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iLO 3 shared network port - downsides?

Simon Haslam

iLO 3 shared network port - downsides?


As a long-term user of iLO I've always plugged the dedicated iLO port into some sort of management network. However I am now wondering whether I can simplify rack cabling by using the shared network feature introduced a couple of years or so ago.

Looking at docs this appears to be implemented as some sort of "mini switch" on NIC 1.

So, let's say for the main server (say, DL380 running VMware ESXi 4.1) I had a bonded pair between NIC1 and another NIC (other onboard controller or separate card), then I would share NIC 1 with iLO. Then I would presumably have the server itself on one VLAN and the iLO on a management VLAN.

Are there any problems with this proposal? I can't see any obvious downsides mentioned in the user guide ( or best practices (

I can imagine there would be a small sacrifice in server bandwidth on NIC1 when iLO was in use (especially remote console or media) but presumably that wouldn't be much or often.

Any suggestions?

PS. I won't forget to award points ;)
Michael Leu
Honored Contributor

Re: iLO 3 shared network port - downsides?

One limitation seems to be a server can't connect to its own iLO in shared mode:
Simon Haslam

Re: iLO 3 shared network port - downsides?

Thanks Michael - that's useful to know. I suppose HP SIM, which needs to run somewhere, is a good example of where it would be a problem. I wonder if would still be a problem if the server was using bonded ports (assuming they are active-active)... (I suppose the NIC1 is alternated between iLO and server, rather than really being an ethernet switch).

I also wonder whether the brief interruption in NIC1 might upset some network monitoring etc.

Anyone got this arrangement running in production?