The Fibre Channel HBA API Project
HBA API Overview

Frequently Asked Questions



HBA API In The News

The SNIA Common HBA API is an industry standard "C" language Application Programming Interface for management of Fibre Channel Host Bus Adapters and discovery of SAN resources. Developed through the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA), the HBA API has been overwhelmingly adopted by Storage Area Network vendors to help manage, monitor, and deploy storage area networks. It defines a scope within which application software can be written without attention to vendor-specific infrastructure behavior. Included within the scope of the Common HBA API are vendor independent interfaces and services such as:

  1. Observation and modification of descriptive and operational characteristics of Fibre Channel HBAs and ports;
  2. Access to Fibre Channel Fabric Services;
  3. Discovery and characterization of FCP-2 storage resources;
  4. Access to Fibre Channel Extended Link Services sufficient to satisfy the FC-MI manageability profile for Host Bus Adapters;
  5. Observation of Fibre Channel HBA, Port, and storage access traffic statistics;
  6. Observation and modification of the availability and representation of Fibre Channel storage resources to Operating System applications;
  7. Timely and selective reporting of HBA and fabric configuration, status, and statistical events.

The Common HBA API specification was developed in two phases. Phase II, completed in March 2002, includes all of the feature groups listed above. Phase I was an early implementers version completed in September of 2000. It included feature groups 1-3 and partial support for the remaining feature groups.

An implementation of the Common HBA API specification of either phase is based on two classes of software: A set of Vendor Specific Libraries each of which provides the standard API functions for a vendor specific HBA driver, and a Common Library which provides a single entry point for each standard API function even when HBAs from multiple vendors are present.

Implementations of the Common HBA API are provided by vendors of Fibre Channel HBAs and subsystems and SAN Management Software. SNIA also sponsors an open-development reference implementation of the Common Library for both phases at the SourceForge.

The source code for this reference implementation of the Common Library supporting both phases of the Common HBA API is maintained here.

Source for a reference implementation of an older Common Library supporting only Phase 1 can also be found there.

If you'd like to learn more about the HBA API, you can read more about it:

For answers to common questions about the HBA API, see:

For links to official specifications and code samples, see:

Other related projects:

Last modified 3/11/2002 by Dixon Hutchinson

SourceForge Logo