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Using 40GE QSFP to 4x 10GE SFP+ splitter cable

Today I was very frustrated when I connect a 40GE QSFP to 4x 10GE SFP+ splitter cable to a HPE FlexFabric 5700 48G 4XG 2QSFP+ switch (JG894A). I received the following message:

[HPE]%Jan 8 19:02:19:652 2011 HPE OPTMOD/4/MODULE_IN: FortyGigE1/0/54: The transceiver is STACK_QSFP_PLUS_4SFP_PLUS.

[HPE]%Jan 8 19:02:50:826 2011 HPE OPTMOD/3/TYPE_ERR: FortyGigE1/0/54: Transceiver type not supported!

First reaction: PANIC! The customer was waiting for delivery and now we had this problem… I looked at the transceiver information and the cable was shown correctly:

[HPE]dis transceiver int FortyGigE 1/0/54
FortyGigE1/0/54 transceiver information:
Transceiver Type : STACK_QSFP_PLUS_4SFP_PLUS
Connector Type : COPPER
Wavelength(nm) : N/A
Transfer Distance(m) : 5(STACK)
Digital Diagnostic Monitoring : NO
Vendor Name : HP
Ordering Name : JG331A

F**K… whats the problem? The distributor told me to just plug it in (I think it was a salesman, not a technician -.-) The offical product document also shows the supported transceiver/splitter-cables:

HPE FlexNetwork X240 40G QSFP+ to 4x10G SFP+ 1m Direct Attach Copper Splitter Cable JG329A
HPE FlexNetwork X240 40G QSFP+ to 4x10G SFP+ 3m Direct Attach Copper Splitter Cable JG330A
HPE FlexNetwork X240 40G QSFP+ to 4x10G SFP+ 5m Direct Attach Copper Splitter Cable JG331A

I googled the logmessages and topics about this cable but I couldn’t find any solution. I installed the new software image 5700-cmw710-system-r2432p01 (previous version 5700-cmw710-system-r2422p01) and made a reboot but the console shows again the “not supported” message. So I went to the interface and looked to the commands and I found something:

[HPE-FortyGigE1/0/54]using tengige
The interface FortyGigE1/0/54 will be deleted. Continue? [Y/N]:y
Reboot the member device to make the configuration take effect.
[HPE-FortyGigE1/0/54]save force
Validating file. Please wait…
Saved the current configuration to mainboard device successfully.

after the reboot, the splitter cable was recognized and the transceiver error message doesn’t appear again. The “dis int brief” command shows also the four new interfaces:

interface Ten-GigabitEthernet1/0/54:1
interface Ten-GigabitEthernet1/0/54:2
interface Ten-GigabitEthernet1/0/54:3
interface Ten-GigabitEthernet1/0/54:4

After this I find an article at H3C to this command. It says “By default, a 40-GE interface is not split and operates as a single interface. The 10-GE breakout interfaces support the same configuration and attributes as common 10-GE interfaces, except that they are numbered differently. A 40-GE interface split into four 10-GE breakout interfaces must use a dedicated 1-to-4 cable.”

The interfaces are numbered from 1 to 4 but the cable has stickers from A to D:

I hope that I can help alot of people with this. From now on, Google will guide you to this article ;) and when you don’t need this cable anymore, you can use it as a necklace:

NetworkDoge – “WOW SO MUCH CABLE” :D


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ekahau Certified Survey Engineer
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