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VMmware ESX 4.0, BL460 G6 blade and network issues

Andrew K2
Occasional Contributor

VMmware ESX 4.0, BL460 G6 blade and network issues

Not sure how to even describe this problem but in a nutshell any hardware changes to our ESX 4.0 U1 systems result in:

“no compatible network adapter found”

and ESX not booting, I found this article:

http://calebs71.blogspot.com/2010/05/bad-esx-network-driver-on-bl490c-g6.html

but it's so hokey that I'm hesitant to follow those instructions.


We're using Flex-10 Virtual Connect, all newest version of firmware but these insane issues have been plaguing us for at least six months and 3 firmware upgrades. Both support organizations have been spectacularly useless so far and I'm hoping for some suggestions on how to rectify these outages.


Thanks,
8 REPLIES
HEM_2
Honored Contributor

Re: VMmware ESX 4.0, BL460 G6 blade and network issues

If your Virtual Connect Flex10 firmware is 2.30 or higher then there are definitely some NC532i NIC firmware and driver dependencies and if they are out of whack you can run in to problems.

What is your bnx2x NIC driver version, Boot code version, and VC firmware version?

"ethtool -i vmnicx" is probably the easiest way to see that.

Andrew K2
Occasional Contributor

Re: VMmware ESX 4.0, BL460 G6 blade and network issues

Well since systems is no longer bootable I was at first unable to run that command, but I got the system going again after forcing NIC firmware update (even though it was already at the highest level), here is the output:

driver: bnx2x
version: 1.45.20
firmware-version: BC:5.2.7 PHY:baa0:0105
bus-info: 0000:02:00.0


Our VC version is 3.01


Thanks,
Andrew K2
Occasional Contributor

Re: VMmware ESX 4.0, BL460 G6 blade and network issues

an update; re-seating of the blade replicates the problem (â no compatible network adapter foundâ ), to fix it all we have to do is to just load Firmware DVD -- no need to update anything.
HEM_2
Honored Contributor

Re: VMmware ESX 4.0, BL460 G6 blade and network issues

Andrew,

your VMware ESX bnx2x driver version needs to be at 1.48 or later to support the version of NIC firmware you have on the system. I would however, recommend 1.52 as it addresses some pause frame issues:

http://downloads.vmware.com/d/details/esx_40_broadcom_bnx2xu1_dt/ZHcqYmRqcGhidGR3

When you run the fw maint cd it loads a driver for that NIC so even if you don't flash the NIC firmware, after exiting the fw maint cd and booting to ESX it will work... not sure how but it must have to do with something in the firmware. Any cold boot will remove whatever that linkage is in the firmware and you will be back to not booting in ESX.

If you load the 1.52 bnx2x driver you wo't have this problem.
JKytsi
Honored Contributor

Re: VMmware ESX 4.0, BL460 G6 blade and network issues

shut down ESX, remove VC profile, boot ESX, update FWs and update ESX NIC drivers, shut down, apply VC profile again, start ESX
Remember to give Kudos to answers! (click the KUDOS star)

You can find me from Twitter @JKytsi
Andrew K2
Occasional Contributor

Re: VMmware ESX 4.0, BL460 G6 blade and network issues

HEM, your suggestion worked, thanks for your help
Michael Leu
Honored Contributor

Re: VMmware ESX 4.0, BL460 G6 blade and network issues

Juan Pablo Reyes S.
Occasional Visitor

Re: VMmware ESX 4.0, BL460 G6 blade and network issues

Thanks Jarkko K. your advice saved me :)