Register for the iXsystems Community to get an ad-free experience and exclusive discounts in our eBay Store.

SOLVED Booting (not) from HBA

Status
Not open for further replies.

dmitrios

Member
Joined
May 9, 2018
Messages
33
I am doing a build with 6 drives and also have a SATA SSD I want to use as FreeNAS boot drive.
My E3C226D2I has 6 SATA ports and I have an LSI 9217-8i (in IR mode) which I flashed with the latest firmware and BIOS.

I somehow trust the motherboard SATA ports more than the LSI card (unjustified paranoia?) so planning to use all 6 for the HDDs and use the 9217-8i having just the SSD connected and boot from it, and then maybe add another SATA SSD later.

Now the problem. I cannot seem to figure out why it would not boot from the SSD once I connect it to the 9217-8i. It does boot from the SSD when plugged in to one of the motherboard ports obviously.
"Boot Support" is Enabled for BIOS & OS in the config utility.

Is there a way to see the list of drives the LSI card "sees"?

upload_2018-7-26_1-19-39.png


upload_2018-7-26_1-21-45.png


upload_2018-7-26_1-22-25.png


upload_2018-7-26_1-25-54.png


For now I have not connected the HDDs.

upload_2018-7-26_1-27-18.png


upload_2018-7-26_1-26-47.png


The card and the cable I am using.

 

Elliot Dierksen

Neophyte Sage
Joined
Dec 29, 2014
Messages
961
I have a server with a BIOS screen that looks very much like that. Somewhere in there should be an option to select which boot device (You would want the 9217) is first priority. Also, FreeNAS works better with the IT firmware than the IR (integrated RAID) firmware. ZFS handles all the RAID functions in FreeNAS-land. What is under that "CSM" section?
 

dmitrios

Member
Joined
May 9, 2018
Messages
33
Thanks. I believe it would be the greyed out "Boot Option Priorities", presumably the card is not passing the connected SSD to BIOS so the BIOS sees nothing to choose from/ assign priorities to? The card is alive, maybe the cable is faulty? (the SSD works obviously). Or maybe I am doing something very stupid.

This is the screen of the "CSM" section.

upload_2018-7-26_1-42-56.png
 

Elliot Dierksen

Neophyte Sage
Joined
Dec 29, 2014
Messages
961
What are your options for "Boot option filter"? You should also be able to move at least ones of the HD's to the 9217 and free up a motherboard spot for the boot drive. Then the problem goes away. The LSI cards are the most popular here, so I am sure it would work just fine.
 

dmitrios

Member
Joined
May 9, 2018
Messages
33
Do I lose LSI's configuration menu if I flash to IT? If not then I do not see why I would want to keep it in IR, I am not using it for any hardware RAID...
 

Elliot Dierksen

Neophyte Sage
Joined
Dec 29, 2014
Messages
961
Neither of those BIOS options really mean a whole lot to me. I would be inclined to put the SSD on one of the motherboard ports and move a drive to the 9217. There is still a configuration mode in IT firmware, so I don't think you would lose anything. Even if you did (which I highly doubt), you could always flash it back.
 

dmitrios

Member
Joined
May 9, 2018
Messages
33
Thanks. I'll keep poking around for a bit more and will then give up and do as you suggested:)

Still curious if there is a way to get a list of drives the LSI card "sees"? I naively expected the configuration utility would be kind enough to show such useful information. Is there a command line utility I could use to interrogate the card/ do some debugging?
 

Elliot Dierksen

Neophyte Sage
Joined
Dec 29, 2014
Messages
961
I would expect it to show you drives during the boot process. My 9207-8E with IT firmware and BIOS disabled does. See the following.

upload_2018-7-25_21-6-59.png


If you go into the config utility (Control-C, I think), there should be an option to see any attached devices.
 
Last edited:

Elliot Dierksen

Neophyte Sage
Joined
Dec 29, 2014
Messages
961
Also, once FreeNAS boots it will show you some info in the boot logs. You can get that from the CLI with dmesg -a | more. Some excerpts from my boot log are below.
Code:
mps0: <Avago Technologies (LSI) SAS2308> port 0x5000-0x50ff mem 0xfbff0000-0xfbf
fffff,0xfbf80000-0xfbfbffff irq 32 at device 0.0 on pci9
mps0: Firmware: 20.00.07.00, Driver: 21.02.00.00-fbsd
mps0: IOCCapabilities: 5a85c<ScsiTaskFull,DiagTrace,SnapBuf,EEDP,TransRetry,EventReplay,MSIXIndex,HostDisc>
da6 at mps0 bus 0 scbus2 target 13 lun 0
da6: <SEAGATE ST2000NM0023 0006> Fixed Direct Access SPC-4 SCSI device
da6: Serial Number Z1X17PT800009413UDPF
da6: 600.000MB/s transfers
da6: Command Queueing enabled
da6: 1907729MB (3907029168 512 byte sectors)
ses0: da6,pass6: SAS Device Slot Element: 1 Phys at Slot 8, Not All Phys
 

Chris Moore

Wizened Sage
Joined
May 2, 2015
Messages
10,062
Now the problem. I cannot seem to figure out why it would not boot from the SSD once I connect it to the 9217-8i.
Because your boot drive should be connected to the SATA interface and only data drives should be connected to the SAS controller.

You need to flash that card to IT (initiator target) mode. The images you show, indicate it is IR (integrated raid) and that is no good for FreeNAS.
Detailed newcomers' guide to crossflashing LSI 9211 HBA and variants
https://forums.freenas.org/index.ph...o-crossflashing-lsi-9211-hba-and-variants.54/
 

Chris Moore

Wizened Sage
Joined
May 2, 2015
Messages
10,062
I somehow trust the motherboard SATA ports more than the LSI card (unjustified paranoia?) so planning to use all 6 for the HDDs and use the 9217-8i having just the SSD connected and boot from it,
This is totally backward from what you should be thinking. SAS is superior to SATA all day, every day.
 

Chris Moore

Wizened Sage
Joined
May 2, 2015
Messages
10,062

dmitrios

Member
Joined
May 9, 2018
Messages
33
Thanks for the help. I did not think that keeping it in IR was a bad idea since I was not planning to use any hardware RAID capabilities of the card anyway.
I flashed it to IT now. The original problem was the cable (PEBKAC rather...) - getting a new one...

upload_2018-7-28_0-24-56.png


My Asrock Rack board did not have an EFI shell so I found these pages very useful. I had to use the EFI shell as had to erase the HBA first, it would't simply allow to cross-flash from IR to IT.

How-to: Flash LSI 9211-8i using EFI shell x
"InitShellApp: application not started from shell."

Also I started with what appeared to be an incompatible version of the EFI shell so had to try an older version.
The error was:
Code:
InitShellApp: application not started from shell.


All problems solved now. Thanks again for the help. Thought I'd post this all here in case someone may find this useful.
 

Chris Moore

Wizened Sage
Joined
May 2, 2015
Messages
10,062
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top