The-Kevster
Contributor
Contributor

SATA Support Clear as Mud!?

From the updated I/O sheet this is what's mentioned on supported SATA controllers....

Supported SAS/SATA Dual Controllers

ESX Server 3.5 supports selected SATA devices connected to dual SAS/SATA controllers. This support is limited to ESX Server 3.5. It is not included with ESX Server 3.0.x.

The supported dual SAS/SATA controllers are:

  • mptscsi_2xx (PCIE) ‐ LSI1078*

  • mptscsi_pcie ‐ LSI1068E (LSISAS3442E)*

  • mptscsi_pcix ‐ LSI1068 (SAS 5)*

  • aacraid_esx30 ‐ IBM serveraid 8k SAS controller*

  • cciss ‐ Smart Array P400/256 controller*

So what is the best PCIE card for me to put into my S5000PAL server that will use the above driver, if only someone could make a list :smileygrin:

Thanks,

Kev

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342 Replies
J-H
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

I have an Intel S5000PSLROMB motherboard. With ESX 3.0.x I had to purchase a RAID activation key (AXXRAK18E), memory for the RAID card, and I also purchased a battery backup unit (AXXRSBBU3). This was quite expensive. http://communities.vmware.com/message/590583

ESX 3.0.x did not recognize the onboard SATA controller (6321ESB). The installation CD only showed the disks connected to the ROMB card and also after the installation I only could use disk connected to the ROMB card.

The ESX 3.5 installation CD now recognizes the SATA controller and the ROMB card. I was able to create a VMFS on a disk connected to the SATA controller.

It is likely that with ESX 3.5 I could have bought the S5000PSLSATA or S5000PSLSAS motherboard which is cheaper, and it would not be required to buy the RAID activation key and RAID memory. The only difference would be that the configuration would not be on the HCL and therefore is not supported.

This is my test system at home so I could live with this disadvantage.

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kriewald
Contributor
Contributor

@J-H:

Can you just only install ESX 3.5 with the SATA controller?

or

Can you install and run ESX 3.5 with the SATA controller?

Cause with a HP ML110G2 and a i82801FR/FRW (ICH6R/RW) I can install ESX 3.5 with VMFS perfectly, but running ESX 3.5 isn't possible. Like @blackforce wrote with his configuration, it crashes during booting on my box too.

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J-H
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

I'm currently running a VM located on the disk connected to the SATA controller.

What I haven't tried is to remove the ROMB card and only use the disk connected to the SATA controller to install ESX and create a VMFS on a partition of that disk or another disk connected to the SATA controller. I'm currently too busy to perform this test.

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rpartmann
Hot Shot
Hot Shot

Hi,

i managed to get my ESX3.5 to boot and run on a HP ML 115.

onboard raid: yes, this "raid" really sucks, because my rescue cd found 2 controllers/disks -> NO RAID

TODO-List to get ESX-3.5 up and running.

1.) install it from the cd (of course)

2.) reboot with a linux live cd of your choice.

and now i hope that there are no typos...because i created this "script" on my laptop during i tried and tested it on my ESX box!

mkdir /mnt/eboot

mkdir /mnt/eroot

  1. /boot of ESX box

mount /dev/sda1 /mnt/eboot

  1. /root of ESX box

mount /dev/sda2 /mnt/eroot

mkdir /mnt/eroot/tmp/initrd

mkdir /mnt/eroot/tmp/initrd/extracted

mkdir /mnt/eroot/tmp/initrd/extractednew

cp /mnt/eboot/boot/initrd-2.4.21-47.0.1.ELvmnix.img /mnt/eroot/tmp/initrd

cd /mnt/eroot/tmp/initrd

mv initrd-2.4.21-47.0.1.ELvmnix.img initrd-2.4.21-47.0.1.ELvmnix.img.gz

gunzip initrd-2.4.21-47.0.1.ELvmnix.img.gz

mount initrd-2.4.21-47.0.1.ELvmnix.img extracted -o loop

cd extracted

cd etc/vmware

cp simple.map simple.map.org

vi simple.map

2nd go for SED!

search for 037e

double this line

change one 037e to 037f

save

cd ..

cd ..

dd if=dev/zero of=initrd.img bs=1k count=97000

mke2fs -i 1024 -b 1024 -m 5 -F -v initrd.img

mount initrd.img extractednew -t ext2 -o loop

tar -C extracted/ -cmf - . | tar -C extractednew/ -xmf - .

  1. umount initrd.img

umount extracted

umount extractednew

gzip -best initrd.img

ls -alh

mv initrd.img.gz initrd.img

cd /mnt/eboot

mv initrd-2.4.21-47.0.1.ELvmnix.img initrd-2.4.21-47.0.1.ELvmnix.img.org

cp /mnt/eroot/tmp/initrd/initrd.img initrd-2.4.21-47.0.1.ELvmnix.img

cd /mnt/eroot

cd etc

cd vmware

cp pci.ids pci.ids.org

vi pci.ids

2nd go for SED!

search for 037e

double this line

change one 037e to 037f

save

cp pci.xml.merged pci.xml.merged.org

vi pci.xml.merged

2nd go for SED!

search for 037e

double this SECTION

change one 037e to 037f

save

cd pciid

cp sata_nv.xml sata_nv.xml.org

vi sata_nv.xml

2nd go for SED!

search for 037e

double this SECTION

change one 037e to 037f

save

reboot from your resuce system into ESX and JUCHEEEEE....

kind regards,

Reinhard

ps: Award points if you find answers helpful. Thanks.
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blackforce
Contributor
Contributor

I have tried your instructions.

I typed them in word for word.

All goes well until I get to

mount initrd.img extractednew -t ext2 -o loop

It says it cant find extractednew or something

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rpartmann
Hot Shot
Hot Shot

Hi,

do a "pwd". You should be in "/mnt/eroot/tmp/initrd"

I think i left out a "cd .." in my notes.

ps: Award points if you find answers helpful. Thanks.
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blackforce
Contributor
Contributor

Sorry I am confused where did u miss the cd.. from? I've PM'd u my msn address if u can help

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rpartmann
Hot Shot
Hot Shot

Hi,

this works on my ML 115-G1

1.) install normaly, hopefully it works.

2.) reboot with linux Live cd when esx boot fails

3.) scp the following script to the esx and tun it.

->8-

#!/bin/bash

  1. vmware esx initrd changer

#/bin/bash

  1. Reinhard Partmann

  2. date created: 2007-12-17

  3. date modified: 2007-12-17

  4. version: 0.2

echo "creating directories..."

mkdir -p /mnt/eboot

mkdir -p /mnt/eroot

echo "mounting.."

mount /dev/sda1 /mnt/eboot

mount /dev/sda2 /mnt/eroot

mount | grep sda

echo "copying original initrd file..."

mkdir -p /mnt/eroot/tmp/initrd/extracted

cp /mnt/eboot/initrd-2.4.21-47.0.1.ELvmnix.img /mnt/eroot/tmp/initrd/initrd-2.4.21-47.0.1.ELvmnix.img.gz

cd /mnt/eroot/tmp/initrd

echo "unpacking & mounting original initrd file..."

gunzip -f initrd-2.4.21-47.0.1.ELvmnix.img.gz

mount initrd-2.4.21-47.0.1.ELvmnix.img extracted -t ext2 -o loop

cd extracted

cd etc

cd vmware

echo "changing simple.map..."

echo "10de:037f 0000:0000 sata_nv.o" >> simple.map

cd ..

cd ..

cd ..

umount extracted

echo "replacing original initrd file..."

gzip --best initrd-2.4.21-47.0.1.ELvmnix.img

mv /mnt/eroot/tmp/initrd/initrd-2.4.21-47.0.1.ELvmnix.img.gz /mnt/eboot/

cp /mnt/eboot/initrd-2.4.21-47.0.1.ELvmnix.img.gz /mnt/eboot/initrd-2.4.21-47.0.1.ELvmnix.img

echo "patching xml files"

cd /mnt/eroot/etc/vmware/pciid

lines=`wc -l sata_nv.xml | awk ' { print $1 } '`

echo "lines: $lines"

(( lines -= 2))

echo "subtr lines: $lines"

mv sata_nv.xml sata_nv.xml.org

head -$lines sata_nv.xml.org > sata_nv.xml

echo " <device ID="037f">" >> sata_nv.xml

echo " <vmware label="scsi">" >> sata_nv.xml

echo " <driver>sata_nv</driver>" >> sata_nv.xml

echo " </vmware>" >> sata_nv.xml

echo " <name>MCP55 SATA Controller</name>" >> sata_nv.xml

echo " </device>" >> sata_nv.xml

echo " </vendor>" >> sata_nv.xml

echo "</pcitable>" >> sata_nv.xml

touch /mnt/eroot/etc/init.d/rp-esxcfg-pciid-boot

echo "#!/bin/bash" >> /mnt/eroot/etc/init.d/rp-esxcfg-pciid-boot

echo "esxcfg-pciid" >> /mnt/eroot/etc/init.d/rp-esxcfg-pciid-boot

echo "sleep 5" >> /mnt/eroot/etc/init.d/rp-esxcfg-pciid-boot

echo "rm /etc/rc3.d/S99rp-esxcfg-pciid-boot" >> /mnt/eroot/etc/init.d/rp-esxcfg-pciid-boot

chmod a+x /mnt/eroot/etc/init.d/rp-esxcfg-pciid-boot

cd /mnt/eroot/etc/rc3.d/

ln -s ../init.d/rp-esxcfg-pciid-boot S99rp-esxcfg-pciid-boot

echo "cleanup..."

cd /

rm -f -r /mnt/eroot/tmp/initrd

umount /mnt/eboot

umount /mnt/eroot

rm -f -r /mnt/eboot

rm -f -r /mnt/eroot

->8-

ps: Award points if you find answers helpful. Thanks.
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pdewild
Contributor
Contributor

Hi Reinhard, thanks for the script, it works like a charm... However....

I install ESX, works perfectly... Boot with Ubuntu live CD (the only one lying around), run your script, reboot into ESX, all is fine. I reboot the ESX server again, "just to reboot" Smiley Happy, and again, the "root not found" issue... Tried it with and without the ending init-rd script.... Any of you have the same problems???

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blackforce
Contributor
Contributor

When he did mine. When he booted into esx for the 1st time.

he edited sata_nv.xml to add the 037f line

added 037f to sata_nv.xml

then ran

esxcfg-pciid

I could then reboot ok,

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pdewild
Contributor
Contributor

Alrighty, fixed the script with some very minor issues (capitals ID instead of normal id, and fixed the quotation, although this is probably not that important)...

Try it if you will! See attached file... Install-options like Reinhard described, so:

1. Install ESX, should work just fine (keep in mind, let /boot be /dev/sda1, and / be /dev/sda2!)

2. At the reboot, use some Linux live-CD (I use an Ubuntu one, doesn't really matter)

3. Get the script on the Live-Linux distribution, ie. via SCP

4. Run the script

5. Reboot into your new ESX 3.5!

Great! Thanks again Reinhard!

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jlee2
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

To add to the list, I tried installing 3.5 on a spare desktop system and it worked great, I'm currently running 2 VMs on it (it only has 1gb RAM right now). Here are the Specs:

-Gigabyte GA-K8N51GMF-9 Motherboard (NVidia Chipset)

-AMD Athlon 64 x2 3800+ Processor (Dual Core 2ghz)

-1gb DDR RAM

-1 Seagate 120gb SATA Drive plugged into motherboard SATA Controller (have not tested any RAID setups)

-Using Integrated Nvidia 6100 Graphics

I of course don't expect this to be a supported config and I'd never use it in production but it does give me a cheap system for testing. Much easier than scrambling to find a SCSI/RAID card and SCSI drives. Thanks guys!

Jay

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admin
Immortal
Immortal

I was able to get a VM created and booted on an old desktop circa 2004 with the following motherboard:

MSI 915P/G Neo2

- Intel ICH6 SATA controller (one HDD attached)

- Broadcom 5751

I didn't do a whole lot of testing to say whether this setup worked well or not.

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myxiplx
Contributor
Contributor

Many thanks for that script folks. That's got ESX 3.5 running on a Sun x2200 box too Smiley Happy

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doctorttt
Contributor
Contributor

Hi guys, I'm new to this. Can someone please assist? I'm experiencing the same problem as everyone else in here.

2. At the reboot, use some Linux live-CD (I use an Ubuntu one, doesn't really matter)

What is a Linux Live CD? What does it do? I'm on ubuntu's site, but I don't know which one to download

3. Get the script on the Live-Linux distribution, ie. via SCP

What does this mean? Does it mean after running the linux live-CD, it will prompt me for the script?

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rpartmann
Hot Shot
Hot Shot

Hi,

1.) a linux live CD is a linux system which boots completely from a bootable cd. The cd can do as much as the tools on the cd can do. Smiley Wink

for example:

2.) scp .. securecopy for help: man scp

And many other free books/infos

nano howto: install esx and try a reboot. If a startup into your esx installation fails, boot your system with any live cd which supports your hardware. Copy my script from above, with corrections from pdewild, ( ) on a usb stick and mount the stick within your linux live environment or set up the network of your linux live system and use under windows winscp to transfer the script to the linux live system.

Every script must be "executable": chmod a+x scriptname.ext and run it with ./scriptname.ext

hope that helps you to move on, r.

ps: Award points if you find answers helpful. Thanks.
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doctorttt
Contributor
Contributor

Thank you so much, partman. You're a great help.

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doctorttt
Contributor
Contributor

Hi. I just loaded Ubuntu and have no clue what to do from here. I have the script in the USB stick and connected it to the PC. In Ubuntu, where do I go to do scp? Is it the terminal screen? I looked at the scp command syntax, and I have no clue what my is. Can someone help?

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doctorttt
Contributor
Contributor

Ok, I was able to use Winscp and transferred the script to Ubuntu. However, when I tried to run the script chmod a+x command, nothing happened and no error message. Did I miss something??

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rpartmann
Hot Shot
Hot Shot

hi,

wenn you run

chmod a+x script.sh

[code]

ls -al vmnetconf.sh

-rwxr-xr-x 1 root root 2.7K Jan 4 2007 vmnetconf.sh

[code]

ls -al script.sh

-rwxr-xr-x 1 root root 2.7K Jan 4 2007 script.sh

[code]

cp /sourcepath/script.sh /root

[code]

ls -al vmnetconf.sh

-rwxr-xr-x 1 root root 2.7K Jan 4 2007 vmnetconf.sh

there is no message when completed successfully. Try a ls -al, should look like ..

ls -al script.sh

-rwxr-xr-x 1 root root 2.7K Jan 4 2007 script.sh

then you can run the script with ./script.sh.

Copy this script before all that to /root.

cp /sourcepath/script.sh /root

kind regards,

rpartmann

ps: Award points if you find answers helpful. Thanks.
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