Xsan uses the following independent networks to connect storage devices, metadata
controllers, and client computers: a Fibre Channel network and two Ethernet networks.
Xsan moves data between clients and SAN volumes over high-speed Fibre Channel
connections. Controllers also use a Fibre Channel connection to move metadata to and
from the volume.
Xsan can take advantage of multiple Fibre Channel connections between clients and
storage. Xsan can alternate between connections for each read and write, or it can
assign each RAID array in a volume to a connection when the volume is mounted.
Xsan controllers and clients exchange file system metadata over a separate, private
Ethernet network. (Controllers use Fibre Channel to read and write metadata on a
To prevent Internet or intranet traffic from interfering with metadata communications,
set up separate public (Internet) and private (metadata) Ethernet networks, as shown
in the illustration on page 14.