IXGBE(7D) Devices IXGBE(7D)

ixgbe - Intel 10Gb PCI Express NIC Driver


The ixgbe 10 Gigabit Ethernet driver is a multi-threaded, loadable, clonable, GLD-based STREAMS driver supporting the Data Link Provider Interface, dlpi(7P), on Intel 10-Gigabit PCI Express Ethernet controllers.

The ixgbe driver functions include controller initialization, frame transmit and receive, promiscuous and multicast support, and error recovery and reporting.

The ixgbe driver supports the following Intel 10-Gigabit PCI Express Ethernet controllers:

Intel Ethernet Controller 82598EB Family
Intel Ethernet Controller 82599EB (X520) Family
Intel Ethernet Controller X540 Family
Intel Ethernet Controller X550 Family

The ixgbe driver and hardware support auto-negotiation, a protocol specified by the IEEE 802.3ae specification.

The cloning character-special device, /dev/ixgbe, is used to access all Intel 10-Gigabit PCI Express Ethernet devices installed within the system.

The ixgbe driver is managed by the dladm(1M) command line utility, which allows VLANs to be defined on top of ixgbe instances and for ixgbe instances to be aggregated. See dladm(1M) for more details.

You must send an explicit DL_ATTACH_REQ message to associate the opened stream with a particular device (PPA). The PPA ID is interpreted as an unsigned integer data type and indicates the corresponding device instance (unit) number. The driver returns an error (DL_ERROR_ACK) if the PPA field value does not correspond to a valid device instance number for the system. The device is initialized on first attach and de-initialized (stopped) at last detach.

The values returned by the driver in the DL_INFO_ACK primitive in response to your DL_INFO_REQ are:

Maximum SDU for Intel 82598EB is 16366.
Maximum SDU for Intel 82599EB, X540 and X550 is 15500.
Minimum SDU is 0.
DLSAP address length is 8.
MAC type is DL_ETHER.
SAP (Service Access Point) length value is -2, meaning the physical address component is followed immediately by a 2-byte SAP component within the DLSAP address.
Broadcast address value is the Ethernet/IEEE broadcast address (FF:FF:FF:FF:FF:FF).

Once in the DL_ATTACHED state, you must send a DL_BIND_REQ to associate a particular SAP with the stream.

By default, the ixgbe driver performs auto-negotiation to select the link speed and mode. Link speed and mode can only be 10000 Mbps full-duplex for fiber, and only 10000, 1000, or 100 Mbps full-duplex for copper. See the IEEE802.3 standard for more information.

Special character device.


Device driver (x86)


Device driver (SPARC)


Driver configuration file

See attributes(5) for descriptions of the following attributes:

Architecture SPARC, x86
Interface Stability Committed

dladm(1M), netstat(1M), driver.conf(4), attributes(5), streamio(7I), dlpi(7P)

Writing Device Drivers

STREAMS Programming Guide

Network Interfaces Programmer's Guide

IEEE 802.3ae Specification, IEEE - 2002

January 10, 2020