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Private cloud user in dialogue with Atmos, el Reg facilitating

It's a unique edge case, not a bug

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Atmos user Michael Roney identified some difficulties he was having with an Atmos array on an EMC community website, saying he wanted to do ordinary-seeming things but couldn't. EMC has responded, saying he is trying to do things that are rarely, if ever done.

Atmos is EMC's object storage system for public and private cloud providers. It is a follow-on to the Centera content-addressed storage (CAS) product which continues in production.

Michael Roney wrote:-

I'm new to Atmos and have been working to setup a private cloud environment. We purchased Atmos as a replacement for our Centera arrays - we didn't use the compliance component and only used the Centera arrays as repositories for the EMC Cloud Tiering Appliance (formerly the File Management Appliance [formerly Rainfinity]). In setting up the Atmos array, I've discovered that many of the basic tasks that I would expect a customer to be able to perform require EMC support, or are just not supported:-

- Changing the IP address of nodes
- Deleting Tenants and Subtenants
- Deleting Authentication Sources
- Upgrading the software

Roney said; "Currently, the array was setup with Atmos 2.0.3.76102 and I see that 2.1xxx is out, but I don't see a way to retrieve the update and apply it."

He said more about the first three points; "To change the IP address of a node we had to open a support case. …. I opened a case for deletion of Tenants and was told it was not possible to delete tenants, but you could remove the administrative accounts for the tenant and remove all nodes to effectively delete it. When creating subtenants, there is no selection box for the Authentication Source when using remote authentication. So, the subtenants are set to an Authentication Source that is not valid. And since I can't delete an Authentication Source or a subtenant, I'm not sure how to proceed to correct this issue."

EMC response

An EMC spokesperson said this about Roney's post: "In setting up any private or public cloud environment, there are many application and network dependencies. As such, new and existing customers usually work closely with an EMC presales, delivery or support person who can help them through this more complex installation. Here’s a bit more detail around the four tasks this individual is inquiring about - changing IP addresses of nodes, deleting tenants and subtenants, deleting an authentication source and upgrading the software.

"In regards to changing IP addresses of nodes or deleting tenants and subtenants; very few customers perform these tasks, though it can be done. As mentioned, EMC provides resources to work with the customer due to the multitude of network, application and other dependencies that are inherent to any online service. There are numerous checks and balances that need to be considered before IP addresses can be changed. As with IP addressing, tenant and sub-tenant deletion also have application dependencies that need to be carefully examined and considered.

"In regards to deleting authentication sources, if he is referring to internal Atmos lockbox or external LDAP sources, again, this is rarely, if ever changed. It can be performed, but as with the other tasks he is inquiring about, they are more unique edge cases, so engaging with the right support resources will be important.

"Finally, regarding software upgrades; Atmos upgrades are non-disruptive. As part of the EMC’s software maintenance, processes are established to ensure successful execution of tasks. It sounds like he is following the right process by opening support cases, which will help him to ensure a smooth handling as he completes his installation.“

Is EMC right and the things Roney is trying to do are "edge cases" and not usual? What do you think? ®

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