Still the case in 4.1 U1, i checked on a fresh install
I can confirm this behavior on a fresh install.
But when I perform an upgrade from vSphere 4.0 update 2 to vSphere 4.1 update 1 I don't see the speed/duplex settings being changed.
I have installed fresh ESX and ESXi 4.1 and will confirm that the default state of a pnic for both is to set the pnic Configured Speed,Duplex to 1000Mb, Full Duplex - not Auto negotiate. If you have Cisco switches like I do, the default switchport config is Auto negotiate. This is quite disconcerting, particularly as it relates to KB 1004089 - because if you take the default config on both the VMware pnic side and the Cisco switchport side you end up with the only one out of three possible configurations that is NOT RECOMMENDED.
Auto < > Auto : Recommended
1000Full < > 1000Full : Recommended
Auto < > 1000Full : NOT RECOMMENDED
per the KB article: " VMware does not recommend mixing a hard-coded setting with Auto-negotiate."
Ironically this is exactly the state you are in if you take the default config from both Cisco and VMware. Reading the rest of that article, it seems that VMware seems to prefer Auto over 1000/Full for the pnic settings as indicated by the statement "AUTO-NEGOTIATION is highly recommended on ESX/ESXi Gigabit-Ethernet Interface cards and physical Gig switch ports for the following reasons: ..." which really does beg the question - why is Auto negotiate NOT the default setting for a pnic when installing ESX or ESXi when Auto IS the default for every switch vendor out there??? Why would VMware intentionally create a mismatched, not recommended configuration requiring remediation on every pnic?
Now, does VMware recommend I go through my 80+ hosts and set all 8 nics to auto to match the current Cisco switchport config fior Auto or shall I go into my Cisco switches and change the config of 8 switchports per host (that's 640 ports if you're counting) to 1000Full to match my VMware hosts which by default install have set their pnics to the lesser-preferred setting (per the above KB) of 1000Full so I can remediate my "not recommended" mixed hard-coded and Auto-negotiate environment?
As long as you do not change the settings I think you will be fine. This is a GUI bug in all 4.x releases. The setting is in reality AUTO, which is why it works at all.
This is finally fixed in 5.0, where the default NIC setting is displayed as AUTO.
Thank you for your response. I assume that when you say “This is finally fixed in 5.0” you mean that this bug is resolved when the HOST is running ESXi 5.0? Because both my vCenter and Virtual Infrastructure client are already at the 5.0 release and my hosts all are 4.1.0 Update2 build 502767 - yet still show the configured speed/duplex as 1000 MB, Full Duplex.
If it is resolved in ESXi 5.0 that is great, but I must say for a bug that was discovered in the base 4.0 release to not have been fixed though all interim releases up to current 4.1.0 Update 2 seems a bit strange to me. Do you think there is any harm (except for the momentary loss of link redundancy) in setting each of my pnics to Autonegotiate just so that the GUI actually reflects the proper setting of the host pnic?
you mean that this bug is resolved when the HOST is running ESXi 5.0?
Yes, when the host is running ESXi 5.0 the adapters are shown as AUTO.
but I must say for a bug that was discovered in the base 4.0 release to not have been fixed though all interim releases up to current 4.1.0 Update 2 seems a bit strange to me.
I totally agree with you, it is very strange indeed. Since the setting makes it impossible to tell if it is (invisible) AUTO or if someone has actually hard configured the adapter to FULL, which makes it very important to have the switch port to FULL too..
VMware even has a KB article about duplex mismatch and recommends AUTO, but makes it impossible to tell if this is used.
Do you think there is any harm (except for the momentary loss of link redundancy) in setting each of my pnics to Autonegotiate just so that the GUI actually reflects the proper setting of the host pnic?
I am not aware of any issues with setting them to AUTO by hand. This makes it more clear in the display and more easy to troubleshoot.
After reading this thread, I'm wondering if there is a way to correct this in a kickstart script for new ESXi 4.1 installations? If so, could you please provide and example?