSE, an established technology leader with a proven history of delivering enterprise-quality support services.

SUSE Enterprise Storage 6 will be fully maintained and supported until 3 months after the release of SUSE Enterprise Storage 8.

For more information, see the support policy at https://www.suse.com/support/policy.html.

2.4 Support Statement for SUSE Enterprise Storage

To receive support, you need an appropriate subscription with SUSE. For more information, see https://www.suse.com/support/?id=SUSE_Enterprise_Storage.

The following definitions apply:


Problem determination, which means technical support designed to provide compatibility information, usage support, ongoing maintenance, information gathering and basic troubleshooting using available documentation.


Problem isolation, which means technical support designed to analyze data, reproduce customer problems, isolate problem area and provide a resolution for problems not resolved by Level 1 or prepare for Level 3.


Problem resolution, which means technical support designed to resolve problems by engaging engineering to resolve product defects which have been identified by Level 2 Support.

For contracted customers and partners, SUSE Enterprise Storage 6 is delivered with L3 support for all packages, except for the following:

  • Technology Previews, see Section 3, “Technology Previews”

  • Sound, graphics, fonts and artwork

  • Packages that require an additional customer contract

  • Some packages shipped as part of the module Workstation Extension are L2-supported only

  • Packages with names ending in -devel (containing header files and similar developer resources) will only be supported together with their main packages.

SUSE will only support the usage of original packages. That is, packages that are unchanged and not recompiled.

2.5 Documentation and Other Information

2.5.1 On the Product Medium

  • For general product information, see the file README in the top level of the product medium.

  • For a chronological log of all changes made to updated packages, see the file ChangeLog in the top level of the product medium.

  • Detailed change log information about a particular package is available using RPM:

    rpm --changelog -qp FILE_NAME.rpm

    (Replace FILE_NAME.rpm with the name of the RPM.)

  • For more information, see the directory docu of the product medium of SUSE Enterprise Storage 6.

2.5.2 Externally Provided Documentation

3 Technology Previews

Technology previews are packages, stacks, or features delivered by SUSE which are not supported. They may be functionally incomplete, unstable or in other ways not suitable for production use. They are included for your convenience and give you a chance to test new technologies within an enterprise environment.

Whether a technology preview becomes a fully supported technology later depends on customer and market feedback. Technology previews can be dropped at any time and SUSE does not commit to providing a supported version of such technologies in the future.

Give your SUSE representative feedback about technology previews, including your experience and use case.

The following technologies are released as technology previews in SUSE Enterprise Storage 6:

Ceph Core
  • Decreasing number of PGs per pool.

  • Automatic tuning of PG count based on cluster utilization or administrator hints.

  • Added the Coupled-Layer (Clay) experimental erasure code plug-in.

Ceph Manager
  • pg_autoscaler module

  • zabbix module.

  • ceph fs volume command-line interface for creating volumes (not to be confused with the ceph-volume command).

  • cephfs-shell tool for manipulating a CephFS file system without mounting

  • VM cache integration with Ceph (ceph-volume plugin).

  • tcmu-runner RBD iSCSI back-store

4 Features

This section includes an overview of new features of SUSE Enterprise Storage 6.

4.1 DeepSea

  • DeepSea disk profiles are replaced by DriveGroups:

    • There is a separate role-storage (as opposed to the implicit role-storage assigned via the storage profiles).

    • The runner is replaced by the disks runner.

  • Grafana and Prometheus now have their dedicated role in DeepSea.

  • Remove and Replace processes of OSDs have been reworked:

    • remove.osd is now osd.remove

    • replace.osd is now osd.replace

  • Rebuild/Migration of OSD nodes has been reworked.

4.2 iSCSI Gateway

The ceph-iscsi framework replaces lrbd for managing iSCSI targets. ceph-iscsi uses the command line interface gwcli and the Ceph Dashboard via the REST API provided by the rbd-target-api service. See https://ceph.com/community/new-in-nautilus-ceph-iscsi-improvements/ for details.

4.3 NFS-Ganesha

The configuration for NFS-Ganesha exports are now stored as RADOS objects in the Ceph cluster (in SUSE Enterprise Storage 5.5 NFS-Ganesha exports were configured in /etc/ganesha/ganesha.conf). Each export is stored in a single RADOS object, and each NFS-Ganesha daemon has a single RADOS object containing references to the respective export object(s). The Ceph Dashboard can be used to manage exports.

4.4 Monitoring

Ceph metrics are now collected by the prometheus Ceph manager module instead of the standalone Prometheus exporter.

4.5 Ceph Dashboard

The Ceph Dashboard replaces openATTIC and provides the following additional new features:

  • Support for multiple users / roles: The dashboard supports multiple user accounts with different permissions (roles). The user accounts and roles can be modified on both the command line and via the WebUI.

  • Single Sign-On (SSO): the dashboard supports authentication via an external identity provider using the SAML 2.0 protocol.

  • Auditing: the dashboard back-end can be configured to log all PUT, POST and DELETE API requests in the Ceph audit log.

  • SSL/TLS support: All HTTP communication between the web browser and the dashboard is secured via SSL.

  • New landing page, showing more metrics and health info.

  • Extended I18N support (Languages include de_DE, es_ES, fr_FR, id_ID, it_IT, ja_JP, pl_PL, pt_BR, zh_CN, zh_TW).

  • REST API documentation with the Swagger API. This makes the REST API self-documenting and makes it possible to quickly test REST API calls via the web browser, if you want to perform any management tasks via a custom script or application. The Dashboard REST API supports version 3 of the OpenAPI spec, which can be obtained from https://HOST:PORT/api.json. See https://github.com/OAI/OpenAPI-Specification for more details.

    The Swagger-based API documentation can be accessed from the dashboard via the help (questionmark) icon in the top right of the dashboard. This opens the REST API documentation in a new browser window/tab. It can also be accessed directly via https://HOST:PORT/docs.

  • Cluster logs: Display the latest updates to the cluster’s event and audit log files.

  • Configuration Editor: View all available configuration options, their description, type and default values and edit the current values.

  • Monitors: Lists all MONs, their quorum status and open sessions.

  • RBD mirroring: Enable and configure RBD mirroring to a remote Ceph server. Lists all active sync daemons and their status, pools and RBD images including their synchronization state.

  • CephFS: Lists all active file system clients and associated pools, including their usage statistics.

  • Object Gateway: Lists all active object gateways and their performance counters.

  • Ceph Manager Modules: Enable and disable all Ceph Manager modules, change the module-specific configuration settings.

  • iSCSI improvements:

    • Modifications are now possible with delta changes (a change in one target will not cause downtime in other targets).

    • Added support for managing tcmu-runner back-store (technology preview).

    • Removed dependency on Salt.

    • Added an iSCSI overview page,

    • It is now possible to see the number of active sessions per target or node.

  • NFS-Ganesha Management:

    • Directly manages NFS-Ganesha exports without depending on Salt.

    • Daemon is reloaded via RADOS object notifications.

  • Support for configuring global OSD flags,

  • OSD management

    • Mark OSDs as up/down/out.

    • Perform scrub operations.

    • Select between different recovery profiles to adjust the level of backfilling activity.

  • Support for embedded Grafana 5.x dashboards, which have been updated to support new metrics collected by the prometheus Ceph manager module.

  • Prometheus Alert-Manager notifications and alert listings.

4.6 RADOS (Ceph core)

  • Monitors: Daemons now use significantly less disk space when undergoing recovery or rebalancing operations.

  • Bluestore

    • More detailed space utilization statistics for (newly created) OSDs.

    • Now alerts about BlueFS spillover, legacy stats, lack of compressor plugins and main device size mismatch.

    • The default allocator is now set to bitmap.

    • Added repair capability.

    • Now supports TRIM/DISCARD for devices.

  • ceph-objectstore-tool:

    • Added BlueStore main device expansion capability.

    • Added BlueFS volumes migration capability.

  • OSD:

    • Memory usage is now autotunable and controlled via osd_memory_... options.

    • Effectively prioritize the most important PGs and objects when performing recovery and backfill.

    • NUMA node can easily be monitored via the ceph osd numa-status command, and configured via the osd_numa_node configuration option.

    • A new async recovery feature now reduces the tail latency of requests when the OSDs are recovering from a recent failure.

    • Scrub by conflicting requests is now preempted, leading to a reduced tail latency.

  • Management/Usability:

    • Configuration options can now be centrally stored and managed by the Ceph Monitors.

    • Physical storage devices consumed by OSD and monitor daemons are now tracked by the cluster, along with health metrics (S.M.A.R.T.). These are supported via the Ceph Manager devicehealth module, and via command line interaction.

    • Progress for long-running background processes—such as recovery after a device failure—is now reported as part of ceph status.

  • Operations:

    • The default value for mon_crush_min_required_version has been changed from firefly to hammer, which means the cluster will issue a health warning if your CRUSH tunables are older than hammer. There will be a small (but non-zero) amount of data that will move around by making the switch to hammer tunables.

    • If possible, we recommend that you set the oldest allowed client to hammer or later. You can tell what the current oldest allowed client is by issuing the following command:

      ceph osd dump | grep min_compat_client

      If the current value is older than hammer, you can tell whether it is safe to make this change by verifying that there are no clients older than hammer currently connected to the cluster by issuing the following command:

      ceph features
    • The newer straw2 CRUSH bucket type was introduced in hammer, and ensuring that all clients are hammer or newer allows new features only supported for straw2 buckets to be used, including the crush-compat mode for the Balancer.

  • SUSE Enterprise Storage 6 includes the new Messenger protocol version 2 (also called the wire protocol). The new protocol version brings support for on-the-wire encryption. Ceph daemons use this protocol (often abbreviated to "msgr") internally to communicate with one another.

    Upon initial release of SUSE Enterprise Storage 6, this protocol version was included as a technology preview. However, it is now considered fully supported.

4.7 Ceph Object Gateway (RGW)

A new RGW front-end, called beast and based on boost (https://github.com/boostorg/beast), is now available and recommended as a replacement for civetweb. While civetweb will continue to be supported, upstream RGW development will focus on beast in the foreseeable future. To replace civetweb with beast change the configuration from

rgw frontends = civetweb port = 80


rgw frontends = beast port=80

RGW now supports S3 life cycle transition for tiering between storage classes. It can now also replicate a zone (or a subset of buckets) to an external cloud storage service like S3 supporting AWsv2 authentication

4.8 CephFS

  • Snapshots are now stable when combined with multiple MDS daemons.

  • MDS stability has been greatly improved for large caches and long-running clients with a lot of RAM. Cache trimming and client capability recall is now throttled to prevent overloading the MDS.

  • The MDS configuration options mds_standby_for_*, mon_force_standby_active, and mds_standby_replay are now obsolete. Instead, the operator may now be the new allow_standby_replay flag on the CephFS file system. This setting causes standbys to become standby-replay for any available rank in the file system.

  • The MDS now supports dropping its cache which concurrently asks clients to trim their caches. This is done using MDS admin socket cache drop command.

  • It is now possible to check the progress of an on-going scrub in the MDS. Additionally, a scrub may be paused or aborted.

  • A new interface for creating volumes is provided via the ceph volume (not to be confused with the ceph-volume command) command line interface (technology preview).

  • A new cephfs-shell tool is available for manipulating a CephFS file system without mounting (technology preview).

  • CephFS-related output from ceph status has been reformatted for brevity, clarity, and usefulness.

  • Lazy IO has been revamped. It can be turned on by the client using the new CEPH_O_LAZY flag to the ceph_open C/C++ API or via the config option client_force_lazyio.

  • The CephFS file system can now be brought down rapidly via the ceph fs fail command.

4.9 Ceph Manager Modules

The following list of modules (plugins) for the Ceph Manager is supported. Modules not listed here are not supported.

  • prometheus

  • dashboard

  • balancer

  • orchestrator_cli

  • iostat

  • crash

  • telemetry

  • progress

  • volumes

  • status

  • devicehealth

  • restful

  • rbd_support

  • pg_autoscaler (technology preview)

  • zabbix (technology preview)

4.10 RADOS Block Device (RBD)

  • Image clones no longer require explicit protect and unprotect steps.

  • Images can be deep-copied (including any clone linkage to a parent image and associated snapshots) to new pools or with altered data layouts.

  • Images can be live-migrated with minimal downtime to assist with moving images between pools or to new layouts.

  • New rbd perf image iotop and rbd perf image iostat commands provide an iotop- and iostat-like IO monitor for all RBD images.

  • The Ceph Manager module prometheus now optionally includes an IO monitor for all RBD images.

  • Support for separate image namespaces within a pool for tenant isolation.

4.11 Samba Gateway

  • New ceph_snapshots VFS module, to expose CephFS snapshots as Previous Versions in Windows Explorer.

  • Samba shares can be backed by a kernel CephFS mount point, as a faster but less flexible alternative to vfs_ceph.

  • SMB2+ leases are supported when share paths are only accessed via Samba.

5 Known Issues

This is a list of known issues for this release.

  • Upgrading from openATTIC to the Ceph Dashboard will not migrate existing user accounts/passwords.

  • The Ceph Dashboard does not provide a feature similar to the API recorder of openATTIC. It created a customizable snippet of Python code containing all REST API calls performed via the UI, while the recorder was running.

  • RBD QoS is not supported by the kRBD back-end used by ceph-iscsi by default (needs tcmu-runner).

  • RGW Bucket Life cycle policies mentioning a non-existent storage classes will always transition to the standard (the default) storage class in the placement policy.

  • CephFS kernel clients have limitations handling a large number of snapshots in a directory tree (more than 400). The SLE15-SP1 CephFS kernel client is able to gracefully handle scenarios where more than 400 snapshots exist, but it is suggested that the number of snapshots is kept below this limit, specially if older CephFS clients (such as SLE12-SP3) are expected to access the cluster.

  • If a cluster is upgraded from SES 5. to SES 6 only LVM based OSDs can be created. This introduces the requirement to migrate shared devices from native to LVM in case a singe OSD having DB+WAL on that shared device needs to be replaced (for example because of a disk failure). Removing such shared devices from Ceph is possible, but re-adding only works if the shared device is entirely LVM based. Therefore, if such an OSD needs to be replaced, all OSDs having WAL+DB on the shared device need to be replaced in parallel.

  • The current NFS-Ganesha configuration does not easily allow for binding to the VIP. As a result, high availability with an active-passive configuration is not supported.

6 Deprecated and Removed Features

6.1 No Automated Upgrade Procedure from 5.5 to 6

Upgrading from SUSE Enterprise Storage 5.5 to version 6 requires manual intervention. As a consequence, the deepsea command ceph.maintenance.upgrade is no longer available. Please refer to the Deployment Guide, Chapter 5: Upgrading from Previous Releases for detailed upgrade instructions.

6.2 libradosstriper Has Been Removed

libradosstriper is no longer part of the recommended and supported Ceph interfaces upstream.

SUSE Enterprise Storage 4 and earlier already did not utilize or advertise libradosstriper. Aligning with upstream development, it was deprecated in SUSE Enterprise Storage 5 and removed in SUSE Enterprise Storage 6.

6.3 openATTIC Has Been Replaced by the Ceph Dashboard

openATTIC was removed and replaced by the Ceph Dashboard as the primary management/monitoring user interface. The Ceph Dashboard provides a web interface for managing and monitoring Ceph. Inspired by and derived from openATTIC, it provides the same functionality, plus more.

6.4 lrbd Has Been replaced with ceph-iscsi

lrbd was replaced by ceph-iscsi for managing iSCSI targets via the ceph-iscsi command line interface gwcli and the Ceph Dashboard via the REST API provided by the rbd-target-api service. lrbd will be removed in SUSE Enterprise Storage 7.

6.5 FileStore will be deprecated with SES 7

In SES 7 the OSD back-end FileStore will no longer be available or supported. It will be replaced by BlueStore, which is already the default OSD back-end since SES 5.

If you are still using FileStore and are planning to update to SES 7, you need to migrate to BlueStore prior to the upgrade. Refer to https://documentation.suse.com/ses/6/html/ses-all/cha-ceph-upgrade.html#filestore2bluestore for instructions.

6.6 Removed standby-for options

The MDS mds_standby_for_*, mon_force_standby_active, and mds_standby_replay configuration options have been removed. Instead, the operator may now set the new allow_standby_replay flag on the CephFS file system. This setting causes standbys to become standby-replay for any available rank in the file system.

7 Obtaining Source Code

This SUSE product includes materials licensed to SUSE under the GNU General Public License (GPL). The GPL requires SUSE to provide the source code that corresponds to the GPL-licensed material. The source code is available for download at http://www.suse.com/download-linux/source-code.html. Also, for up to three years after distribution of the SUSE product, upon request, SUSE will mail a copy of the source code. Requests should be sent by e-mail to mailto:sle_source_request@suse.com or as otherwise instructed at http://www.suse.com/download-linux/source-code.html. SUSE may charge a reasonable fee to recover distribution costs.

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