Intel PRO/10GbE CX4? General 10Gb tips?

Alan Amesbury amesbury at
Fri Jun 1 23:12:54 UTC 2007

ixgb(4) on 6.2-RELEASE-p5 says that the driver supports adapters based 
on the 82597EX controller.  The 10GbE CX4 uses the same chip, but isn't 
in the list of explicitly listed hardware in the manpage.  A quick peek 
at the driver in the source tree shows that it does some 
hardware-specific checks for the SR adapter, because they "support two 
different types of XPAK optics....." (ixgb_hw.c).  There's no mention of 
the CX4, and the dates on the source suggest they're from '04.  I see 
Intel has an updated version of this driver from '06 which explicitly 
lists the CX4.

Are any of you familiar with these cards and, if so, do you know if the 
6.2-RELEASE or later drivers will work with the CX4?

On a related note, do you have any suggestions for 10Gb hardware?  I 
lean towards the Intel stuff because, at least with the 1Gb stuff (and 
aside from the weird and atypical em(4) problems earlier in 6-RELEASE), 
the Intel stuff just works.  That said, I'm open to suggestions for 
other 10Gb stuff if you've got them.

Besides the tuning stuff discussed here before (around mid-December, 
2006), are there knobs that I should tweak for ridiculously fast packet 

As always, thanks in advance!

Alan Amesbury
OIT Security and Assurance
University of Minnesota

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