We have a lab at work for the various sales engineers to use. We’ve done a home-brew boot-from-iSCSI farm of servers so we can change boot luns pretty easily, based on a NetApp FAS270 (old cheap but reliable for the moment.)
I had the iSCSI initiator in the BIOS set up and could see it logging into the FAS270. The problem was that if I had the CDROM selected as secondary boot (so I could install an operating system to the new LUN), it would attempt to boot from iSCSI (good!), fail (normal, no OS yet), and then log out of the iSCSI connection before continuing to boot from the CDROM (secondary device). Windows wouldn’t see the target device for installation.
If I put the CDROM first, then the NetExtreme BIOS wouldn’t log into the iSCSI target, so Windows installation again would not see the target device for installation. This differs from IBM x3650 M2/M3 servers which will initialize the iSCSI connection first, no matter what order the boot device is, and work “as expected”.
The trick is to put the CDROM second, but hit “CTRL-D” after the initial login to the iSCSI initiator. The iSCSI boot ROM actually warns you “Hit Ctrl-D if you don’t want to boot from the iSCSI target” or similar. Hitting Ctrl-D tells the Broadcomm chipset to skip iSCSI boot, but stay logged in to the target. So the target LUN is visible, the system boots from CDROM, and the Windows installation can install to the iSCSI device.