System requirements for Azure Stack HCI

System requirements for Azure Stack HCI

System requirements for Azure Stack HCI

Rate This


Before you start

Before creating a cluster, do the following:

  1. Purchase two servers from the Azure Stack HCI Catalog.
  2. Review the system requirements to make sure the hardware will support the workloads.
      • Recommend using a system with high-speed network adapters that use iWARP for simple configuration.
    • Server requirements
      • A standard Azure Stack HCI cluster requires a minimum of two servers and a maximum of 16 servers
      • A stretched cluster requires a minimum of 4 servers (2 per site) and a maximum of 16 servers (8 per site).
      • Recommended that all servers be the same manufacturer and model, using 64-bit Intel Nehalem grade, AMD EPYC grade, or later compatible processors with second-level address translation (SLAT)
      • A second-generation Intel Xeon Scalable processor is required to support Intel Optane DC persistent memory.
      • Processors must be at least 1.4 GHz and compatible with the x64 instruction set.
      • Server should be with at least 32 GB of RAM per node to accommodate the server operating system, VMs, and other apps or workloads.
        • In addition, allow 4 GB of RAM per terabyte (TB) of cache drive capacity on each server for Storage Spaces Direct metadata.
      • Verify that virtualization support is turned on in the BIOS or UEFI.
        • Hardware-assisted virtualization must be available and enabled
        • Hardware-enforced Data Execution Prevention (DEP) must be available and enabled.
    • Storage requirements
      • Every server in the cluster should have the same types of drives and the same number of each type. It is also recommended (but not required) that the drives be the same size and model.
      • Each server in the cluster should have dedicated volumes for logs, with log storage at least as fast as data storage.
        • Stretched clusters require at least two volumes: one for replicated data, and one for log data.
      • SCSI Enclosure Services (SES) is required for slot mapping and identification.
        • Each external enclosure must present a unique identifier (Unique ID).
    • Networking requirements
      • At least one network adapter is available and dedicated for cluster management.
      • Physical switches are configured to allow traffic on any VLANs you will use.
    • Software Defined Networking (SDN) requirements
      • The host servers should have at least 50-100 GB of free space to create the Network Controller VMs.
      • Must copy a virtual hard disk (VHD) of the Azure Stack HCI operating system to the first node in the cluster to create the Network Controller VMs.
      • Network interface cards (NICs)
        • Must support Remote Direct Memory Access (RDMA)
        • Must support Switch Embedded Teaming (SET)
        • The maximum transmission unit (MTU) of the Layer-2 fabric network (switches and hosts) must be set to greater than or equal to 1674 bytes.
          • NICs that support the new EncapOverhead advanced adapter keyword set the MTU automatically through the Network Controller Host Agent.
      • Switches and routers
        • Switchport MTU settings (required)
        • MTU set to >= 1674 bytes (including L2-Ethernet Header)
        • L3 protocols (required)
        • Equal-cost multi-path (ECMP) routing
        • BGP (IETF RFC 4271)-based ECMP
        • Tagging protocols are required.
          • VLAN – Isolation of various types of traffic
          • 1q trunk
        • Should support the MUST statements in the following IETF standards:
          • RFC 2545: BGP-4 Multiprotocol extensions for IPv6 Inter-Domain Routing
          • RFC 4760: Multiprotocol Extensions for BGP-4
          • RFC 4893: BGP Support for Four-octet AS Number Space
          • RFC 4456: BGP Route Reflection: An Alternative to Full Mesh Internal BGP (IBGP)
          • RFC 4724: Graceful Restart Mechanism for BGP
        • Link control
          • Quality of Service (QoS) (PFC only required if using RoCE)
          • Enhanced Traffic Selection (802.1Qaz)
          • Priority-based Flow Control (PFC) (802.1p/Q and 802.1Qbb)
        • Availability and Redundancy
          • Switch availability (required)
          • A highly available router is required to perform gateway functions. Ca be provided by using either a multi-chassis switch\router or technologies like the Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol (VRRP).
  3. User Account:
    • Create a user account that is a member of the local Administrators group on each server.
  4. Azure subscription exists.
  5. Management PC
    • Install Windows Admin Center on a management PC (Windows 10 Enterprise).
      • Download Windows Admin Center
      • Must be joined to the same Active Directory domain in which you will create the cluster.
      • Uses port 6516 by default.
      • Modifying TrustedHosts is required in a workgroup environment, or when using local administrator credentials in a domain.
        • Set-Item WSMan:localhost\Client\TrustedHosts -Value ‘,,server02

        • Set-Item WSMan:\localhost\Client\TrustedHosts -Value ‘*’

      • Register Windows Admin Center with Azure.
        • Launch Windows Admin Center and click the Settings gear icon in the upper right, which will take you to your Account page. Then, from the Gateway menu at the left, select Azure, and then click Register.
Tags: No tags

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *