Earlier today, I needed to configure an HP StorageWorks Modular Storage Array (MSA) 1000 which I’ll be using for SAN storage over the next few weeks. Nothing too difficult about that, except that I wanted to access the SAN via the command line interface (CLI) and that meant using a serial cable to connect to the MSA controller. Each controller has what looks like an RJ45 Ethernet connection on the front, but standard Ethernet cables don’t fit. Fortunately I found the console cable that had been delivered with the SAN and found that it uses a slightly unusual variation of an RJ45 connection, which further research indicates is called an RJ45Z. The only noticeable difference (apart from how the connector is wired internally), is an extra notch on one side, as shown in the picture below:
Incidentally, once the connection is made from a standard RS232 serial port to the MSA (most modern notebook PCs don’t have a serial port – I had to use an IBM USB-serial/parallel adapter), accessing the CLI simply involves starting Windows HyperTerminal with the following connection settings:
- Connect using: comportidentifier (e.g. COM1)
- Bits per second: 19200
- Data bits: 8
- Parity: None
- Stop bits: 1
- Flow control: None
Once connected, it may be necessary to press the Enter key until the CLI> prompt is displayed, after which commands can be issued to configure the MSA.
Further details can be found in the HP StorageWorks Modular Smart Array 1000/1500cs Command Line Interface manual (just in case, like me, you found this information using Google before you got around to reading the manual that came on a CD with the MSA!).