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Dell PowerEdge 800 and Dell Adaptec CERC SATA1.5/6ch RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hello All,

     

    I'm trying to get Home Server installed on a Dell PowerEdge 800. The system has a Dell Adaptec CERC SATA1.5/6ch SATA controller, I downloaded the drivers dated 11/21/2007 and the install of Home Server will not take this driver.

     

    I don't have it configured as a RAID just two 500 gigabyte drives.

     

    Any suggestions on how to get this controller working would be great.

     

    Thank you,
    Brian

    Saturday, December 22, 2007 2:08 PM

Answers

  • I did try the Server 2003 drivers from the Dell website loaded onto a flash drive; no luck there. I did not try the XP drivers, but as Colin mentioned, it's been my past experience that the Server 2003 drivers should work.

    In the end, I moved the drive I intended as the system volume onto one of the motherboard SATA ports and went along my way with the install. Once the install was complete, Device Manager was able to install the SATA controller card getting the driver from Windows Update.

    Colin, I only recall one "portion" of setup. Once I selected which drive to install to and entered my product key, the rest of the install was hands off. The only time I had a chance to load additional drivers was when prompted for which drive to install to. I know of the F6 option you're referring to, but I don't recall seeing it come up. Also, this server was a hand-me-down (a de-commissioned server from a local business that I was able to get for free!), so I only got the machine itself (no hard drives, no Dell driver CD's, etc.), but even so the drivers from the Dell site should have worked.

    The best I can suspect, as perhaps grast was thinking, is that the drivers aren't Windows 2003 certified. The procedure for loading additional drivers during the install doesn't allow you to use non-certified drivers. In retrospect, I should have looked for another source for the drivers other than the Dell website. The card is made by Adaptec, they may have had something. I also remember coming across a "corporate" version of Windows Update several years ago that had every available update listed, not just the one's listed for your particular system. Knowing now that Device Manager was able to load the driver via Windows Update, perhaps there is a driver on Microsoft.com somewhere that would have been helpful.
    Wednesday, October 22, 2008 2:23 AM

All replies

  • I'm going to resurrect this thread because I'm just beginning to undertake the same thing and running into the exact same situation. If I find anything that works, I'll post what I find here.

    Hopefully though, someone has found a solution and can assist.
    Monday, October 20, 2008 3:53 PM
  •  Have you tried the XP drivers? Does the SATA controller have a Windows 2003 certified drivers?

    later..
    Tuesday, October 21, 2008 7:07 PM
  • Hi,
    As mentioned, you should endeavour to use Server 2003 drivers for WHS if at all possible. Also, any drivers required will need to be installed twice; once during the initial graphical portion of the setup, then again during the text-mode portion. This second time, you will need to press 'F6' when requested.

    Also, I'm not sure about this exact server, but some of the Dell servers require their own installation CD to prepare the system for an operating system installation.


    Colin





    If anyone answers your query successfully, please mark it as 'Helpful', to guide other users.
    Tuesday, October 21, 2008 7:15 PM
    Moderator
  • I did try the Server 2003 drivers from the Dell website loaded onto a flash drive; no luck there. I did not try the XP drivers, but as Colin mentioned, it's been my past experience that the Server 2003 drivers should work.

    In the end, I moved the drive I intended as the system volume onto one of the motherboard SATA ports and went along my way with the install. Once the install was complete, Device Manager was able to install the SATA controller card getting the driver from Windows Update.

    Colin, I only recall one "portion" of setup. Once I selected which drive to install to and entered my product key, the rest of the install was hands off. The only time I had a chance to load additional drivers was when prompted for which drive to install to. I know of the F6 option you're referring to, but I don't recall seeing it come up. Also, this server was a hand-me-down (a de-commissioned server from a local business that I was able to get for free!), so I only got the machine itself (no hard drives, no Dell driver CD's, etc.), but even so the drivers from the Dell site should have worked.

    The best I can suspect, as perhaps grast was thinking, is that the drivers aren't Windows 2003 certified. The procedure for loading additional drivers during the install doesn't allow you to use non-certified drivers. In retrospect, I should have looked for another source for the drivers other than the Dell website. The card is made by Adaptec, they may have had something. I also remember coming across a "corporate" version of Windows Update several years ago that had every available update listed, not just the one's listed for your particular system. Knowing now that Device Manager was able to load the driver via Windows Update, perhaps there is a driver on Microsoft.com somewhere that would have been helpful.
    Wednesday, October 22, 2008 2:23 AM
  • I had that same card in several iterations of Win2K3 servers, but never as a boot drive. I always used a regular old IDE or SATA disk to install the OS on and then installed the CERC. I can't remember if the drivers I used came form Dell or from Adaptec.

    I do remember that you have to match the driver version to the firmware. So if you downloaded the newest drivers make sure you upgrade the Firmware as well.

    Unless you have the TSLID number (Adaptecs draconian method of screwing buyers of used cards) you can't get the RAID monitoring card of off Adaptecs site.


    Wednesday, November 5, 2008 10:19 PM
  • This can be done. I have WHS running on CERC SATA 1.5/6ch RAID  controller with 6 WD1000 Cavier Green. But it does take some disk shuffling during setup and you need to leave the discs in there the entire time until setup is 100% done.
    1. Get your CERC firmware and BIOS all updated and whatnot and plug all the drives in
    2. Put the Highest capacity drives on the lower channel numbers 0-1... WHS storage manager works better when the OS drive is the same size as the biggest drive. and WHS put the OS on the channel zero (at least it did for me).
    3. Configure all the drives as VOLUME - no RAID
    4. I enabled write caching for faster writes
    5. Get the latest drivers onto a floppy or second CD-ROM or however you want to do
    6. At the beginning of the initial setup at the bottom of the screen it says press F6 to load additional drivers.
    7. Stick in the floopy and load all drivers - there may be two or more - load them all
    8. Setup continues and needs to reboot - pop out the floppy and let it reboot and then put the floppy back in.
    9. There are several reboots during setup and they all need the floppy with the CERC drivers in there so it can read the drivers. Of course this is a pain in the ____ if BIOS default boots to floppy so you have to baby-sit it or disable booting from floppy.
    10. When WHS is setup fully you can get rid of the floppy.

    I used a floppy (obviously) so I don't know how it would work with a single CD reader - I guess a lot of CD swapping.

    HOWEVER!
    Although everything is working I have a weird problem with transferring files to the machine. After about 20 seconds of 500Mbps transfer speed the speed drops down to 10 or slower Mbps and it takes 4 hours to transfer only a few gigabytes.

    It's not the network switch - I've tried three NICs so it's not that. It only happens when transferring files TO the server. transferring from is what i would expect 300-500 Gbps. So i'm guessing it might be the HDDs.  There are no read/write errors. <shrug> I don't know how to isolate this.

    Saturday, February 7, 2009 9:19 PM
  • I started with a PowerEdge 850 with 4 Gigs of RAM and 2 internal WD Green 500 Gig Hard drives. The CERC card was installed and did not prompt me for anything until WHS was loaded and running. At that time I just got the standard "hardware found" dialog box.  I got the drivers off DELL's page and put them on a USB thumb drive and installed with no issues.

    I am now going to add a SuperMicro 5 SATA disk array to the CERC card and leave it JBOD (if everything I read is right) and just add disk space as I need it. That gives me 5 drive bays to add data.

    Anyone running a similar configuration and where there any issues?
    Has anyone tried one of these removable drive bay systems for the storage backup? I was hoping to leave drive bay 5 open and when I insert a large hard drive and it prompts me I choose backup and when done just pull the drive and put it in the safe?????

    Any Thoughts from some of you seasoned pro's out there?
    Tuesday, March 24, 2009 4:53 PM
  • Before you commit a significant amount of data, practice the server reinstallation process with several drives installed, connected to that controller, and included in the storage pool. You will probably (almost certainly) have to supply drivers during the initial graphical portion of the reinstallation, since without drivers it's unlikely that you will even be presented with the option for reinstallation at the appropriate point. You don't want to be working your way through this for the first time in a panic. :)
    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Tuesday, March 24, 2009 5:47 PM
    Moderator
  • Here are the drivers for CERC SATA1.5/6ch SATA controller that I got working on my WHS.
    So far I got 5 200GB drives in RAID-5 working perfectly....., WHS.. different story.

    Cerc drivers that work on WHS

    Also you can use Dell's OpenManage with it.
    Wednesday, March 25, 2009 6:07 PM