5 Replies Latest reply on Aug 4, 2011 9:19 PM by Scissor

    ServeRAID M1015 and megaraid_sas inbox driver

    Scissor Virtuoso

      Is there a VMware-supported way to update storage drivers included on the ESXi installer ISO?



      I have an IBM System x3755 M3 (7164-AC1) with a ServeRAID M1015 adapter.  The M1015 came with firmware 4.24.00 (20.10.1-0036) installed.


      I am unable to install ESXi 4.1 U1 onto a M1015 RAID volume with the included inbox drivers.


      The M1015 is listed on the HCL:  http://partnerweb.vmware.com/comp_guide1/detail.php?device_cat=io&device_id=12373


      I am using the “VMware-VMvisor-Installer-4.1.0.update1-348481.x86_64.iso” file.


      The ESXi installer appears to see the volume (shows the correct size, etc), but when I confirm the volume as the destination and hit F11 to start the actual install, the ESXi Installation progress bar stalls at 0% complete.


      Pressing ALT+F12 to bring up the logs shows the following lines repeated over and over again.


      WARNING: LinScsi: SCSILinuxAbortCommands: Failed, Driver LSI Logic SAS based MegaRAID driver
      megasas: ABORT sn <…>
      megasas: RESET sn <…>
      megasas: reset successful.


      I then installed ESXi onto a USB key. I connected to the server using the vSphere client.  Under the Configuration -> Storage Adapter tab I can see the M1015 adapter, and I can see the LUN under the Configuration -> Storage -> Add Storage wizard.  But when I try to create a datastore on the LUN I get the same errors in the logs as during the installation attempt.


      I then updated the megaraid_sas driver to version 5.29 and was then able to successfully utilize the RAID volume as a datastore:  http://downloads.vmware.com/d/details/dt_esx4x_lsi_mpt2sas/ZHcqYnR3d2ViZCpwdw==


      So it looks like a newer driver is all that is needed.  However, I do not want to run ESXi off a USB key -- I want to install and run it off the RAID volume. Hence I think I need to somehow update the installation ISO with this updated megaraid_sas driver.    Unless there is another way?


      Thanks for any suggestions.


      P.S - Incidentally I found this link from IBM that references a need for a newer driver with recent M1015 firmware:  http://www-947.ibm.com/support/entry/portal/docdisplay?lndocid=MIGR-5087330


      P.P.S - Just for fun I updated the M1015 to the very latest FW (20.10.1-0045), but the same issue exists with the inbox megaraid_sas driver.  I am hesitant to try downgrading the firmware due to this post:  http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/forums/thread.jspa?messageID=14583891&tstart=0

        • 1. Re: ServeRAID M1015 and megaraid_sas inbox driver
          DSTAVERT Guru

          You can add the drivers to a custom oem.tgz file and make a custom installer. Create a USB installer from the ISO file and add the custom oem.tgz




          The USB install works really well. Since there isn't any appreciable writing to disk there isn't much chance of disk failure.

          • 2. Re: ServeRAID M1015 and megaraid_sas inbox driver
            Scissor Virtuoso

            The fix ended up being to Enable the IOMMU in the UEFI setup using the following steps:

            1. Reboot the server.
            2. Press F1 when the system is at the IBM splash screen.
            3. Select System Settings, Processors, and IOMMU Mode.


            (IOMMU is disabled by default)


            After this was done, I was then able to install ESXi 4.1 Update 1 using the inbox drivers.

            • 3. Re: ServeRAID M1015 and megaraid_sas inbox driver
              cdc Hot Shot

              Have you tried using the IBM-customized ESXi 4.1U1 ISO?




              It will add a bunch of additional IBM-specific hardware sensors, so it might be worth looking into for your system.

              1 person found this helpful
              • 4. Re: ServeRAID M1015 and megaraid_sas inbox driver
                Scissor Virtuoso

                Good suggestion cdc:


                I did try the IBM customized installer before discovering the IOMMU fix and it had a similar (but not the same) problem.  Now that I found the root cause I suppose I could install the IBM version instead.


                I have always been a bit hesistant about going with customized installers though.  I guess the main reason is that if I install using the IBM customized installer, then when VMware releases a new version of 4.x I believe that I will have to wait for IBM to create a new installer before I can upgrade.  Do you know how long IBM usually takes to create new installers (I guess I could check the download dates myself -- but I am a bit too lazy right now).


                Anyway... thanks for the suggestion.  I may try the IBM installer tomorrow just to see what additional sensors are supported.

                • 5. Re: ServeRAID M1015 and megaraid_sas inbox driver
                  cdc Hot Shot

                  I'm not entirely sure how quickly they release new ones.  But, as far as I know, installing VMware "patches" are not supposed to wipe out the customizations.  For actual new builds, where the version number changes (in additional to the build number), those would probably wipe customized stuff out.


                  I deal mostly in IBM BladeCenter, but fwiw, using the IBM customized image has added between 20-30+ additional hardware sensors for the HS22, HS22V, and HX5 blades.  So, I would expect a similar bump for your system.

                  1 person found this helpful