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 VMDirectPath requires reinstall of ESXi after H/W change? 
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Joined: Tue Sep 13, 2011 12:00 pm
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Post VMDirectPath requires reinstall of ESXi after H/W change?
Hi folks,

I have an ESXi box detailed here:
viewtopic.php?f=13&t=3386

The previous BIOS of the motherboard did not support VT-d when I first installed and ran ESXi. Now that I have the new BIOS that is support it, ESXi still shows me "host does not support passthrough" under advanced config.

Do I need to reinstall ESXi to get it to detect or is it still a bios issue? This is really confusing, thanks for helping :)


Wed Sep 14, 2011 10:48 am
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Joined: Mon Mar 16, 2009 10:13 pm
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Post Re: VMDirectPath requires reinstall of ESXi after H/W change
You shouldn't have to reinstall. Generally you would enable the option in the BIOS and then perform a cold restart of the server.

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Dave Mishchenko
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Wed Sep 14, 2011 1:45 pm
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Joined: Tue Sep 13, 2011 12:00 pm
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Post Re: VMDirectPath requires reinstall of ESXi after H/W change
Hmm - well got it enabled correctly now but ESXi boot hangs after the "Load HyperVisor" bar fills up and never actually gets to the black and yellow Hypervisor.

Maybe something is still broken about this Beta BIOS?


Wed Sep 14, 2011 3:53 pm
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Post Re: VMDirectPath requires reinstall of ESXi after H/W change
From watching some of the discussion about VMdirectpath and video cards there seems to be a significant difference between VT-x on a desktop motherboard and the same on a server.

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Dave Mishchenko
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Wed Sep 14, 2011 6:35 pm
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Post Re: VMDirectPath requires reinstall of ESXi after H/W change
so it might be the video card not playing nice with VT-d? VT-x is working on the platform, VT-d is the one giving me all the headaches. I currently have a NVidia G210 card plugged in, should I try ATI/AMD?


Wed Sep 14, 2011 8:16 pm
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Post Re: VMDirectPath requires reinstall of ESXi after H/W change
Sorry, I meant to say VT-d (and not VT-x). There's a thread on VMware's forums of a number of graphics cards that have been tested. Have you seen it?

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Dave Mishchenko
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Wed Sep 14, 2011 8:27 pm
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Post Re: VMDirectPath requires reinstall of ESXi after H/W change
Dave.Mishchenko wrote:
Sorry, I meant to say VT-d (and not VT-x). There's a thread on VMware's forums of a number of graphics cards that have been tested. Have you seen it?


I just searched on google and couldn't find it, can you link? Thanks!
A bit more info, not sure if relevant here:
I'm not trying to do passthrough for video card, only the onboard sata ports for guest linux OS to run with mdadm raid. The install is bare right now and I haven't even added any guest OSes or VMs yet but it still hangs :(


Wed Sep 14, 2011 9:56 pm
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Post Re: VMDirectPath requires reinstall of ESXi after H/W change
http://communities.vmware.com/message/1669083

Is the SATA controller on a shared bus with other devices?

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Dave Mishchenko
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Wed Sep 14, 2011 11:14 pm
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Post Re: VMDirectPath requires reinstall of ESXi after H/W change
Dave.Mishchenko wrote:
http://communities.vmware.com/message/1669083

Is the SATA controller on a shared bus with other devices?


Not likely - the ports are the ICH10R ports and I've moved the video card between the different X16 slots and the server still gets stuck booting up.

Most of the issues in that thread seems related to trying to passthrough the VGA card which I'm not going to do. There are no VMs on the system yet and VMDirectPath is not setup at all.


Thu Sep 15, 2011 6:58 am
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Post Re: VMDirectPath requires reinstall of ESXi after H/W change
So you've just enabled VT-d and done nothing else with VMdirectpath?

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Dave Mishchenko
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Thu Sep 15, 2011 8:39 am
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