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10Gb card transfering at 1Gb rate

I have two 10G base-T cards that aren't perform how I'd expect.  I don't see speeds over 1Gb.  I got both cards from Dell.  First, I bought two broadcoms 10Gb cards and then sent them back for 2 Intels, same problem.  Dell is telling me to disable 1gb preinstalled Broadcom cards in the bios and reinstall my OS.  

This seems like a lazy solution to me and since both servers are production database servers this makes the OS reinstallation a very costly solution.  I'm guessing there is some reg key screwup causing this but I sure can't find the answer.   Dell won't help me unless I reinstall the OS and the problem still exists.  Anyone else experience this problem?
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poob
Asked:
poob
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1 Solution
 
Rob HutchinsonDesktop SupportCommented:
A common problem with any network card is that the autonegotiate doesn't work correctly.

Can you manually set the ports to 10G and configure the port on the switch for the same speed?
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poobAuthor Commented:
No, unfortunatly the only option is Autoneg and 1Gb.  Both cards and the switch say they are transfering at 10Gb speeds, but when I do a speed check with a number of different speedtest tools they all come back at around 1Gb a sec.
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poobAuthor Commented:
FYI both cards are Intel 10Gb AT cards.
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andy_deruCommented:
The point is that your current OS obviously doesnot support 10G speed. Tha means tweaking in your hardware, whatever it is. If you don;t want to install the other OS.
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John S. Williamson, IIISr. Principal Networking HW Development EngineerCommented:
What OS are you running?
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poobAuthor Commented:
Server 2003 standard x64.  It should be compatible with 10Gb.  They didn't ask me to install a new OS, just reinstall what I currently have.
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andy_deruCommented:
at least you need to use compatible NIC driver. Based on the available selection, it sounds like not supported.
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John S. Williamson, IIISr. Principal Networking HW Development EngineerCommented:
What is the model number of the Intel cards, I'll see if I can ask the NIC guys for the latest driver (though it should be available on the Dell support website).
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poobAuthor Commented:
It's the Intel 10 Gigabit AT.  Part number EXPX9501AT.  I downloaded the drivers from Intel.  The drivers show 10Gb connection.  Status for the card states 10Gb.  Tranfer rates aren't better than the 1Gb cards.

I spoke with Intel support when I set this up after having little luck with Dell.
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andy_deruCommented:
another question:
How did you measure the real speed? I mean are sure it is 1Gb and not 1GB?
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Rob HutchinsonDesktop SupportCommented:
Another thing you can try is connect the server w the 10GB cards to another device that you know is 10GB network port speed and see if it runs at the 10GB speed, have a feeling that the device it is attempting to talk to is auto-negotiating the speed of the server network card down from 10GB to 1GB.
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poobAuthor Commented:
andy_deru.  I used Qcheck, NetCPS, and iperf.  I am sure of the speed.  

WiReDNet.  I initially connected both 10Gb cards directly together and didn't get better than 1Gb connection.  Then I purchased a switch from Dell with the 10Gb uplink and tested that way.  All links currently claim to be transfering at 10Gb  (the two cards + the 10Gb uplink).  Speedtest shows otherwise.  I tried transfer a 20Gb file over the 10Gb line + enabling the 1Gb cards and using a stopwatch to time the transfers.  Both 10Gb and 1Gb finish the transfer at the same time around 5 minutes or so.
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John S. Williamson, IIISr. Principal Networking HW Development EngineerCommented:
Are you sure that the NIC is plugged in to a PCIe x8 slot?
A file transfer may not be the best way to test network utilization, since the disk I/O bandwidth can be the bottleneck.  
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Rob HutchinsonDesktop SupportCommented:
If you connected both computers together then the issue is definately with the computers and their network cards.

Can you swap out the hard drives and boot to a different OS and test the speeds this way to eliminate the chance that there is a driver or settings issue?

Maybe boot to a thumb drive or other USB drive and test the speeds that way?

At least this will tell you if the problem is software or hardware.
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Rob HutchinsonDesktop SupportCommented:
Something I just noticed that you said earlier:
"No, unfortunatly the only option is Autoneg and 1Gb. "

If there is no option to set to 10GB, then the driver for these network cards cannot be the correct driver. If the network card driver were designed for these network cards, then the 10GB option would be available.
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Rob HutchinsonDesktop SupportCommented:
Contact Intel and ask them to verify this please, and aks them to tell you why the 10GB option is not available since it's their driver for these 10GB network cards.
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poobAuthor Commented:
Thanks, I am actually waiting for a callback from Intel.  The driver listed is ixe51x64.sys..etc.  version 1.6.9.0, which according to their website is the correct driver for a 2003 x64 system.

I have thought about removing the cards and trying them in other systems but this will have to wait for the weekend.  Using a bootable OS is a good idea, I just wonder if that will use a 10gb connection.
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Rob HutchinsonDesktop SupportCommented:
Believe all your attempts at this point are going to be limited to the actual network card driver...if the driver does not even support 10GB, there's no way it's going to work.
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John S. Williamson, IIISr. Principal Networking HW Development EngineerCommented:
You are on the right track, going after the drivers from Intel. My colleagues' response:
"Turns out that your friends card is not the Dell specific card but the Intel retail card which is slightly different.  He may need to get the latest drivers from Intels website.  The drivers on Dells website will probably arent the proper drivers.  If he is still having issues we will be happy to try and help.  I have also sent his issue to Intel directly and we will see if they have any other comments."
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poobAuthor Commented:
Thanks again,

One reason I don't believe it's the drivers and some reg setting that is causing all this.  Before the Intel cards I ordered 10Gb cards from Broadcom.  I returned the Broadcom cards because of this exact same issue.  I guess it's possible that both sets of drivers for both cards are bad.  But it seems Dell has ran into this problem before and believe a reinstall of the OS fixes it.  Maybe I'll just go and change a bunch of reg values ;)
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Rob HutchinsonDesktop SupportCommented:
What made me believe that it was a driver issue, is that you do not have an option to manually config the cards for 10G, "No, unfortunatly the only option is Autoneg and 1Gb."

If the drivers are truly for these cards, there should be an option to manually set the speed to 10G.
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John S. Williamson, IIISr. Principal Networking HW Development EngineerCommented:
poob,
Did you get this working? I have a contact at Intel that I can pass to you, if you'd like.  Send me an email at johnw3@gmail.com.
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poobAuthor Commented:
Still no luck, I'll send you an email.  Thanks!
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poobAuthor Commented:
No fix but I got as far a possible with John's contact.  Thanks
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Bill_itfocusCommented:
I am having a similar issue using Mellanox Mnph29b-Xtc  with a direct connect and discovered someone else discovered they had a Pci-e x16 slot and once moved to a 8x slot everything started to work.  My Rackable server also only has a x16 slot.  Check to see what speed your Pci-e slot is to confirm
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