PowerEdge 4400 PERC2 RedHat

jason andrade jason at rtfmconsult.com
Wed Oct 29 14:48:00 CST 2003

On Wed, 29 Oct 2003, Darren Rhoads wrote:

> I have the ability to purchase a Dell PowerEdge 4400 server.  Dual
> P3-600 Xeon.  512MB RAM.  Six 18GB drives.  PERC2, Dual Channel RAID
> controller.  Dual 10/00 NIC.  3 hot-swap power supplies.

nice machine.  it is about 1.5 generations behind the current model but
still very capable and has a lot of room for expansion (faster cpus,
more memory, larger disks and lots of 64bit PCI slots).

> I'm most specifically concerned about the PERC2 DC Controller.  I would
> be using this server as a qualification bed, first to document RAID 0,
> 1, 5, 10, etc using RedHat software RAID.  And then to qualify and

I am unclear as to why you would be using a hardware raid controller to
document software RAID.

The PE4400 probably has onboard scsi or you can purchase a simple
U160 controller to connect the internal backplane or an external
storage chassis to.

> document all other aspects of RH linux system admin on a system
> comparable to what my company's customers could end up using.
> My questions are these:
> 1)       Would the PERC2 DC controller work at all with RH Linux 9 or AS
> 2.1?

it works with both 'out of the box'.  it will also work with RHEL3 in
the AS/ES/WS flavours.

> 2)       If so, can we 'turn off' hardware RAID and just see the
> straight drives in RH Linux to do software RAID?

perhaps.  i can't remember but the 4400 might have an on board scsi
you can physically connect to.  alternatively you can configure
your hardware raid board to present all the drives a JBOD - i.e
individual drives, which can then be used to configure software raid up.

> 3)       Then, once done with software RAID, can we go back to hardware
> to play with that config?

assuming you're willing to destroy the contents of the drive, sure.  when
you create a new HW raid container it will initialize the drives as part
of the container creation.

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