LSI Controller FW updates IR/IT modes


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In case anyone is interested, I just got SAS2108 based controller (LSI 9280-i4ie) working in IT mode.

 

I don't have any external devices to test with, but at least internal port disks are detected.

 

If someone else wants to try it out, here's what I did:

- clean the flash memory with megarec -cleanflash

- read SBR out, change to Fusion mode (change 0xc6 to 0xd6 at location 0x56), write changed SBR to card

 

Now you can boot Linux and use lsirec to hostboot using latest 9211-8i firmware, after hostboot run rescan, card should be up and running, disks visible and all.

 

Programming the firmware to flash chip didn't seem to work with either sas2flash or lsiutil, which limited the card usefulness severely, you could hostboot the card every time but that is not compatible with IOMMU.

 

So to fix that, I programmed the firmware manually to the flash chip with external programmer - and it actually just worked.

 

Firmware I programmed to the chip was downloaded from IBM M1015 card flashed with 9211-8i firmware using sas2flash -o -uflash command. That card had 16MB flash chip and this 9280 has only 8MB chip and I wasn't sure where the controller would boot from (and didn't want to desolder the flash chip again) so I cut the firmware up and pasted first 1M from the 16MB file, then last 3M and then last 4M again. Now the firmware is copied at 0x1a0000, 0x2e0000, 0x5a0000 and 0x6e0000 and boot blocks are at 0x3e0000 and 0x7e0000.

 

Now someone just needs to find out a way to program the flash memory without getting it off from the board fist, I didn't find any hints of anyone doing that on the Internet on SAS2108 controllers.

 

Maybe I'll try next if the IR firmware is compatible...

 

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On 9/24/2022 at 6:10 PM, Hakki said:

In case anyone is interested, I just got SAS2108 based controller (LSI 9280-i4ie) working in IT mode.

 

I don't have any external devices to test with, but at least internal port disks are detected.

 

If someone else wants to try it out, here's what I did:

- clean the flash memory with megarec -cleanflash

- read SBR out, change to Fusion mode (change 0xc6 to 0xd6 at location 0x56), write changed SBR to card

...

Maybe I'll try next if the IR firmware is compatible...

 

That's the info I was waiting for. I've got an LSI 9280-24i4e and trying to find a way getting this card to IT-mode. Hoping someone will find a way, flashing the memory. 

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On 9/29/2022 at 2:07 AM, Keller-Server said:

That's the info I was waiting for. I've got an LSI 9280-24i4e and trying to find a way getting this card to IT-mode. Hoping someone will find a way, flashing the memory. 

 

I'm waiting for another SAS2108 card to appear to do more testing, I modified the 4i4e model because of the external connector and don't want to break it. I'm sure I have 3ware 9750-4i somewhere..

 

I'll have to amend previous instructions a little, I did use sbrtool.py from lsirec project to edit the SBR and changed also PCI IDs to match 9211-8i card. Unk08 = 0x91c600f8 changed to 0x91d600f8, PCIPID to 0x0072 and SubsysPID to 0x3050. I tried to do minimal changes, those were enough on this card.

 

Even if SBR was programmed with 9211-8i card data, controller still went to megaraid mode if flash was not cleared. The SAS2108 controller boots from the flash chip and looks like firmware/bootloader set the chip back to megaraid mode regardless of SBR contents.


So if you don't have any way to program the flash chip, you could just program SBR, clean the flash memory and use lsirec to hostboot 9211-8i IT firmware and rescan the controller to test if anything works, controller and disks should be detected. Just remember to save the original SBR somewhere to restore original functionality if nothing works..

 

Also the card worked just fine without the big flash memory chip at all, you just had to hostboot it every time :)

Maybe someone could figure out a way to make the hostboot work with IOMMU, then it wouldn't be a problem .. and someone could patch the driver to load firmware on the fly as many other drivers do.

 

 

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  • 3 months later...

Hi 

 

I try to find any information about cross-flashing perc h710 with lsi firmware BUT keep raid mode not IT. I can see there's many guide how to get it mode but can't find any info/guid how to get raid mode  mode, if it possible. If someone can guid me where to look for it? 

Thank you

 

 

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5 minutes ago, jas7o said:

I can see there's many guide how to get it mode but can't find any info/guid how to get raid mode  mode,

The procedure is the same, but when flashing with the LSI firmware use the RAID mode firmware (IR) instead of IT mode.

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  • 3 weeks later...

From what I read shortly this forum seems like a great find. After all the official support from SuperMicro/LSI has been a letdown ever since I got my HBA card around 2014 or so. I'm running LSI OEM 9217-8i (Supermicro AOC-S2308L-L8e - flashed to LSI 9207-8i). I've never needed RAID functionality, only additional SATA connections.

 

Today I updated my system from i9-12900k to 13900k. Subsequently my system wouldn't post after enabling XMP for the RAM. Also the LSI card seemed to disappear from my system without any sign either in BIOS or Windows, with all the drives connected to it. I'm dealing with the possible RAM incompatibility issue elsewhere, and meanwhile started searching if there were any fw updates to the HBA card.

 

I switched back to 12900k for the time being and everything works as norm. I've attached pics of what my motherboard submenu has to say about the card. It seems the bios version is 7.27.01.00 and the IT firmware 20.0.2.0. I read that the most recent versions would be 7.39.02.00 and 20.00.07.00, is that correct? Also it was suggested that in HBA mode the BIOS is pretty much redundant and could be erased and thus disabled, am I right? Anything to speed up the startup.

 

I hardly doubt updating the fw by a small increment will resolve the problem with the 13900k, but I might as well do it anyway. Also, it came to my mind after I switched the 12900k back that the BIOS might've re-assigned the PCIe lanes all to the GPU, disabling the 2_PCIe_x16, which is where the LSI card is attached. I did load optimized defaults for the BIOS, but never checked weather the BIOS had done this on its own after the CPU update.

 

If it's true there's an update to my HBA card, would you be so nice as to point out a trusted source where I can download it? It looks as Broadcom/LSI haven't stored the files for bit now or at least I can't find them.

 

My system specs are as follows:

Spoiler

Windows 11 Pro
Corsair AX1600i
Aquaero 6 Pro USB
Asus ROG Maximus Z690 Extreme E-ATX (lates BIOS v. 2204)
Intel Core i9-13900k (now back to 12900k)
G.Skill Trident Z5 DDR5 6000 MHz CL36 32 GB (F5-6000J3636F16GX2-TZ5K) (2x16 GB kit)
MSI GeForce RTX 3090 Suprim X 24G
LSI OEM 9217-8i (Supermicro AOC-S2308L-L8e - flashed to LSI 9207-8i)
_01: Samsung 980 Pro 2 TB (M.2 PCIe x4 Gen4 - OS drive)
...(drives 2-5 detached as of currently)

_06: WD60EFRX-68L0BN1 (Western Digital Red NAS HDD 6,0TB SATA3 6,0Gb 5400RPM)
_07: WD60EFRX-68L0BN1 (Western Digital Red NAS HDD 6,0TB SATA3 6,0Gb 5400RPM)
_08: WD60EFRX-68L0BN1 (Western Digital Red NAS HDD 6,0TB SATA3 6,0Gb 5400RPM)
_09: WD60EFRX-68L0BN1 (Western Digital Red NAS HDD 6,0TB SATA3 6,0Gb 5400RPM)
_10: WD60EFAX-68JH4N1 (Western Digital Red NAS HDD 6,0TB SATA3 6,0Gb 5400RPM)
_11: WD60EFAX-68JH4N1 (Western Digital Red NAS HDD 6,0TB SATA3 6,0Gb 5400RPM)
_12: Samsung 870 QVO 2 TB
_13: Samsung 960 Pro 512 GB OEM SM961 (M.2 PCIe x4 Gen3)

 

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