6. BNX2X Poll Mode Driver

The BNX2X poll mode driver library (librte_pmd_bnx2x) implements support for QLogic 578xx 10/20 Gbps family of adapters as well as their virtual functions (VF) in SR-IOV context. It is supported on several standard Linux distros like Red Hat 7.x and SLES12 OS. It is compile-tested under FreeBSD OS.

More information can be found at QLogic Corporation’s Official Website.

6.1. Supported Features

BNX2X PMD has support for:

  • Base L2 features
  • Unicast/multicast filtering
  • Promiscuous mode
  • Port hardware statistics

6.2. Non-supported Features

The features not yet supported include:

  • TSS (Transmit Side Scaling)
  • RSS (Receive Side Scaling)
  • LRO/TSO offload
  • Checksum offload
  • Rx TX scatter gather

6.3. Co-existence considerations

  • BCM578xx being a CNA can have both NIC and Storage personalities. However, coexistence with storage protocol drivers (cnic, bnx2fc and bnx2fi) is not supported on the same adapter. So storage personality has to be disabled on that adapter when used in DPDK applications.
  • For SR-IOV case, bnx2x PMD will be used to bind to SR-IOV VF device and Linux native kernel driver (bnx2x) will be attached to SR-IOV PF.

6.4. Supported QLogic NICs

  • 578xx

6.5. Prerequisites

  • Requires firmware version It is included in most of the standard Linux distros. If it is not available visit linux-firmware git repository to get the required firmware.

6.6. Pre-Installation Configuration

6.6.1. Config File Options

The following options can be modified in the .config file. Please note that enabling debugging options may affect system performance.


    Toggle compilation of bnx2x driver. To use bnx2x PMD set this config parameter to ‘y’. Also, in order for firmware binary to load user will need zlib devel package installed.


    Toggle display of transmit fast path run-time messages.


    Toggle display of receive fast path run-time messages.


    Toggle display of register reads and writes.

6.7. Driver compilation and testing

Refer to the document compiling and testing a PMD for a NIC for details.

6.8. SR-IOV: Prerequisites and sample Application Notes

This section provides instructions to configure SR-IOV with Linux OS.

  1. Verify SR-IOV and ARI capabilities are enabled on the adapter using lspci:

    lspci -s <slot> -vvv

    Example output:

    Capabilities: [1b8 v1] Alternative Routing-ID Interpretation (ARI)
    Capabilities: [1c0 v1] Single Root I/O Virtualization (SR-IOV)
    Kernel driver in use: igb_uio
  2. Load the kernel module:

    modprobe bnx2x

    Example output:

    systemd-udevd[4848]: renamed network interface eth0 to ens5f0
    systemd-udevd[4848]: renamed network interface eth1 to ens5f1
  3. Bring up the PF ports:

    ifconfig ens5f0 up
    ifconfig ens5f1 up
  4. Create VF device(s):

    Echo the number of VFs to be created into “sriov_numvfs” sysfs entry of the parent PF.

    Example output:

    echo 2 > /sys/devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:03.0/0000:81:00.0/sriov_numvfs
  5. Assign VF MAC address:

    Assign MAC address to the VF using iproute2 utility. The syntax is: ip link set <PF iface> vf <VF id> mac <macaddr>

    Example output:

    ip link set ens5f0 vf 0 mac 52:54:00:2f:9d:e8
  6. PCI Passthrough:

    The VF devices may be passed through to the guest VM using virt-manager or virsh etc. bnx2x PMD should be used to bind the VF devices in the guest VM using the instructions outlined in the Application notes below.

  7. Running testpmd:

    Follow instructions available in the document compiling and testing a PMD for a NIC to run testpmd.

    Example output:

    EAL: PCI device 0000:84:00.0 on NUMA socket 1
    EAL:   probe driver: 14e4:168e rte_bnx2x_pmd
    EAL:   PCI memory mapped at 0x7f14f6fe5000
    EAL:   PCI memory mapped at 0x7f14f67e5000
    EAL:   PCI memory mapped at 0x7f15fbd9b000
    EAL: PCI device 0000:84:00.1 on NUMA socket 1
    EAL:   probe driver: 14e4:168e rte_bnx2x_pmd
    EAL:   PCI memory mapped at 0x7f14f5fe5000
    EAL:   PCI memory mapped at 0x7f14f57e5000
    EAL:   PCI memory mapped at 0x7f15fbd4f000
    Interactive-mode selected
    Configuring Port 0 (socket 0)
    PMD: bnx2x_dev_tx_queue_setup(): fp[00] req_bd=512, thresh=512,
                 usable_bd=1020, total_bd=1024,
    PMD: bnx2x_dev_rx_queue_setup(): fp[00] req_bd=128, thresh=0,
                 usable_bd=510, total_bd=512,
                              rx_pages=1, cq_pages=8
    PMD: bnx2x_print_adapter_info():
    Checking link statuses...
    Port 0 Link Up - speed 10000 Mbps - full-duplex
    Port 1 Link Up - speed 10000 Mbps - full-duplex