Forums Archive -> VectorStar News

Upgrades a little behind schedule 2002-09-12 18:04:56
by lmbedore
As I've mentioned before in some buried comment, we got the Promise FastTrak RAID cards to finally work properly. They work, they boot, they do all the great stuff we want.

The SuperTrak SX6000 card has been a little harder. The great, trusty, about-5-years-old motherboard that Vector has been running on has IRQ problems with the card, which cause the kernel to crash when the card's driver is loaded. We found that this crash doesn't happen on my motherboard (a slightly newer model of the same board in Vector)... so my motherboard is being given to Vector. Once that's done (hopefully tonight, thanks to Vahman's loaning of his old motherboard to me), we can continue development on putting the SuperTrak into the Linux kernel.

Oh yeah. If any of you out there are in the Tampa, FL area, are pretty good with UNIX* and think you might like the idea of being a VectorStar Staff member, drop me a line! We could use some helping hands to get things done more quickly around here. We'd be VERY happy to invite some more gung-ho bad-sense-of-humor borderline-completely-crazy people into the VectorStar team.

* skills and other things of complexity that could particularly use some helping hands: Linux and OpenBSD kernel hacking, Linux and OpenBSD administration, NIS, SQL (postgres is our current platform), PHP, Perl, SNMP, MRTG-like stuff (we use NRG+RRDTool), very-advanced Apache web administration, UNIX user policy management, minor (even poor) documentation skills, pool-sharking, beer-drinking, and other sort-of-geeky means of socialization.

Re: Upgrades a little behind schedule 2002-09-12 18:33:40
by nuzod
Dude...I'd totally try to be in on that. How about I consider going to school and working in Florida and until then you make me an honorary staff member through donations? Haha.
Re: Upgrades a little behind schedule 2002-09-12 22:20:58
by lmbedore
Now there's an idea... honorary staff member. :) Especially considering you're our 8th-oldest user - 3rd-oldest if you take Frank's family and personal friends out of the list... only behind dreadl0k (once alpha) and succy. wow. you've been around here a long time! since late '98 or early '99 if memory serves.

Though I'd REALLY not recommend the Florida schools if you want to get through college without committing grevious acts of mass destruction. The only one that might be okay is University of Florida, and we're still not quite sure on that one. Pogo will let us know when he graduates. :)
Re: Upgrades a little behind schedule 2002-09-15 22:19:02
by lmbedore
Just an update on the upgrades front...

Jason and I got together and hammered out our NIS setup this weekend. We also found and fixed a stability problem we were having with the SuperTrak RAID card. I'm very close to having the SuperTrak driver working 100%. Just a couple more lines of code and it should snap right into the Linux kernel.

Doing my first test compile right now...
Hrm. broke. Must be compile flags... (3 tries later)
looks like it compiled! it actually compiled! ahah!
WOW. okay. First test of this kernel... Nothing. detects nothing.

Okay, so I'm not exactly a kernel developer... but I'm getting there! Guess I'll keep firing away at some debug stuff and figure out what's going wrong. :)
Re: Upgrades a little behind schedule 2002-09-15 22:26:38
by nuzod
I kept forgetting to reply...I was thinking about it, and damn, '98...that _is_ a long time! Is succy still around?
Re: Upgrades a little behind schedule 2002-09-16 10:46:55
by stale
Yeah, she's still around. I was talkin' to her the other day.
Re: Upgrades a little behind schedule 2002-09-16 19:57:45
by lmbedore
Allright! we got the driver to work. The kernel itself detects the card and its arrays during boot.

Unrelated to that, I haven't been able to get the OS to boot directly from the RAID array. I think it's an MBR-related problem. I'll have to hack around with it some more and see what can be done.
Re: Upgrades a little behind schedule 2002-09-16 21:41:40
by nuzod
(in a Joseph from King of the Hill voice) How'd you get to be so sliiiiiiiick?
Re: Upgrades a little behind schedule 2002-09-16 22:52:28
by lmbedore
1. MBR problem fixed.
2. Custom Slackware 8.1 CD made which boots the SuperTrak SX6000.
3. Slackware 8.1 installed successfully from the CD.
4. (after working around a minor known bug in slackware installation) the server boots properly from the RAID array.
5. Finally, I'm building the 357gb (probably gonna be 320 useable) RAID-5 array. Damn, this is gonna take a LONG time to initialize. one VERY long time. And then I get to format it! woo hoo!

Wow. This is way too cool. A very good day for VectorStar.

After we get some more stuff going, I'll be putting up a site to distribute SuperTrak SX6000 support natively in the Linux kernel. Who knows, maybe we'll get this driver worked up so good that we can get it merged in the main tree and be official kernel hackers someday!
Re: Upgrades a little behind schedule 2002-09-17 10:34:58
by jdaunt
I have missed working on these things. It has been fun. Now we just have to implement the things that have been developed. I think we can do some more with the CD as well, to make it a little bit cleaner on boot.
Re: Upgrades a little behind schedule 2002-09-17 16:02:01
by Young Eddie Murphy
I got some ice cream, I got some ice cream, and you can't have none, and you can't have none...
Re: Upgrades a little behind schedule 2002-09-18 08:18:11
by jdaunt
Keep the ice cream away from us or we will rackmount it.
Re: Upgrades a little behind schedule 2002-09-18 12:35:38
by Forge
You might want to rackmount vending machine full of shaving products and beer.
Re: Upgrades a little behind schedule 2002-09-18 17:29:50
by jdaunt
I knew there was a reason you were my friend Forge. You are brilliant. Laird, check on Ebay for that item.