Thanks to Reuben F who left a comment on the Community Networking Driver for ESXi Fling asking about something interesting he saw in the latest ESXi 7.0 Update 3f release notes regarding Intel ne1000 driver.
ESXi 7.0 Update 3f upgrades the Intel-ne1000 driver to support Intel I219-LM devices that are required for newer server models, such as the Intel Rocket Lake-S platform. The TCP segmentation offload for the I219 devices is deactivated because of known issues in the hardware DMA.
He asked whether the Community Networking Driver for ESXi Fling was still needed to support the various Intel I219 devices on the Fling requirements page?
First off, thank you Reuben for making me aware of this, which I totally missed while reading the release notes. Secondly, I reached out to Songtao, one of the Engineers on Fling and he was also surprised by the news. He checked the source and then confirmed that all listed Intel I219 devices in the Fling has actually been incorporated into the latest ESXi 7.0 Update 3f release and the Fling would no longer be required for these specific devices and we have Shu, another Engineer on the Fling to thank for this awesome update! Thank you Shu!
Songtao, Shu and myself had released the Community Networking Driver for ESXi Fling back in early 2021 to help support some of the networking devices that we had observed in the community and there have been a number of releases that has added additional devices. It is always a great feeling to see your work not only being well adopted but also now productized. This is one of the many benefits of the VMware Fling's program and being able to share a solution that solves an immediate problem and iterating on feedback from our users, we have the opportunity to enhance and improve our products/services. Thank you to all the VMware customers who have and continue to support us! 🙏
Who knows ... maybe the network devices under the igc-community module in the Fling will be productized next? 😀