IBM Spectrum Scale CSI Driver for Container Persistent Storage

An IBM Redpaper publication

Published 10 April 2020

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ISBN-10: 0738458643
ISBN-13: 9780738458649
IBM Form #: REDP-5589-00
(82 pages)

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Authors: Abhishek Jain, Andrew Beattie, Daniel de Souza Casali, Deepak Ghuge, Harald Seipp, Kedar Karmarkar, Muthu Muthiah, Pravin P. Kudav, Sandeep R. Patil, Smita Raut, Yadavendra Yadav


IBM® Spectrum Scale is a proven, scalable, high-performance data and file management solution. It provides world-class storage management with extreme scalability, flash accelerated performance, automatic policy-based storage that has tiers of flash through disk to tape. It also provides support for various protocols, such as NFS, SMB, Object, HDFS, and iSCSI. Containers can leverage the performance, information lifecycle management (ILM), scalability, and multisite data management to give the full flexibility on storage as they experience on the runtime.

Container adoption is increasing in all industries, and they sprawl across multiple nodes on a cluster. The effective management of containers is necessary because their number will probably reach a far greater number than virtual machines today. Kubernetes is the standard container management platform currently being used.

Data management is of ultimate importance, and often is forgotten because the first workloads containerized are ephemeral. For data management, many drivers with different specifications were available. A specification named Container Storage Interface (CSI) was created and is now adopted by all major Container Orchestrator Systems available.

Although other container orchestration systems exist, Kubernetes became the standard framework for container management. It is a very flexible open source platform used as the base for most cloud providers and software companies' container orchestration systems.

Red Hat OpenShift is one of the most reliable enterprise-grade container orchestration systems based on Kubernetes, designed and optimized to easily deploy web applications and services. OpenShift enables developers to focus on the code, while the platform takes care of all of the complex IT operations and processes.

This IBM Redbooks® publication describes how the CSI Driver for IBM file storage enables IBM Spectrum® Scale to be used as persistent storage for stateful applications running in Kubernetes clusters. Through the Container Storage Interface Driver for IBM file storage, Kubernetes persistent volumes (PVs) can be provisioned from IBM Spectrum Scale. Therefore, the containers can be used with stateful microservices, such as database applications (MongoDB, PostgreSQL, and so on).

Table of contents

Chapter 1. IBM Spectrum Scale and Containers Introduction
Chapter 2. Architecture of IBM Spectrum Scale CSI Driver
Chapter 3. Solutions and Use Cases
Chapter 4. Planning for IBM Spectrum Scale CSI driver deployment
Chapter 5. Deployment and Administration
Chapter 6. Security Considerations
Chapter 7. Problem determination and troubleshooting
Chapter 8. Migration from SEC to CSI driver
Chapter 9. Support
Appendix A. Implementation details for use cases

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