More about the 9500S-4 issues with the MoBo and FreeBSD...

Olaf Greve o.greve at
Thu Dec 1 08:45:28 GMT 2005

Hi again,

> I'm not sure.. I think he has flash danced around the controller card signing "I
> hope this SOB works this time" - but I'm not sure about actually flashing the
> firmware... :)  Olafo?

Nope, that's about the only thing I hadn't done yet (due to the machine 
not having a floppy drive, and my own machine's CD writer being 
n*ckered). I wanted to get a floppy drive and/or make a CD and flash it 
yesterday evening, but the client decided to pick the machine up and in 
the meantime installed W*nd*ws on it. No comments please; I know this'll 
make all of you (and me too) want to request Ray's nailgun. ;)

Interestingly enough, I must add, Windows didn't have any problems with 
it; or at least - NOT YET...;)))

As sick as it may sound, I can actually understand their thinking 
somewhat: my time is very limited (I work a full-time job, and do the 
consultancy stuff in my evening and night hours, along with having a 
family), so given the fact that they need to have this machine up and 
running this Friday, you can do the math on just how precious little 
time there would have been left for me to install the lot on it (at, 
least, in a RAID set-up, that is), do the custom kernel compilation 
ceremonies, compile MySQL, and tune it (!!!). In stead, they have their 
own personnel who are on their normal payroll (and could spend all of 
the remainder of yesterday, and today on it) and who have installed 
W*nd*ws lots of times on their DB servers. Given those parameters, 
combined with their requirement to have the drives run in a RAID set-up, 
I can understand their logic somewhat.

However... Not all is lost: they like the initially proposed back-up 
plan of giving this machine a temporary go, and then have me install a 
proper Opteron board in case the machine gets stressed heavily...:)
I'll have them sort out a provider for it (Ray: I may come back to you 
off-list for that), and then in the future they can spend their money 
much better on the proper hardware, rather than on my time in order to 
tweak the sub-optimal hardware configurations...

Also, today I'll ask them to Flash the 3ware card and see if FreeBSD 
boots from the CD to see if that does any magic... If it works, then at 
least they know that on their second identical config they ordered (but 
of which the CPU hasn't yet been ordered), FreeBSD would or wouldn't 
work (in case the Opteron stuff is beyond their budget)...:/

Oh well, live and learn; I guess they'll have learned their lesson 
regarding server hardware vs. other hardware, but still they need to 
have a DB server up and running, so for now they'll have to do with some 
interim solution, and then do it proper...

Anyway: if anything new pops up I'll let you guys know, and if this is 
not the case, then I'd like to thank you guys already for hanging in 
there with me, and for all your help and suggestions. :)


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