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dmcentire 03-24-2003 06:16 PM

Serial ATA (SATA) Linux Support
Hello everyone:

I am working on a new server that uses an Intel P4 motherboard. This board also includes built-in serial-ata (SATA) connectors for this new type of hard drive. I have been looking for Linux support for this new standard and not finding much. Here's what I have and have found:

The Intel board is model D845PEBT2 - and the built-in SATA controller is Silicon Image SiI 3112.

The only page I found with any kind of driver is here:

Unfortunately, the file is a patch file and I'm not sure how to apply this patch to a new Linux distro for an initial installation.

The file is:
ide-2.4.19-ac4.11.patch and can be found on the same site shown above. It seems like the file it wants to patch is called "ide.h".

Can anyone give me a suggestion on how to implement this patch to either the Linux installation CDs (I happen to use Mandrake 9.0) or patch a boot floppy that will enable the installer to recognize the SATA bus?

BTW, just to ensure the h/w is working I formatted the drive with Win2K (using the Intel supplied SATA driver disk). The OS formatted and installed the drive, so I know the hardware is OK.

Thanks for any help!

Dennis McEntire

Aussie 03-24-2003 08:33 PM

That is a kernel patch, it has to be applied to the vanilla kernel source before you compile a new kernel, also it's for an old branch of the AC kernel tree (2.4.19-ac4), the current stable kernel is 2.4.20.
Silicon Image claim to support linux here, but don't provide a link to the drivers.

mcleodnine 03-24-2003 11:45 PM

I want to know where you got your hands on the sATA drives. Who did you have to kill?

Daemonfly 03-25-2003 12:26 AM

Theres a few out. Newegg has the 80g Seagate one -

spy5600 03-25-2003 07:31 AM

Well I searched a bit the Silicon Image web site and found that their linux driver is provided by the Linux ATA development site. So, I went there and in the supported chipsets page it's written that Silicon Image WILL have support for SATA

Links: Silicon Image linux driver (you have to go to the left frame and choose: Serial ATA -> controllers -> SiI3112/3112A -> SiI3112A: Linux SATA Drivers)
Linux ATA Development
SATA supported chipset


mcleodnine 03-25-2003 08:29 AM


Originally posted by Daemonfly
Theres a few out. Newegg has the 80g Seagate one -
Kooky marketing... Seagate's online store shows them as having no stock.

dmcentire 03-25-2003 11:53 AM

As far as the drives are concerned, we picked them up locally at a computer store called Central Computer (San Jose, CA). They had the Seagate 80GB SATA drives in stock for around $156 each. They do have a website:

Also, in reply to the post by spy5600 the websites mentioned I did find at the start of the research, but it seems like the driver provided is a kernel patch (based on Aussie's post) and may not be able to be applied to a particular distro of Linux.

Sooo, it seems like I am stuck at the moment since I am using the Mandrake distro and am not familiar enough with kernel building/compiling to integrate the SATA drivers. It seems like I may have to wait until Mandrake decides to integrate SATA support.

Electro 03-25-2003 03:05 PM

Western Digital has a new drive named Raptor though its designed for servers and should go nicely with your setup.

Review on WD Raptor

dmcentire 03-25-2003 04:16 PM

Well, not to make things complicated, but here's some additional research I found on the Silicon Image website. Unfortunately, the site uses URL based sessions, so I cannot provide a direct link to the page in question. Follow these instructions:

1. Go to
2. Click on the red "Product Support" button on the lower left.
3. Select the "Specified Article ID Number" radio button and enter 10041 as the article number.

This article describes how to apply a patch (maybe like the one I am trying to do) but my question is: Can I apply this patch to the kernel source code from my Mandrake distro CDs? Or as "Aussie" stated above, I might need to apply this to a plain-vanilla kernel.

Ideas on this approach?


Aussie 03-25-2003 04:45 PM

You have to apply kernel patches against the specified kernel, in this case the kernel is 2.4.19-ac4. See and the Kernel-HOWTO for more info on patches and 'ac' kernels.

dmcentire 03-28-2003 11:49 AM

The answer has arrived! Mandrake Linux 9.1 (now in production release) supports the hardware! Woohoo! We were able to easily set up the new server - and boy are these drives FAST!

Thanks to everyone for their help and advice,


mcleodnine 03-28-2003 12:28 PM

Keep us posted on how well it performs for you. I'm curious to see how this generation of hardware will evolve in the wild.

Aussie 03-28-2003 01:19 PM

Yeah, a "hdparm -tT" would be interesting.

Yete 05-10-2003 05:03 AM

I'm using the Intel D845PEBT2 motherboard/ sil 3112A/ bios version 4.1.45 and from hdparm -t /dev/hdx i got only 1.7MB/sec.
Is there anyone that can tell me a diffrent result with this bilt in controller?

Village Idiot 05-21-2003 03:23 PM

Western Digital
Well I have the RAPTOR 37 GB drive set up with the Silicon Images card sent with the drive on an ASUS P4PE using Redhat 9.0. The result is YUCK! :mad: hdparm -t yielded 1.63 MB per sec. Will try setting the idebus manually but suspect that is not going to help. The Promise chipset on the P4PE does not play nicely with Redhat Linux. If anyone has an idea on getting the Raptor flying at something other than treetop level I would appreciate the feedback. :newbie:

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