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ML150G3 - Adaptec 2820SA card - Hang at POST

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Dan Hawker
Advisor

ML150G3 - Adaptec 2820SA card - Hang at POST

Hi All,

Have an Adaptec 2820SA card that I'd like to throw in a ML150G3 we have to connect up some SATA drives we have.

However when I insert the card, it just causes the machine to hang during POST (just after it has finished going through the POST (press Ctrl-S to configure) for the HP Boot setup for the onboard NIC.

If I pull the card, all is fine, but with it in it just sits there. (Is still responsive tho, ctrl-alt-del restarts it, capslock etc, OK).

Any ideas??? Am thinking the ML150G3 can't take PCI-X-133 cards, but that seems strange as the LSI Logic SAS/SATA card that came with it is a PCI-X-133 card.

I'd like to use it to be able to use RAID 5/6 over these disks, which the LSI and onboard SATA raid does not support.

Thanks

Dan
9 REPLIES
Marek Podmaka
Frequent Advisor

Re: ML150G3 - Adaptec 2820SA card - Hang at POST

I have found this for ML150 G3 (399154-421):
Six expansion slots: Three (3) PCI-X (64-bit/100MHz), 2 PCI-Express (x4\x8), and 1 PCI (32-bit/33MHz).

What OS are you installing on this server? Can you tell me what model of SATA card it has? "lspci" from linux would be best...
Dan Hawker
Advisor

Re: ML150G3 - Adaptec 2820SA card - Hang at POST


Hi Marek,

Irritating eh???

So far I have been unable to get the ML150 G3 to boot with the card inserted, so unfortunately I have no lspci output to post.

Have FC5 installed.

ATM I am using the onboard controller (JBOD) and have used mdadm to RAID them. Not optimal since I have a perfectly decent (and working SATA2 RAID card that won't work in this server.

Have tested the card in a DL380 G4 (in the 64bit/100Mhz PCI-X slot), a DL360 G5 (with PCe - PCI-X riser) and a standard HP desktop and it works fine. Put it in the 64bit/100Mgz PCI-X slot in the ML150 G3 and nothing happens. Won't get past POST.

The SATA controller I'd like to use is an Adaptec 2820SA (Adaptecs compatability report, (http://www.adaptec.com/NR/rdonlyres/44CDE154-BAD8-46FB-B2A6-4453A12D8ADE/0/ARCSATACompatibilityReport.pdf) says it is compatible) with the hardware.

Have to say am disappointed. I'll try the HP support number but am not holding out that much hope. Think I'll just have to wait for a firmware upgrade or similar.

Dan
Marek Podmaka
Frequent Advisor

Re: ML150G3 - Adaptec 2820SA card - Hang at POST

Hi,

As far as I know these embedded SATA controllers are not true hardware RAID cards. The system and OS have to do all RAID stuff, not the card itself. I know HP has some binary kernel modules which do support the RAID functionality. But as it is in reality only some pseudo-hardware RAID, I prefer to use drives as JBOD and create software RAID in linux. This way you have the same functionality (in fact more options than in raid bios) and you can simply move the disks to other server/controller without problems...

I was asking about this embedded SATA controller which comes with ML150. I'm using debian, so trying those binary modules for redhat kernels is a pain. Do you know if there is opensource driver (either in stock 2.6 kernels or standalone)? I think if there is, it won't support RAID (only JBOD), but that's fine for me.
I just want to be sure that I won't have problems installing it, before I actually buy this server.

Thanks
Dan Hawker
Advisor

Re: ML150G3 - Adaptec 2820SA card - Hang at POST


Yeah, as I understand it, most of these embedded SATA controllers are more software RAID-like than real hardware.

Personally I like hardware RAID. Software is good for RAID1/0 and variants thereof, however once you start introducing 5/6 etc (and hence there's all that parity to calculate) hardware is the way forward as it needs quite a bit of processing power. Even on modern systems (which can handle this very well), it does sap cycles. I find most operations OK with software RAID, but if you do something quite I/O intensive (like du a large dir of small files), on a RAID5 disk, hardware RAID really shows off where you spent that money.

Have to admit though the option of transfering RAID sets between machines of differing hardware is one very nice plus point in software RAID. Admittedly a decent backup strategy can offset this capability.

Th embedded controller should work fine as a JBOD. If you look at my other post (that you responded to) I ahve just recapped and added my lspci output and experiences of the box and Linux. Although not used Debian on it, should be fine as the controller needed no extras added to the standard FC5 kernel I used.

Dan
Marek Podmaka
Frequent Advisor

Re: ML150G3 - Adaptec 2820SA card - Hang at POST

I agree with the reasons to use HW RAID if possible. There are two advantages:
1) CPU - calculating parity
2) bandwidth - in software RAID data for all disks must go through the PCI bus. For HW RAID only one copy goes to the controller. Then all transfers (writes to multiple drives and also reads in case of RAID5/6) are managed in the controller itself.
BTW thanks for the "lspci" output in my thread.
Marcus Naraidoo
Occasional Advisor

Re: ML150G3 - Adaptec 2820SA card - Hang at POST

Hi Dan,

Have you managed to resolve the problem with the Adaptec SATA RAID2 card?

I have exactly the same problem.

Regards, Marcus
Marcus Naraidoo
Occasional Advisor
Solution

Re: ML150G3 - Adaptec 2820SA card - Hang at POST

Hi Dan,

Not heard from you, so thought I would tel you that the latest 007 bios firmware release (dated 2006.10.02A) solves this problem.

You can download it from:
http://tinyurl.com/wzjn8

Just follow the instructions.

Marcus
Dan Hawker
Advisor

Re: ML150G3 - Adaptec 2820SA card - Hang at POST

Hi Marcus,

Apologies for the delay, we've shut down for the Xmas period, so am only in for a few minutes...

Thanks for the info. I haven't managed to get it working as of yet, but now I know its possible with the new firmware version, will give it a go. Hope so, have found software RAID over 6x 500GB drives a little slower than I had hoped. All that parity I guess...

Thanks again

Dan
Dan Hawker
Advisor

Re: ML150G3 - Adaptec 2820SA card - Hang at POST

Will test properly, but the answer above from Marcus seems to be correct and hence fixes it. Thanks Marcus.

Thanks to all who posted.

Dan