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Rebuilding new old NAS box

Posted by pete_c , 15 May 2020 · 0 views

This is a NAS box which I built remotely a few years back. 
It was configured with Ubuntu Linux and served as a combo automation server, video NAS, media NAS box.
Made some repairs on it and ordered new drives for it.
1 - Case - Silverston DS380
  • Supports 12 total drives with 8 hot-swappable 3.5” or 2.5” SAS/SATA and 4 fixed 2.5” drives
  • Unbelievable storage space and versatility for small form factor
  • Premium brushed aluminum front door
  • Supports graphics card up to 11” with supporter design from TJ08-E
  • Lockable power button design and adjustable LED from GD07
  • Includes three 120mm fans with filtered intake vents

Repairs done:
- Backplane SAS / SATA two ports burned up and one exploding cap - replaced 
- FANs not functioning - cleaned and lubricated with lithium grease (not sure if this will work)
- plastic and metal cover of case tabs all broken.  Used liquid nail to fix the plastic cover to the case
- two button holders in plastic case broken - glued with liquid nail. 
2 - Motherboard - Intel Xeon S1200KP - Haswell i3 / 16Gb of RAM - running fine
3 - Raid Controller - Avago Technologies (LSI) SAS2008 - ordered 2 pairs of thin cables (8 drives) - Firmware IT version - updated.
To update firmware download most current firmware here for an SAS 9210-8i
Download current bios and IT firmware.
1 - Make a DOS boot stick using Rufus
2 - copy over sas2flash to usb stick
3 - mptsas2.rom file to usb stick
4 - copy 2108it.bin file to usb stick
5 - check firmware and bios version typing
sas2flash -list
6 - clear flash typing
sas2flash -o -e 6
7 - update firmware and rom
sas2flash -o -f 2108.bin -b mptsas2.rom
8 - type 
sas2flash to check your firmware and bios.
DO NOT STOP or shut off computer during the flash as you will brick you device.

4 - Hard drives - Seagate Constellation ES (4) - SAS drives - zero MB reads - damaged during shipping - 4 Seagate SATA enterprise drives - still working fine. - replacing 4 SAS drives with EMC SAS drives.  Ordered one 32Gb SSD drive for boot drive for new OS.
Xigmanas - Been using this OS for another NAS box which is similiarly configured.  Installed the embedded version on the 32Gb SSD drive which is plugged in to the motherboard - running fine now after ~ 1 Day 18 hours.
Hostname ics-raid-00.ics
Version - Ingva (revision 7542)
Compiled Friday April 17 14:26:51 CDT 2020
Platform OS FreeBSD 12.1-RELEASE-p3 #0 r360028M: Fri Apr 17 01:52:46 CEST 2020
Platform x64-embedded on Intel® Core™ i3-3245 CPU @ 3.40GHz
System Time Friday May 15 07:25:06 CDT 2020
System Uptime 1 Day 18 Hours 36 Minutes 14 Seconds
System Config Change Thursday May 14 10:00:17 CDT 2020
CPU Frequency 3400Mhz
The Silverstone case is approximately the same price as my current 8 drive case except that it is larger.  
Note that the EMC drives are "differently" configured for EMC. They need to be reformatted from 520 to 512 to be able to use them. These are literally given away on Ebay as to most folks they are bricks unless you are running EMC storage.

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade
sudo apt-get install software-properties-common
sudo apt-get install sg3-utils
sudo sg_format —format —size=512 —fmtpinfo=0 -six /dev/sda
I still have yet to update the firmware on the LSi Raid controller.  Only way I can do these testing on 2 new motherboards is to utilize EFI command line prompt.   
9 - installing new back plane today.  Ordered up thin LSi-SAS cables today.  Ordered another pair of EMC drives today.  First 4 of 8 drives will be configured as ZFS - Mirrored drives.  I have not used ZFS yet.  Other NAS box is using GPT / Raid mirrored configuration.
Note: this is more a learning experience than a need to use experience for me.

May 16 2020 07:42 PM

Wow, that's a hardcore NAS. Why the change from Linux to BSD? What backup software are you using? 


I'm currently in the process of changing out my Netgear RN102 because it's just so VERY slow. I'm using NextCloud, which I like quite well, and haven't found any real problems with it except for phone backup, which I am not highly invested in. 


I have just ordered a used Optiplex 790 SFF with the intention of putting in a single 3.5" (due to lack of 3.5 drive bays) drive from my RN102 and using a second drive for exterior backups on Linux. I don't expect I'll get the performance you do, but should serve my needs. 

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Well been using BSD XigmaNAS (and FreeNAS) for over 10 years on other NAS box which is similar to this one.
The NAS before this one is almost the same and has been running fine for many many years.  (IE: AMD E350 mITX board, LSi SAS Raid controller inside an 8 drive NAS case.)
Don't back up the laptops or desktops here.  I do store movies on one NAS and use KODI for play back.
I just keep a shared files, pictures, music and videos directory on the NAS boxes.  
Ordered up some EMC SAS drives and reformatting them today.  If these work will be using 8 EMC SAS drives in the new box.  These are Hitachi Enterprise SAS drives.  This is similiar to my other NAS box except that they are Hitachi Enterprise SATA drives.

Note that the EMC drives are "differently" configured for EMC. They need to be reformatted from 520 to 512 to be able to use them. These are literally given away on Ebay as to most folks they are bricks unless you are running EMC storage.

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade
sudo apt-get install software-properties-common
sudo apt-get install sg3-utils
sudo sg_format —format —size=512 —fmtpinfo=0 -six /dev/sda
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Update 0813 C 19th of May, 2020


Today disassembling NAS, removing drives, removing cage and install installing new back plane.


Note: old back plane has two burnt SAS/SATA connectors and one exploding cap.  (still works as it is though).

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I wanted to update the firmware and bios on the SAS 9210-8i and tried it using a DOS boot up stick and was unsuccessful.  Made up an EFI boot USB stick.
Hardware:  SAS 9210-8i
1 - download latest firmware and bios from here:
a - Package_P20_Firmware_BIOS_for_MSDOS_Windows
b - UEFI Installer
2 - download Shell_Full.efi from here:
3 - make a boot usb stick with Rufus.  (doesn't really need to be a boot stick).
4 - make two directories on the USB
A - efi\boot
B - boot\efi
5 - Rename the Shell_Full.efi to ShellX64.efi and copy it to root and each of the subdirectories created. IE: 3 copies.

6 - copy the rom and firmware files to the root of the USB stick.

7 - copy the sas2flash.efi file to the root of the USB stick.
8 - reboot and hit the optional F key for a boot list. Here it is F10. The boot list will show USB regular boot and USB EFI boot. Pick USB EFI boot which will bring you do an EFI command line prompt which looks almost the same as a DOS prompt.

9 - rest is now easy and the same as if you were doing this at a DOS prompt.

10 - Note do not exit any of this until you are done otherwise you may brick your SAS Raid controller.

A - type sas2flash.efi -list
This will show you the controller connected, firmware and rom - you can write this down if you want.

B - Type:

sas2flash.efi -o -e 6
This erases the controller flash memory

C - Type:

sas2flash.efi -o -f XXXIT.bin -b mptsas2.rom

This will take a few seconds to do. Do not stop this until completed.

D - Type:

sas2flash.efi -list

This will show updated ROM and Firmware.

11 - reboot at this time.

12 - when prompted for the LCI controller management on boot check out the firmware and rom levels. You will see them updated from previous versions.

13 - I then adjust the BIOS such that I do not see the controller as all configurations of the raid ZFS stuff is done via IT mode and the Raid software running.

I have ordered 4 more SAS drives to add to the same SAS drives which are EMC converted to standard via low level format / bios edit. These are Hitachi enterprise SAS drives which will be configured as ZFS pools. May use mirroring here instead of striping across the drives.

Note this was much easier than the last NAS update which was using an IBM LSI Raid controller. I had to cross flash this device because of the built in Lock and key configuration on the IBM controller.
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May 2020

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