Wed, 23 Aug 2006
3ware 9550SX Versus Faulty Drive
One of the drives in Odysseus
has failed. I have got a replacement today. While installing the new drive,
I have used the 3ware utility
tw_cli to handle the configuration
changes. I was surprised how well designed the 3ware controller software
- It is possible to upgrade the controller firmware from Linux, without needing a DOS boot disk or whatever.
- When the new unit is created, Linux immediately can see it (using the hotplug mechanism).
- S.M.A.R.T. tests can be done using standard Linux utilities (which can see the physical drives). Or the controller can be programmed to run self-tests itself on a periodical basis.
- The controller can identify the physical drive by blinking a LED over an I2C bus (provided that the chassis has the actual LEDs - mine unfortunately doesn't have any).
... and some other things as well. This controller also fully supports physical hotplug and hotremove (but again, my chassis does not have the hotplug SATA power connectors). I think with this controller, the features available to the system administrator are as good as the ones of the high-end arrays (or maybe better, see the point about SMART). Good work, 3ware!