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LSI Controller FW updates IR/IT modes

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Yes, you can continue without worries.

This backup step is not really necessary if you don't intend to revert back to the original firmware.

Make sure you got the adapters.txt with your SAS adress.

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Ok, great news! After around a day of messing with things, and playing with @Fireball3's instructions, I was able to cross-flash the Dell H200A to the LSI IT firmware version 20. All of the instructions worked seamlessly (huge thanks to @Fireball3 and all other folks who contributed - you are all awesome!). The only hiccup I faced was the 2.bat step in the instructions, where we are trying to save the original Serial Boot ROM of the original H200A firmware. After @Fireball3 confirmed that I can ignore Megarec.exe tool hanging, I still managed to save the original firmware and flash contents using the SAS2FLSH.exe tool.

 

Here's a snapshot of my H200A listing using SAS2FLSH *before* I flashed the firmware:

Dell-H200A-Listing-Before-IT-Flashing-Final.thumb.jpg.2d5b7db938e09aaabe843490f08b9a73.jpg

 

As you can see it has the IR firmware. After following the instructions, I first flashed the Dell IT firmware, then I moved to LSI IT firmware version 7 and from there, I flashed LSI IT firmware version 20. I didn't flash the mptsas2.rom (BIOS) at first, but I didn't know how to confirm if the H200A was still working or not. So, I reflashed the firmware along with mptsas2.rom, and I was able to see the H200A listed in that BIOS. After this, I plugged into two 4 TB hard drives, and I was able to see them being listed. I also briefly booted ubuntu, and it was able to see the 4 TB drive.  The next step is to try booting with UNRAID.

 

Here's a snapshot from the BIOS utility which shows the H200A flashed with the IT version:

Dell-H200A-After-IT-Flashing.thumb.jpg.680fd76ec36fd55214258109f9f6eec6.jpg

 

For reference, I did have to purchase these SAS cables to work with the H200A on my Dell R710: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07CKXFKHT/ref=oh_aui_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1  (not sure if amazon links are allowed in UNRAID). If not, please let me know and I can delete the link.

 

So, overall, it was much smoother than I expected. I was able to flash the H200A from *within the Dell R710* itself, and I did NOT need a UEFI shell, etc...Phew...what  a  relief! Once again, thanks everyone, specifically to @Fireball3!!!

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I have a question about the LSI SAS controllers, Do they only support up-to 3TB Drives? 

 

Looking through the forum and all the how-to's i only see 3TB support nothing else. IS this the case or am i miss interrupting the settings. 

 

thanks in adavnced

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Writing from my mobile.
Check my signature and go to the hardware wiki. There is a table with recommended controllers of all kind.
Might provide a link later if you dont find it.

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Yes, depending on your settings for sigs. You can also do a forum search for hardware wiki.

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27 minutes ago, 08deanr said:

I have a question about the LSI SAS controllers, Do they only support up-to 3TB Drives?

Old SAS1 models support up to 2TB, all SAS2 (SAS2xxx) and SAS3 (SAS3xxx) models support any size.

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Hope not .. that’s what I use, presently with just 3tb’s.

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1 hour ago, 08deanr said:

ok so using your wiki a LSI SAS 9211-8i doesnt have the 3tb limit correct?

 

No, it does not have the 2TB limit.  I use a SAS2008 card with that firmware without issue with 8TB drives.

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7 hours ago, 08deanr said:

ok so using your wiki a LSI SAS 9211-8i doesnt have the 3tb limit correct?

 

I moved all cards with limited drive size support to the lower table "Not recommended extension boards" some time ago. I use the DELL H310 card (SAS2008 chip) with 10TB drives - no probs.

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Guys I seem to be having an issue with my M1015 card which I've managed to flash over to IT mode using the steps here.

 

megarec -writesbr 0 sbrempty.bin

megarec -cleanflash 0

<reboot, back to USB stick>

sas2flsh -o -f 2118it.bin -b mptsas2.rom

sas2flsh -o -sasadd 500605bxxxxxxxxx 

 

The card boots with the system and shows the cards bios with the disks connected to it and then after about 1 minute the card crashes and the green activity led goes off, however the 2 amber leds stay on at the top left of the card. This keeps on happening whether I boot with disks and W/O, temperature of the heatsink is not that hot at all, I've tried the card in 2 other systems and the same thing keeps on happening. I am reluctant to reflash as the card might randomly crash again and then I will have fully bricked it.

 

Anyone have any advice on what to do as this has never happened before.

Edited by dragonsbless
typo

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I want to prepare for my unraid setup. I was planning on using pass through disk in Areca 1880i but there seems to be no support for SMART using pass through.

 

So now I am about to order a LSI 9211-i8 card. I have been reading a loot about this card and how to flash it but I cant figure it out.

 

My motherboard is asus b85m-g and I am running windows. Will this give me any problem? Can I just use the HBAFlash.bat and be done with it?

 

I also read something about this card not supporting spin down on drives. Is this the case?

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So, I've just realized that there are serious performance implications to running any older LSI cards in IR mode with disks passed through as JBOD.
The firmware has an odd "bug" where it doesn't properly report the drive status. This confuses the kernel during any read/write operations and causes certain disk commands to kind of "hang" for a bit.
Symptoms:

  • rtorrent timing out even though it's on the NVME cache drive
  • plex intermittently having poor transcoding performance, even with nvenc and nvdec
  • abysmal parity check performance (note that part of this is due to my SAS Expander only negotiating 3gb/s per link)

To verify your controller is old enough to have this problem (my IBM M1015/LSI 9211-8i is)
Start watching the disk status with hdparm:

watch -tn 0.1 hdparm -C /dev/sdw

/dev/sdw:
 drive state is:  standby

 

Click the "Spin Up" button on that drive's page on the WebUI. 

If the drive state doesn't change, and the button is still there, your controller isn't reporting the drive status properly. From my understanding (have not been able to test yet) flashing the controller to IT mode *should* rectify this problem. I am upgrading my card to a 9750-24I4E with no expander to free up a PCI-E slot and get rid of the 3gb/s bottleneck. I'll be flashing that card to IT mode when I install it, but will try to flash my existing card to IT mode as well.

I'm sure someone else has run into this, but I figured I should share anyways. I know that flashing to IT mode is "the usual" but also know that a lot of LSI users don't since the IR mode does JBOD disks as well.

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Has anyone had an issue with a SAS2008 LSI card (9200-8e) where only 2 of 8 identical drives are detected?  I have the card on the latest P20 firmware and in IT mode but both the card BIOS and Unraid are only detecting 2 of the 8 drives as you can see here.

 

0XXFlp9.jpg

mkx4yza.jpg

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2 hours ago, IamSpartacus said:

I have the card on the latest P20 firmware

Latest firmware is p20.00.07, and it appears you're running an HP firmware, still, strange issue, but try with LSI firmware

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4 hours ago, johnnie.black said:

Latest firmware is p20.00.07, and it appears you're running an HP firmware, still, strange issue, but try with LSI firmware

 

I updated the card with p20.00.06 from the LSI website but I didn't completely flash the card to delete the old firmware first so maybe that's something I can look to do next.

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22 minutes ago, IamSpartacus said:

I updated the card with p20.00.06 from the LSI website

And where did you find 20.00.06? Like mentioned latest release is 20.00.07, and AFAIK the ones before were 20.00.00 and 20.00.04.

 

Also, and assuming it's connected to some sort of external enclosure, maybe also worth mentioning brand/model and if single/dual link is in use.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, johnnie.black said:

And where did you find 20.00.06? Like mentioned latest release is 20.00.07, and AFAIK the ones before were 20.00.00 and 20.00.04.

 

Also, and assuming it's connected to some sort of external enclosure, maybe also worth mentioning brand/model and if single/dual link is in use.

 

I got it from this post because I couldn't find the page for this card on Broadcom's website.

 

I have dual links connected to this card and then mini SAS to 4 SATA cables connecting to a UNAS 810a backplane.

Edited by IamSpartacus

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2 minutes ago, IamSpartacus said:

I got it from this post because I couldn't find the page for this card on Broadcom's website.

Doubt that is the problem but you should still update, latest release can be found under legacy HBAs.

 

3 minutes ago, IamSpartacus said:

I have dual links connected to this card and then mini SAS to 4 SATA cables connecting to a UNAS 810a backplane.

You'll need to move things around to try and rule things out out, cables, backplane slot, adapter, etc, disks detected are on port 1 only of both cables, which might be more than just coincidence, also don't forget you need to respect max SATA cables lengths, it can't be more than 1 meter from HBA to disks total.

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11 hours ago, johnnie.black said:

Doubt that is the problem but you should still update, latest release can be found under legacy HBAs.

 

You'll need to move things around to try and rule things out out, cables, backplane slot, adapter, etc, disks detected are on port 1 only of both cables, which might be more than just coincidence, also don't forget you need to respect max SATA cables lengths, it can't be more than 1 meter from HBA to disks total.

 

Thanks for the tip on where to find the latest firmware.  Updated to 20.00.07.00-IT and the latest BIOS and that fixed my issue.  PHEW!

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Hi,

 

I purchased myself this card:

LSI00244 9201-16i PCI-Express 2.0 x8 SATA / SAS Host Bus Adapter Card

and I guess I have to flash it to IT Mode, right?

(I just got into this and don't know much yet about these cards, but still learning :) )

 

I found a link earlier in this topic to this site:

https://www.broadcom.com/support/download-search/?pg=Legacy+Products&amp;pf=&amp;pn=SAS+9201-16i+Host+Bus+Adapter&amp;pa=Firmware&amp;po=&amp;dk=

 

Could someone just confirm that this is the correct package that I need (bottom of the list):

9201-16i_Package_P20_IT_Firmware_BIOS_for_MSDOS_Windows

image.thumb.png.7c5024db384d2eb2071ad3b466061d6d.png

 

Is this correct?

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1 minute ago, Odom said:

9201-16i

That one is IT mode only, though you should update to latest firmware if using an older release.

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OK thanks. I guess when I get it I'll boot it up and will see what firmware it comes with. If it is below then I'll update it.

I'm on day 5 of my unRaid trial and so far I'm only pre-clearing my old disks and finding out which ones need to be binned due to errors. I'm really excited to be playing with unRaid and the possibilities it offers. Can't believe i didn't hear about it before getting my Qnap...

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