Dell EMC PowerMax Plugin

The Dell EMC Shared File Systems service driver framework (EMCShareDriver) utilizes the Dell EMC storage products to provide the shared file systems to OpenStack. The Dell EMC driver is a plug-in based driver which is designed to use different plug-ins to manage different Dell EMC storage products.

The PowerMax plug-in manages the PowerMax to provide shared file systems. The Dell EMC driver framework with the PowerMax plug-in is referred to as the PowerMax driver in this document.

This driver performs the operations on PowerMax eNAS by XMLAPI and the file command line. Each back end manages one Data Mover of PowerMax. Multiple Shared File Systems service back ends need to be configured to manage multiple Data Movers.


  • PowerMax eNAS OE for File version 8.1 or higher

  • PowerMax Unified or File only

  • The following licenses should be activated on PowerMax for File:

    • CIFS

    • NFS

    • SnapSure (for snapshot)

    • ReplicationV2 (for create share from snapshot)

Supported shared file systems and operations

The driver supports CIFS and NFS shares.

The following operations are supported:

  • Create a share.

  • Delete a share.

  • Allow share access.

    Note the following limitations:

    • Only IP access type is supported for NFS.

    • Only user access type is supported for CIFS.

  • Deny share access.

  • Create a snapshot.

  • Delete a snapshot.

  • Create a share from a snapshot.

While the generic driver creates shared file systems based on cinder volumes attached to nova VMs, the PowerMax driver performs similar operations using the Data Movers on the array.

Pre-configurations on PowerMax

  1. Configure a storage pool

    There is a one to one relationship between a storage pool in embedded NAS to a storage group on the PowerMax. The best way to provision storage for file is from the Unisphere for PowerMax UI rather than eNAS UI. Go to {array} > SYSTEM > FIle and under Actions click PROVISION STORAGE FOR FILE


    When creating a new storage group you have the ability to assign a service level e.g. Diamond and disable compression/deduplication which is enabled by default.

    To pick up the newly created storage pool in the eNAS UI, go to {Control Station} > Storage > Storage Configuration > Storage Pools and under File Storage click Rescan Storage Systems

    or on the command line:

    $ nas_diskmark -mark -all -discovery y -monitor y

    The new storage pool should now appear in the eNAS UI

  2. Make sure you have the appropriate licenses

    $ nas_license -l
    key                 status    value
    site_key            online    xx xx xx xx
    nfs                 online
    cifs                online
    snapsure            online
    replicatorV2        online
    filelevelretention  online
  3. Enable CIFS service on Data Mover.

    Ensure the CIFS service is enabled on the Data Mover which is going to be managed by PowerMax driver.

    To start the CIFS service, use the following command:

    $ server_setup <movername> -Protocol cifs -option start [=<n>]
      # movername = name of the Data Mover
      # n = number of threads for CIFS users


    If there is 1 GB of memory on the Data Mover, the default is 96 threads. However, if there is over 1 GB of memory, the default number of threads is 256.

    To check the CIFS service status, use the following command:

    $ server_cifs <movername> | head
      # movername = name of the Data Mover

    The command output will show the number of CIFS threads started.

  4. NTP settings on Data Mover.

    PowerMax driver only supports CIFS share creation with share network which has an Active Directory security-service associated.

    Creating CIFS share requires that the time on the Data Mover is in sync with the Active Directory domain so that the CIFS server can join the domain. Otherwise, the domain join will fail when creating a share with this security service. There is a limitation that the time of the domains used by security-services, even for different tenants and different share networks, should be in sync. Time difference should be less than 5 minutes.


    If there is a clock skew then you may see the following error “The local machine and the remote machine are not synchronized. Kerberos protocol requires a synchronization of both participants within the same 5 minutes”. To fix this error you must make sure the times of the eNas controller host and the Domain Controller or within 5 minutes of each other. You must be root to change the date of the eNas control station. Check also that your time zones coincide.

    We recommend setting the NTP server to the same public NTP server on both the Data Mover and domains used in security services to ensure the time is in sync everywhere.

    Check the date and time on Data Mover with the following command:

    $ server_date <movername>
      # movername = name of the Data Mover

    Set the NTP server for Data Mover with the following command:

    $ server_date <movername> timesvc start ntp <host> [<host> ...]
      # movername = name of the Data Mover
      # host = IP address of the time server host


    The host must be running the NTP protocol. Only 4 host entries are allowed.

  5. Configure User Mapping on the Data Mover.

    Before creating CIFS share using PowerMax driver, you must select a method of mapping Windows SIDs to UIDs and GIDs. DELL EMC recommends using usermapper in single protocol (CIFS) environment which is enabled on PowerMax eNAS by default.

    To check usermapper status, use the following command syntax:

    $ server_usermapper <movername>
      # movername = name of the Data Mover

    If usermapper does not start, use the following command to start the usermapper:

    $ server_usermapper <movername> -enable
      # movername = name of the Data Mover

    For a multiple protocol environment, refer to Configuring PowerMax eNAS User Mapping on EMC support site for additional information.

  6. Configure network connection.

    Find the network devices (physical port on NIC) of the Data Mover that has access to the share network.

    To check the device list on the eNAS UI go to {Control Station} > Settings > Network > Devices.

    or on the command line:

    $ server_sysconfig server_2 -pci
    server_2 : PCI DEVICES:
    On Board:
      VendorID=0x1120 DeviceID=0x1B00  Controller
        0:  scsi-0  IRQ: 32
        0:  scsi-16  IRQ: 33
        0:  scsi-32  IRQ: 34
        0:  scsi-48  IRQ: 35
      Broadcom 10 Gigabit Ethernet Controller
        0:  fxg-3-0  IRQ: 36
        speed=10000 duplex=full txflowctl=disable rxflowctl=disable
        Link: Up
         0:  fxg-3-1  IRQ: 38
        speed=10000 duplex=full txflowctl=disable rxflowctl=disable
        Link: Down

Back-end configurations


The following deprecated tags will be removed in the T release:

  • emc_nas_server_container

  • emc_nas_pool_names

  • emc_interface_ports

The following parameters need to be configured in the /etc/manila/manila.conf file for the PowerMax driver:

emc_share_backend = powermax
emc_nas_server = <IP address>
emc_nas_password = <password>
emc_nas_login = <user>
driver_handles_share_servers = True
powermax_server_container = <Data Mover name>
powermax_share_data_pools = <Comma separated pool names>
share_driver = manila.share.drivers.dell_emc.driver.EMCShareDriver
powermax_ethernet_ports = <Comma separated ports list>
emc_ssl_cert_verify = True
emc_ssl_cert_path = <path to cert>
share_backend_name = <Backend>
  • emc_share_backend

    The plug-in name. Set it to powermax for the PowerMax driver. Other values are isilon, vnx and unity.

  • emc_nas_server

    The control station IP address of the PowerMax system to be managed.

  • emc_nas_password and emc_nas_login

    The fields that are used to provide credentials to the PowerMax system. Only local users of PowerMax File is supported.

  • driver_handles_share_servers

    PowerMax only supports True, where the share driver handles the provisioning and management of the share servers.

  • powermax_server_container

    Name of the Data Mover to serve the share service.

  • powermax_share_data_pools

    Comma separated list specifying the name of the pools to be used by this back end. Do not set this option if all storage pools on the system can be used. Wild card character is supported.

    Examples: pool_1, pool_*, *

  • powermax_ethernet_ports (optional)

    Comma-separated list specifying the ports (devices) of Data Mover that can be used for share server interface. Do not set this option if all ports on the Data Mover can be used. Wild card character is supported.

    Examples: fxg-9-0, fxg-_*, *

  • emc_ssl_cert_verify (optional)

    By default this is True, setting it to False is not recommended

  • emc_ssl_cert_path (optional)

    The path to the This must be set if emc_ssl_cert_verify is True which is the recommended configuration. See SSL Support section for more details.

  • share_backend_name

    The backend name for a given driver implementation.

Restart of the manila-share service is needed for the configuration changes to take effect.

SSL Support

  1. Run the following on eNas Control Station, to display the CA certification for the active CS.

    $ /nas/sbin/nas_ca_certificate -display


    This cert will be different for the secondary CS so if there is a failover a different certificate must be used.

  2. Copy the contents and create a file with a .pem extention on your manila host.

    the cert contents are here
    -----END CERTIFICATE-----
  3. To verify the cert by running the following and examining the output:

    $ openssl x509 -in test.pem -text -noout
         Version: 3 (0x2)
         Serial Number: xxxxxx
     Signature Algorithm: sha1WithRSAEncryption
         Issuer: O=VNX Certificate Authority, CN=xxx
             Not Before: Feb 27 16:02:41 2019 GMT
             Not After : Mar  4 16:02:41 2024 GMT
         Subject: O=VNX Certificate Authority, CN=xxxxxx
         Subject Public Key Info:
             Public Key Algorithm: rsaEncryption
                 Public-Key: (2048 bit)
                 Exponent: xxxxxx
         X509v3 extensions:
             X509v3 Subject Key Identifier:
             X509v3 Authority Key Identifier:
                 DirName:/O=VNX Certificate Authority/CN=xxxxxx
             X509v3 Basic Constraints:
             X509v3 Subject Alternative Name:
                 DNS:xxxxxx, DNS:xxxxxx.localdomain, DNS:xxxxxxx, DNS:xxxxx
     Signature Algorithm: sha1WithRSAEncryption
  4. As it is the capath and not the cafile that is expected, copy the file to either new directory or an existing directory (where other .pem files exist).

  5. Run the following on the directory

    $ c_rehash $PATH_TO_CERTS
  6. Update manila.conf with the directory where the .pem exists.

    emc_ssl_cert_path = /path_to_certs/
  7. Restart manila services.

Snapshot Support

Snapshot support is disabled by default, so in order to allow shapshots for a share type, the snapshot_support extra spec must be set to True. Creating a share from a snapshot is also disabled by default so create_share_from_snapshot_support must also be set to True if this functionality is required.

For a new share type:

$ manila type-create --snapshot_support True \
                     --create_share_from_snapshot_support True \
                     ${share_type_name} True

For an existing share type:

$ manila type-key ${share_type_name} \
                  set snapshot_support=True
$ manila type-key ${share_type_name} \
                  set create_share_from_snapshot_support=True

To create a snapshot from a share where snapshot_support=True:

$ manila snapshot-create ${source_share_name} --name ${target_snapshot_name}

To create a target share from a shapshot where create_share_from_snapshot_support=True:

$ manila create cifs 3 --name ${target_share_name} \
                       --share-network ${share_network} \
                       --share-type ${share_type_name} \
                       --metadata source=snapshot \
                       --snapshot-id ${snapshot_id}

IPv6 support

IPv6 support for PowerMax Manila driver was introduced in Rocky release. The feature is divided into two parts:

  1. The driver is able to manage share or snapshot in the Neutron IPv6 network.

  2. The driver is able to connect PowerMax management interface using its IPv6 address.

Pre-Configurations for IPv6 support

The following parameters need to be configured in /etc/manila/manila.conf for the PowerMax driver:

network_plugin_ipv6_enabled = True

If you want to connect to the eNAS controller using IPv6 address specify the address in /etc/manila/manila.conf:

emc_nas_server = <IPv6 address>


The PowerMax driver has the following restrictions:

  • Only driver_handles_share_servers equals True is supported.

  • Only IP access type is supported for NFS.

  • Only user access type is supported for CIFS.

  • Only FLAT network and VLAN network are supported.

  • VLAN network is supported with limitations. The neutron subnets in different VLANs that are used to create share networks cannot have overlapped address spaces. Otherwise, PowerMax may have a problem to communicate with the hosts in the VLANs. To create shares for different VLANs with same subnet address, use different Data Movers.

  • The Active Directory security service is the only supported security service type and it is required to create CIFS shares.

  • Only one security service can be configured for each share network.

  • The domain name of the active_directory security service should be unique even for different tenants.

  • The time on the Data Mover and the Active Directory domains used in security services should be in sync (time difference should be less than 10 minutes). We recommended using same NTP server on both the Data Mover and Active Directory domains.

  • On eNAS, the snapshot is stored in the SavVols. eNAS system allows the space used by SavVol to be created and extended until the sum of the space consumed by all SavVols on the system exceeds the default 20% of the total space available on the system. If the 20% threshold value is reached, an alert will be generated on eNAS. Continuing to create snapshot will cause the old snapshot to be inactivated (and the snapshot data to be abandoned). The limit percentage value can be changed manually by storage administrator based on the storage needs. We recommend the administrator configures the notification on the SavVol usage. Refer to Using eNAS SnapSure document on EMC support site for more information.

  • eNAS has limitations on the overall numbers of Virtual Data Movers, filesystems, shares, and checkpoints. Virtual Data Mover(VDM) is created by the eNAS driver on the eNAS to serve as the Shared File Systems service share server. Similarly, the filesystem is created, mounted, and exported from the VDM over CIFS or NFS protocol to serve as the Shared File Systems service share. The eNAS checkpoint serves as the Shared File Systems service share snapshot. Refer to the NAS Support Matrix document on EMC support site for the limitations and configure the quotas accordingly.

Other Remarks

  • eNAS nas_quotas should not be confused with OpenStack manila quotas. The former edits quotas for mounted file systems, and displays a listing of quotas and disk usage at the file system level (by the user, group, or tree), or at the quota-tree level (by the user or group). nas_quotas also turns quotas on and off, and clears quotas records for a file system, quota tree, or a Data Mover. Refer to PowerMax eNAS CLI Reference guide on EMC support site for additional information. OpenStack manila quotas delimit the number of shares, snapshots etc. a user can create.

    $ manila quota-show --tenant <project_id> --user <user_id>
    | Property              | Value |
    | share_groups          | 50    |
    | gigabytes             | 1000  |
    | snapshot_gigabytes    | 1000  |
    | share_group_snapshots | 50    |
    | snapshots             | 50    |
    | shares                | 50    |
    | share_networks        | 10    |

Driver options

Configuration options specific to this driver:

Description of Dell EMC PowerMax share driver configuration options

Configuration option = Default value



powermax_ethernet_ports = None

(List) Comma separated list of ports that can be used for share server interfaces. Members of the list can be Unix-style glob expressions.

powermax_server_container = None

(String) Data mover to host the NAS server.

powermax_share_data_pools = None

(List) Comma separated list of pools that can be used to persist share data.