Fiber drivers

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zeiszler
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Fiber drivers

Post by zeiszler » Mon Jul 11, 2022 1:34 pm

Will Fiber drivers be release that will support fiber on VMware VM hosts? I just go a VM built with the base OS installed but do not have any FG devices on the VM at OS level.

I have a DL380 ordered but not received yet. That will be our second x86 OS build.


pjacobi
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Re: Fiber drivers

Post by pjacobi » Wed Jun 28, 2023 1:42 pm

Yes, we are investigating into ESXi Fibre Channel Pass-Through (VMDirectpath). This will allow a VM direct access to $x$DGAxxx disks. We have this currently working in our lab but need time for qualification and testing. A similar feature exists on the KVM Hypervisor.

Support will likely be limited to select QLogic Fibre Channel HBA cards, but the exact list has not been determined. Emulex Fibre Channel cards will not be supported because the VMS driver needs much work.

Be aware that use of Fibre Channel Pass-through has a toll on hardware resources. Each VM must have exclusive use of HBA card which cannot be shared with another VM. All memory used by the VM must be locked into physical memory and cannot be shared with another VM. There are several other restrictions when using Fibre Channel Pass-Through.

I don't have an exact date when Fibre Channel Pass-Through will be made available, but the hope is for later this year.


Paul A. Jacobi
VMS Software, Inc.

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dmjb
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Re: Fiber drivers

Post by dmjb » Wed Jun 28, 2023 6:14 pm

Any plans to support NVMe passthrough in future?


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Re: Fiber drivers

Post by pocketprobe » Thu Jun 29, 2023 12:48 pm

I'd second the NVMe support request. Strangely bootmgr seems to recognize my older samsung 950 as nvme which is interesting.


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Re: Fiber drivers

Post by pjacobi » Mon Jul 10, 2023 9:38 am

There are no current plans for NVMe support in VMS. It might be something to look into for the future.

Paul A. Jacobi
VMS Software, Inc.


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Re: Fiber drivers

Post by nils_neumann » Tue Nov 28, 2023 6:39 am

Is there a Time Frame for the Release of Fibre Channel Pass-Through now? Also at this Point, can you say something about which QLogic Fibre Channel HBA Cards will be useable?


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Re: Fiber drivers

Post by pjacobi » Wed Nov 29, 2023 5:19 pm

Fibre Channel will likely be supported in a release after V9.2-2, probably in 2024.

VSI is looking at QLogic 8/16/32Gb cards (64Gb?, 128Gb?). The are no plans for Emulex Fibre Channel.

Unofficially, the current V9.2-1 release will configure 16/32Gb QLogic Fibre Channel cards. A simple fix is needed to configure the 8GB QLogic card. Prior to booting VMS, the card must be configured in VMware ESXi as a pass-through device and dedicated to a particular VM. This configuration is *not* supported and should be treated as experimental.

VMware ESXi UEFI firmware does not seem to support Fibre Channel booting. A hack to manually load the UEFI driver from local UEFI disk partition seems to work but it is unclear if this method will be supported by VSI/QLogic/VMware.

A limited amount of 16Gb QLogic qualification was done on bare metal but needs to be completed on VMware ESXi.


Paul A. Jacobi
VMS Software


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Re: Fiber drivers

Post by babydr » Wed Nov 29, 2023 6:43 pm

@pjacobi , I've but one question , Why " The are no plans for Emulex Fibre Channel." ?
All I've seen is the staement quoted above BUT No reasoning for it .
Please enlighten me (& thus all of us) .
Tia , JimL
Just pesters the he?? out of me when statements are made without some reasoning surrounding it .
If the reason lie's somewhere in previous discussions that would be enlightening too .

ps: Sorry , pjacobi , To place this question on your head .


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Re: Fiber drivers

Post by pjacobi » Thu Nov 30, 2023 12:13 pm

The existing VMS driver for Emulex LightPulse Fibre Channel card does not compile on X86. It could take several weeks of work just to get the driver building and running again. This would produce a driver capable of running on an old 2Gb Fibre Channel card.

To update the driver for the current generation of Emulex hardware requires implementing multiple major changes to the hardware interface. This is likely to require substantial changes to the driver. It is unknown how much time this would require.

For now, the focus is on QLogic where the VMS driver is currently running on 8/16/32Gb QLogic HBAs.


Paul A. Jacobi
VMS Software


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Re: Fiber drivers

Post by babydr » Thu Nov 30, 2023 8:49 pm

@pjacobi , Thank You !-) .
Might I suggest th ecreation of a Living FAQ ?
Populated With such decisions and the Wonderful help that has been placed in the Hollowed confines of the VSI * Forum's ?
Tho the search function can be of help there isn't the categorization that a faq can bring .

Thank You Agn . JimL

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