support for Sun Fire

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support for Sun Fire

mufurcz
Greetings,

Are the Sun Fire X2100 (1 x AMD Opteron,  Model 175, dual core 2.26 MHz CPU)
servers fully supported?  I am interested in booth - good and bad
experiences
with this boxes.  If you don't want to generate noise on this group, please
e-mail to me personally.

Thanks,

mufurcz

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Re: support for Sun Fire

Stuart Henderson
On 2007/05/29 22:10, mufurcz wrote:
> Are the Sun Fire X2100 (1 x AMD Opteron,  Model 175, dual core 2.26 MHz CPU)
> servers fully supported?  I am interested in booth - good and bad
> experiences
> with this boxes.  If you don't want to generate noise on this group, please
> e-mail to me personally.

works ok, one nic is nfe(4) which works but isn't the world's greatest.
if you want decent remote management get an x4xxx (non-M2), you lose use
of the better nic on the x2100 if you plug in the ipmi card, and the
remote management on these isn't really good enough to be worth that.

the (optional) rack mounting kit is well thought through (and so it
should be at that price!)

if you have a recent bios that lets you set the low-temp fan duty
cycle to 0% to quieten things down while you do the initial install,
make sure the 'power off if cpu fan fails' option is turned off or
you'll have an aggravating 'enter the bios at just the right time'
session.

if anyone has a working PXE bios-flash setup for these and wouldn't
mind sharing how, please drop me a line, when I try the system hangs
after memdisk loads the bios-flash image.

latest bios on sun's ftp site fixes erratum 89, first time I've seen
an amd64 box boot without it. and hooray: the bios *defaults* to using
serial console, so you don't lose access if the CMOS battery dies.
other vendors would do well to copy that idea.

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Re: support for Sun Fire

mark reardon
In reply to this post by mufurcz
I just got a x2100 M2 from Sun yesterday on a 60 day trial and am having
trouble setting the MTU on one of the bge NICs. Just some initial findings.
Not a big problem for me really.


On 29/05/07, mufurcz <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> Greetings,
>
> Are the Sun Fire X2100 (1 x AMD Opteron,  Model 175, dual core 2.26 MHz
> CPU)
> servers fully supported?  I am interested in booth - good and bad
> experiences
> with this boxes.  If you don't want to generate noise on this group,
> please
> e-mail to me personally.
>
> Thanks,
>
> mufurcz

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Re: support for Sun Fire

mark reardon
my problem was only setting the mtu > 9000 btw. as I said not a biggie ;-)

On 29/05/07, mark reardon <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> I just got a x2100 M2 from Sun yesterday on a 60 day trial and am having
> trouble setting the MTU on one of the bge NICs. Just some initial findings.
> Not a big problem for me really.
>
>
> On 29/05/07, mufurcz <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >
> > Greetings,
> >
> > Are the Sun Fire X2100 (1 x AMD Opteron,  Model 175, dual core 2.26 MHz
> > CPU)
> > servers fully supported?  I am interested in booth - good and bad
> > experiences
> > with this boxes.  If you don't want to generate noise on this group,
> > please
> > e-mail to me personally.
> >
> > Thanks,
> >
> > mufurcz

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Re: support for Sun Fire

Jeff Quast
In reply to this post by Stuart Henderson
On 5/29/07, Stuart Henderson <[hidden email]> wrote:

> an amd64 box boot without it. and hooray: the bios *defaults* to using
> serial console, so you don't lose access if the CMOS battery dies.
> other vendors would do well to copy that idea.

here, here.

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Re: support for Sun Fire

Sam Vaughan
In reply to this post by Stuart Henderson
On 29/05/2007, at 10:41 PM, Stuart Henderson wrote:

> if you have a recent bios that lets you set the low-temp fan duty
> cycle to 0% to quieten things down while you do the initial install,
> make sure the 'power off if cpu fan fails' option is turned off or
> you'll have an aggravating 'enter the bios at just the right time'
> session.

I wish I'd known I could have shut those fans up when I was setting  
up my x4100s!  Thanks for the tip.

> if anyone has a working PXE bios-flash setup for these and wouldn't
> mind sharing how, please drop me a line, when I try the system hangs
> after memdisk loads the bios-flash image.

I'd be interested to know about this too.  Since my x4100s have no CD/
DVD ROM drive (I've got the four-SAS-disk config) I can't use Sun's  
BIOS CD image.  I couldn't even mount the ISO to get at the necessary  
files.  With their releases prior to 1.3 they provided the individual  
files which made it easy to make a floppy image that could then be  
written to a USB stick.  A PXE solution would be even better.

> latest bios on sun's ftp site fixes erratum 89, first time I've seen
> an amd64 box boot without it. and hooray: the bios *defaults* to using
> serial console, so you don't lose access if the CMOS battery dies.
> other vendors would do well to copy that idea.

Very true.

My pet peeve is that I can't move the service processor's ssh to a  
high port number and disable password authentication.  Logging in to  
the embedded OS and editing the ssh config file by hand doesn't work,  
presumably because it's not sitting on writable media when it's  
running.  I can't really be bothered digging in to the source and  
building my own service processor OS image.

Have you had any success with IPMI SoL?  Whilst the Java app works  
fine for remote access, I'd much rather not have to launch it when  
all I really want is access to the console.

Sam

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Re: support for Sun Fire

Stuart Henderson
On 2007/06/03 14:09, Sam Vaughan wrote:
>
>> if anyone has a working PXE bios-flash setup for these and wouldn't
>> mind sharing how, please drop me a line, when I try the system hangs
>> after memdisk loads the bios-flash image.
>
> I'd be interested to know about this too.  Since my x4100s have no CD/DVD
> ROM drive (I've got the four-SAS-disk config) I can't use Sun's BIOS CD
> image.  I couldn't even mount the ISO to get at the necessary files.

I don't have one but it looks like X4100 is much easier, it appears that
the BIOS update is done with the ILOM firmware via the service processor
using an .ima file from http://www.sun.com/download/products.xml?id=45b94409

> Have you had any success with IPMI SoL?  Whilst the Java app works fine for
> remote access, I'd much rather not have to launch it when all I really want
> is access to the console.

I only have X2100 and I didn't want to lose the decent NIC, I got as far
as power control via ipmitool but didn't look at SoL, I'm just using good
old-fashioned serial console and masterswitch.

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Re: support for Sun Fire

Sam Vaughan
On 03/06/2007, at 7:33 PM, Stuart Henderson wrote:

> On 2007/06/03 14:09, Sam Vaughan wrote:
>>
>>> if anyone has a working PXE bios-flash setup for these and wouldn't
>>> mind sharing how, please drop me a line, when I try the system hangs
>>> after memdisk loads the bios-flash image.
>>
>> I'd be interested to know about this too.  Since my x4100s have no  
>> CD/DVD
>> ROM drive (I've got the four-SAS-disk config) I can't use Sun's  
>> BIOS CD
>> image.  I couldn't even mount the ISO to get at the necessary files.
>
> I don't have one but it looks like X4100 is much easier, it appears  
> that
> the BIOS update is done with the ILOM firmware via the service  
> processor
> using an .ima file from http://www.sun.com/download/products.xml?
> id=45b94409

It certainly looks that way from the file descriptions, doesn't it?  
However installing that .ima file to upgrade the ILOM firmware gave  
no indication that it also upgraded the BIOS.  All their previous  
releases looked like this:

<http://www.sun.com/download/products.xml?id=45007c22>

The descriptions of the .ima file still mention the BIOS, but the  
required files to build a bootable DOS image to update the BIOS are  
all provided separately.  When upgrading to those previous releases,  
I followed the docs and updated the ILOM firmware, then built the DOS  
image and booted from it.  The BIOS certainly hadn't been updated at  
that point, and running the DOS tool worked as documented.

It's a massive pain in the arse to have to boot into DOS to upgrade a  
machine that is otherwise completely serviceable remotely via the  
ILOM.  It basically means a visit to the data centre with a USB  
stick, but as of this 1.3 release I can't even do that!

But I take your point, Stuart, what the hell is the mention of the  
BIOS update in the .ima file descriptions about and is there really a  
much easier way that's just not mentioned in the docs?

>> Have you had any success with IPMI SoL?  Whilst the Java app works  
>> fine for
>> remote access, I'd much rather not have to launch it when all I  
>> really want
>> is access to the console.
>
> I only have X2100 and I didn't want to lose the decent NIC, I got  
> as far
> as power control via ipmitool but didn't look at SoL, I'm just  
> using good
> old-fashioned serial console and masterswitch.

Fair enough.  I'll just put up with the Java app to redirect video  
and USB for now then.

Thanks,

Sam

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Re: support for Sun Fire

Toni Mueller-10
In reply to this post by mark reardon
Hi Mark,

On Tue, 29.05.2007 at 14:13:06 +0100, mark reardon <[hidden email]> wrote:
> I just got a x2100 M2 from Sun yesterday on a 60 day trial and am having
> trouble setting the MTU on one of the bge NICs. Just some initial findings.
> Not a big problem for me really.

did you get it to run OpenBSD properly? Which model do you have?


Best,
--Toni++

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Re: support for Sun Fire

mark reardon
Yep - x2100 M2. OpenBSD 4.1. It works brilliantly compared to the Dell it
replaced which was getting to 55+% IO bound.


On 16/07/07, Toni Mueller <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> Hi Mark,
>
> On Tue, 29.05.2007 at 14:13:06 +0100, mark reardon <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
> > I just got a x2100 M2 from Sun yesterday on a 60 day trial and am having
> > trouble setting the MTU on one of the bge NICs. Just some initial
> findings.
> > Not a big problem for me really.
>
> did you get it to run OpenBSD properly? Which model do you have?
>
>
> Best,
> --Toni++

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Re: support for Sun Fire

Daniel Ouellet
In reply to this post by Toni Mueller-10
Toni Mueller wrote:
> Hi Mark,
>
> On Tue, 29.05.2007 at 14:13:06 +0100, mark reardon <[hidden email]> wrote:
>> I just got a x2100 M2 from Sun yesterday on a 60 day trial and am having
>> trouble setting the MTU on one of the bge NICs. Just some initial findings.
>> Not a big problem for me really.
>
> did you get it to run OpenBSD properly? Which model do you have?

I have one as well. Some results in the archive as well, but my biggest
griff with it is with the admin console for this unit. Sun really cut
way to short on it to make if a decent remote admin box. Plus the share
the BGE with the admin port, instead of the nVidia, witch I could do
without. The box is not bad, but could be better. It's more expensive,
but it make me definitely switch to the 4100 instead. I only got one,
and wouldn't get an other one, unless it's not in a remote setup
configuration witch is pretty rear these days.

Even the serial console is limited in operation and work until OpenBSD
start when it goes dead. Then you can do some more from the Ethernet
port instead, but then if you reboot the box, you loose the admin on the
Ethernet port and needs to go back to the serial console.

My own feedback is not a top of the line box, but not the worst either.
Just not as good as it should be for me to recommend it however. It work
well in some setup, not all.

YMMV,

Daniel

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Re: support for Sun Fire

Dag Richards
Daniel Ouellet wrote:

> Toni Mueller wrote:
>> Hi Mark,
>>
>> On Tue, 29.05.2007 at 14:13:06 +0100, mark reardon
>> <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>> I just got a x2100 M2 from Sun yesterday on a 60 day trial and am having
>>> trouble setting the MTU on one of the bge NICs. Just some initial
>>> findings.
>>> Not a big problem for me really.
>>
>> did you get it to run OpenBSD properly? Which model do you have?
>
> I have one as well. Some results in the archive as well, but my biggest
> griff with it is with the admin console for this unit. Sun really cut
> way to short on it to make if a decent remote admin box. Plus the share
> the BGE with the admin port, instead of the nVidia, witch I could do
> without. The box is not bad, but could be better. It's more expensive,
> but it make me definitely switch to the 4100 instead. I only got one,
> and wouldn't get an other one, unless it's not in a remote setup
> configuration witch is pretty rear these days.
>
> Even the serial console is limited in operation and work until OpenBSD
> start when it goes dead. Then you can do some more from the Ethernet
> port instead, but then if you reboot the box, you loose the admin on the
> Ethernet port and needs to go back to the serial console.
>
> My own feedback is not a top of the line box, but not the worst either.
> Just not as good as it should be for me to recommend it however. It work
> well in some setup, not all.
>
> YMMV,
>
> Daniel
>
I use a few of these, and second all of Daniel griffs.  I use them
because they are cheap, and a fairly good value.

I would recommend you take a look at the HP DL360,
one U
hardware raid
and have nice little management interface you can ssh to
which allows pretty complete console access, go into bios, watch boot
messages, power set the system.

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Re: support for Sun Fire

Daniel Ouellet
Dag Richards wrote:
> I would recommend you take a look at the HP DL360,
> one U
> hardware raid
> and have nice little management interface you can ssh to
> which allows pretty complete console access, go into bios, watch boot
> messages, power set the system.

The Sun 4100 is a pretty good one as well. I have a few of them and I am
happy so far. If you can swing the difference in price however.

The HP-145 M1 and IBM e326, witch both works well, with the IBM giving
me some minor issues every few months, but looks like it cleared up over
time with various upgrades.

However, a few more months before I can tell more, but so far looks like
the Sun 4100 would be my favorite, specially if the built in RAID can be
maid to work and I know based on the archive that there is/was some work
done on it.

That's all for my feedback on this.

Best,

Daniel

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Re: support for Sun Fire

bofh-6
On 7/16/07, Daniel Ouellet <[hidden email]> wrote:
> The HP-145 M1 and IBM e326, witch both works well, with the IBM giving
> me some minor issues every few months, but looks like it cleared up over
> time with various upgrades.

I'm not sure if I would recommend the DL-145s.  I bought about 2 dozen
of them, and fortunately (or unfortunately), I had to buy all the
upgrades separately (bto would have added another month to two at that
time).  The scsi cable was just a tad too short on around half of them
(for the second scsi drive).  Ram wasn't seated properly on a couple
of them.  And I bought lsi's short profile raid card, and for some
reason, I couldn't do hardware raid on some of the drives until after
a full format on both drives.  Some drives showed up as 143xxxM and
the others showed up as 141xxxM.  After a low level format, both
showed up as 143xxxM, and I can now raid-1 them.

No cable management system (a velcro clip so does not count) that
ships with the system.  Best part was the HP sales critter laughing at
me for buying them.

So, highly don't recommend the DL145s.

--
"This officer's men seem to follow him merely out of idle curiosity."
-- Sandhurst officer cadet evaluation.

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Re: support for Sun Fire

Toni Mueller-10
In reply to this post by Daniel Ouellet
Hi,

On Mon, 16.07.2007 at 14:25:05 -0400, Daniel Ouellet <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Toni Mueller wrote:
> >On Tue, 29.05.2007 at 14:13:06 +0100, mark reardon <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >>I just got a x2100 M2 from Sun yesterday on a 60 day trial and am having
> >did you get it to run OpenBSD properly? Which model do you have?
> I have one as well. Some results in the archive as well, but my biggest

thanks for all the feedback. I was thinking about the difference
between a X2100 and an X2100 M2. These "subtleties" are not yet
covered well in the archives.

> griff with it is with the admin console for this unit. Sun really cut
> way to short on it to make if a decent remote admin box. Plus the share

I have just opted to return an X2200 M2 which has about the same
problem, plus remote admin does really not appear to work reliable (for
me, at least - may be a hardware problem, though). So, I'm abandoning
the box for the moment...


Best,
--Toni++