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Having trouble installing a piece of hardware? Want to know if that peripheral is compatible with Linux?


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Old 07-29-2003, 01:53 PM   #16
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And the answer is:

To put the SATA drives in UltraDMA mode do this:

hdparm -X66 -d1 /dev/hdg
hdparm -X66 -d1 /dev/hde

This answer comes striaght from Alan Cox on the linux-kernel mailing list so you can trust it. (Thanks Alan)

I assume you can put that someplace in the startup files but I'm not certain.

Here are the results of the speed test after that setting:

# hdparm -Tt /dev/hdg

Timing buffer-cache reads: 1812 MB in 2.00 seconds = 906.00 MB/sec
Timing buffered disk reads: 172 MB in 3.02 seconds = 56.95 MB/sec

Rougly 50 times faster! Thats awesome but I thought the drive could do sustained trasnfers of 150 MB/sec? Anyhow at least the problem is solved.
Old 07-29-2003, 07:28 PM   #17
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Hmmm, on my system I can only get about 25MB/sec. I used

hdparm -d1 -X70

to put the drives in udma6 which is what Win2000 runs them at. I tried X69, but it was no faster. Have you tried X70 and tested the speed at that level ?
Old 08-02-2003, 08:07 AM   #18
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I have written a driver for the software RAID used by this device, get it from

The driver that comes with Linux 2.4.x (silraid) is broken.

To use this driver, apply the patch to a 2.4.2x kernel, make sure you select Medley RAID and the Silicon Image IDE driver.

Then you can load the module with "modprobe medley", it also uses the "ataraid" driver which should be loaded automatically.

It only supports striped sets.

However, if you only use this controller with Linux and have no need to share the drive with Windows etc., don't use the Medley software RAID but use the controller in normal mode and use Linux's Software RAID instead.

PS: You still need to set the DMA mode on the underlying disks as described earlier in this thread (hdparm -d 1 -X66 /dev/hde ; hdparm -d 1 -X66 /dev/hdg).

Last edited by thh; 08-02-2003 at 08:08 AM.
Old 08-03-2003, 07:41 PM   #19
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How is the silraid driver broken ? - mine works just fine as does many other people's who have posted. The only thing I have noticed is that my HDD LED never lights up under linux.

Old 08-20-2003, 12:19 PM   #20
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Angry How did you get it to work?


I have spent about 10 hours trying to get Silicon Image 3112 controler to work with linux in hardware RAID 1 (mirroring) mode.

I have tried getoo kernel 2.4-20, vanilla 2.4-21,the Slackware bootable disk (ataraid.i) even the latest 2.6-rc kernel but the results are the same.

First, let me describe the hardware configuration.I have Intel 845 mobo with the SiI controller. I have upgraded the BIOS with the latest available form Intel. The controller is set to work in Mirror mode with a set of identical 80 GB Maxtors, and there is an old Quitum where the kernels and the filesystem resides.

If I boot DOS I see 1 Maxtor and the old Quintum which is perfect. It means that the controller works fine and the 2 Maxtors are shown as 1 - we have RAID.

When I boot linux I see 3 ide disks ! Two Maxtors and a Quintum (hda,hde and hdc accordingly). I can access the Maxtors and modify them separately.Which means that there is no RAID.

In my kernel config I have included support for the SiI controller as well as ataraid and ataraidsii (built-in)(the 2.6 kernel didn't have ataraid - I think it's somehow integrated). All the results are the same - two separate devices instead of one. I didn't see something like /dev/ataraid appearing in my numerous restarts.

Any help? Maybe someone can provide a working kernel config file

Old 08-21-2003, 12:09 PM   #21
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Originally posted by drekka

Under /dev you should now have a new directory called /dev/ataraid. The structure under that however seems to vary according to the distro (don't ask me why!) for Gentoo is was /dev/ataraid/disk0/disc for the raid drive (i.e. fdisk this to setup partitions) and /dev/ataraid/disk0/part1, /dev/ataraid/disk0/part2, etc for the partitions. I can't exactly remember the names that SUSE8.2 used, but the partitons where called d0p01, d0p02, etc and the drive was just d0.
You must use /dev/ataraid/disc0/disc and /dev/ataraid/disc0/partX if you are using a devfs-enabled kernel.

If you are using a kernel WITHOUT devfs support or you have /dev "unmounted" you must use "real files" instead of the autogenerated devfs.

You can rename the "real device files" if you don't use devfs but you cant do so with it.

Other think you can do is create links inside a "temporal folder" that can be erased in the next reboot.

About the naming scheme note that ide names are diferent: /dev/ide/host2/bus0/target0/lun0/disc is hde and /dev/ide/host2/bus0/target0/lun0/part1 is hde1

(And its posible you will have an automatically generated link named /dev/hde* to /dev/ide/host2/bus0/target0/lun0/*)

I repeat: All this name changes are due to devfs
Old 09-03-2003, 12:08 PM   #22
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Last edited by vocaltoast; 09-03-2003 at 11:07 PM.
Old 09-03-2003, 07:07 PM   #23
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Hi all,
If your distro is going to use devfs and doesn't start it during the install. You can start it with

$ mount -t devfs /dev /dev

During the install of Gentoo I have this situation and manually starting devfs lets me configure lilo with the correct names for a running system and install it.

Old 12-02-2003, 11:35 PM   #24
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Originally posted by Wangster
I have successfully got a Slackware 9 up and running with an Asus A7N8X Deluxe which includes the Silicon Image (Sil3112) Serial ATA controller.

To do it you will have to use the ataraid.i kernel bootdisk from Slackware-current (/slackware-current/bootdisks/ataraid.i). This kernel is built from 2.4.21 and includes the Silicon Image drivers.

Once you then boot from the floppies you then install from the CD-ROM as normal.
hey Wangster ,

i downloaded mentioned ataraid.i from /slackware-current/bootdisks directory but I didn't make a bootable floppy since I don't have working floppy drive. i already have slack 9.1 cd-s burned, and what I did was extract the ISO of cd 1 replaced the ataraid.i and builded new ISO burned. but that didn't work. i guess i'd also have to change the files in the /kernels/ataraid.i/ with the ones from /slackware-current/kernels/ataraid.i/ am i right here? thanks
Old 01-21-2004, 03:09 PM   #25
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I have a similar situation which you posted about to start this thread. I'm using gigabytes 7n400 pro2 which uses the 3112 from sil. I have 2 wd 36gig hd's in a stripe. This is my primary windows partition but i did give up 20 gigs for linux.

problem is this: on install with suse 9 i can see that it correctly detects the 3112, and it detects both drives (incorrectly) and then mentions that they are corrupt etc etc. i want to know how to tell suse that it is looking at a stripe. do you have any ideas?


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