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esxi: PCIe risers and passthrough

Hi there,
I'm running esxi on my home server and I'm slowly coming to the conclusion that there are more discrete PCIe devices (low-power GPUs, USB-cards, SATA-controllers) that I'd like to pass through to individual VMs than my mainboard can provide PCIe slots for.
How would esxi handle PCIe bifurcation or riser systems like this? Could I pass through all PCIe devices connected to these kinds of systems to individual VMs or could I only pass through the "original" slot on the motherboard? To clarify, I'm not worried about bandwidth here since I'm neither using high-power GPUs nor 10Gbit ethernet adapters nor NVMe-storage, so I'd be fine with having 16 PCIe x1 slots instead of one PCIe x16 slot.
Thanks!
submitted by EspritFort to vmware [link] [comments]

My Experience: From FX-8350 to R7-1700

Upgrading from an FX-8350 to a R7-1700.
Just a bit about me – I have been building computers since the mid 80’s. I missed the 8-inch floppy disk era, but came on board when dual 5.25” was considered mainstream and a 10-megabyte full-height HDD was the mark of a power user. The first computer I built for my own enjoyment was an AMD X5-133 (a factory overclocked 486 faster than the Pentium-75), and I’ve used a wide variety of systems since then, including a Pentium Pro-200 which served me well in college and a K6-2 which I took to quite a few LAN parties. While I’ve always had Intel notebooks, my PC’s have been AMD for quite some time now. I decided to upgrade my current main machine, which is an FX-8350 with a mild 4.4Ghz overclock. I was using 2x8GB Crucial Ballistix DDR3-1600 and a Sapphire Radeon Fury Nitro. While I know the R5-1600x would be a better bet for a pure gaming build, I have a soft spot for 8-core machines. I had been tempted to pull the trigger on an i7-7700k for a while, but the timing never worked out. But when I found the R7-1700 at a deep discount and an X370 motherboard on the shelf next to it – I couldn’t resist the siren call of a new build.
Here are my thoughts about the process:
AM4 is physically the same as AM3 from a build perspective, except for the mounting holes. I don’t know what was so important about making the holes have different offsets, but this makes it much more difficult to get quality cooling. Not all manufacturers have brackets yet, and I’m still waiting on Cooler Master to release the brackets for my Siedon 240.
The new motherboard feels very different from my AM3 board. My FX-8350 sat on an ASUS M5A99FX Pro R2.0. It was, for lack of a better word, a very workstation-ish board. 4 PCIx16 slots, 10x USB ports (2 of the USB 3.0), triple USB 2.0 front panel headers (and a USB 3.0 front panel header as well), eSATA on the rear panel, beefy VRM and Northbridge cooling, Toslink output for audio, and so on. The board itself is full of tiny components, support chips, and ports. Granted, many of these connectors are outdated (eSATA and USB2.0), and the PCIe is only 2.0 instead of current-gen 3.0, but there is a LOT of connectivity. Few people paired an FX chip with triple of quad-GPU for gaming, but I know a fair number of people used these for bitcoin mining back before there was widespread ASIC support and back then GPU mining was the most cost-effective way to mint cryptocurrency. Extra PCIe slots could be used for dedicated video capture, PCI-based storage, a RAID card, etc... Having 4 full-size slots allows this kind of flexibility. The new motherboard is an Asrock Fatal1ty x370 Gaming K4. It does not feel very workstation-ish at all. It has only two 16x PCIe slots (and when they are both in use they are only 8x), 8 USB ports on the rear panel, and a much less “busy” motherboard. Very few support chips litter its surface. Instead of a workstation component, it feels much more like a luxury consumer product. This is not a bad thing – just something I noticed while building the system. The rear IO shield is red and black to match its gaming aesthetic, it includes things like premium audio (including a very nice headphone amplifier for the front panel connectors), and while it only has 8x USB ports on the back, 6 of them are USB 3.0 and two of them (including a type-C connector) are USB 3.1 gen2. It includes RGB LED’s under the chipset heatsink and three separate RGB LED controller ports (one of which is used for the boxed cooler), Intel gigabit Ethernet, and dual M.2 slots (one of which connected directly to the CPU). It is very different in “feel” from the older ASUS board, even down to things like a shroud for the external connectors and metal-reinforced PCI slots. I must say, its more aggressive appearance and near-empty areas appeal to me. It does, however, funnel the builder into a particular configuration: limited fast storage through the M.2 slots, slow(er) storage through the 6x SATA ports, all external devices should be USB 3. Personally, these limitations didn’t restrict me for this build, since that was how I was going to set it up anyway, but the fewer connectivity choices might cause some pause for others. The only thing I don’t like about this board is the 20 second POST times. 20 seconds every time. Resuming from sleep is very fast, just reboots are slow. That’s really it. I have no substantive complaints other than that – well, and the memory speed limitations – more on that below.
The Wraith Spire cooler is without doubt the best looking box cooler I’ve ever seen. The symmetrical cylinder look, combined with the LED logo and RGB ring are very striking. I can see why many people have asked to order one, though I think for the 1700X and 1800X they are better off without it. I’ll explain why further down.
Initial hardware setup was very easy. I was able to flash to the newest 2.0 BIOS without any hassle using a DOS USB flash boot drive. The 2.0 BIOS has the newest AGESA code from AMD, as well as support for the R5 processors and better DDR4 compatibility. I didn’t want to cheap out on RAM since apparently Ryzen is sensitive to DDR4 speeds for the latency between cores. I bought the cheapest 16GB DDR4-3200 kit I could find (the EVGA SuperSC 2x8GB), for which I paid $115. While I was not able to get it to boot at 3200, I could get 2933 simply by activating XMP, then manually changing the speed from 3200 to 3000. I then tested it with MemTest86 for two complete cycles, which it passed without errors. I have encountered zero memory issues with these RAM sticks running at 2933. Since this motherboard does not officially support DDR4-3200 at all, I figure this is a good outcome. I am curious to know whether anyone has gotten 3200 on this board – that is, whether the lack of 3200 memory on Asrock’s QVL is a marketing issue or an actual hardware limitation – but I didn’t want to spend nearly double that amount in order to get AM4 verified memory (G.Skill’s FlareX), and 2966 seemed fast enough from the benchmark results I had read.
My old setup had a Samsung 850 EVO 256gb SATA6 drive as the primary boot/gaming drive. It seemed plenty fast but it had become too small for my needs, so this seemed like a good opportunity to buy a new SSD. I originally thought the NVMe drives would be out of my price range, but I bought the Intel 600p 512GB drive for only $10 more than I would have paid for a premium SATA6 drive. Though the 600p is without doubt the SLOWEST NVMe drive out there, it has 3x the read speed as the SATA6 drives, and most of what I am doing with it is trying to get quicker load times. If I was using it for professional workloads (as a video editing scratch drive, for example), I would need much higher sustained write speeds and then Samsung would be the obvious answer. I just didn’t want to spend an extra $80 on write performance that I’d never notice, and the 600p has been an excellent boot/gaming drive.
Ok, back to the Wraith Spire. I tend to have bad luck with the silicon lottery. My FX-8350 was not able to be stable above 4.4Ghz with reasonable temperatures. I was hoping I would be able to get better results from the R7-1700, since general reports indicated that it overclocked well. Unfortunately, it is difficult to tell how good of an overclock I am getting since I can find no good information about maximum recommended temperatures for this chip. Some people say 75c is the maximum safe temp. Others say 75c is a fine everyday 24/7 temp. Others say they are running it at 80c all the time without any issues at all. Steve at Techspot was getting 88c and 90c when overclocking the 1600X and 1500X using the stock coolers and without any instability – were those dangerous temps or totally fine? Nobody seems to know. I like my overclocks to be set-and-forget. I want to get it dialed in and then leave it for years without worrying that it will burn up or degrade or that in this or that application I have to turn back to stock speeds because of the thermals. Since I don’t know what max safe thermals are, I just have to guess based on stock thermals.
For stock speeds, the Wraith Spire does a good job. It is very quiet, and after a few BIOS fan-curve tweaks, it keeps the chip around 35-38 at idle, and around 68-70 on Prime95 (Small FFT, for maximum temperature generation). Incidentally, it also hits 70 if I run Cinebench a bunch of times in a row as well, so I don’t consider the Small FFT test to be totally unrealistic for the load this chip might encounter. From what I can tell, these are good normal temps. I can get 3.5Ghz by simply changing the multiplier and leaving the voltage at stock. This gives Cinebench numbers around the 1550 mark (roughly 6900k levels). Prime95 shows a modest boost in temperatures of 3-4 degrees C, and was stable even for several hours. If I push it to 3.6Ghz at stock voltage the system is unstable. At 3.7Ghz (the 1700’s boost speed for single-threaded loads) it is stable only if I give it 1.3v. While that is a totally fine voltage (AMD recommends up to 1.35v for 24/7), the Wraith Spire cannot handle a Prime95 Small FFT load anymore. I shut down the test and reverted the OC when the CPU read 89c. Given the fact that the Spire was meant to cool a 65w chip (and so probably is rated at no more than 85-95w), this is not a terribly surprising temperature – I wish I knew if it was dangerous. I have no doubt that a 240mm radiator or even a decent tower cooler will be more than enough to cool down my 3.7Ghz R7-1700. I am a little jealous of the people who just set the multiplier to 3700 and are good to go – lower voltages probably mean the Spire would be enough. But for me, it was not to be. I was halfway tempted to see at what temperature the chip would reduce its clock speed, but I didn’t want to burn up a chip I had just bought – might as well wait until I get bigger and better cooling to OC it to the 3.8-3.9 I hope it will reach.
Other than the OC temps it has been smooth sailing. Gaming feels more fluid than with the FX, even in games that I always thought were GPU-limited and/or running at 60fps with VSYNC on. Especially games that are sensitive to single-core performance (Heroes of the Storm is my latest addiction) there is a definite boost in 1% low and 0.1% low FPS. I have been using the Ryzen Balanced power plan from AMD and it seems to do a fantastic job keeping temps low when idle and letting the cores ramp up really fast when needed. I need to test whether the lack of core parking prevents it from hitting the 3.7Ghz boost as much as the regular Balanced plan allows. I think a simple CineBench single-thread comparison will do the trick.
I also tried streaming a bit – and it was able to generate 1080p60fps at x264-medium settings without being noticeable while in game. Later I edited some video of my kids – the final render speed was SOOOO fast. I am, on the whole, very happy with my upgrade. I get better single-core performance, much much better multi-core performance, along with faster disk speeds, and a more modern platform (with RGB lighting, M.2, USB 3.1, etc…).
Now if only I could find out appropriate temperatures…..
submitted by Morphon to Amd [link] [comments]

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60Cm Ver009S Pci-E Riser Card Pcie 1X To 16X Usb 3.0 Data ...

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