Diminishing Speed with RAID Controller

Bought and installed a Intel SRCU42e RAID Controller for use in a HP Proliant ML110 G4 along with three Hitachi 10K Ultrastar disks and a SCSI U320 ribbon cable, essentialy it was going to be a 2K3 NAS. It was installed and working for several weeks then the RAID array went offline for no apparant reason.

When it was first installed all three drives were detected at 320mb/sec, once the array went offline the disks were only being detected by the controller BIOS as 160mb/sec of the course of the last few weeks of debugging the problem the speed has dropped to 20mb/sec through 80mb/sec and 40mb/sec.

Each of the drives has been tested on its own with different cables but still registers at 20mb/sec (occasionaly 40mb/sec), unfortunatly I do not have any known working systems that I can test a U320 drive in.

On top of these problems if I try and upgrade the firmware on the controller, the flash software is unable to detect the RAID Controller, despite windows being capable of seeing it as a RAID Controller with a volume attached (albeit a slow volume).
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RichardSlaterAsked:
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InteraXCommented:
Hello RichardSlater,

Do you have a standard SCSI card and cable you can check the drives on without plugging them into the RAID card?

Sounds like it may be a faulty card or cable.

Regards,

InteraX
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InteraXCommented:
RichardSlater,

Have you terminated the SCSI cable correctly?

InteraX
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Aaron StreetInfrastructure ManagerCommented:
I would say its deffently a card issue.

a faulty cable is unlickly to deterate over weeks. generaly thy just go... and as you ahve use a few diffent cables its unlikley to be this..

are you using a windows flash tool or a POST/bios flash tool ??

its always best to try the post version if possible..

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RichardSlaterAuthor Commented:
InteraX:
1) I don't have another SCSI card, I have tried with the same result with another cable
2) I have tried various combinations (HA = Host Adapter, D = Drive, T = Terminator, E = Empty)
 - a) HA --- D --- D --- D --- T --- E --- E
 - b) HA --- D --- D --- D --- E --- E --- T
 - c) HA --- D --- D --- D --- E --- E --- E (last drive set to self terminate)
 - d) HA --- D --- T (different cable)

DevilWAH:
I think it is a card issue, Intel are however being less than forthcomming. I was trying to flash with the Windows tool, I can not boot from Floppy as the ML110 dosn't have a FDD Header.
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InteraXCommented:
RichardSlater,

You should be able to boot from a USB floppy to flash the card's BIOS.

Is the card set to self-terminate? If you don't have a terminator on both ends of the cable, this can cause problem?

It does look very much like a card issue.

InteraX
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Aaron StreetInfrastructure ManagerCommented:
get a usb floppy drive!!

there are really cheap and then you can have one floppy drive for all your servers ;) i know we dont really use floppy drives any more but very usfull to have on a shelf for when needed

you could also get a usb pen and put floppy drive emulation on it.. (hp drive key boot utility from hp)

this will allow you to create a usb pen drive that has a floppy partition to allow you to boot to it...

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RichardSlaterAuthor Commented:
USB Floppy Drive on order!

I couldn't get the HP Drive Key to work, first it dosn't support Vista, then from an XP machine the install worked and I was able to format and make a USB Key bootable but now it isn't recognised when you plug it in.

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RichardSlaterAuthor Commented:
USB Flopp Drive arrived, I will hopefuly get a chance to give this ago today see if I can upgrade the firmware.
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RichardSlaterAuthor Commented:
OK, the bios upgrade worked fine with the USB floppy drive, however now there is no video output from the computer. I will award points and do some more diagnostics on the computer.
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RichardSlaterAuthor Commented:
Was able to upgrade the firmware with a USB floppy drive, however other influences seem to be affecting the server and I have been unable to get it to display any output since upgrading the firmware so the origional issue remains unresolved.
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