gmirror Issues

Joe Kelsey joe at
Mon Mar 26 23:44:05 UTC 2007

Joe Kelsey wrote:
> I am having a real hard time with gmirror.  I recently bought two new 
> 400G SATA disks and I want to mirror them.  I think I am following the 
> directions, but I am not sure.
> I generally do the following steps:
> edit /boot/loader.conf to add geom_mirror_load.
> reboot into single-user
> gmirror label -v -b round-robin gm0 ad4s1 ad6s1
> bsdlabel -w mirror/gm0
> bsdlabel -e mirror/gm0
> newfs mirror/gm0a
> When I attempt to perform the newfs, it generally goes through all of 
> the backup super blocks and hangs the system at the end of the newfs.  
> At that point, my only recourse is pushing the reset button.  When the 
> system comes up, GEOM_MIRROR tries to rebuild one of the providers 
> (usually ad4s1), but never seems to succeed.
> Anyway, the first problem I had was not having geom_mirror loaded.  
> The only solution seems to be adding the load to /boot/loader.conf.  
> None of the manual pages or handbook pages says anything about this 
> except when discusssing making your system disk mirrored.  I am not 
> doing that.
> So, after loading the mirror stuff, I regularly lock up the system by 
> trying to perform simple activities on the mirror.  What do I need to 
> do differently?
> Here are the relevant dmesg lines:
> atapci0: <SiI 3512 SATA150 controller> port 
> 0xa000-0xa007,0x9800-0x9803,0x9400-0x9407,0x9000-0x9003,0x8800-0x880f 
> mem 0xfba00000-0xfba001ff irq 18 at device 13.0 on pci0
> ata2: <ATA channel 0> on atapci0
> ata3: <ATA channel 1> on atapci0
> ad4: 381554MB <Seagate ST3400620AS 3.AAC> at ata2-master SATA150
> ad6: 381554MB <Seagate ST3400620AS 3.AAC> at ata3-master SATA150

OK.  I did some more testing and found a bug in the SII3512 controller.  
If I mount just one of the drives just as a single disk and attempt to 
move a 250G drive over using tar, sometime during the copying the system 
simply hangs.  No errors, no messages, the system stops and my only 
recourse is jto press the reset button.

For that reason, I have decided that the SII3512 is unreliable and will 
replace it with a Promise controller, basically the cheapest one (TX2).  
I hope it works better.

Thank you everyone for the links to other pages.


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