It’s never great when you have to take a ‘trial and error’ approach to work out whether an operating system works with your hardware or the other way around – not least to do this you’ve had to actually purchase the kit!
That’s why XenServer has a hardware compatibility list (HCL for short). The HCL is the means by which we can assure customers:
What Hardware is tested with XenServer
We provide our partners with automated tests to confirm hardware meets our functional and performance requirements.
What Hardware Citrix and partners support (above and beyond best-effort)
If something ever did go wrong, provided you have a support contract, both Citrix and the hardware manufacturer will work together to ensure a fix is produced to rectify the issue.
The HCL started out fairly simple. It has gradually grown and gotten more and more complicated over time, particularly in recent years with the dawn of device types like Converged Network Adapters and GPU cards. Needless to say these added complexities, along with ageing infrastructure, components and technologies pushed the old site to the limit of what it could handle.
Finally, several weeks ago, the final straw broke the systems back – prompting us to roll up our sleeves to work on developing something completely new – a rewrite from the ground up that would focus on improving performance and usability – with the by-product of future proofing the site for a number of improvements.
We hope that the result has both a ‘fresh but familiar’ feel, along with some notable improvements:
We fixed the search!
I know, I know – “Why did it take this long!” I hear you cry! Well it’s here now, and we hope it’s going to speed up finding what you’re after no-end.
We’ve gotten rid of the separate CNA page
We’ve decided that it was too confusing having separate pages for Network Adapters and Converged Network Adapters (essentially NAs with extra features!) – so we’ve unified them and created a single ‘Network Adapters’ component with a set of supported features which you can filter.
Linked GPUs and Servers
The GPU passthrough/vGPU pages were becoming very unusable with an ever increasing list of supported server/GPU combinations. Because GPU support is heavily dependent on particular servers, BIOS versions, drivers (not to mention XenServer releases!) – the monolithic pages just didn’t scale (and didn’t have filters).
So we’ve fixed that by making this is a first-class device on the HCL and we’ve cross-linked servers with GPUs. This means that if you click on a GPU, you get the list of servers supported with it – equally, if you click on a particular server, you can see which GPU cards are supported.
We think that this is a step forward but we’d love to go further! Please leave us some comments on this blog post if you have any ideas for how we can make the site more useful to you.
Check it out here: http://hcl.vmd.citrix.com
And for the sake of nostalgia…