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Thread: LSI MegaRAID 9260-8i SAS Controller and IR / IT Firmware and / or JBOD?

  1. #1
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jun 2008

    LSI MegaRAID 9260-8i SAS Controller and IR / IT Firmware and / or JBOD?

    I'm trying to get my LSI MegaRAID 9260-8i SAS controller to function under FreeBSD / FreeNAS 8.x and it seems to be a real pain with the latest official firmware release from LSI as it wont pass-through disks untouched directly to the operating system without configuration. So I've basically got two option, either configured each drive in single RAID0 arrays in order to make each one into a ZFS RAIDZ / RAIDZ2 afterwards or configure them all in RAID5 / RAID6 on the controller and just format the entire array with ZFS file-system.

    Neither is by no means ideal, and just to complicate things there seems to be some sort of bug with the LSI MegaRAID 9260-8i firmware or it's FreeBSD driver so when I configure the controller with Write-Back using Backup Battery Unit it will bug out on heavy transfers making the file server reboot at random giving me all kinds of command time-outs while FreeBSD / FreeNAS is trying to initiate / fire up the RAID controller after the reboot. Resulting in me having to turn of the system for about 1-2 hours before I manage to actually successfully boot it up again and then it'll do the same thing over and over during heavy file transfers rendering the entire thing useless.

    So either I have to figure some way to get an alternate IR / IT firmware on my LSI MegaRAID 9260-8i or some alternate firmware supporting JBOD configuration so I can make FreeBSD / FreeNAS handling the hard drive configuration completely without the controller interfering and messing things up. Or cripple the performance entirely by going with one of the configurations I mentioned above but instead use Write-Through and not Write-Back which will indeed cripple performance quite a bit.

    But I can't seem to find such a firmware? Do any of you have any idea if such a firmware even exist for this controller? Or am I stuck with a controller not suitable for use with FreeBSD / FreeNAS and ZFS RAIDZ / RAIDZ2 configurations and need to replace the entire thing with a cheaper option.

  2. #2
    Xtreme X.I.P.
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    There never was IT (Initiator-Target) firmware or support for passthrough on the 926x RAID Controllers, not from LSI. (could be that rebranded support IT mode?)

    The 9211 has that option as you may know.
    (as well as most Areca controllers, including the ones using the LSI chip, i.e. the 188x series, they are on the expensive side though)

  3. #3
    Xtreme Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    The LSI9260 is simply not for you.

    LSI9260 =
    RAID 5 and 6 very good
    RAID 0, 1 and 10 good
    JBOD = none

    LSI9240 =
    RAID 5 = Very poor writes
    RAID 0,1 and 10 very good
    JBOD = supported
    Passthrough = none

    LSI9240 flashed to LSI9211 IR mode =
    RAID 5 = none
    RAID 0, 1 and 10 very good
    JBOD = supported
    Passthrough = supported

    LSI9240 flashed to LSI9211 IT mode =
    RAID 5 = none
    RAID 0,1 and 10 = none
    JBOD = none
    Passthrough = supported

    If you are running ZFS you really want the LSI9240 flashed to a LSI9211 in IT mode or a LSI9211 or get an IBM M1015 cheap OEM version
    Running the M5015 even in single RAID0 mode means you are adding a layer between the drive and the OS
    DON'T run RAID5 and then ZFS it defeats the purpose of ZFS

    IBM M1015 flashed to a LSI9211 IT mode you will be laughing

    Hope this helps



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