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A few setup questions


CaptainFred
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Hi,

In my excitement to play with my new Gen8, I simply put XPenology on a USB key, put in 2 x 6TB WD reds, booted it up, enabled iLO, didn't touch the BIOS, installed DSM, created a SHR volume (1 drive redundancy) and put lots of data on it.

1. Did I actually do anything wrong or miss some important steps?

2. I've noticed now that on boot it keeps saying that the RAID isn't configured. Is that a problem? Bit annoying though. If I disable the B120i in Setup > PCI Device Enable/Disable will that stop that message from appearing but will I loose data?

3. I'm confused what mode it's in out of the box. It's not clear even from the BIOS. Is the B120i enabled and AHCI isn't? If so how did XPenology manage to create a volume with the drives when there is nothing created by the B120i and they aren't in AHCI mode or are they?

4. Fan speed is generally around 14-15%, seems quite quiet but read here http://homeservershow.com/forums/index.php?/topic/8595-time-to-start-b120i-faq/?p=92355  that it's not and should be around 6%? This doesn't make any sense because if it's in RAID mode it should be at 6% unless it is in AHCI mode out of the box? Although it's quite warm in this room says the inlet temp is 24-25C.

5. Also, I want A and C so it uses less power when they spin down but is quiet...is that possible? Or as they are WD red NAS drives should they be spinning all the time?
 

A. When operating in RAID mode the drive temperatures can be read and the system fan is adjusted appropriately. This results in a system fan speed of around 6% at idle which is quiet.
B. When operating in AHCI mode the drive temps are not read and the system fan speed is set at a higher minimum, around 10%, this is noisier. Some reports of higher fan speed of 15%.
C. When operating in AHCI mode the drives can spin down during idle but in RAID mode they cannot.

 

6. Is there a way to disable the loud beep when it boots?

7. I think it's up to date?

System ROM J06 06/06/2014
System ROM Date 06/06/2014
Backup System ROM J06 06/06/2014
iLO Firmware Version  2.20 May 20 2015

8. I set the date and time in the BIOS but it's gone back to 2014 I think. Why? Can I make it permanent?

Thanks in advance

 

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1,2,3 - If you haven't configured RAID0 volumes in the SmartArray management then you are in AHCI or Legacy mode, you can confirm that from the BIOS and see if the B120i is in RAID/AHCI/Legacy mode, Switching between AHCI and RAID mode prevent you from accessign the data on the disks, no idea about switching away from Legacy which you should do as it reduces the performance a great deal.

 

4. Just because someone's fan is running at 6% (probably due to no load and low ambient temp) doesn't mean you have to chase the same fan speed, if it's quiet enough, why do you care? Which cooling profile is selected in the BIOS?

 

5. AFAIK the problem with the fan speed and RAID/AHCI is resolved long time ago with firmware/BIOS update. I'm running at 6% with 25C inlet and RAID and CPU at 5% with Plex streaming to the TV

 

6. Not that i'm aware of, how often do you reboot anyway?

 

7. There is a new version of the BIOS that came out a week or so ago, you don't have to update

 

8. No idea on this one, did you save the BIOS on exit? Have you tried setting up the time in the OS?

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Switching between AHCI and RAID mode prevent you from accessign the data on the disks

A single drive RAID 0 array is just the raw drive. You can swap between AHCI and RAID mode without affecting the data on the drive. I'd still advise backing up your data first though before doing it.
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2. I've noticed now that on boot it keeps saying that the RAID isn't configured. Is that a problem? Bit annoying though. If I disable the B120i in Setup > PCI Device Enable/Disable will that stop that message from appearing but will I loose data?

 

3. I'm confused what mode it's in out of the box. It's not clear even from the BIOS. Is the B120i enabled and AHCI isn't? If so how did XPenology manage to create a volume with the drives when there is nothing created by the B120i and they aren't in AHCI mode or are they?

The B120i "RAID" controller is actually the Intel SATA controller built into the chipset with a custom HP firmware and driver. If you don't load the HP hpvsa driver then it is basically a standard AHCI controller. The hpvsa driver won't be available for the kernel used in DSM so you should switch it to AHCI mode. It shouldn't affect your data but you should still backup before switching it.

 

There are some issues with the SATA controller in AHCI mode when booting from the ODD port but you're not doing that so you shouldn't be affected.

 

4. Fan speed is generally around 14-15%, seems quite quiet but read here http://homeservershow.com/forums/index.php?/topic/8595-time-to-start-b120i-faq/?p=92355  that it's not and should be around 6%? This doesn't make any sense because if it's in RAID mode it should be at 6% unless it is in AHCI mode out of the box? Although it's quite warm in this room says the inlet temp is 24-25C.

The fan is controlled by iLO. You have no control over it yourself. The old issues with high fan speed when using AHCI were fixed last year. 15% fan sounds normal to me. 6% would be zero CPU load in a cool room.

 

6. Is there a way to disable the loud beep when it boots?

No. Put some tape over the piezo buzzer inside if it really bothers you. It is next to the CPU heatsink. As sal noted above, how many times do you need to reboot your Microserver?

 

7. I think it's up to date?

 

System ROM J06 06/06/2014

System ROM Date 06/06/2014

Backup System ROM J06 06/06/2014

iLO Firmware Version  2.20 May 20 2015

There is a slightly newer BIOS which adds support for some specific i3 CPUs but you can skip that version if you want.

iLO is up to 2.30 now.

 

8. I set the date and time in the BIOS but it's gone back to 2014 I think. Why? Can I make it permanent?

No idea about this. It should work fine.
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1,2,3 - If you haven't configured RAID0 volumes in the SmartArray management then you are in AHCI or Legacy mode, you can confirm that from the BIOS and see if the B120i is in RAID/AHCI/Legacy mode, Switching between AHCI and RAID mode prevent you from accessign the data on the disks, no idea about switching away from Legacy which you should do as it reduces the performance a great deal.

 

4. Just because someone's fan is running at 6% (probably due to no load and low ambient temp) doesn't mean you have to chase the same fan speed, if it's quiet enough, why do you care? Which cooling profile is selected in the BIOS?

 

5. AFAIK the problem with the fan speed and RAID/AHCI is resolved long time ago with firmware/BIOS update. I'm running at 6% with 25C inlet and RAID and CPU at 5% with Plex streaming to the TV

 

6. Not that i'm aware of, how often do you reboot anyway?

 

7. There is a new version of the BIOS that came out a week or so ago, you don't have to update

 

8. No idea on this one, did you save the BIOS on exit? Have you tried setting up the time in the OS?

 

3. This is the thing. How do I tell I'm in AHCI or Legacy mode? I can't believe I am in legacy mode as I get around 115MB/s transfer speed. See pictures...

 

4. The default cooling profile selected. Well I haven't changed it.

 

8. I can't see a save option for the BIOS. I did escape then F10 i think it was to confirm. Is that right? I think it's saved other settings.

 

The B120i "RAID" controller is actually the Intel SATA controller built into the chipset with a custom HP firmware and driver. If you don't load the HP hpvsa driver then it is basically a standard AHCI controller. The hpvsa driver won't be available for the kernel used in DSM so you should switch it to AHCI mode. It shouldn't affect your data but you should still backup before switching it.

 

There are some issues with the SATA controller in AHCI mode when booting from the ODD port but you're not doing that so you shouldn't be affected.

 

The fan is controlled by iLO. You have no control over it yourself. The old issues with high fan speed when using AHCI were fixed last year. 15% fan sounds normal to me. 6% would be zero CPU load in a cool room.

 

No. Put some tape over the piezo buzzer inside if it really bothers you. It is next to the CPU heatsink. As sal noted above, how many times do you need to reboot your Microserver?

 

There is a slightly newer BIOS which adds support for some specific i3 CPUs but you can skip that version if you want.

iLO is up to 2.30 now.

 

No idea about this. It should work fine.

 

So do you think it would be best for to create a RAID 0 for each drive or leave it in AHCI if thats what it's in? And in theory this won't actually write anything to the drives themselves? I will obviously backup first.

 

Or what happens if I disable the B120i in PCI Device Enable/Disable? See picture...

 

Thanks for your help.

 

PCI_Device_Enable_Disable.jpg

 

System_Options_SATA_Controller_Options_E

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8. I set the date and time in the BIOS but it's gone back to 2014 I think. Why? Can I make it permanent?

 

Set NTP server in ILO (Network->ILO...->SNTP) and propagate NTP time to host

 

A

 

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Set NTP server in ILO (Network->ILO...->SNTP) and propagate NTP time to host

 

A

 

 

Yes I have done that. I suppose it doesn't matter what the bios is set to.
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Yes I have done that. I suppose it doesn't matter what the bios is set to.

When Propagate option is active, ILO (after booting) writes UTC time from specified NTP  (or DHCP) server to server's BIOS. Just checked it. 

 

A

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When Propagate option is active, ILO (after booting) writes UTC time from specified NTP (or DHCP) server to server's BIOS. Just checked it.

 

A

Ok is the propagate option in ilo where u set the NTP server?

 

How did u check it for interest?

 

I need to reset my ilo again since I changed something that needs it for some reason...

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Ok is the propagate option in ilo where u set the NTP server?

 

How did u check it for interest?

 

I need to reset my ilo again since I changed something that needs it for some reason...

Yes, I use public NTP server in ILO settings and propagate it to host (server BIOS).

 

I checked it by booting in BIOS, change date&time to something wrong. Reboot the server again in BIOS. Checked that time is still incorrect. Reboot server normally to full running state (in my case ESXi). Then reboot again in BIOS and checked that time is UTC now.

 

 

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