Sil3512 (sii, SATA) driver on Sun Ultra60/blade 1000

R J rjohanne at
Thu Sep 24 15:35:10 UTC 2009

Hi Mav,
I have been referred to you by Marius regarding the sii (Silicon Image) 
ata driver on sparc64.  The card I have is a two-port SATA card with the 
Sil3512 chipset.

You have perhaps seen some of my communication to the freebsd-sparc list 
earlier, but briefly, here's the problem I have had with it.


I have had a silicon image Sil 3512 in the ultra 60, and attached two disk 
drives.  The drives are seen by the ata driver.  I was able to lay a ufs 
file system on them, and even copied files onto the drives, but the system 
was not stable. I.e, I would copy files to the sata hard drives for a few 
minutes before it would hang and remain that way till I did a hard reset 
(power-off).  Usually there would be some message about the device 
detaching from the system, and the /dev/ad* entries disappear.

I then take the Sil 3512 out of the ultra60 and put it in the Sun blade 
1000, and attach the disk drives; upon booting, the drives are not seen by 
the ata driver, although the controller is seen.  Remember, the drives are 
seen with the same card in the ultra60.

REBUILD TO 8.0 BETA on the Sun Blade 1000:

After I upgraded the Sun blade 1000 to 8.0 BETA, the ata driver could now 
see the disk attached to the Sil3512 controller, but the behaviour remains 
pretty much like on the Ultra60 under 7 stable if I put any i/o on the 

I have worked with Marius to get the ata-marvell driver sane for 
big-endian sparc64, and that driver now works on the Sun blade 1000 under 
8.0 BETA.  Before Marius fixed that driver, it was exhibiting the same 
behaviour as the Sil3512 under 8.0 Beta; i.e, the controller is seen, but 
no drives are seen, and the system wouldn't even finish booting if disks 
were attached to the controller.

Is it possible to for  you to take a look at the Sil ata driver again 
in-light of this information?



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