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Mfusick's How to build an affordable 30TB Flexraid media server: Information Requested.! - Page 20

post #571 of 3378
Thread Starter 
I just have not had much time. If I did it I would want to do it well.

I am wondering if I should just edit the first post of this thread and change the title versus making a new one ?

This thread had lots of info from my journey.
post #572 of 3378
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post

Parents are Right down street

BtW you can RMA that external cracked open. Just use serial # on drive and set up online. Use standard process.

I've done it and got a new drive.

They don't complain about the missing external case?
post #573 of 3378
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Puwaha View Post

They don't complain about the missing external case?
Nope

I got back an external retail box with power cable and USB cord. They obviously knew it was external unit originally.

All I sent was my bare drive.

RMA process is automated and done online.

I guess there's a chance they could reject it but I had luck. I did it twice with two MFGs.
post #574 of 3378
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post

I just have not had much time. If I did it I would want to do it well.

I am wondering if I should just edit the first post of this thread and change the title versus making a new one ?

This thread had lots of info from my journey.

Yea I suppose you could just gather all the info in your first post.
post #575 of 3378
Hey Guys,
Any help will be appreciated. I am trying to flash a ibm m1015 to IT mode. I am stuck on step 1. After I type in I get two lines saying DOS/32A -- Protected mode run time version 7.35 blah blah supernar systems etc.
Then a blinking cursor. Nothing happening. I have tried the hpflash DOS key and rufus freedos method. I have unhooked all other drives from the machine. The Mobo is a nvidia nforce 680i. Anyone ? Please ?
post #576 of 3378
Nevermind. I did it using the unraid bat file method. Worked much better.
post #577 of 3378
Thread Starter 
Sorry I just missed it.

Your all set ?
post #578 of 3378
I have successfully flashed it. I dont have any sas cables or my case yet. I am not able to boot into my hdd connected to my mobo. It shows me the LSI card stuff. Then asks if I want to press ctrl + c. Then just a blank screen. Not booting. I tried disabling the card. Still not booting. Any thoughts ?
post #579 of 3378
Quote:
Originally Posted by donysious View Post

I have successfully flashed it. I dont have any sas cables or my case yet. I am not able to boot into my hdd connected to my mobo. It shows me the LSI card stuff. Then asks if I want to press ctrl + c. Then just a blank screen. Not booting. I tried disabling the card. Still not booting. Any thoughts ?

Did your boot order simply get changed?
post #580 of 3378
Thread Starter 
When you flash it to IT mode I don't use any card boot screens. The IBM is transparent. My Z77 Asrock just goes right into windows or WHS. All the drives show. The first time it took a while. They populated one at a time. (I have 8)

WHS has native support and drivers for the IBM card. Once it's flashed you should just be able to slap it into your x8 slot and use it. There is nothing you need to do to configure it.

It will be basically transparent and provide 8 sata ports. No RAID. No configuring. No menus in BIOS.

Just plug in your drives and your good.
Quote:
Originally Posted by donysious View Post

I have successfully flashed it. I dont have any sas cables or my case yet. I am not able to boot into my hdd connected to my mobo. It shows me the LSI card stuff. Then asks if I want to press ctrl + c. Then just a blank screen. Not booting. I tried disabling the card. Still not booting. Any thoughts ?

What cables to you need ??

I have some extra's I'll sell. Brand new.

I have 2 SAS to 4 SATA ports foward cables I'll sell. Basically the 8087 end goes into the IBM and it breaks out to 4 SATA ports for going to a HDD. I have 2, one for each port on the IBM. I used for 2 weeks.
Intel branded blue ones. Pictures earlier in this thread. With those you could run 8 HDD's and have 8 Sata ports.

I upgraded my case to the Norco 4220 and I only need an 8087 to 8087 SAS cable now. (I have extra those too)
post #581 of 3378
I checked my boot order. The hard drive I want to boot from is still the first one. In the M1015 bios screen it says boot order '0'. I dont know what that means and I cant change it.
post #582 of 3378
Instead of started a new thread I'll just post here. I currently have an Intel e8400 based server built from my first HTPC. Has a mATX Gigabyte motherboard from that era and has five SATA ports. Right now I've used up all five ports with one 64GB SSD OS drive, and 4x 2TB drives. The server was recently upgraded from WHS2011 using StableBit DrivePool to WS2012 Essentials. Right now I have 3x 2TB (WD Green) drives in Storage Spaces pooled mode with no RAID or duplication, just pooling. The other 2TB drive (Seagate 7,200) is my working disc that houses the incoming downloads, Newznab Ubuntu VM, and IP cam scratch disc.

I have an IBM Megaraid M1015 card arriving Tuesday that I paid $75 shipped plus another $10 for a full height bracket (see other SAS thread that went downhill since the poster was too lazy to find his own $85 deal tongue.gif). When I installed WS2012E I don't think StableBit DrivePool was compatible so I just stuck with Storage Spaces basic pooled mode. My question is how should I grow my server using the M1015?

I'm considering buying 2 to 4 WD Red 3TB drives, leaving the SSD for OS and Seagate as the working disc connected to the motherboard's SATA ports. The new drives would go to the SAS card (flashed to IT mode for JBOD). Is the only option with decent performance with parity to use FlexRAID? I haven't read anything good about RAID 5 on these cards, but don't want to rule that out (flashing to IR mode).

*I plan on retiring two of my 2TB WD Greens to my HTPC for local RecordedTV storage to replace the old 1TB WD Green currently in use. The plan would be to use Storage Spaces Mirror mode (RAID1) for the recorded TV storage.
post #583 of 3378
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bryansj View Post

Instead of started a new thread I'll just post here. I currently have an Intel e8400 based server built from my first HTPC. Has a mATX Gigabyte motherboard from that era and has five SATA ports. Right now I've used up all five ports with one 64GB SSD OS drive, and 4x 2TB drives. The server was recently upgraded from WHS2011 using StableBit DrivePool to WS2012 Essentials. Right now I have 3x 2TB (WD Green) drives in Storage Spaces pooled mode with no RAID or duplication, just pooling. The other 2TB drive (Seagate 7,200) is my working disc that houses the incoming downloads, Newznab Ubuntu VM, and IP cam scratch disc.

I have an IBM Megaraid M1015 card arriving Tuesday that I paid $75 shipped plus another $10 for a full height bracket (see other SAS thread that went downhill since the poster was too lazy to find his own $85 deal tongue.gif). When I installed WS2012E I don't think StableBit DrivePool was compatible so I just stuck with Storage Spaces basic pooled mode. My question is how should I grow my server using the M1015?

I'm considering buying 2 to 4 WD Red 3TB drives, leaving the SSD for OS and Seagate as the working disc connected to the motherboard's SATA ports. The new drives would go to the SAS card (flashed to IT mode for JBOD). Is the only option with decent performance with parity to use FlexRAID? I haven't read anything good about RAID 5 on these cards, but don't want to rule that out (flashing to IR mode).

*I plan on retiring two of my 2TB WD Greens to my HTPC for local RecordedTV storage to replace the old 1TB WD Green currently in use. The plan would be to use Storage Spaces Mirror mode (RAID1) for the recorded TV storage.

Lots of info but I am unsure of your specific question. I guess your asking how should you grow your storage??? I will assume so.


"I haven't read anything good about RAID 5 on these cards, but don't want to rule that out (flashing to IR mode)."
Did you mean flashing to IR or IT mode?

IT mode I believe is the mode where you use it as an HBA or plain old SATA port card. My terminology might be wrong though. That is basically what I did with mine. You can find all the info earlier in this thread about how to flash your card. I ran into some trouble because the board I was using - but when I swapped the motherboard for an older one it worked flawless. My advice on flashing is make sure you use an x8 slot and board- older motherboards work great. I used a board that had a video card and no integrated graphics but the older motherboard did not run x8 when an x16 slot video card was installed so I was getting errors. Swapping to a motherboard with no video card and integrated graphics worked well for me. I was lucky to have many machines to try it out.

As far as flashing- I would just tell you go into the earlier pages of this thread and watch my process. It was pretty easy in retrospect. You should be fine. Ask here if you have questions, there is about 5 of us with that card that have it flashed that can help you. I was noob and asked lots of questions I did not need to ask so it's likely the answers are earlier in this thread if you have questions. It's not hard at all.

About your main question- That IBM is a really nice card, especially for that price. I'll assume your going to add more HDD in the future ??? If so then Flexraid and software parity will make more sense IMO. It would give you drive pooling and parity based backup now- (both good) and also allow you to add additional HDD's in the future with very little fuss. Just buy a HDD and add it to the pool. You can add empty or full drives. Does not matter. And you can remove a drive and still read all the data from it. That is a very important feature to me I think many people overlook or downplay - which is a mistake IMO. I really like knowing I can both rebuild a failed drive and not lose data from the parity software RAID system and I also like knowing that if something crazy happened all my data on the drives is readable from any machine.

You don't need Flexraid. But it's not a bad option at all.

If you flash your card to make it just a SATA port multiplier you'll see great performance for software raid. Basically as fast as the HDD reads and writes. Flashing + software raid is a great solution. Your alternative would be running hardware Raid. You can do that with RED drives I believe, or Seagata 3TB. You'd gain some performance in speed but sacrifice some storage (you need more parity backup HDD drives) and you'll be at the mercy of the raid set up. If it breaks down the data is not easily readable in other machines.
post #584 of 3378
In the first question I meant IR mode because IR mode is the one that unlocks RAID 5. IT mode would be for JBOD/FlexRAID.

Since I've read that the M1015 flashed to IR mode has poor RAID5 performance that means the best choice would probably be IT mode with FlexRAID. Was just looking for any additional insight on the best path forward. I tried FlexRAID trial back right before he announced it was going to a paid model. I made the choice back then to just run WHS2011 DrivePool with a few folder shares duplicated (pictures, music, documents).

Since I now have the option of Storage Spaces, RAID from the M1015, and DrivePool now compatible with WS2012E I need to make sure FlexRAID is the right choice. Too bad NZFS isn't public right now. I was going to order my Red drives today, but don't know how many to get. With RAID5 I need four. With anything else I just need two for now (need 6TB to replace I have).
post #585 of 3378
Thread Starter 
I'd order 4 and set up flexraid with 3 as data and 1 as parity. That would be easy set up to start and give you some room to grow.

Adding more drives in future would be easy.

I think your still undecided on hardware versus software raid set up. In that case.. you'll need decide that before deciding on flexraid or another alternative.

Personally the things that are important to me are:

Drive pooling
Parity Back up
Ease of set up / flexibility
Ability to add or subtract from storage pool with both full or empty drives
Data on drives being able to be read from any system.

That's why I choose Flexraid and software raid. Hardware raid has advantages, especially on a more serious set up or enterprise. But for a small home media server I think it's overkill, more expensive, and less flexible.
post #586 of 3378
I ave flashed them to IT mode with the option rom so that if I had an option to boot from a hdd connected to the adapter. Now that has become a problem. MY computer shows me the option rom and then a blank screen. Nothing even if I wait for a long time. I cannnot even go into the mobo s bios with the adapter installed. And cannot boot anything. SO I cannnot flash it again. SO I am stuck i guess. Any ideas ?
post #587 of 3378
Thread Starter 
I'm not sure. I think I skipped that. I didn't want any boot screens slowing down my restarts.

Can you boot into windows ? Is your boot drive on a motherboard SATA port ?
post #588 of 3378
To keep the WAF on the financial side in check I ordered three 3tb Seagate 7,200 drives instead of four 3tb WD Red drives. I'll start the FlexRAID trial with one 3TB as a parity drive and the other two 3TB drives as data drives which gets me to the 6TB I need to migrate. I have a 2TB Seagate that I'll include as a data drive post migration for a total of 8TB. The three WD Greens will be re-purposed to RecordedTV and Work/Backup discs. Once all this is in place my system will be set to add additional 3TB data drives as needed.

The M1015 card will arrive today so I'll work on flashing that to IT mode this evening. The drives arrive tomorrow so the data transfer will happen then.
post #589 of 3378
The boot drive is on my mobo SATA port.There are no drives on the card yet since the case and cables havent arrived yet.
post #590 of 3378
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bryansj View Post

To keep the WAF on the financial side in check I ordered three 3tb Seagate 7,200 drives instead of four 3tb WD Red drives. I'll start the FlexRAID trial with one 3TB as a parity drive and the other two 3TB drives as data drives which gets me to the 6TB I need to migrate. I have a 2TB Seagate that I'll include as a data drive post migration for a total of 8TB. The three WD Greens will be re-purposed to RecordedTV and Work/Backup discs. Once all this is in place my system will be set to add additional 3TB data drives as needed.

The M1015 card will arrive today so I'll work on flashing that to IT mode this evening. The drives arrive tomorrow so the data transfer will happen then.

I like the Seagate drives personally. I've had really good luck with them and I own a bunch of them. Very nice performance. Very nice energy profile (especially for a 7200rpm drive). Usually best per TB price too.

Good luck flashing your card. biggrin.gif

What is the rest of your system ???
post #591 of 3378
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by donysious View Post

The boot drive is on my mobo SATA port.There are no drives on the card yet since the case and cables havent arrived yet.

So explain again exactly what the problem is ? You can't boot into windows?
post #592 of 3378
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post

I like the Seagate drives personally. I've had really good luck with them and I own a bunch of them. Very nice performance. Very nice energy profile (especially for a 7200rpm drive). Usually best per TB price too.

Good luck flashing your card. biggrin.gif

What is the rest of your system ???

Just flashed the card. No problems except getting the boot order sorted out for the USB drive. I forgot that I had an external USB HDD attached for backup so it was fighting with my thumb drive and not letting it boot. Once I realized that it was as simple as 1, 2, 3, reboot, 4, 5, 6 (used the numbered .bat files).

My system is just an E8400, 8GB RAM, and a GA-E7AUM-DS2H motherboard in an Antec 300 case. It was the guts from my first HTPC.

Edit: I noticed there was a P15 firmware and BIOS update for the flashed card. Went and flashed the two updates. No problems. Used this to flash the P15 update http://lime-technology.com/forum/index.php?topic=12767.msg226265#msg226265
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post

So explain again exactly what the problem is ? You can't boot into windows?

I would double check the boot order and make sure that Hard Drive is first. Then some motherboard BIOS has the option to choose which HDD is first in the boot attempt. Make sure that the Add-in card isn't on the top of either list. Also check that you turned your SATA controller back on for your motherboard.

Edit: When I reflashed my card I disabled the SATA again and changed the boot order to USB first. When I re-enabled the SATA controller and restored the Hard Drive as the first boot device the Hard Drive boot order had the Add-in card as the first HDD boot device. Without changing the HDD boot order I think that would lead to the problem you are describing.
Edited by bryansj - 2/19/13 at 7:23pm
post #593 of 3378
Without the card the Mobo Bios says the boot order with hdd first and boots just fine. When I add the card, it first flashed the option rom. and if I do nothing it just goes into a blank screen. I cannot even get into my mobo BIOS anymore. Nothing boots. just a blank screen. The only thing I can access when the card is in is the card's option rom (bios i guess). Nothing else. There is a boot order in the option rom that I am not able to change. That says 0. Any thoughts ?
post #594 of 3378
Thread Starter 
Disable the boot rom. ???? Or option rom ?
post #595 of 3378
I tried disabling the adapter in the option rom/adapter bios. There is an option to disable it there. But nothing happens even after i disable it. Even if I want to delete the option rom I would need to reflash it to IT mode without the option rom. I would like to do it but I cannot do it until I can boot into a USB. With this boot failure I cant reflash. So I am kinda stuck right now.
post #596 of 3378
Quote:
Originally Posted by donysious View Post

I tried disabling the adapter in the option rom/adapter bios. There is an option to disable it there. But nothing happens even after i disable it. Even if I want to delete the option rom I would need to reflash it to IT mode without the option rom. I would like to do it but I cannot do it until I can boot into a USB. With this boot failure I cant reflash. So I am kinda stuck right now.

Try this:

remove the card
boot into Bios an disable your onboard SATA and NIC
reinstall card and boot to USB
reflash without option rom
post #597 of 3378
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy_Steb View Post

Try this:

remove the card
boot into Bios an disable your onboard SATA and NIC
reinstall card and boot to USB
reflash without option rom

Before you reinstall the card, make sure you have your USB drive as the first boot device.
post #598 of 3378
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy_Steb View Post

Try this:

remove the card
boot into Bios an disable your onboard SATA and NIC
reinstall card and boot to USB
reflash without option rom

Thank you for the tip.
I tried with everything disabled and the USB boot disk. I am able to boot into USB without the card. Once the card is in its the same. Blank screen after option rom prompt. Tried disabling the card in option rom. Same problem even after disabling it. Any other ideas guys?
post #599 of 3378
Starting to wonder how you got it to flash in the first place. A lot of consumer boards have problems with option roms, they just don't leave enough room for them.
With the option rom disabled you would think it would boot up.

The card is a 8x pcie but will run at 4x. Try a different slot.

If all else fails, send it to me and I will reflash it for you without the rom.
post #600 of 3378
Thread Starter 
Do you have another motherboard you can try ?

You sure it's in the top or first x8/x16 slot ?
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