[rescue] new to the list: new E250 owner, just saying hello.

Devin L. Ganger devin at thecabal.org
Thu Jan 12 20:46:24 CST 2006

on 1/12/2006 6:05 PM Bryan Gurney wrote:

> Judging from the 24-bit framebuffer and the single hard drive, its  
> best role would be as a workstation.

As long as you don't need high-end server kit like redundant power 
supplies or lots of disk, they make great infrastructure servers for 
things like mail gateways, DNS, DHCP, etc. -- even webservers. I fondly 
remember the first U2 I used in anger -- it was our primary UNIX 
webserver for the regional ISP I worked for then.

> I've used another Ultra 2 before that was running software RAID through  
> the Solstice DiskSuite (or whatever it's called now); the performance was  
> rather good for a 9-year-old machine.

Later versions of SDS were pretty good, although SDS was a touch 
crotchety to set up. I know lots of admins who swore by Veritas Volume 
Manager for everything except the boot disk, which they'd use SDS for. 
When I was running machines that required that kind of solution, we just 
engineered them so that we could use Volume Manager and not have to know 
the ins and outs of both products. Oh, the Volume Manager stories I've got!

> I don't know about raid1d on Linux on an UltraSparc box; most of the ones
> I've worked with were running Solaris of some version.

The last time I made that mistake was a couple of years back or so. At 
first, I tried running my SPARC 20 with an external diskpack and Linux 
md drives (under a 2.4 kernel). Everything seemed to go okay, so I 
cautiously upgraded to an early (IIRC) 2.6 kernel and ran more tests. 
The day after I put the bastard in production, every md device crapped 
out and corrupted the filesystems so badly that ext3fs gave up.

To make a long story short, I tried all of the following combinations:

- SS20, 2.4 kernel, ext3fs
- SS20, 2.6 kernel, ext3fs
- SS20, 2.4 kernel, ext2fs
- SS20, 2.6 kernel, ext2fs
- SS20, 2.4 kernel, xfs
- SS20, 2.6 kernel, xfs

Then I started wondering if there wasn't something flawed with the 
32-bit SPARC kernel and switched to an Ultra 1. Trying all the 
permutations again didn't help -- everything still got corrupted. I even 
tried different disks and a separate disk enclosure. Funny, everything 
worked Just Fine under Solaris and SDS.

That was the last time I ever looked at Linux on SPARC gear. If I ever 
run a non-Solaris OS on Sun kit again, it'll be one of the BSDs.

Devin L. Ganger <devin at thecabal.org>
Homepage: http://www.thecabal.org/~devin/
Devin on Earth: http://blogs.thecabal.org/blogs/devin/

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