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I'm trying to pair up the parts and pieces to get an already purchased Dell Equallogic PS6010E going, with a couple existing Dell r900 servers for ESXi 5.0,and keep running into show-stoppers. The PS6010E has 4xSFP+ ports for 10gb iSCSI. The Dell r900 servers have no 10gb ports, yet. We're looking to buy dual PowerConnect 8132F switches to sit in between them. And want to use direct attach Twinax cables since the devices will be fairly close - probably only a rack or two away from each other. The problem I'm having is finding the HBAs that will work in the Dell r900's. So far, the best option seems to be Intel X520-DA2 HBAs. Probably a long shot... but anybody have a setup that uses a Dell r900 server running ESXi 5.0, Intel X520-DA2 HBA, direct attached cable to a Powerconnect 8132F switch? And does it work? Anything special needed to make it work? Or are there other HBAs that will work in this scenario with the r900's?

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Any 4x or 8x 10GbE PCIe card would work in your situation. If you're planning to use iSCSI, I'd just use ESXi's software initiators rather than a hardware iSCSI-specific HBA...

Intel is easy due to their ubiquitous drivers - Something like the Intel NetEffect Ethernet (E10G81G2P) could work.

But I don't understand the problem here. These are just network cards. Use the VMware Hardware Compatibility List (HCL) as a guide if you're confused about what's supported by ESXi. (also, you WILL be deploying ESXi 5.1, right?)

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  • Just trying to find the SFP+ cards that will work in the Dell r900. Dell says they'll sell us some, but won't guarantee they'll work in the 900's since they didn't start supporting them until the r910. Commented Feb 24, 2013 at 21:07
  • It's a PCI-Express card. There's a standard. There's nothing unique about the Dell that would preclude using the card of your choice.
    – ewwhite
    Commented Feb 24, 2013 at 21:15
  • It was this site that got me looking deeper - 3rd paragraph - cjthenetworkguy.blogspot.com/2010/12/emulex-oce10102-cards.html. I also read something similar about Qlogic. So it seemed like there was something about the r900 that may be causing problems with the cards. Commented Feb 24, 2013 at 21:23
  • @GregoryThomson Then go for Intel.
    – ewwhite
    Commented Feb 24, 2013 at 21:30

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