debian etch/etch-and-a-half on R610

Gavin Hanover ghanover at
Fri Sep 18 11:36:02 CDT 2009

Note: We can't switch to debian lenny until we modify our software to
work with libapache2-mod-perl2, so not currently an option.
Based on my google research on the issues I've had, debian etch doesn't
work with the R610 because 2.6.18 does not contain the newer bnx2
drivers necessary for the BCM5709 network. However, when using
etch-and-a-half with 2.6.24, there is the performance problem with the
SAS 6/iR as mentioned here:
I've tried creating a 2.6.31 kernal_image deb and installing it, but it
has not improved performance.  I've also purchased a PCIE NIC to put in
the server and installed etch, but see no improvement in performance. 
Is anyone aware of any workaround or fix for this? Would replacing the
SAS 6/iR with a PERC6/i fix this? Perhaps a kernel config or sysctl I'm
missing?  It would be really nice to be able to put this new server into
production, but as is, it's just an expensive paperweight. 
Gavin Hanover
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