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Supported configurations for system boot from SAN

This document (3627396) is provided subject to the disclaimer at the end of this document.


Hardware: Machine with a Fibre Channel controller that is attached to a Storage Area Network (SAN)
Software: SuSE Linux Enterprise Server 10


Recent BIOSes with Fibre Channel support, enable servers to be booted directly from a logical unit number (LUN) on a SAN.In order to do, so the BIOS communicates directly with the Fibre Channel controller and fetches the information about the storage.With these information a virtual boot device is created, to which the world wide id (wwid) of a LUN can be assigned.This becomes the device where the machine boots from.


If the BIOS supports virtual boot devices to which a wwid can be assigned, the SAN boot is supported.

There is, however, one limitation:currently there is no known bios that can boot via multipath.If the boot files are located on a multipathed LUN, the BIOS will just choose one of the available paths to the LUN.

This restriction applies only as long as the bios has control over the boot process.As soon as the operating system is startet the multipath setup for the /boot partition is available.

A detailed description about the hardware setup for SAN boot, including configuration examples for several operating systems, can be found at:

Additional Information


This Support Knowledgebase provides a valuable tool for SUSE customers and parties interested in our products and solutions to acquire information, ideas and learn from one another. Materials are provided for informational, personal or non-commercial use within your organization and are presented "AS IS" WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND.

  • Document ID:3627396
  • Creation Date: 16-Feb-2007
  • Modified Date:03-Mar-2020
    • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server

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