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ESXi host fails with a diagnostic screen due to an Intel® Virtualization Technology Erratum (2147325)

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Symptoms

  • The ESXi host fails with a purple diagnostic screen due to an Intel® Virtualization Technology for Directed I/O erratum in systems with Intel® Xeon® Processors
  • You see the backtrace:

    cpu2:32999)0x4390c119b660:[0x4180163128c3]VTDQISync@vmkernel#nover+0xf7 stack: 0x1
    cpu2:32999)0x4390c119b6a0:[0x4180163137b2]VTDIRWriteIRTE@vmkernel#nover+0x8e stack: 0x2e
    cpu2:32999)0x4390c119b6d0:[0x418016313895]VTDIRSteerVector@vmkernel#nover+0x61 stack: 0x43004d129f10
    cpu2:32999)0x4390c119b700:[0x4180162e96c9]IOAPICSteerVector@vmkernel#nover+0x59 stack: 0x1c00
    cpu2:32999)0x4390c119b740:[0x418016057514]IntrCookie_SetDestination@vmkernel#nover+0x174 stack: 0x4

Purpose

This article provides information about the problem's cause and the required BIOS fix.

Cause

The purple diagnostic screens are rare but can occur in platforms based on these processors:
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor 55xx Series
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor 56xx Series
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor 65xx Series
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor 75xx Series
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E5-1400 v2 Product Family
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E5-1600 v2 Product Family
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E5-1600 v3 Product Family
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E5-2400 Product Family
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E5-2400 v2 Product Family
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E5-2600 Product Family
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E5-2600 v2 Product Family
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E5-2600 v3 Product Family
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E5-2600 v4 Product Family
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E5-4600 Product Family
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E5-4600 v2 Product Family
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E5-4600 v3 Product Family
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E5-4600 v4 Product Family
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E7-2800 Product Family
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E7-4800 Product Family
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E7-8800 Product Family
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E7-8800/4800/2800 v2 Product Families
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E7-8800/4800 v3 Product Families
  • Intel® Xeon® Processor E7-8800/4800 v4 Product Families
The cause of this problem is an Intel® IOMMU (VT-d) erratum that causes the IOMMU to stop processing IOTLB invalidation requests submitted by the ESXi host to the IOMMU. This is a non-recoverable condition that causes the ESXi host to fail.

Most Intel® Xeon® processor based platforms incorporate a work around for the erratum in the machine's BIOS. For platforms that do not, they will require a BIOS update as described in the Resolution section.

Public information about the erratum (BT98) for the Intel® Xeon® E5 processor family (Sandybridge EN/EP) can be found at Intel® Xeon® Processor E5 Family: Spec Update.

Information about this erratum in other processor families is not public. Please contact the machine's manufacturer or Intel® for support

Resolution

VMWare recommends contacting the hardware manufacturer for updated BIOS or possible workarounds.

Note: A prior version of this KB article recommended that customers experiencing the problem described above work around it by configuring ESXi to disable the Intel® VT-d interrupt remapper (setting boot option iovDisableIR=TRUE and rebooting). VMware ESXi 5.5 p10, 6.0 p04, 6.0 U3 and 6.5 by default disable the Intel® VT-d interrupt remapper for this purpose.

VMware has recently received several reports indicating that disabling the Intel® VT-d interrupt remapper is causing ESXi host failure on HPE
Gen8 platforms, see ESXi host fails with intermittent NMI purple diagnostic screen on HP ProLiant Gen8 servers (2149043). VMware is no longer recommending that the Intel® VT-d interrupt remapper be disabled to work around the Intel® VT-d erratum described in this article. VMware is recommending that the fix for the erratum be applied in the BIOS as described in the Intel® specification updates for the affected processors.

Tags

PSOD, ESXi, Intel® Virtualization Technology, Intel® Xeon® Processors, Intel® VT-d

Keywords

PSOD, ESXi, Intel® Virtualization Technology, Intel® Xeon® Processors, Intel® VT-d

See Also

Language Editions

zh_cn,2147875

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