raid framework from OpenBSD

Scott Long scottl at
Fri Sep 16 10:53:38 PDT 2005

Joao Barros wrote:
> On 9/14/05, Scott Long <scottl at> wrote:
>>Massimo wrote:
>>>I would like to know what do you think about new OpenBSD raid framework
>>>Doesn't it seems good stuff which is good for consideration?
>>Creating a unified management tool for multiple RAID architectures has
>>been a Holy Grail for at least 10 years, if not longer.  It's
>>deceptively hard, though.  While it sounds straight-forward and is
>>relatively easy to do for 1 or 2 architectures, the vast differences in
>>how different architectures work makes it quickly turn into a huge mess.
>>This is especially true when it comes to topology discovery and
>>management and asynchronous event notification.  Often times the only
>>course is to degrade to a very simple, lowest common denominator
>>interface, which then starts to limit the usefulness of the tool.  I've
>>been involved in several professional projects in exactly this area, and
>>it simply is very, very hard to do well. The OpenBSD work looks
>>interesting, but unless they can demostrate useful operation on more
>>than 1 or 2 architectures, it's not terribly impressive.  That's not to
>>say that it can't be done and be a success, but the amount of required
>>effort should not be underestimated. It's relatively easy to come up
>>with a framework and implement one architecture module in it, then tell
>>everyone else to simply add more modules.
>>Also, it's not clear from the email whether the tool has to be manually
>>told to rescan and look for changes in the state of the array (not just
>>SES/SAFTE changes of the component drives).  Displaying status on demand
>>is fine, but what admin sits in front of their terminal and refreshes
>>their monitoring apps every 5 seconds?  The key is to have a an event
>>notification pipeline that can collect events in near real time, filter
>>them in a configurable way, and send out email/pager alerts when
>>appropriate.  Also, what does this mean for a datacenter full of
>>machines that need to be monitored?  Does a remote terminal session need
>>to be opened on each one in order for monitoring to work?
>>But, even if this particular work degrades into only being a tool for
>>AMI (I assume they mean MegaRAID) controllers, it's still useful and I
>>give them credit for doing it.
> Having an amr I'm most interested in this, as I guess more people are.
> Given that there is "customer" interest, my question is: is there
> interest from you in this, having it imported to FreeBSD?
> I've looked at the code and I wouldn't mind starting to work on this.
> --
> Joao Barros

Give it a try if you're interested.


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