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Applies to SUSE Enterprise Storage 5.5 (SES 5 & SES 5.5)

2 Hardware Requirements and Recommendations Edit source

The hardware requirements of Ceph are heavily dependent on the IO workload. The following hardware requirements and recommendations should be considered as a starting point for detailed planning.

In general, the recommendations given in this section are on a per-process basis. If several processes are located on the same machine, the CPU, RAM, disk and network requirements need to be added up.

2.1 Object Storage Nodes Edit source

2.1.1 Minimum Requirements Edit source

  • At least 4 OSD nodes, with 8 OSD disks each, are required.

  • For OSDs that do not use BlueStore, 1 GB of RAM per terabyte of raw OSD capacity is minimally required for each OSD storage node. 1.5 GB of RAM per terabyte of raw OSD capacity is recommended. During recovery, 2 GB of RAM per terabyte of raw OSD capacity may be optimal.

    For OSDs that use BlueStore, first calculate the size of RAM that is recommended for OSDs that do not use BlueStore, then calculate 2 GB plus the size of the BlueStore cache of RAM is recommended for each OSD process, and choose the bigger value of RAM of the two results. Note that the default BlueStore cache is 1 GB for HDD and 3 GB for SSD drives by default. In summary, pick the greater of:

    [1GB * OSD count * OSD size]


    [(2 + BS cache) * OSD count]
  • 1.5 GHz of a logical CPU core per OSD is minimally required for each OSD daemon process. 2 GHz per OSD daemon process is recommended. Note that Ceph runs one OSD daemon process per storage disk; do not count disks reserved solely for use as OSD journals, WAL journals, omap metadata, or any combination of these three cases.

  • 10 Gb Ethernet (two network interfaces bonded to multiple switches).

  • OSD disks in JBOD configurations.

  • OSD disks should be exclusively used by SUSE Enterprise Storage 5.5.

  • Dedicated disk/SSD for the operating system, preferably in a RAID 1 configuration.

  • If this OSD host will host part of a cache pool used for cache tiering, allocate at least an additional 4 GB of RAM.

  • For disk performance reasons, we recommend using bare metal for OSD nodes and not virtual machines.

2.1.2 Minimum Disk Size Edit source

There are two types of disk space needed to run on OSD: the space for the disk journal (for FileStore) or WAL/DB device (for BlueStore), and the primary space for the stored data. The minimum (and default) value for the journal/WAL/DB is 6 GB. The minimum space for data is 5 GB, as partitions smaller than 5 GB are automatically assigned the weight of 0.

So although the minimum disk space for an OSD is 11 GB, we do not recommend a disk smaller than 20 GB, even for testing purposes.

2.1.3 Recommended Size for the BlueStore's WAL and DB Device Edit source

Tip: More Information

Refer to Section 1.5, “BlueStore” for more information on BlueStore.

Following are several rules for WAL/DB device sizing. When using DeepSea to deploy OSDs with BlueStore, it applies the recommended rules automatically and notifies the administrator about the fact.

  • 10GB of the DB device for each Terabyte of the OSD capacity (1/100th of the OSD).

  • Between 500MB and 2GB for the WAL device. The WAL size depends on the data traffic and workload, not on the OSD size. If you know that an OSD is physically able to handle small writes and overwrites at a very high throughput, more WAL is preferred rather than less WAL. 1GB WAL device is a good compromise that fulfills most deployments.

  • If you intend to put the WAL and DB device on the same disk, then we recommend using a single partition for both devices, rather than having a separate partition for each. This allows Ceph to use the DB device for the WAL operation as well. Management of the disk space is therefore more effective as Ceph uses the DB partition for the WAL only if there is a need for it. Another advantage is that the probability that the WAL partition gets full is very small, and when it is not entirely used then its space is not wasted but used for DB operation.

    To share the DB device with the WAL, do not specify the WAL device, and specify only the DB device:

    bluestore_block_db_path = "/path/to/db/device"
    bluestore_block_db_size = 10737418240
    bluestore_block_wal_path = ""
    bluestore_block_wal_size = 0
  • Alternatively, you can put the WAL on its own separate device. In such case, we recommend the fastest device for the WAL operation.

2.1.4 Using SSD for OSD Journals Edit source

Solid-state drives (SSD) have no moving parts. This reduces random access time and read latency while accelerating data throughput. Because their price per 1MB is significantly higher than the price of spinning hard disks, SSDs are only suitable for smaller storage.

OSDs may see a significant performance improvement by storing their journal on an SSD and the object data on a separate hard disk.

Tip: Sharing an SSD for Multiple Journals

As journal data occupies relatively little space, you can mount several journal directories to a single SSD disk. Keep in mind that with each shared journal, the performance of the SSD disk degrades. We do not recommend sharing more than six journals on the same SSD disk and 12 on NVMe disks.

2.1.5 Maximum Recommended Number of Disks Edit source

You can have as many disks in one server as it allows. There are a few things to consider when planning the number of disks per server:

  • Network bandwidth. The more disks you have in a server, the more data must be transferred via the network card(s) for the disk write operations.

  • Memory. For optimum performance, reserve at least 2 GB of RAM per terabyte of disk space installed.

  • Fault tolerance. If the complete server fails, the more disks it has, the more OSDs the cluster temporarily loses. Moreover, to keep the replication rules running, you need to copy all the data from the failed server among the other nodes in the cluster.

2.2 Monitor Nodes Edit source

  • At least three Ceph Monitor nodes are required. The number of monitors should always be odd (1+2n).

  • 4 GB of RAM.

  • Processor with four logical cores.

  • An SSD or other sufficiently fast storage type is highly recommended for monitors, specifically for the /var/lib/ceph path on each monitor node, as quorum may be unstable with high disk latencies. Two disks in RAID 1 configuration is recommended for redundancy. It is recommended that separate disks or at least separate disk partitions are used for the monitor processes to protect the monitor's available disk space from things like log file creep.

  • There must only be one monitor process per node.

  • Mixing OSD, monitor, or Object Gateway nodes is only supported if sufficient hardware resources are available. That means that the requirements for all services need to be added up.

  • Two network interfaces bonded to multiple switches.

2.3 Object Gateway Nodes Edit source

Object Gateway nodes should have six to eight CPU cores and 32 GB of RAM (64 GB recommended). When other processes are co-located on the same machine, their requirements need to be added up.

2.4 Metadata Server Nodes Edit source

Proper sizing of the Metadata Server nodes depends on the specific use case. Generally, the more open files the Metadata Server is to handle, the more CPU and RAM it needs. Following are the minimal requirements:

  • 3G of RAM per one Metadata Server daemon.

  • Bonded network interface.

  • 2.5 GHz CPU with at least 2 cores.

2.5 Salt Master Edit source

At least 4 GB of RAM and a quad-core CPU are required. This is includes running openATTIC on the Salt master. For large clusters with hundreds of nodes, 6 GB of RAM is suggested.

2.6 iSCSI Nodes Edit source

iSCSI nodes should have six to eight CPU cores and 16 GB of RAM.

2.7 Network Recommendations Edit source

The network environment where you intend to run Ceph should ideally be a bonded set of at least two network interfaces that is logically split into a public part and a trusted internal part using VLANs. The bonding mode is recommended to be 802.3ad if possible to provide maximum bandwidth and resiliency.

The public VLAN serves to provide the service to the customers, while the internal part provides for the authenticated Ceph network communication. The main reason for this is that although Ceph provides authentication and protection against attacks once secret keys are in place, the messages used to configure these keys may be transferred openly and are vulnerable.

Important: Administration Network not Supported

Additional administration network setup—that enables for example separating SSH, Salt, or DNS networking—is neither tested nor supported.

Tip: Nodes Configured via DHCP

If your storage nodes are configured via DHCP, the default timeouts may not be sufficient for the network to be configured correctly before the various Ceph daemons start. If this happens, the Ceph MONs and OSDs will not start correctly (running systemctl status ceph\* will result in "unable to bind" errors) To avoid this issue, we recommend increasing the DHCP client timeout to at least 30 seconds on each node in your storage cluster. This can be done by changing the following settings on each node:

In /etc/sysconfig/network/dhcp, set


In /etc/sysconfig/network/config, set


2.7.1 Adding a Private Network to a Running Cluster Edit source

If you do not specify a cluster network during Ceph deployment, it assumes a single public network environment. While Ceph operates fine with a public network, its performance and security improves when you set a second private cluster network. To support two networks, each Ceph node needs to have at least two network cards.

You need to apply the following changes to each Ceph node. It is relatively quick to do for a small cluster, but can be very time consuming if you have a cluster consisting of hundreds or thousands of nodes.

  1. Stop Ceph related services on each cluster node.

    Add a line to /etc/ceph/ceph.conf to define the cluster network, for example:

    cluster network =

    If you need to specifically assign static IP addresses or override cluster network settings, you can do so with the optional cluster addr.

  2. Check that the private cluster network works as expected on the OS level.

  3. Start Ceph related services on each cluster node.

    root # systemctl start ceph.target

2.7.2 Monitor Nodes on Different Subnets Edit source

If the monitor nodes are on multiple subnets, for example they are located in different rooms and served by different switches, you need to adjust the ceph.conf file accordingly. For example if the nodes have IP addresses,, and, add the following lines to its global section:

mon host =,,
mon initial members = MON1, MON2, MON3

Additionally, if you need to specify a per-monitor public address or network, you need to add a [mon.X] section per each monitor:

public network =

public network =

public network =

2.8 Naming Limitations Edit source

Ceph does not generally support non-ASCII characters in configuration files, pool names, user names and so forth. When configuring a Ceph cluster we recommend using only simple alphanumeric characters (A-Z, a-z, 0-9) and minimal punctuation ('.', '-', '_') in all Ceph object/configuration names.

2.9 OSD and Monitor Sharing One Server Edit source

Although it is technically possible to run Ceph OSDs and Monitors on the same server in test environments, we strongly recommend having a separate server for each monitor node in production. The main reason is performance—the more OSDs the cluster has, the more I/O operations the monitor nodes need to perform. And when one server is shared between a monitor node and OSD(s), the OSD I/O operations are a limiting factor for the monitor node.

Another consideration is whether to share disks between an OSD, a monitor node, and the operating system on the server. The answer is simple: if possible, dedicate a separate disk to OSD, and a separate server to a monitor node.

Although Ceph supports directory-based OSDs, an OSD should always have a dedicated disk other than the operating system one.


If it is really necessary to run OSD and monitor node on the same server, run the monitor on a separate disk by mounting the disk to the /var/lib/ceph/mon directory for slightly better performance.

2.10 Minimum Cluster Configuration Edit source

  • Four Object Storage Nodes

    • 10 Gb Ethernet (two networks bonded to multiple switches)

    • 32 OSDs per storage cluster

    • OSD journal can reside on OSD disk

    • Dedicated OS disk for each Object Storage Node

    • 1 GB of RAM per TB of raw OSD capacity for each Object Storage Node

    • 1.5 GHz per OSD for each Object Storage Node

    • Ceph Monitors, gateway and Metadata Servers can reside on Object Storage Nodes

      • Three Ceph Monitor nodes (requires SSD for dedicated OS drive)

      • Ceph Monitors, Object Gateways and Metadata Servers nodes require redundant deployment

      • iSCSI Gateways, Object Gateways and Metadata Servers require incremental 4 GB RAM and four cores

  • Separate management node with 4 GB RAM, four cores, 1 TB capacity

2.11 Recommended Production Cluster Configuration Edit source

  • Seven Object Storage Nodes

    • No single node exceeds ~15% of total storage

    • 10 Gb Ethernet (four physical networks bonded to multiple switches)

    • 56+ OSDs per storage cluster

    • RAID 1 OS disks for each OSD storage node

    • SSDs for Journal with 6:1 ratio SSD journal to OSD

    • 1.5 GB of RAM per TB of raw OSD capacity for each Object Storage Node

    • 2 GHz per OSD for each Object Storage Node

  • Dedicated physical infrastructure nodes

    • Three Ceph Monitor nodes: 4 GB RAM, 4 core processor, RAID 1 SSDs for disk

    • One SES management node: 4 GB RAM, 4 core processor, RAID 1 SSDs for disk

    • Redundant physical deployment of gateway or Metadata Server nodes:

      • Object Gateway nodes: 32 GB RAM, 8 core processor, RAID 1 SSDs for disk

      • iSCSI Gateway nodes: 16 GB RAM, 4 core processor, RAID 1 SSDs for disk

      • Metadata Server nodes (one active/one hot standby): 32 GB RAM, 8 core processor, RAID 1 SSDs for disk

2.12 SUSE Enterprise Storage 5.5 and Other SUSE Products Edit source

This section contains important information about integrating SUSE Enterprise Storage 5.5 with other SUSE products.

2.12.1 SUSE Manager Edit source

SUSE Manager and SUSE Enterprise Storage are not integrated, therefore SUSE Manager cannot currently manage a SUSE Enterprise Storage 5.5 cluster.

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