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Old 11-23-2004, 08:19 PM   #1
bbking
Member
 
Registered: Oct 2004
Distribution: SuSE 9.0 & SuSE 10.0
Posts: 40

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Promise FastTrak 378 RAID controller + Linux


hi,

in case anybody has the same problem as I had:
Just bought a new Asus P4P800-E Deluxe Motherboard and wanted to use the onboard Promise FastTrak 378 RAID controller.
On the driver cd there was only a driver for Redhat 8 and 9
So I was painfully searching for a driver suitable for SuSE....the Promise website doesn't even mention my controller, so I was scratching my head...

-> anyway, go to the Promise website, choose Promise SATA-RAID-Controller (TX-4000) from the products and choose your distro.
download the archive, it is suitable for the following controllers:
FastTrak S150 TX4 or
FastTrak S150 TX2plus or
FastTrak 376 or
FastTrak 378 or
FastTrak TX4000

with SuSE you press F3 at the boot menu and it will ask you later on for a driver disk. It just loads the drivers fine and that's it!

I hope, this helps, I spent about 3 days looking for this....
 
Old 11-23-2004, 08:44 PM   #2
penguin4
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Registered: May 2004
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Posts: 1,209

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bbking; King U R! thank you for that tip.
 
Old 11-24-2004, 05:23 AM   #3
bbking
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Distribution: SuSE 9.0 & SuSE 10.0
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well, I'm glad I could help...
 
Old 11-24-2004, 04:45 PM   #4
roofrack
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Registered: Nov 2004
Posts: 9

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bbking,

This may just have given me a bit of hope.

In the office we are trying to put together a P4P-800 running SLSE9 (Kernel 2.6).
We're trying two sATA disks hanging off the onboard FastTrack RAID controller, configured as RAID-1. The first o/s build seemed to go OK but, following the reboot after the second installation had finished, I didn't get the option to log in -- I only got the GRUB prompt. Further attempts followed but with no success.

Eventually, I went into the BIOS, deleted the RAID mirror, and used the sATA disks in IDE mode. Unfortunately the two disks now appeared as IDE channel 3 and 4 masters. The SLSE9 installation kernel couldn't then seem to find the disks at all (some message like "waiting for /dev/sda3...".

I would VERY much appreciate if you could confirm that your two disks are working well using the onboard RAID. More to the point, it would be great if you could let me know the BIOS settings you used in relation to the disks and the IDE configuration, and which channel you put your CD-ROM on.

We've wasted a lot of time so far, as well as money on incompatible hardware. Looking forward to hearing from you...
 
Old 11-24-2004, 06:35 PM   #5
bbking
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okay, what I have under the hood is this:

1 IDE HDD as PRI MASTER with XP -> MBR holds the boot record
2 160 GB HDD's as RAID1 mirror on the FastTrak controller
1 Pioneer DVD-RW as SEC MASTER
1 IDE HDD as SEC SLAVE

I use some kind of standard SuSE kernel, I think 2.4.19 or so

in the BIOS I set the RAID controller to be used as RAID, not IDE

I was fighting with GRUB as well, when I inserted the HDD on SEC SLAVE....check out this post:

http://www.linuxquestions.org/questi...ghlight=bbking


well, I hope this helps....maybe one more thing: try to create a boot diskette, and what did you set as first boot device in BIOS?

greetings
 
Old 11-25-2004, 05:41 AM   #6
roofrack
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Registered: Nov 2004
Posts: 9

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bbking,

One last favour, if you could. I'm a definite newbie at administering Linux, so could you talk me through, in really simple dumb steps, how I get the .tar.gz archive of the driver onto a floppy (what format ? size ? etc) and at what exact point this F3 option occurs during the installation. Assume I know nothing !

Thanks in advance.
 
Old 11-25-2004, 06:09 AM   #7
bbking
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*) okay, you download the driver, and unpack the tar archive to somewhere on your harddrive (you can also do this in windows...)

*) change into the directory where you unpacked the archive and copy everything as is onto a newly formatted empty floppy disk

*) the structure of the disk should now look like this:
linux (its a directory)
1.00.0.19
install
readme

btw, the readme file also explain how to install it

*) now boot from the SuSE CD/DVD
*) when the menu appears where it says
Boot from harddisk
Manual Installation
...
...
Rescue System

etc.

Press F3 for extra drivers (on the bottom of the screen you can see the options)

*) now insert the floppy and the driver will be loaded automatically. it perhaps ask you to load another driver, then you say "back" and that should be it. your RAID array should be visible for the partitioning program.


hope that these are enough details now
 
Old 11-25-2004, 08:11 AM   #8
roofrack
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Registered: Nov 2004
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bbking,

I think you need to be careful about upgrading your o/s !! Read on...

Thanks for your instructions which I've tried following to the letter. However, I'm getting nowhere. I think the problem is that we are using SLES 9.1 (not 9.0) and kernel 2.6.X (not 2.4.X like yours). For instance, what you describe as F3 is actually F6 (Update Driver) on our system (which made me suspicious). I've built the driver update floppy exactly right, but SuSE comes back and says "no new updates found" when I try to load it. I also tried with the Promise Fasttrak driver for SLES9.1 but that gives me the same problem.

If I try to carrry on with the installation, I get an error when the kernel probes the hard disks ("I detected you've got two RAID disks blah blah... I'm kernel 2.6 and I don't support RAID controllers although I used to support some of them, e.g. Promise Fasttrak, in kernel 2.4......)

We've got the option of dropping back to 9.0, but that doesn't seem sensible.

Guess you folks out there need to be aware of this.
 
Old 11-25-2004, 08:47 PM   #9
bbking
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yeah, I thought of that you might have problems because of the 2.6 kernel but forgot to mention. sorry about that....
anyway, that would be quite stupid from kernel.org, why would they drop the RAID support??

is it because it is a tainted kernel (-> you know, the driver is proprietary, not GPLed...) ?? does anybody know something in detail about this?

SuSE 9.0 is not that bad by the way....and you can update most of the packages....

isn't it possible to choose your kernel with SuSE 9.1 at installation time??
 
Old 11-26-2004, 04:04 AM   #10
roofrack
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Got to admit that I haven't seen any options where alternative kernels can be chosen in SLES9 installation.

Ideas, anyone ?
 
Old 11-26-2004, 11:43 AM   #11
penguin4
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suse does have a great support site. any one try it! why not? visit it occasionally but do not have suse just curiuos. but it is a great site with good information. investigate & research it!
 
Old 11-27-2004, 09:19 AM   #12
bbking
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Quote:
Originally posted by roofrack
Got to admit that I haven't seen any options where alternative kernels can be chosen in SLES9 installation.

Ideas, anyone ?
I can remember that it was possible with the 7.x SuSE releases. Next week I have to install another PC with SuSE, I will look out for that option and will report it here.
 
Old 05-30-2005, 08:08 AM   #13
bbking
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Posts: 40

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I guess it's been a long time, but I cam across a hint in the SuSE manual for promise controllers.
it says you should try the boot parameter "ide=reverse" if you have not only the promise controller but some other IDE controllers on your board....

I'm trying to install a new kernel and it's not working till now.......I'm sure, I will have to deal with the controller at some point within this issue....

ok, I just found out, that kernel 2.6.11.10 still doesn't support this controller....

Last edited by bbking; 05-30-2005 at 08:30 AM.
 
Old 07-26-2005, 05:10 PM   #14
newbiesteve
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Registered: Apr 2005
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Re: Promise FastTrak 378 RAID controller + Linux

Quote:
Originally posted by bbking
hi,

in case anybody has the same problem as I had:
Just bought a new Asus P4P800-E Deluxe Motherboard and wanted to use the onboard Promise FastTrak 378 RAID controller.
On the driver cd there was only a driver for Redhat 8 and 9
So I was painfully searching for a driver suitable for SuSE....the Promise website doesn't even mention my controller, so I was scratching my head...

-> anyway, go to the Promise website, choose Promise SATA-RAID-Controller (TX-4000) from the products and choose your distro.
download the archive, it is suitable for the following controllers:
FastTrak S150 TX4 or
FastTrak S150 TX2plus or
FastTrak 376 or
FastTrak 378 or
FastTrak TX4000

with SuSE you press F3 at the boot menu and it will ask you later on for a driver disk. It just loads the drivers fine and that's it!

I hope, this helps, I spent about 3 days looking for this....

I'm going to try this with my Xandros 3.02 Deluxe Desktop, which has failed to install so far.
 
Old 08-14-2005, 03:57 PM   #15
Fisslefink
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Registered: Feb 2005
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Promise 378 SATA as IDE

This is slightly related, but I need a place to post my findings, and LQ is always a good resource for people in a bind.

Since February, I've been trying to get linux to boot from a partition on my main hard drive, a 120Gb Samsung SATA drive on my Promise 378 controller. The drive is in "IDE mode" according to the BIOS, so no RAID is involved.

The linux drivers available to support this setup are very confusing, and compiling them into my kernel (Yoper linux) did not go well.

Recently, I tried doing an HD install of Knoppix 4.0 and Kubuntu 5.04 (both worked) from the install CD/DVD to my linux partition (/dev/sda5). I put GRUB on the /dev/sda5 partition --- NOT the MBR. Importantly, the BIOS defines the primary boot device as (hd0) in GRUB terminology. This can cause some major trouble when installing GRUB in one BIOS configuration, and then trying to execute GRUB from another BIOS configuration.

Anyway, once I figured out how to get GRUB to play nicely, I set up dual boot using the instructions at http://www.redlog.com/dualboot.html . I was able to get the windows bootloader to load a "boot.lnx" file from C: that had the /dev/sda5 GRUB bootloader in it. Sure enough, the thing boots Knoppix or Kubuntu from my partition now! Clearly, both distros now have the required drivers built in, which saves some headaches for many of us Promise 378 owners.

A history of this painful problem, with a more detailed explanation of my success, is here: http://kerneltrap.org/node/4716#comment-190801

Sorry for the off-topic reply, but I'm hoping that the all-knowing eye of Google will point some poor soul to this post. Oh, I run an Asus P4P800-E Deluxe motherboard.

Cheers

Fisslefink

Last edited by Fisslefink; 08-14-2005 at 08:04 PM.
 
  


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