Finding the right Lenovo Firmware for vSAN

With any new vSAN deployment, it is critical to ensure the drivers and firmware levels are in compliance with the VMware Compatibility Guide (VCG). Get to the VCG by following the steps below.

  1. Go to the VMware Compatibility Guide here
  2. Go to the vSAN section of the Compatibility Guide here
  3. Select Build Your Own based on Certified Components near the bottom

You’ll see the vSAN component selector. Even if you purchase a vSAN ready node, it is a good idea to reference this page to ensure that the firmware and driver that comes preinstalled on the system are what is supported by vSAN.

Our focus today is Lenovo firmware, specifically the ServeRAID 5210 SAS/SATA controller. Select I/O Controller in the Search For field and Lenovo in the Brand Name field, and enter 5210 in the click Update and View Results.

In this case, two 5210’s are listed. On the console of the host, run the following command (assuming your ServeRAID controller is vmhba0) to view the Vendor ID, Device ID, SubSystem Vendor ID, and Subsystem ID of the device.

In this case, the following value was returned, showing that a ServeRAID 5210 was installed and NOT a ServeRAID 5210e.

Upon clicking the link for the model, the below information is presented. This is where the fun begins.

The vSAN VCG shows that version 4.620.00-7178 should be installed. Upon checking the IMM of the Lenovo server, it was determined that the controller had a firmware version of 24.16.0-0104. Needless to say, the version installed does not line up with the version listed in the VCG.

Upon going to the Lenovo support site, and checking for controller firmware for the 5210, which was installed in a Lenovo 3650 M5 type 8871, the versions continued to be mismatched.

So, here’s the trick. Open up the Change History file. The change history file contains the mapping between the Lenovo firmware package name, and the MegaRAID firmware version. Below is a snipped of the change log. It seems that the MegaRAID firmware version is what is listed in the VCG. In this case, firmware version 4.620.00-7178 corresponds with Lenovo firmware package 24.12.0-0033.

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