A while back I contorted myself to get a 64-bit FreeBSD 6.0 driver for my HighPoint RocketRaid 2220 RAID controller. Now that I have a 2TB ReadyNAS box, that old 1TB FreeBSD box is falling into disuse, so I thought I’d repurpose it as a dedicated Azureus download machine.
At first, I had hoped I could install Ubuntu Feisty Fawn directly on the RAID array, but I couldn’t even get the Ubuntu live CD to boot without a litany of read errors on
sdb. I gave up on that, pulled one of the five 250GB drives from the array, and hooked it up to the on-board SATA controller, unplugged the RocketRaid, and installed Ubuntu.
Once that was done, I wanted to at least get enough RocketRaid support to create a RAID 0 volume consisting of the four remaining 250GB SATA drives. Long story short, here’s what I had to do:
- Compile a custom 2.6.22 kernel, explicitly excluding the
sata_mvdriver, which is extremely incomatible with the RocketRaid. Adding
sata_mvto the blacklist, and using the
brokenmoduleskernel startup parameter were not sufficient; I had to literally compile this out of the kernel.
- Download the latest HighPoint RocketRaid Linux driver source code. It may be possible to get the pre-compiled drivers to work on Feisty, but if so I don’t know how.
- Build the RocketRaid driver code per the instructions. The
make installstep failed towards the end, but it made it far enough to get the
hptmv6driver built and working and loading at boot time.
Once that was done, it was time to create the RAID array. As I learned when I built a BSD box around this card, the RocketRaid 2220 is what is known as a FakeRAID card, meaning it has no hardware RAID circuitry; it’s just a SATA controller with some proprietary, buggy code that emulates the various RAID levels. So, I decided against using the HighPoint RAID code, and went into the HighPoint BIOS and created one JBOD device for each disk in the array. These devices showed up at
/dev/sde. I used the software RAID HOWTO to build a
/dev/md0 device consisting of these four disk devices, in RAID 0.
Now, I have a 1TB RAID 0
reiserfs partition upon which to stage my ill-gotten gains, before archiving them on my 2TB dedicated NAS box.
Next time, I’ll spend the $300 and get a real, supported RAID controller card.