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 Very Slow network Traffic with ESXi 4.1 U1 
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Joined: Mon Apr 04, 2011 1:03 am
Posts: 3
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Post Very Slow network Traffic with ESXi 4.1 U1
Hi everyone,

I'm in the process of installing a new home server.
I'm working in IT, and my goal is to be able to reproduce some case study, and home storage.
In that approach I choose to install Freenas 8 RC4 x64
My problem is that i have a very very VERY slow bandwidth from my Win7 laptop in wireless or wired, same result, about 300Kb/s
yes kilo ....!!!!!!
I'm not new to Vmware technology, but i'm not an ESXi expert, far from that ...

I'm using a french provider box (Freebox) as 100Mb switch.

This is my hardware:
asus P7H55M-PRO
Intel i5 650
8 go RAM
Intel Pro /1000PT PCI-E NIC
(cause the integrated Realtek is not HCL)
3x1TB Samsung F3
1x40G Kingston SSDNow

I've been through various test, which lead my to think that the problem comes from my ESXi 4.1u1.
indeed, an installation of freenas as main OS on USB stick give me around 20Mb/s
the Freenas config for this is then the reference one:
3*1TB in ZFS, configured in RAIDZ (RAID-5 like)
a ZFS dataset of the whole space, shared with CIF
CIFS configured, with no permission set (anonymous)

Here is my insallation.
I'm using Esxi 4.1u1, on a 4G CompactFlash, from a USB multiCard Reader.
My SATA drives are in AHCI mode.
I use the 40G SSD as Datastore.
I made from Ssh console, the 3 1TB HDD as RDM (with the vmkfstool command)
So i can add the vmdk files i created into my Frenas VM.
I changed several times the config in Freenas:
ZFS or UFS, RAIDZ or Stripe or mirror, doesn't change anything

As I was having trouble with the network :
could not get the DHCP offer from the DHCP server
wasn't able to configure the interface from the CLI menu
I could assign a static IP from the shell (via ipconfig)
and then it was working fine
I was guessing that the vmware tools were not present, but they are (v8.7.0.3046 build 313025)
(I had a doubt on that this morning so i installed freenas x86 on my Vmware Workstation and is found this version of vmware tools,
so it is not the same version of freenas and not esxi, but i guess i make not difference, if the freenas team preinstalled the vmware tools)

Beside that i tried another NAS distribution, Openfiler, which is not BSD based but linux,
I did not had trouble with the vmware NIC, and I made an LVM RAID-5 config, same result around 300Kb/s

Then i thought it could be the RDM HDDs,
after moding my oem.tgz to be able to use the JMicron PATA port of my asus motherboard,
I pluged an old IDE drive to use as datastore, and i configured a Passthrough of the intel SATA controler.

i reinstalled Freenas, and then was able to access my SATA drives directy from it without using a vmdk file.
same result .....

If anybody could enlight me, it would be very nice,
maybe there are some basic troubleshooting to do ??
could it be the intel H55 controler ? it is not in the HCL list, but it's a clone of the ICH10 as i understand, and anyway it is well detected by ESXi
as the "Ibex Peak" controler (lspci command), and i can see the drives in the vSphere client.

I now i'm lost .... ^^
I did not try to install a windows VM for testing transfer rate, but i think it's gonna be my next step.

I only test the traffic using CIFS file share, i did not had the time to test with a bandwidth tool like Iperf
anyway i don't know if iperf could run on FreeBSD

In last resort i could try Ubuntu Server with KVM, but i really like the Vmware environment...

(other thoughts : ...
I first installed Win7 and Vmware Server on this hardware, and Freenas was working a little better when transfering from my laptop to it
with the 3 HDD in Raw mode,
But the issue was already present when transfering from the Win7 Host to the Freenas Guest,
in this scenario i had a 1TB external USB HDD connected,
transfering to the guest freenas using the 3 1TB HDD onboard SATA, with CIFS)

Many thanks for helping me out.


Tue Apr 05, 2011 1:25 am
Site Admin

Joined: Mon Mar 16, 2009 10:13 pm
Posts: 3880
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Post Re: Very Slow network Traffic with ESXi 4.1 U1
I recall a similar discussion somewhere else on this :)

Here's the link to the VMware discussion if anyone else has the same issue -

Dave Mishchenko
VMware vExpert 2009-2013
Now available - VMware ESXi: Planning, Implementation, and Security
Also available - vSphere Quick Start Guide

Tue Apr 05, 2011 1:49 am

Joined: Mon Apr 04, 2011 1:03 am
Posts: 3
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Post Re: Very Slow network Traffic with ESXi 4.1 U1
you really are everywhere !!! ^^

Tue Apr 05, 2011 3:34 am
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