January 27, 2015

QLogic and Emulex Deliver 8 Gb Fibre Channel For VMware ESX

As I mentioned on Monday, VMware’s Update 2 for ESX 3.5 includes support for 8 Gb Fibre Channel HBAs. This is an important development, so I went looking through the official ESX I/O Compatibility Guide to see which HBAs in particular were supported, but none were listed.

This was pretty puzzling, but Rich from VM /ETC and Duncan from Yellow Bricks were right – they just hadn’t updated the guide yet (even though the revision date was July 25).

So without further ado, the announcement:  You can now use Emulex and QLogic 8 Gb Fibre Channel HBAs with VMware ESX to give blazing I/O performance right where it’s needed.  Of course, 8 Gb storage arrays remain rare, but this will change soon.

An end-to-end 8 Gb FC SAN will likely provide all the performance of 10 Gb FCoE, and it’s available now instead of 2009 or 2010.  10 Gb iSCSI and NFS are also supported as of Update 2 if you’re more of a TCP/IP person…