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3ware has recently released drivers for their newer (9650, 9690) SATA RAID cards for ESX 3.5 update 2. On my windows machine the 9550SX card shared the same driver code ...
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  1. #1
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    3ware 9550SX RAID card in ESX


    3ware has recently released drivers for their newer (9650, 9690) SATA RAID cards for ESX 3.5 update 2.

    On my windows machine the 9550SX card shared the same driver code as the 96xx series.

    I have suspisions that they excluded the 9550 simply because it is not the most current model, and they are trying to encourage purchases of their newer cards.

    When I look at the .xml inside the ESX RPM for the 96xx driver I see device id="1004" (which is the 9650), device id="1005" (the 9690), device id 1003 is missing (which is the 9550). Both entries are under the vendor id 13c1 (which is the same for my 9550). Both entries in the xml point to the driver module: 3w_9xxx.

    Any likelyhood that I could just insert the settings for device 1003 and have it work? Since the Windows driver is shared among all 9xxx series cards, is that any indication that the same would hold true for Linux?

  2. #2
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    schmechy,

    i saw your post here while i was searching to make this 3ware 9550sx card working in esx. it gave me a good hint. and i can successfuly confirm that changing a few files with the correct pci id and then do the big hassle in updating the iso file and tgz files, that this will result in a working esxi udpate 2 straight from the cdrom and booting from harddisk (not the usb variant altho this will work also)

    what have i done. (and i will update more in detail later if you want)

    - got the oem.tgz from 3ware (special driver for what they say only the newer cards..)
    - downloaded the latest esxi iso

    and for all this to work you need another vm running linux with make gcc etc (default development tools) i used centos 5 and two harddisk in the vm

    AND you need the busybox 1.2.1 source file.

    the big scope is that the oem.tgz from 3ware contains the right drivers and modified files BUT they do not include the 1003 changes..
    (wil post more later) but to get these 2 modified files and extra driver in the ISO and tgz files is a hassel due to the TAR bug in busybox (google on it and you see) so we can unpkca with any tar but we NEED to repack again with that old busybox.

    then to make it more phun you actually need to recreate the ISO in as close as the origional way. (will post this later too)

    so a brief summary

    - unpacked the file binmod.tgz out of the iso
    - unpacked the file install.tgz out of the iso
    - unpacked the oem.tgz from 3ware
    -- modded the etc/vmware/simple.map
    --- added the following line as first line.
    ---- 13c1:1003 0000:0000 storage 3w_9xxx
    -- modded the usr/share/hwdata/pci.ids
    --- added the following in chonological order (in section 13c1)
    ---- 1003 3ware 9550SX

    in the development vm i have now a oem dir with the modified files and i chown them with 201:201 to be sure

    now we need the busybox binary 1.2.1 so compile it somere you dont need to isntall but as long as you can start it somewhere

    - so we can unpack the binmod.tgz to binmod
    - copy the file tree of oem to binmod

    with busybox create a new binmod.tgz (/path/busybox tar binmod.tgz *)

    now we have a correct binmod.tgz and this needs to come in two places.. one is the root of the iso and second in the install.tgz but even better in the VMware-VMvisor-big-3.5.0_Update_2-110271.i386.dd file.

    so to get this right we need to unpack the install.tgz and bunzip2 the VMware-VMvisor-big-3.5.0_Update_2-110271.i386.dd.bz2

    then we can dd if=VMware-VMvisor-big-3.5.0_Update_2-110271.i386.dd of=/dev/sd? bs=1M (your second hd in your VM)

    after the dd you need to reboot to get your /dev/sd?# files)
    (or you mknod etc but a reboot is simpel)

    then you need to mount /sd?5 to /mnt/folder
    and copy the binmod.tgz in /mnt/folder
    chown 201:201 if needed
    umount /mnt/folder and we can redump the file

    so

    dd if=/dev/sd? of=VMware-VMvisor-big-3.5.0_Update_2-110271.i386.dd bs=1M count=750
    and after that you can use your normal bunzip2 (you dont need the busybox one its only for tar)
    bunzip2 VMware-VMvisor-big-3.5.0_Update_2-110271.i386.dd
    make sure this file is back in its rightfull place usr/lib/vmware/installer
    and chmod 755 it (chown also)

    so allmost there

    now we use the busybox tar again to create the install.tgz

    (/path/busybox tar install.tgz *)


    now the last part recreating the iso i have used barts bcd toolset and it worked for me. in anycase i ran into an iso checksum error and was able to solve it with normally reacreating the iso.
    will post these details later its late for me here two days of hacking shizzle in a few minz of blog forum reply.

    so to make a long story short if you want send me an email and i link you the iso of esxi installable and if you want to do it yourself i will say makeitwork.nu m8ty.

    har har..

    soul.

  3. #3
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    so after all the testing .. all works..

    BUT it had no performance it hicks here and there. so actually the reason i think that controller and code id not ment for esx it runs and sable but not very smooth.. slow performance and sometimes os stalls.

    but for testing ideal..

    soul

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  5. #4
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    I ended up getting it working with a similar process.

    But I used ESX 3.5 Update 2 (not 3i)

    I used the boot iso from 3ware (which works fine for the install, but at boot time it doesn't load the kernel drivers, because of the missing device id.)

    I ended up booting with a linux boot CD, mounting the boot image, making changes to the xml and pci id file, then repacking the boot image.

    I agree performance isn't stellar, but I'm using ESX to just mount a Lefthand networks VSA, and use it for nearline storage and backups, so performance is of no huge concern..

    Thanks for the post... I will hang on to this, as ESX 3i may be a cleaner way to go, and 3i DOES boot fine on the particular host that I have the 3ware controller in. Thanks again!

  6. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by schmecky View Post
    I ended up getting it working with a similar process.

    But I used ESX 3.5 Update 2 (not 3i)

    I used the boot iso from 3ware (which works fine for the install, but at boot time it doesn't load the kernel drivers, because of the missing device id.)

    I ended up booting with a linux boot CD, mounting the boot image, making changes to the xml and pci id file, then repacking the boot image.

    I agree performance isn't stellar, but I'm using ESX to just mount a Lefthand networks VSA, and use it for nearline storage and backups, so performance is of no huge concern..

    Thanks for the post... I will hang on to this, as ESX 3i may be a cleaner way to go, and 3i DOES boot fine on the particular host that I have the 3ware controller in. Thanks again!
    so for you esx3i did boot and installed ont he hardisk but only not from booting from the installed version?
    and is the performans for you on esx that it feels like everything stalls? and hangs for seconds and then continue's?

    i did not try esx3.5 in thhis case, becasue i wanted to explore the possibility if i could use it as an hosting platform. but because it uses busybox does not have support for iptables it all becuase in imo very insecure. i even played with the idea to replace the busy boxbinary with as i google one with iptables included

    but eh all too much work to get something stable.. i use now centos 5.1 with vmware server as my hosting platform.

    also thx for the reply

    soul

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