Monday, January 5, 2009

Not all 10G Cards are Equal

I found this out while configuring some 10G Ethernet cards for a customer recently. Be careful who makes your 10G cards. It turns out the NetXen 10G card (OEMed to HP, IBM and Others) has a hard limitation of only being able to address 32GB of system memory in the box. If the system has more than 32GB of memory, the card will start dropping packets.

My sources tell me there will not be a firmware fix for this at this time.To say this was a surprise to me is an understatement! I have never seen a card with a limitation based on memory before. IBM has pulled support for the card on the 3850 M2 model even though it is still a valid configuration in the configuration tools. I haven’t had a chance to check the DL580 but be careful if you are considering either of these boxes with the 10G card. Right now you will have to go 3rd party and your level of support may vary.

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