Jump to content
RESET Forums (homeservershow.com)
scruffters

RAID cards in the Gen10

Recommended Posts

schoondoggy
Hmm - even in Legacy, the P420 doesn't show up in the BIOS boot menu.
 
You can see the card during POST but once initialized, you can't even press F8 for the ACU on the card - you can just read there's 1 logical drive (visible for sub 1 second) and then the POST moves onto the Broadcom NICs.
 
Chucked in a spare SSD on Port 5 (which couldn't be found to start with - seems it's disabled unless the 8087 port is also connected on the motherboard) and quickly installed 2012 R2.  Flashed the P420 to FW 8.2x but still no sign of it as a bootable device.
 
[mention=3464]schoondoggy[/mention] - did you boot off the P222?  Or was the OS boot drive on P5 or another controller?
I did not boot from the P222. I booted from a SSD on port 5 or it may have been a PCIe mSATA card I was working with on the MS Gen10. I used the offline SSA to configure the arrays on the P222. After boot I used SSA in Windows.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Harpoon
 

I did not boot from the P222. I booted from a SSD on port 5 or it may have been a PCIe mSATA card I was working with on the MS Gen10. I used the offline SSA to configure the arrays on the P222. After boot I used SSA in Windows.

 

Thank you.  BIOS options are limited, so don't think I've got a lot left to try to get the P420 as the boot controller.  Hmm.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Harpoon

So I've gone with plan B - ESXi 6.5 install on USB stick in the internal port (in UEFI mode).

 

P420 shows up fine (I built my ESXi installer using the HPE custom ISO) and I've just created a VMFS datastore on mirrored MX500 SSDs connected to it.

 

I remember going through an USB ESXi install on an ML115 G5 with an Opteron CPU 7 or 8 years ago for a small lab at work.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tighernain

  I just tried an Adaptec ASR-6805T and it works without any problems even in UEFI mode. :) very pleased with it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
WhitePhantom
On 10/30/2018 at 3:38 AM, Tighernain said:

  I just tried an Adaptec ASR-6805T and it works without any problems even in UEFI mode. :) very pleased with it.

 

Tighernain, thank you very much for this post!  I'm speccing out a MicroServer Gen10 and I think I'll go with an ASR-6805T.

 

From pictures I've seen, it looks to me like both SATA and SAS drives can be plugged into this server, but HPE claims that it only supports SATA drives, presumably because the onboard controller only supports SATA.

 

Can anybody here confirm that the Gen10 can use SAS drives with an add-in RAID contoller?  Also, does using an add-in controller make it possible to hot plug drives?

Edited by WhitePhantom

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tighernain

With the Adaptec ASR-6805T just make sure that you update it to the latest BIOS V5.3. V5.2 used to reset itself and was a bit annoying. you will need to go into Legacy mode in the bios to access the setup screen for the card but once set up switch to UEFI and everything will work and boot faster as well.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Gareth

Hi all.  Appreciate the information and thought I'd add a couple of bits in case it's helpful for anyone else.

 

The onboard RAID controller has its issues - as some of you are probably aware of. 

 

1. Drive compatibility:  I've got a pair of Sandisk 480GB SSDs as a RAID1 (mirror) set up and it works fine with that.  Tried adding a pair of 2TB Seagate hard disks as another mirror and it would create it and show up in Windows (Server 2016) but the entire system would hang when you tried to format it.  As separate disks, Dynamic (software) mirror or Storage Spaces mirror, it worked fine and the performance was about the same.  HP say it ought to work if they were genuine HP-branded disks (probably also by Seagate).

 

2.  Reliability:  I tried pulling one of the hard disks while the server was on to check it would handle it.  First time it didn't spot (or at least report) that a disk had been removed.  Second time it did but when I reinserted it, the controller believed that one of the SSDs had also been unplugged.  Now to be fair, it is stated that it is not hot-plug and this could well be why.  The way the controller resolved the issue was concerning too.  Originally there was an array called "SSD-Mirror" and after it thought one SSD had been disconnected and reconnected, there was a second array called "[D]SSD-Mirror" and both were "Degraded".  It meant that to recover, you had to delete the one that wasn't active and then rebuild the good array onto the newly blank disk.  Plenty of opportunity for disaster there.  Windows Storage Spaces just sorted itself out - although, to be fair, there was no data on the disks.

 

3.  Notification:  I set up notification through MSU and tested it succesfully.  Received the test and everything.  When disks failed - either the separate HDD or the SSD that was a member of an array, no notifications were sent at all.  This was aimed at a mailserver I run so I could see from the logs that it didn't even try to connect;  it wasn't just that it was rejected.  Without notification of a disk failure, you're just praying that another disk doesn't fail before you happen to actively check the status.

 

The P420 doesn't seem to be bootable.  Shows up in Legacy mode but doesn't offer the utility and doesn't seem to be selectable as a boot device.  Didn't try updating to latest firmware after some of the feedback above.  Also worth noting that the chip gets hot enough to burn skin and the install location isn't somewhere that will benefit from much airflow either.

 

Tighernain mentioned the Adaptec controller but I ended up getting the HPE SmartArray E208i-p SR Gen10 as time is pressing and the Adaptec card would have taken weeks for delivery.  I've not had a chance to test it yet but it is the supported option.  Reason I mention this is purely because the actual PCB is marked "Microsemi" and if you go to Adaptec.com, you get Microsemi's website.  So it may be that other Adaptec/Microsemi cards are compatible - with a firmware update if necessary.

 

Hope some of this is useful to someone else losing too much sanity to this new "improved" Microserver!

 

Gareth

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now



×
×
  • Create New...