SR-IOV is a specification that allows a PCIe device to appear to be multiple separate physical PCIe devices.
Intel NICs for the server market – for example – advertise their SR-IOV capabilities to improve networking speed in virtualized guest systems.
The network driver has to support SR-IOV and you can enable the capabilities by setting a parameter when loading the module using the
modprobe command. For the driver
igb, this is be
max_vfs=7. More can be found in the Red Hat Virtualization Host Configuration and Guest Installation Guide (section on SR-IOV and the following section: 13.2. Using SR-IOV).
- Intel NICs supporting SR-IOV include those based on the chipset Intel 82576 Gigabit Ethernet Controller
- SR-IOV seems to work with 12.04 LTS as stated in this bug comment
- little outdated but good resource: http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/Features/SR-IOV
- A collection of references can to be found in the ubuntuforums.org forum post Anyone Using SR-IOV for KVM?.
- Some practical questions are discussed in this Intel forum thread.
- What is SR-IOV? http://blog.scottlowe.org/2009/12/02/what-is-sr-iov/