Matt Pson Just another dead sysadmin blog


Proving a point – building a SAN (part 3)

Just a short update on the SAN building activities. All items finally arrived the other day in very much Cisco-style, around 30 boxes with each item packaged individually. After some assembly it became painfully obvious that I had forgotten to order SAS-cables long enough to reach from the raidcards to the disk backplane. Bummer!

Well, after some studying of the C210 Server Maintenance Manual and the quick-installation sheet for the LSI 3081E-R raidcard I figured it should work with a standard SFF-8087 cable. I found a local dealer that could have some Promise SAS cables delivered the following day with SFF-8087 connectors in both ends and long enough to ensure proper cabling inside the chassis.

The next day I connected everything and spent quite some time making sure that the cables would not prevent proper airflow etc. etc. Problem was, when powering up the server no disks could be found. Not a single one, no SAS disks, no SATA disks and not the SSD disks either (though they have SATA interface). Troubleshooting commenced, reseating cables, checking each disk and so on but nothing worked.

Using the Promise cable connected to the onboard SATA controller should really let me see the SATA disks connected so I did try that. The result was no disks at all found and my USB keyboard didn't work either in this combination - really odd. Uh-huh. Using the original cable that came with the server, that is much too short to reach to raidcards with, to the onboard SATA controller works just fine and lets me see the SATA disks.

So, obviously, you need Cisco cables to make this work and my belief that SFF-8087 was a SAS-cable standard is now gone and shattered.

The really bad thing is that getting those Cisco cables seems to add another "few weeks" (according to our Cisco dealer) until I can have this up and running.

To be continued...

Comments (0) Trackbacks (0)

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Trackbacks are disabled.