AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage! - Linux

This is a discussion on AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage! - Linux ; First, My situations are as follow: AlphaServer 1000 - Single SCSI 2 Controller 1 SCSI CDROM (Not used normally) 1 Tape Drive (Used for backup every 2 days) 4 StorageWork 2.1G Harddisk (On Storage Rack) 1 4.3G Harddisk (Internal) So, ...

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Thread: AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!

  1. AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!

    First, My situations are as follow:

    AlphaServer 1000 - Single SCSI 2 Controller

    1 SCSI CDROM (Not used normally)
    1 Tape Drive (Used for backup every 2 days)
    4 StorageWork 2.1G Harddisk (On Storage Rack)
    1 4.3G Harddisk (Internal)

    So, it meet the 7 devices limitation of the controller, and the space is now
    running out, and I had come with different ideas:

    -- Idea 1 --
    Get an IDE Raid Card and get an single ATA100 HD

    Problem: Not sure AlphaServer will support or not, and not sure whether the
    Raid Card support using 1 HD only or not.

    -- Idea 2 --
    Similar to Idea 1, But use an SCSI to IDE Bridge instead, and disconnect the
    CDROM

    Problem: Worry about the stability of the bridge, and the performance seems
    lower than Ideas 1

    -- Idea 3 --
    Get an spare AlphaServer 1000 Up, and install 7 StorageWork 2.1G Harddisk
    and a new OS :-(

    Problem: Too much trouble for me!!

    A new SCSI HDD is not considered at this moment as it is too expansive and
    low performance when using with an SCSI 2 Controller.

    Hey!! I need your comments and other suggestions, Thank you very much!



  2. Re: AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!

    -- wrote:

    > First, My situations are as follow:
    >
    > AlphaServer 1000 - Single SCSI 2 Controller
    >
    > 1 SCSI CDROM (Not used normally)
    > 1 Tape Drive (Used for backup every 2 days)
    > 4 StorageWork 2.1G Harddisk (On Storage Rack)
    > 1 4.3G Harddisk (Internal)
    >
    > So, it meet the 7 devices limitation of the controller, and the space
    > is now running out, and I had come with different ideas:
    >
    > -- Idea 1 --
    > Get an IDE Raid Card and get an single ATA100 HD
    >
    > Problem: Not sure AlphaServer will support or not, and not sure
    > whether the Raid Card support using 1 HD only or not.


    This won't work. IDE RAID Controllers have a x86 BIOS that doesn't work
    correctly on the AS1000...

    > -- Idea 2 --
    > Similar to Idea 1, But use an SCSI to IDE Bridge instead, and
    > disconnect the CDROM
    >
    > Problem: Worry about the stability of the bridge, and the performance
    > seems lower than Ideas 1
    >
    > -- Idea 3 --
    > Get an spare AlphaServer 1000 Up, and install 7 StorageWork 2.1G
    > Harddisk and a new OS :-(
    >
    > Problem: Too much trouble for me!!


    -- Idea 4 -- ;-)
    Get an UW-SCSI Controller (i.e. Symbios Logic SYM875, can be had for a few
    bucks on ebay) that runs in the AS1000. Costs only a few bucks and delivers
    40MB/s instead of the slow 10MB/s of the AS1000's FastSCSI.

    > A new SCSI HDD is not considered at this moment as it is too
    > expansive and low performance when using with an SCSI 2 Controller.


    Forget IDE in the AS1000. That's a nogo. But there are plenty of cheap SCSI
    drives around on ebay, even an 18GB disk can be had relative cheaply. And
    with a faster controller You will have a huge permformance benefit.

    Benjamin



  3. Re: AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!

    In article , Benjamin
    Gawert writes

    >> Problem: Not sure AlphaServer will support or not, and not sure
    >> whether the Raid Card support using 1 HD only or not.

    >
    >This won't work. IDE RAID Controllers have a x86 BIOS that doesn't work
    >correctly on the AS1000...


    I can see this might be a problem if you want to boot off IDE, but won't
    the linux device drivers run the card after booting ?


    Cheers, J/.
    --
    John Beardmore

  4. Re: AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!


    "--" schreef in bericht
    news:bp74d0$fuq4@imsp212.netvigator.com...
    > First, My situations are as follow:
    >
    > AlphaServer 1000 - Single SCSI 2 Controller
    >
    > 1 SCSI CDROM (Not used normally)
    > 1 Tape Drive (Used for backup every 2 days)
    > 4 StorageWork 2.1G Harddisk (On Storage Rack)
    > 1 4.3G Harddisk (Internal)
    >
    > So, it meet the 7 devices limitation of the controller, and the space is

    now
    > running out, and I had come with different ideas:
    >
    > -- Idea 1 --
    > Get an IDE Raid Card and get an single ATA100 HD
    >
    > Problem: Not sure AlphaServer will support or not, and not sure whether

    the
    > Raid Card support using 1 HD only or not.
    >
    > -- Idea 2 --
    > Similar to Idea 1, But use an SCSI to IDE Bridge instead, and disconnect

    the
    > CDROM
    >
    > Problem: Worry about the stability of the bridge, and the performance

    seems
    > lower than Ideas 1
    >
    > -- Idea 3 --
    > Get an spare AlphaServer 1000 Up, and install 7 StorageWork 2.1G Harddisk
    > and a new OS :-(
    >
    > Problem: Too much trouble for me!!
    >
    > A new SCSI HDD is not considered at this moment as it is too expansive and
    > low performance when using with an SCSI 2 Controller.
    >
    > Hey!! I need your comments and other suggestions, Thank you very much!
    >
    >

    Suggestion for idea 4:

    IIRC the 1000 has an internal storage bay for SBB canisters. Open up a
    canister and look at the disk that's actually inside (RZ28m-xx). These disks
    have a 50 pins SCSI connector and they may be replaced by another disk. Ebay
    usually has several alternatives available, even DEC branded disks though
    any Seagate or Quantum disk will do equally well.
    In case you need more disk capacity, you might need a 68 pin to 50 pin SCSI
    converter and those are not expensive either.

    Good luck



  5. Re: AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!

    John Beardmore writes:

    >>> Problem: Not sure AlphaServer will support or not, and not sure
    >>> whether the Raid Card support using 1 HD only or not.

    >>
    >>This won't work. IDE RAID Controllers have a x86 BIOS that doesn't work
    >>correctly on the AS1000...

    >
    > I can see this might be a problem if you want to boot off IDE, but
    > won't the linux device drivers run the card after booting ?


    I've used a Promise controller in Avanti, Miata and SX164, and a
    Highpoing controller in Miata and S164. No problems there.

    --
    Måns Rullgård
    mru@kth.se

  6. Re: AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!

    John Beardmore wrote:

    >> This won't work. IDE RAID Controllers have a x86 BIOS that doesn't
    >> work correctly on the AS1000...

    >
    > I can see this might be a problem if you want to boot off IDE, but
    > won't the linux device drivers run the card after booting ?


    Well, Linux will propably support generic IDE controllers, and on these You
    even can use software RAID. It will however _not_ support IDE RAID adapters
    more than any other generic IDE controller...

    With Tru64 and OpenVMS You are certainly lost with IDE...

    Benjamin



  7. Re: AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!

    As diligent as the Linux developers are, I seriously doubt that someone has
    developed and tested IDE drivers for an AlphaServer. IDE was never supported
    by DEC as a hardware interface on an AlphaServer 1000, was it? So someone would
    have to expend the time and money to acquire an IDE controller and tweak
    low-level Intel X86 code to work with the Alpha CPU.

    Save some time. Stick with SCSI, even if the capacities are less exciting and
    more expensive... Ben Myers

    On Tue, 18 Nov 2003 14:44:35 +0100, "Benjamin Gawert" wrote:

    >John Beardmore wrote:
    >
    >>> This won't work. IDE RAID Controllers have a x86 BIOS that doesn't
    >>> work correctly on the AS1000...

    >>
    >> I can see this might be a problem if you want to boot off IDE, but
    >> won't the linux device drivers run the card after booting ?

    >
    >Well, Linux will propably support generic IDE controllers, and on these You
    >even can use software RAID. It will however _not_ support IDE RAID adapters
    >more than any other generic IDE controller...
    >
    >With Tru64 and OpenVMS You are certainly lost with IDE...
    >
    >Benjamin
    >
    >



  8. Re: AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!

    Spam Me Please wrote:

    > I have tried IDE in my xp1000. Search google groups for the detailed
    > post I wrote up concerning my experience. A short summary. I had
    > absolutely no luck with promise raid controllers, but a very cheap
    > silicon image ide raid controller worked like a charm. I have three
    > 160g drives on the ide controller, and the setup has been working
    > perfectly for the last three weeks. Note I use either the scsi drive
    > to boot or boot over the network without a scsi drive. Both setups
    > work beautifully. Another note you cannot use the onboard raid, but
    > the linux raid drivers worked perfectly.


    Right, so it makes no sense to buy an IDE RAID controller for use in an
    Alpha, a normal IDE controller is cheaper and does the same...

    Benjamin



  9. Re: AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!

    Maciej W. Rozycki wrote:

    >> Well, if there are drivers for IDE controllers within Linux they
    >> will work on any PCI-based Alpha, even on an AS1000. But if that
    >> makes any sense is a

    >
    > I tried a generic (PIO only, IIRC) no-name PCI IDE controller on an
    > AS300 about five years ago and it worked just fine with Linux 2.2.x
    > (or late
    > 2.1.x -- I can't tell now anymore).
    >
    > The Linux IDE drivers do not contain any i386-specific low-level
    > code -- they work for many platforms beyond i386. And thanks to a
    > large user base they are often far better tested than drivers for
    > SCSI host adapters.


    Right, but on the other side there often are side effects on older machines
    with modern PCI cards...

    > Yep, indeed -- a 146GB SCSI disk costs now only about six times more
    > than
    > a 160GB ATA one...


    Read the original posting, it seems the poster even would have been happy
    with seven 2.1GB disks, so I was looking more in the 9 to 18GB disk range.
    And these disks are dirt cheap today.

    Benjamin



  10. Re: AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!

    John Beardmore wrote:

    >> Yes, that's probably the best way. And SCSI drives aren't that
    >> expensive any more...

    >
    > Three times the price is still three times the price for a given
    > capacity.
    >
    > Sounds as if Måns Rullgård have tried IDE and found that it works.
    > I'm giving it serious consideration.


    Do that, but don't forget that he has an XP1000 which is a modern PCI
    2.1-based machine. The AS1000 (without A) is very very old, and it doesn't
    follow the PCI 2.1 spec, and besides that has a very very limited PCI
    performance. Even when an IDE card works in the XP1000 that doesn't mean it
    also works in the AS1000...

    Benjamin



  11. Re: AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!

    John Beardmore writes:

    >>Yes, that's probably the best way. And SCSI drives aren't that expensive any
    >>more...

    >
    > Three times the price is still three times the price for a given
    > capacity.
    >
    > Sounds as if Måns Rullgård have tried IDE and found that it works.
    > I'm giving it serious consideration.


    I'll add some more comments about IDE in Alpha. I used a Promise
    ultra100 tx2, aka pdc20268, controller. It worked, but only with
    ATA-33. I could set ATA-66 or ATA-100, but it would instantly get a
    bunch of CRC errors and fall back to ATA-33. Not very fun. Later, I
    replaced it with a Hightpoint 1540 SATA card, and put SATA bridges on
    all disks. It's been working fine ever since.

    --
    Måns Rullgård
    mru@kth.se

  12. Re: AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!

    "Benjamin Gawert" writes:

    >> Sounds as if Måns Rullgård have tried IDE and found that it works.
    >> I'm giving it serious consideration.

    >
    > Do that, but don't forget that he has an XP1000 which is a modern PCI
    > 2.1-based machine.


    Not quite. I have SX164, Miata, AS255, AS100, but no XP1000. The
    promise pdc20268 worked in the AS255, I can't remember if I ever tried
    it in an AS100.

    > The AS1000 (without A) is very very old, and it doesn't follow the
    > PCI 2.1 spec, and besides that has a very very limited PCI
    > performance. Even when an IDE card works in the XP1000 that doesn't
    > mean it also works in the AS1000...


    That could be the case.

    --
    Måns Rullgård
    mru@kth.se

  13. Re: AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!

    On Wed, 19 Nov 2003, Benjamin Gawert wrote:

    > > The Linux IDE drivers do not contain any i386-specific low-level
    > > code -- they work for many platforms beyond i386. And thanks to a
    > > large user base they are often far better tested than drivers for
    > > SCSI host adapters.

    >
    > Right, but on the other side there often are side effects on older machines
    > with modern PCI cards...


    Possibly, but that does not really depend on the processor's
    architecture. They can happen anywhere.

    > > Yep, indeed -- a 146GB SCSI disk costs now only about six times more
    > > than
    > > a 160GB ATA one...

    >
    > Read the original posting, it seems the poster even would have been happy
    > with seven 2.1GB disks, so I was looking more in the 9 to 18GB disk range.
    > And these disks are dirt cheap today.


    Agreed, though it doesn't mean using ATA with Alpha systems is completely
    pointless.

    --
    + Maciej W. Rozycki, Technical University of Gdansk, Poland +
    +--------------------------------------------------------------+
    + e-mail: macro@ds2.pg.gda.pl, PGP key available +

  14. Re: AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!

    Not complete true and the reason I got the raid controller because it
    was cheaper for me to buy, and at the time I could not even find a
    non-raid controller. Anyway it really depends on the price before one
    can say what is better to buy? So I would not say the it makes no
    sense at all. Maybe little sense ;-)

    I would have purchased a non-raid ide controller but that cost more at
    the time I got the raid version. I got it on ebay really cheap. For
    the record none of the stores here sold a plain ide controller without
    raid, and all the controllers where "promise controllers at the local
    stores. I guess promise has the market share here in my rural area.

    For the record most of the so called ide raid controllers don't even
    have hardware raid. Therefore, even though my controller said raid it
    functions as a plain old ide controller and works well.

    I think the key with Alpha though is all ide raid controllers don't
    work with Alpha's. I could never get a raid or non-raid promise
    controller to work with my alpha xp1000.

    Whatever.

    >>>>> "Benjamin" == Benjamin Gawert writes:


    Benjamin> Spam Me Please wrote:
    >> I have tried IDE in my xp1000. Search google groups for the
    >> detailed post I wrote up concerning my experience. A short
    >> summary. I had absolutely no luck with promise raid controllers,
    >> but a very cheap silicon image ide raid controller worked like a
    >> charm. I have three 160g drives on the ide controller, and the
    >> setup has been working perfectly for the last three weeks. Note I
    >> use either the scsi drive to boot or boot over the network without
    >> a scsi drive. Both setups work beautifully. Another note you
    >> cannot use the onboard raid, but the linux raid drivers worked
    >> perfectly.


    Benjamin> Right, so it makes no sense to buy an IDE RAID controller
    Benjamin> for use in an Alpha, a normal IDE controller is cheaper and
    Benjamin> does the same...

    Benjamin> Benjamin



  15. Re: AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!

    >>>>> "Benjamin" == Benjamin Gawert writes:

    Benjamin> Maciej W. Rozycki wrote:
    >>> Well, if there are drivers for IDE controllers within Linux they
    >>> will work on any PCI-based Alpha, even on an AS1000. But if that
    >>> makes any sense is a

    >> I tried a generic (PIO only, IIRC) no-name PCI IDE controller on
    >> an AS300 about five years ago and it worked just fine with Linux
    >> 2.2.x (or late 2.1.x -- I can't tell now anymore).
    >>
    >> The Linux IDE drivers do not contain any i386-specific low-level
    >> code -- they work for many platforms beyond i386. And thanks to a
    >> large user base they are often far better tested than drivers for
    >> SCSI host adapters.


    Benjamin> Right, but on the other side there often are side effects
    Benjamin> on older machines with modern PCI cards...

    >> Yep, indeed -- a 146GB SCSI disk costs now only about six times
    >> more than a 160GB ATA one...


    Benjamin> Read the original posting, it seems the poster even would
    Benjamin> have been happy with seven 2.1GB disks, so I was looking
    Benjamin> more in the 9 to 18GB disk range. And these disks are dirt
    Benjamin> cheap today.

    Depends on the condition of the drives. Newer drives cost between
    10-20 bucks, and this adds up quickly. A 40g ide drive would be
    cheaper. However, some auction sites have much better deals. So it all
    depends on what you can find.

    Later


  16. Re: AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!

    >>>>> "Måns" == Måns Rullgård writes:

    Måns> John Beardmore writes:
    >>> Yes, that's probably the best way. And SCSI drives aren't that
    >>> expensive any more...

    >> Three times the price is still three times the price for a given
    >> capacity.
    >>
    >> Sounds as if Måns Rullgård have tried IDE and found that it works.
    >> I'm giving it serious consideration.


    Måns> I'll add some more comments about IDE in Alpha. I used a
    Måns> Promise ultra100 tx2, aka pdc20268, controller. It worked, but
    Måns> only with ATA-33. I could set ATA-66 or ATA-100, but it would
    Måns> instantly get a bunch of CRC errors and fall back to ATA-33.
    Måns> Not very fun. Later, I replaced it with a Hightpoint 1540 SATA
    Måns> card, and put SATA bridges on all disks. It's been working fine
    Måns> ever since.

    Måns> -- Måns Rullgård mru@kth.se

    I had the same results here with the promise controller, and the exact
    same error message. Not clear if it was driver or the hardware
    problem.

    Good luck

  17. Re: AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!

    Spam Me Please writes:

    > Måns> I'll add some more comments about IDE in Alpha. I used a
    > Måns> Promise ultra100 tx2, aka pdc20268, controller. It worked, but
    > Måns> only with ATA-33. I could set ATA-66 or ATA-100, but it would
    > Måns> instantly get a bunch of CRC errors and fall back to ATA-33.
    > Måns> Not very fun. Later, I replaced it with a Hightpoint 1540 SATA
    > Måns> card, and put SATA bridges on all disks. It's been working fine
    > Måns> ever since.
    >
    > I had the same results here with the promise controller, and the exact
    > same error message. Not clear if it was driver or the hardware
    > problem.


    A theory of mine is that the Alpha system is more noisy (electrically)
    than a PC. The memory bus is twice as wide, and most Alpha systems
    have 64-bit PCI, so it could be the reason.

    --
    Måns Rullgård
    mru@kth.se

  18. Re: AlphaServer 1000 running out of storage!

    Spam Me Please wrote:

    > Depends on the condition of the drives. Newer drives cost between
    > 10-20 bucks, and this adds up quickly. A 40g ide drive would be
    > cheaper. However, some auction sites have much better deals. So it all
    > depends on what you can find.


    And where You live. Prices of used disks vary alot between the different
    countries.

    Benjamin



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