[CentOS] CentOS and Marvell SAS/SATA drivers

Chuck Munro chuckm at seafoam.net
Fri Mar 4 20:55:04 UTC 2011

On 03/04/2011 09:00 AM, Les Mikesell wrote:
>  On 3/3/11 6:52 PM, Chuck Munro wrote:
>> >
>> >  I've been on a real roller coaster ride getting a large virtual host up
>> >  and running.  One troublesome thing I've discovered (the hard way) is
>> >  that the drivers for Marvell SAS/SATA chips still have a few problems.
>> >
>> >  After Googling around quite a bit, I see a significant number of others
>> >  have had similar issues, especially evident in the Ubuntu forums but
>> >  also for a few RHEL/CentOS users.
>> >
>> >  I have found that under heavy load (in my case, simply doing the initial
>> >  sync of large RAID-6 arrays) the current 0.8 driver can wander off into
>> >  the weeds after a while, less so for the older 0.5 driver in CentOS-5.
>> >  It would appear that some sort of bug has been introduced into the newer
>> >  driver.
>> >
>> >  I've had to replace the Marvell-based controllers with LSI, which seem
>> >  rock solid.  I'm rather disappointed that I've wasted good money on
>> >  several Marvell-based controller cards (2 SAS/SATA and 2 SATA).
> I replaced separate SII and promise controllers with a single 8-port Marvell
> based card and thought it was a big improvement.  No problems with centos5.x,
> mostly running RAID1 pairs, one of which is frequently hot-swapped and
> re-synced.  I hope its not going to have problems when I upgrade.

Since I have the luxury of time to evaluate options, I've just 
downloaded Scientific Linux 6 to see what happens with either the mvsas 
or sata-mv driver.  This is my first experience with SL but I wanted 
native ext4 rather than the preview version in CentOS-Plus.  Even if I 
stick with SL-6 as the KVM host, I'll continue using CentOS as guest 
machines.  If the Marvell drivers don't pan out, it looks like I'll have 
to either spend money on a 3Ware|LSI|Promise controller or revert to 
CentOS-Plus 5.5 for ext4.

SL-6 is installing as I write this.


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