I'd strongly recommend only using certified hardware for production use to guarantee compatibility and support. It may work or it may not, or it may work and stop working in a future release or it may be unstable. I'm not sure it's as clear cut as support wouldn't talk to you but if there is any suspicion it is hardware related you'd probably be referred back to your hardware vendor. Basically is it worth the risk?
They will talk to you, give you some advice & try to find an alternative solution for your incompatible hardware no matter what, but I don't think they can do that much for the following reasons. A hardware compatibility list (HCL) or support matrix is a one-way list of approved functionality. In other words, it’s a way for Vendor A to affirm that Vendor B’s product works with their own.
Additional products that are not found on the latest HCL will probably (but not always) cause the VMware\Microsoft support staff to stop your support. VMware only provides support for server hardware that is listed on the HCL. Why isn’t everything on the HCL? There are lots of good reasons:
- Some things just don’t work. Not every implementation of iSCSI, NFS, or SMB is equal, and some just don’t interoperate.
- Some things work reasonably well but fall apart in production or under load.
- Some vendors lack the resources or motivation to get their products listed on all of the various compatibility lists.
- New products often take a while to get on the supported list, and vendors commonly advise customers to buy and implement them anyway.
My advice to you! Be sure to check the HCL periodically, especially if you plan to upgrade to a newer ESX/ESXi version, as you will want to make sure your hardware is listed before upgrading. You should check this guide before you purchase any server hardware to use with ESX/ESXi.
VMware VDI Administrator.
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Thanks jhague & Raul.....much appreciated!