ATA Timeouts

Tony Byrne freebsd-current at
Thu May 26 14:04:24 PDT 2005


We have an up-to date FreeBSD 5.4 Stable server that has suddenly
started experiencing timeouts while reading and writing its 200Gb
Western Digital SATA hard disk. We see at least one read / write
timeout with kernel message every fifteen minutes or so and the box
becomes sluggish while the IO is retried. The server has an Intel ICH5
SATA disk controller.

I temporarily moved the disk to a recent 5.4 desktop machine equipped
with the same chipset and the timeouts stopped, so it appears that the
problem is not with the disk. I also tried Soren's ATA mkIII patches
on the server, but the problem remains. Since the controller is built
onto the Intel server board, we're tempted to try another brand of
SATA disk.

Does anyone have any ideas as to what could cause a previously happy
server to start behaving this way?



Tony Byrne

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