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1an3
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Sanity Check: Hardware compatibility: vMotion/CPU/EVC etc

Hi all

We currently have a DRS cluster with 6 Dell Poweredge R610 hosts with either Intel Xeon 5540 or 5530 CPUs which according to this KB article (http://kb.vmware.com/kb/1991) are in the Group D for vMotion compatibility. (Nehalem-EP)

I want to add new hosts to the cluster and am looking at newer Dell R620s. These have Xeon E5-2640 CPUs .I can't find a kb article with the same detail for the new CPUs. The Vmware Compatibility guide tells me that this is a Sandy-bridge processor?


If I add the hosts with the newer CPUs to the cluster, will they just work? Or will I need to turn on some sort of EVC mode?


If I read this kb article (VMware KB: Enhanced vMotion Compatibility (EVC) processor support ) it suggests that I would need to turn on EVC Level2 (Nehalem). This would 'turn off' CPU features in the new hosts over and above what the older CPUs have... But what happens in 'x' years time when all older hosts are gone - presumbaly I can then turn off the EVC compatibility mode so that all CPU features are presented? Would this have any adverse effect on existing VMs ?


Please could someone sanity-check me and/or point me in the direction of something to reassure me?


Thanks in advance




NB. Currently on vSphere 4.0 but upgrading to 5/5.1  soon.



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vmroyale
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I assume, once EVC mode is turned on, it will always be set to the level of the 'lowest' (oldest?) CPU level (in this case Nehalem) until the last host with Nehalem CPUs is retired from the cluster.

Yes, that is correct.

Brian Atkinson | vExpert | VMTN Moderator | Author of "VCP5-DCV VMware Certified Professional-Data Center Virtualization on vSphere 5.5 Study Guide: VCP-550" | @vmroyale | http://vmroyale.com

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vmroyale
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Note: Discussion successfully moved from VMware vSphere Hypervisor to VMware vCenter™

See if ftp://ftp.dell.com/Manuals/all-products/esuprt_electronics/esuprt_software/esuprt_virt_solutions/vmw... helps.

Brian Atkinson | vExpert | VMTN Moderator | Author of "VCP5-DCV VMware Certified Professional-Data Center Virtualization on vSphere 5.5 Study Guide: VCP-550" | @vmroyale | http://vmroyale.com
1an3
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Apologies for this being in the wrong place.

Thank you. I also checked out ftp://ftp.dell.com/Manuals/all-products/esuprt_electronics/esuprt_software/esuprt_virt_solutions/vmw... for ESX4 and all appears well, but I will need EVC mode on.

I assume, once EVC mode is turned on, it will always be set to the level of the 'lowest' (oldest?) CPU level (in this case Nehalem) until the last host with Nehalem CPUs is retired from the cluster.

Thank you again.

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vmroyale
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I assume, once EVC mode is turned on, it will always be set to the level of the 'lowest' (oldest?) CPU level (in this case Nehalem) until the last host with Nehalem CPUs is retired from the cluster.

Yes, that is correct.

Brian Atkinson | vExpert | VMTN Moderator | Author of "VCP5-DCV VMware Certified Professional-Data Center Virtualization on vSphere 5.5 Study Guide: VCP-550" | @vmroyale | http://vmroyale.com
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1an3
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Thank you.

Now to tell Dell that their advice was incorrect, referring to their own documents...

Cheers

Ian

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