A dependent hardware iSCSI adapter is a third-party adapter that depends on VMware networking, and iSCSI configuration and management interfaces provided by VMware.

An example of a dependent iSCSI adapter is a Broadcom 5709 NIC. When installed on a host, it presents its two components, a standard network adapter and an iSCSI engine, to the same port. The iSCSI engine appears on the list of storage adapters as an iSCSI adapter (vmhba).

The iSCSI adapter is enabled by default. To make it functional, you must connect it, through a virtual VMkernel adapter (vmk), to a physical network adapter (vmnic) associated with it. You can then configure the iSCSI adapter.

After you configure the dependent hardware iSCSI adapter, the discovery and authentication data is passed through the network connection. The iSCSI traffic goes through the iSCSI engine, bypassing the network.

The entire setup and configuration process for the dependent hardware iSCSI adapters involves several steps.

Step Description
View Dependent Hardware iSCSI Adapters View a dependent hardware iSCSI adapter to verify that it is correctly loaded.
Modify General Properties for iSCSI or iSER Adapters If needed, change the default iSCSI name and alias assigned to your adapter.
Determine Association Between iSCSI and Network Adapters You must create network connections to bind dependent iSCSI and physical network adapters. To create the connections correctly, determine the name of the physical NIC with which the dependent hardware iSCSI adapter is associated.
Configure Port Binding for iSCSI or iSER Configure connections for the traffic between the iSCSI component and the physical network adapters. The process of configuring these connections is called port binding.
Configure Dynamic or Static Discovery for iSCSI and iSER on ESXi Host Set up dynamic discovery. With dynamic discovery, each time the initiator contacts a specified iSCSI storage system, it sends the SendTargets request to the system. The iSCSI system responds by supplying a list of available targets to the initiator. In addition to the dynamic discovery method, you can use static discovery and manually enter information for the targets.
Set Up CHAP for iSCSI or iSER Storage Adapter If your iSCSI environment uses the Challenge Handshake Authentication Protocol (CHAP), configure it for your adapter.
Set Up CHAP for Target You can also configure different CHAP credentials for each discovery address or static target.
Enable Jumbo Frames for Networking If your iSCSI environment supports Jumbo Frames, enable them for the adapter.