Support for ibmvnic in SLES

This document (7023703) is provided subject to the disclaimer at the end of this document.


SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 15 SP1
SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 15
SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12 SP4
SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12 SP3


The kernel device driver ibmvnic provides support for vNIC (virtual Network Interface Controller) which is a PowerVM virtual networking technology that delivers enterprise capabilities and simplifies network management on IBM POWER systems. It is an efficient high-performance technology. 
When combined with SR-IOV NIC, it provides bandwidth control Quality of Service (QoS) capabilities at the virtual NIC level. vNIC significantly reduces virtualization overhead resulting in lower latencies and fewer server resources (CPU, memory) required for network virtualization.


The kernel device driver ibmvnic is supported with SLES as follows: 
 * ibmvnic is supported with SLES 12 SP3, SLES 12 SP4, SLES 15, SLES 15 SP1, and forward.  It is recommended to have the most current SLES kernel maintenance update installed.
 * ibmvnic is fully supported on IBM POWER9 systems using the most current POWER9 firmware installed. 
 * ibmvnic is supported as Technology Preview only on IBM POWER8 systems. 
 * Attempting an installation of SLES 12 SP3 using an SR-IOV (Single Root I/O Virtualization) vNIC (virtual Network Interface Controller) interface results in unexpected behavior or failure to complete the installation on POWER. The SLES 12 SP3 installation can be done using an alternative device, such as a virtual ethernet adapter. 
After the SLES 12 SP3 installation is complete, a vNIC interface can be configured as normal. 
 * The IBM Community Public Wiki at provides additional hints and tips for the usage of ibmvnic on POWER. (Search for 'vnic' in this wiki.)


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:7023703
  • Creation Date: 06-Feb-2019
  • Modified Date:13-Dec-2021
    • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server
    • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for SAP Applications

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