What is a good choice of sata-ii raid controller for freebsd?
mike at sentex.net
Thu Feb 8 19:02:11 UTC 2007
At 11:52 AM 2/8/2007, Jeremy Chadwick wrote:
>On Thu, Feb 08, 2007 at 12:47:10PM +0200, Clayton Milos wrote:
> > I can highly recommend the Areca family of SATA-II controllers. I have a
> > ARC-1110 (4 poort RAID controller) with 4x 320GB Western Digital
> > SATA-II drives attached to it in a RAID5 configuration.
>I have questions:
>1) Do these controllers, from a BIOS level, permit SMART commands
> to be sent directly to the drives (via pass(4)) so you can
> monitor drives for potential upcoming failures and perform
> drive tests, via smartctl?
There is the pass0 interface, but not sure what you can
set. Smartmon doesnt seem to work, or at least I havent used it.
Here is what you get via the cli tool for disk info
# ./cli32 "disk smart drv=1"
# Attribute Items Flag Value Thres State
1 Raw Read Error
Rate 0x0f 49 6 OK
3 Spin Up
Time 0x03 98 0 OK
Count 0x32 100 20 OK
5 Reallocated Sector
Count 0x33 100 36 OK
7 Seek Error
Rate 0x0f 86 30 OK
9 Power-on Hours
Count 0x32 81 0 OK
10 Spin Retry
Count 0x13 100 97 OK
12 Device Power Cycle
Count 0x32 100 20 OK
194 Temperature 0x22 35 0 OK
197 Current Pending Sector Count 0x12 100 0 OK
198 Off-line Scan Uncorrectable Sector Count 0x10 100 0 OK
199 Ultra DMA CRC Error Count 0x3e 200 0 OK
# ./cli32 "disk info"
Ch ModelName Serial# FirmRev Capacity State
1 ST3250823AS 3ND02GC5 3.01 250.1GB RaidSet Member(1)
2 ST3250823AS 3ND02WRF 3.01 250.1GB RaidSet Member(1)
3 ST3250823AS 3ND02X9G 3.01 250.1GB RaidSet Member(1)
4 ST3250823AS 3ND02YRL 3.01 250.1GB RaidSet Member(1)
>2) Regardless of performance, have you actually tried a hard failure
> with these controllers and seen what both the controller and the
> OS do?
Yes. Its not as nice as the 3ware (I have done LOTS of those and my
heart remains at normal levels when I change out dead drives...) I am
still a little nervous with the Areca, but it has worked so far on
the couple that I have done.
>3) Does Areca provide any form of carriage/enclosure medium, such as
> an enclosure which supports 4 drives, allows hot-swapping, and
> allows you to query the enclosure for statistics (fan RPM, thermals,
> and so on)?
Not Areca branded, but the generic ones I have picked up seem to work
>4) string'ing the cli32 binary returns some references to SMART, but
> the monitoring is generally retarded (literally, not slang) -- it
> looks as if it just wants to use SMART to say "drive bad" or "drive
Seems to give a bit more than that.
>This is not an effective use of SMART, and does nothing
> for those wanting to monitor drives properly (read: temperature,
> excessive ECC, perform SMART tests for bad blocks, etc.).
>5) Is there native FreeBSD 6.x binaries for administrative utilities?
> It doesn't look like it, but maybe I'm looking at the wrong utility:
> ~/V1.5_50930 $ file cli32
> cli32: ELF 32-bit LSB executable, Intel 80386, version 1, for
> FreeBSD 4.2, statically linked, not stripped
I use it under RELENG_6. The cli is a 42 binary, but it works just
fine on RELENG_6. You dont need any klds loaded to use it, nor the
>The best out of the bunch in this regards seems to be Promise, who
>despite having "ehhh" controllers, has given Soren lots of documen-
>tation and has been helpful in providing him answers to his
>questions. I can't say the same for other controller vendors.
But Areca and 3ware provided developer time to make the drivers for
FreeBSD. Should this not be encouraged / applauded as well
? Especially 3ware, support has been awesome over the years and
Areca I think has a lot of the specs open and published... Enough so
that the People's Popular Front of BSD (aka OpenBSD) wrote their own
native driver for the Areca.
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