Microsoft's Newest Linux Driver Contribution Is Enabling MANA RDMA

Written by Michael Larabel in Microsoft on 17 May 2022 at 05:33 AM EDT. 8 Comments
Microsoft has another open-source driver they are working to get upstreamed into the Linux kernel.

Microsoft overnight sent out a set of 12 patches amounting to over two thousand lines of code for adding a MANA RDMA driver. MANA in this context is the Microsoft Azure Network Adapter.

Last year Microsoft sent out patches adding a MANA driver to Linux. That driver in Linux 5.13 was their initial network adapter to be used with Microsoft's cloud by virtual machines moving forward. Now they are preparing to offer RDMA (Remote Direct Memory Access) support under their MANA umbrella.

Microsoft publishes another open-source Linux driver.

The new patches implement working Remote DMA support for Microsoft's Azure Network Adapter that is modeled as an auxiliary device to the Ethernet device. This builds off the existing MANA Ethernet driver from last year and thus how they were able to get this new RDMA support going in a little more than two thousand lines of code.

With these patches, the new driver can be enabled via the "MANA_INFINIBAND" Kconfig build switch.

Various Microsoft Azure instances have already been offering Linux RDMA support and InfiniBand going back to 2015 with a focus on high performance computing (HPC) while this latest code points to their next-gen VMs offering this in-house MANA-based solution.
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