Dell 6300 linux related questions

Mark Roberts vaultdweller at
Tue Oct 21 19:03:01 CDT 2003

Philippe Coupe wrote:
> I just bought a used DELL 6300 on ebay and the box will be delivered this
> tuesday...
> The config is supposed to be  :
> Quad 550MHz Xeon Pentium 3
> 1Gb RAM
> 2x9.1Gb HDD
> 6x18.2Gb HDD
> SCSI RAID (RAID 0,0/1,5 capable)

I purchased a very similar machine off e-bay a few months ago. RedHat 9 
has run quite reliably on my 6300. I'm running the latest errata kernel 
(2.4.20-20.9) patched to support the SGI XFS file system.

There is one major trick to installing RH on it. You need to specify 
'linux expert noprobe' at the boot prompt of the CD. Select 'no' when it 
asks if you have a driver disk. At some point, you will need to specify 
what devices are in the system. For the on-board SCSI controllers, you 
need to pass the option 'aic7xxx=no_probe' to the aic7xxx module. If you 
do not, the machine will lock up. After that, you should be able to 
proceed through the install normally.

LVM works fine under RH9, except that you will not be able to mount 
snapshots of ext3 or any other journaling file system without 
recompiling the kernel.

One final note. If you have hardware problems, try moving cards to 
different PCI slots. I replaced the PERC II in my system with a PERC3/DC 
and was unable to use the on-board SCSI channels until I moved it to a 
different slot.

> The big plan is to install Linux and run many/lots of "User mode Linux"
> virtual servers (see )...
> I originally planned to install Debian through my broadband network
> connection but, reading this mailing list, I understood that it may be safer
> to install RedHat... What about Suse ? Any opinion ?
> What is your opinion regarding the best way to use this machine ?
> Which linux kernel version would you consider for this hardware ?
> How would you partition the disks ?
> Would you use LVM one way or another ?
> Any comment/reply will be greatly appreciated...
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