NVIDIA ConnectX-5 Ethernet Adapter Cards User Manual

The network ports of the ConnectX®-5 adapter card are compliant with the IEEE 802.3 Ethernet standards listed in Features and Benefits. Ethernet traffic is transmitted through the SFP28/QSFP28 connectors on the adapter card.


The adapter card includes special circuits to protect from ESD shocks to the card/server when plugging copper cables.

The table below describes the supported PCIe interface in ConnectX-5 and ConnectX-5 Ex adapter cards.

IC Model

Supported PCIe Interface



PCIe Gen 3.0 (1.1 and 2.0 compatible) through x8 or x16 edge connectors

Link Rates: 2.5. 5.0 or 8.0GT/s.

Auto Negotiation to: x16, x8, x4, x2 or x1.

Support for MSI/MSI-X mechanisms.

ConnectX-5 Ex

PCIe Gen 3.0/4.0 (1.1 and 2.0 compatible) through x16 edge connectors

Link Rates: 2.5. 5.0, 8.0 or 16.0GT/s.

Auto Negotiation to: x16, x8, x4, x2 or x1.

Support for MSI/MSI-X mechanisms.

There is one bi-color (yellow/green) I/O LED per port to indicate link status located on the adapter card.


LED Behavior

Beacon command for locating the adapter card

Blinks yellow at 1Hz


Blinks yellow at 4Hz until error is resolved. The reason for the error may be:

  • Failure of I2C access to the port

  • Over-current conditions of the port

Link Activity

Blinks green reflecting the link speed

Link Up

Constant green light

ConnectX-5 technology maintains support for manageability through a BMC. ConnectX-5 PCIe stand-up adapter can be connected to a BMC using MCTP over SMBus or MCTP over PCIe protocols as if it is a standard NVIDIA PCIe stand-up adapter. For configuring the adapter for the specific manageability solution in use by the server, please contact NVIDIA Support.

The voltage regulator power is derived from the PCI Express edge connector 12V supply pins. These voltage supply pins feed onboard regulators that provide the necessary power to the various components on the card.

© Copyright 2023, NVIDIA. Last updated on Jan 14, 2024.