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x520-t2 with Esxi 5

idata
Community Manager
1,632 Views

Hi,

I am setting up a 2 host vsphere environment. I am using the x520-t2 for a 10Gb link to my iscsi san. simple enough... in Vsphere client both ports on the network card show up fine under Configuration --> network adapters, but I they dont show up under storage adapters. I can create a software iScsi and bind it to the x540 but I thought that the x520-t2 would provide hardware iscsi offload to reduce the iscsi CPU overhead of the host? Perhaps this is transparent with the software iscsi in vsphere 5? Any insight in the matter is great appreciated.

Thanks,

Brandon

Message was edited by: ncvbit

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2 Replies
idata
Community Manager
88 Views

In order for hba adapter to show as hardware storage on a Dell r710, a TOE (TCPIP offload engine) key must be installed on the motherboard. However, you lose the ability to Jumbo Frame if enabled. I'm wondering if it's worth it or not?

Patrick_K_Intel1
Employee
88 Views

Thanks for visiting the forum and using the Intel X520 adapter.

We do not have HBA type offloads in our devices - they do not scale well with increasing processor speeds. What we do have are intelligent offloads, such as checksum calculation in the CPU, which do scale.

To use iSCSI with the X520 you need to use the software initiator.

If you go digging into VMware's BKM documents, you will find that they tell you to turn off all hardware offloads on HBA's. This is because they found that those offloads cannot keep pace with the data under stress on newer generation processors and errors occur.

Hope this helps.

Patrick

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