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vmnics missing from ESXi 5.5 server after firmware upgrade

Posted on 2014-09-14
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Last Modified: 2016-11-23
After a round of BIOS/firmware upgrades I've a Network Adapter that whilst detected by ESXi is not available for use.

Dell M520
Intel I350 Gigabit Backplane (not detected)
Broadcom Gigabit NetXtreme BCM5720
VMWare ESXi 5.5 Update 1

Output of esxcfg-nics -l, the vmnics are unavailable for use
Output of esxcfg-nics -l
If I run an lspci | grep vmnic the result is below
Output from lspci | grep vmnic
To date I've tried this KB article (2019871) and a full reinstall of ESXi 5.5 Update 1 without success.

Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.
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Question by:Recept
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by:GG VP
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Hi,

Did you installed ESXi using customized ESXi provided by DELL or the normal ESXi downloaded from VMware.

Please find the link for DELL customized ESXi 5.5, please install using this image and let us know the outcome,

http://www.dell.com/support/home/us/en/04/Drivers/DriversDetails?driverId=Y5W35&osCode=XI55&fileId=3365811236&languageCode=EN&categoryId=EC
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paulsolov earned 500 total points
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I don't know about Dell servers but we've had many issues where the nics or HBAs do not work after the 5.5 upgrade.  The issue on these servers is not the driver but the nic and hba firmware.  See if you can upgrade the firmware and see if it resolves the issue
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by:gheist
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Also worth trying - reset DELL BIOS to default settings...
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by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE)
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Does it appear in Network Adaptors when you connect via vSphere Client?

because they are mapped as vmnic0 etc
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by:gheist
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Also NICs are powered on all the time. You might need to remove power from them to allow new firmware to reinitialize.
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by:Recept
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I got it working in the end and had to install Windows, downgrade to firmware 14.5.9, reboot, then upgrade to the latest firmware 15.0.28, reboot and finally reinstall ESXi 5.5 Update 1.

Thanks for everyone's help.
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