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Using 8Gb HBA's in an MDS9124

When using an existing 4Gb SAN infrastructure, should I expect any difference between setting up a connection with a new 8Gb HBA when compared to setting up a connection with a 4Gb HBA?

System components:

VMWare ESXi 4.1 running on a Dell Poweredge R310 server

Cisco MDS9124 running NX-OS System Software-4.1.(3a)

SAN array: HDS AMS2100

I purchased two Qlogic QLE2562-CK HBA's and cannot get my 9124's to recognize them properly.

Both switches show the WWN's for the HBA's in the fcid database, but do not otherwise appear to recognize them.

All ports are set to auto.

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Cisco Employee

Using 8Gb HBA's in an MDS9124

Hi Grant,

Can you elaborate some more on the hbas not being recognized?  Are they zoned, is there a * next to them when you sh zoneset active?  Can you post a show int?

You could also try setting the mds to 4gb and the hba to 4gb (ctrl q at bootup I think).

Community Member

Using 8Gb HBA's in an MDS9124

Aloha Brian,

Thanks once again for your quick response.

To answer your question:

Whenever I've installed new HBA's into the fabric in the past, I would go into the fabric manager, create an alias for the HBA by selecting the WWN of the new card and create a new zone.

This time around, the WWN didn't show up on the drop-down list.

When I used the device manager to look at the switches, it showed the connection as being inactive (red X).

I've spent some time testing today and the problem might be tied to the server, or components within the server.

I removed the HBA from the R310 server, placed it in an older PowerEdge 2850 and had no problem with the HBA being seen on the 9124.

This was without changing any of the BIOS settings in the HBA with regard to connection speed.

I'm still in the midst of testing, and I need to pull an 4Gb HBA from another server to test in the problem child server.

I plan to do that tonight.

I have four of these R310 servers and the two most recently purchased are the ones I'm trying to use with the 8Gb HBA.

The two older ones have no issues with the 4Gb HBA (Qlogic QLE2462-CK).

The two newer ones have a different RAID controller, however, that takes up one of the PCIe slots, whereas the two older ones have a zero-slot daughter card RAID controller.

I don't know if that's a part of the problem or not, but it's another area to troubleshoot.

At any rate, I am going to try changing the BIOS setting to dictate a 4Gb connection and see if that changes anything.

Either way, I'll post back my results.

Community Member

Using 8Gb HBA's in an MDS9124

Aloha Brian,

Call it a lesson in humility.

The problem was my own forgetfulness, not the servers or the switches.

ESXi supports device pass-through, which I use on some of my servers. I had set up both HBA's in both of these servers in pass-through mode.

I forgot that when you set up a device in pass-through mode, ESXi does not load a driver for it, therefore no link is established until you set up a VM to use that HBA directly.

Once I took the HBA's out of pass-through mode and rebooted the servers, the drivers loaded and all was well.

So to answer my own question:

No, you should not expect any difference in the setup process between 8 and 4 Gb HBA's.

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