VMware ESXi Purple Screen of Death (PSOD) on Dell Server

Last week I was informed of a customer who had a Purple Screen of Death on a Dell PowerEdge R810 running ESXi 4.1 Update 1. The stop screen showed the following reason:

LINT1 motherboard interrupt. This is a hardware problem: please contact your hardware vendor

After working with Dell tech support, the customer was directed to disable the C States and C1E settings in the BIOS. I was interested in this setting as I have a cluster using the same hardware with the same version of ESXi.

The following article describes C States and specifically the C1E setting; it is a method to reduce power consumption by powering off cores when not in use: http://www.delltechcenter.com/page/Impact+of+C1E+on+PowerEdge+11G+Servers+–+HPBD+100909.

The VMware Performance Best Practices Guide (available here: http://www.vmware.com/pdf/Perf_Best_Practices_vSphere4.0.pdf) specifically states on page 15 to “Disable C1E halt state in the BIOS.”

I don’t spend a lot of time changing settings in the BIOS, but with the possible impact of this setting thought this was worth sharing.


  1. [...] ESXi 4.1U1. After applying the update I disabled the C-States and C1E settings as described here: http://enterpriseadmins.org/blog/virtualization/vmware-esxi-psod-on-dell-server/. Once I had all my updates completed, I wanted to validate that each host was reporting the latest [...]

  2. Jai says:

    Just stuck up with this error, is there any immediate fix for this one..?

  3. [...] some research I ended up on Brian Wuchner‘s blog who suggested to diable the following two settings in the server [...]

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