Be sure to review the NIC support information carefully before making any NIC purchases.
Which NIC driver to use
If the custom driver is compatible with your card as per Hardware Recommendations, use this table to help you decide whether to go ahead and use the custom driver or whether to stay with the native driver. (If your NIC does not support a custom driver, you must stay with the native driver.)
High Speed AMD
For High Speed AMD, the L size in particular, we strongly recommend to use custom drivers. High Speed AMD performs up to twice better with custom drivers. See AMD Performance Estimates for Different Traffic Profiles for details.
If a native driver was used, filtering was not performed on the driver level, but at a higher level (the packet processing layer in the AMD analysis layer), which me. Thus a high CPU usage was observed on those AMDs (on cpu #0) in such cases.
Starting with DC RUM 12.3, a new installation enables autodiscovery mode on the AMD by default. This is equivalent to monitoring all traffic (user.map.only = false). In this scenario, where there is no packet filtering, the custom driver has no performance advantage over the native driver. (However, an upgrade to DC RUM 12.3 from an earlier release does not automatically enable autodiscovery. )
The performance of the native driver and the custom driver in DC RUM 12.3 and later is almost the same, assuming autodiscovery is running (the AMD is analyzing all traffic connected to the cards). Autodiscovery is running by default in all new installations starting with release 12.3.
Table 2. Pros and cons of custom and native drivers
Be aware that some vendors offer cards that are similar to cards we recommend, but that are still incompatible with the custom driver. If you are considering using a card that has not been tested, be sure to contact the Support first.
For more information, see Hardware Recommendations.
Ensuring NIC Driver Compatibility
However, you can monitor 1 GbE networks and 10 GbE networks on the same AMD when using a 10 GbE card as long as the 10 GbE NIC also supports 1 GbE data rates and you use the same custom 10 GbE driver to support both data rates.
Testing Other Cards
We have tested the cards listed in Hardware Recommendations. We make no warranty, implied or otherwise, regarding any other card's performance or reliability. Customers have reported positive results with the cards listed in NICs tested by DC RUM community.
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