Whats the diffrence between ConnectX-2 VPI and ConnectX-2 EN Cards

DBayPlaya2k3

Member
Nov 9, 2012
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Houston
Trying to figure out what I need to purchase to play with IPoIB and looks like I have a choice of 2 cards for the ConnectX-2 series.

ConnectX-2 VPI

or

ConnectX-2 EN

So anyone know what is the diffrence besides the price?

Looking at using these for stoarge network between 1 ESXi box and 1 windows server 2012 box.

Thanks
 

britinpdx

Active Member
Feb 8, 2013
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Portland OR
I believe that "EN" supports Ethernet only, "VPI" supports Ethernet or Infiniband.

I use the ConnectX-2 VPI with Server 2012, and you can select the interface in the device manager.
 

33_viper_33

Member
Aug 3, 2013
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Hmmm... Just bought a couple HPs advertised as QDR. Hoping it is VPI. HP appears to use ConnectX-2 which is why I jumped on them. Is it possible to flash between the two or is the hardware different?
 

mrkrad

Well-Known Member
Oct 13, 2012
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cross flashing is very possible on many network cards, give it a shot and let us know!
 

cactus

Moderator
Jan 25, 2011
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CA
britinpdx explanation is correct. The CX-2 EN normally has SFP+ so even if the VPI firmware works on it you can only use it as a 10GbE card. There are a few versions that have both a QSFP and SFP+ port on them, but I think they are marked as VPI cards. I have flashed a few older HP 20Gbps cards and Cisco 10Gbps cards to stock Mellanox firmwares. The firmwares wont flash onto the wrong PSID, but you can force it if you are sure of what you are doing. PCI device ID is a good why of figuring out what card you have.
 

MiniKnight

Well-Known Member
Mar 30, 2012
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NYC
britinpdx explanation is correct. The CX-2 EN normally has SFP+ so even if the VPI firmware works on it you can only use it as a 10GbE card. There are a few versions that have both a QSFP and SFP+ port on them, but I think they are marked as VPI cards. I have flashed a few older HP 20Gbps cards and Cisco 10Gbps cards to stock Mellanox firmwares. The firmwares wont flash onto the wrong PSID, but you can force it if you are sure of what you are doing. PCI device ID is a good why of figuring out what card you have.
Why did you do that? Did you get more features or something?
 

Aluminum

Active Member
Sep 7, 2012
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I see zero reason to choose EN versions unless they are significantly cheaper, everything I have seen about them indicates they are nothing more than VPI cards limited by board connectors and/or firmware.

The ENs are not always cheaper, honestly some of the best deals on fleabay lately have been the VPI cards, evidenced by how fast they go away once someone posts here.

You can convert QSFP to SFP+ with a $30~40 adapter or various hybrid cables, but those 30 meter QSFP fiber cables are still ready to be stolen for <40 quid so unless you are connecting to a 10Gb switch with SFP+ why bother :)

random note: on dual port cards, the wider ports close together with heatsink studs are QSFP, the smooth cages with holes and more space between are SFP+

edit: there are some dual port EN X-2 cards under $100 right now, that is a pretty good deal IMO
 
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