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net51-drivers (Deprecated - see note below!)


Adds the blacklisted ESXi 5.1 NIC drivers back to ESXi 6. The original driver names were

  • net-r8168
  • net-r8169
  • net-sky2
  • net-s2io

Also adds additional PCI mappings for the net-sky2 driver. These are also separately available as net-sky2-1.

Please note: This package is deprecated! Please use one (or more) of the following packages instead:


Andreas Peetz (@VFrontDe)

Vendor (Vendor Code)

VFrontDe (VFT)

Current Version


Supported Devices / PCI IDs

10ec:8168, 10ec:8167, 10ec:8169, 17d5:5831, 17d5:5832, 1148:9000, 1148:9E00, 1186:4001, 1186:4b01, 1186:4b02, 1186:4b03, 11ab:4340, 11ab:4341, 11ab:4342, 11ab:4343, 11ab:4344, 11ab:4345, 11ab:4346, 11ab:4347, 11ab:4350, 11ab:4351, 11ab:4352, 11ab:4353, 11ab:4356, 11ab:4357, 11ab:435a, 11ab:4360, 11ab:4361, 11ab:4363, 11ab:4364, 11ab:4365, 11ab:4366, 11ab:4367, 11ab:4368, 11ab:4369, 11ab:436a, 11ab:436b, 11ab:436c, 11ab:4354, 11ab:4362

Acceptance Level


Dependencies and Restrictions

  • Replaces: net-r8168, net-r8169, net-s2io, net-sky2, net-sky2-1
  • Compatible With: ESXi 5.1, ESXi 5.5, ESXi 6.0, ESXi 6.5
  • Does NOT work With: ESXi 6.7 and newer

(In ESXi 5.0 and 5.1 these drivers are included out-of-the-box, with ESXi 5.5 you can add them directly from the VMware Online Depot. See Additional links.)

Package Properties

Requires MaintMode Live Install Allowed Live Remove Allowed Stateless Ready Overlay
Yes No No Yes No

Additional links

Direct Download links