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Silicon Image 3114 and Linux SATARAID



Hi all,
this is my story with a Lycom ST-114 and Linux.
This 25 euro card has 4 SATA ports and a sii3114 chip. This chip is
supported by the kernel but i wanted some RAID features that aren't
available in the kernel driver. So I downloaded the binary driver for
this chip from the silicon image website and my problems started....
Silicon Image has some binary drivers for some old versions of Fedora
Core, RHEL and SuSE. I asked SI if they were working on new ones, but no
answer. (sii3124 drivers are recent, from November 2006, but i can't get
a card with that chip here in Portugal)
The solution: just alter the names of the directories where the kernel
drivers are, from 2.6.9-11 to 2.6.9-42 and a line in the initial-install
script and installed CentOS 4.4 without any trouble.
I tested this in two servers with a SATA I Hot-Swap cage and backplane
from CHENBRO and 4 Hitachi 80GB SATA II disks.
One had an ASUS A7N8X-E motherboard (not a server motherboard) with a
AMD Sempron 2500+, 512 MB DDR Dual Channel. This one installed well but
some strange things would start to happen: after downloading files from
a CentOS mirrors, applying rpm -K would give some bad signatures.
Removing a disk from the cage and putting it again was no problem....
the hot swap was working. But if i started the Java tool to see if it
was rebuilding the RAID 10 array would kernel panic. No luck with this
one.....
The other has an ASUS K8N-LR motherboard with an AMD Athlon64 3500+
(couldn't get an Opteron :-( ) and 1GB DDR Dual Channel. Installed as
well as the other one. Doing the same rpm -K check now gives always ok
:-) The only problem is when I remove a disk.... During the rebuild the
best thing is not to start that Java SATARAID tool:-) It tends to put
the filesystem read-only or kernel panic.... but if you wait some time,
then nothing happens and you get a RAID 10 for 25 euros working like
charm....
BTW, I'm waiting for an Adaptec 2420SA and I'll do the bonnie++ test and
see the differences...

Alexandre


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