OpenBSD Journal

Compaq Hardware

Contributed by jose on from the common-hardware dept.

Bards writes: "I've been battling with several compaq 1600 servers recently trying to get 3.2 and now 3.3 working. They all have various models of 'Compaq Array Controllers' that use the cac driver. Anyway, I can install 3.3 on all of them but they seem to be as unstable as all hell. I tried FreeBSD 4.8 and they are rock solid, so no apparent hardware problems.

Has anyone had any experience with these types of boxes and if so had any luck getting openBSD to run stably on them ?" I played with some Compaq hardware some years ago with OpenBSD (had to make an adjustment or two), but not this type. What's the trick with some of these models?

(Comments are closed)

  1. By Bug () on

    I've seen this kind of trouble with those "Smart" arrays and OBSD before; if you could post here or email me dmesg and what exactly's happening maybe I could help...


    1. By Anonymous Coward () on

      Not a troll. But I have often wondered how it is possible to retrieve the 'dmesg' from a system that can hardly boot up, let alone connect to the internet or even another machine.

      1. By Anonymous Coward () on

        Serial console from a working machine.

      2. By Bug () on

        You could take a photo of the screen :P
        Well a description of what is happening is sometimes as good as a dmesg; "not stable" doesn't say a lot...

        1. By Anonymous Coward () on

          you might want to define what STFW and STFA mean. I thought they were some variant of STFU until I looked up STFW on

          1. By Alejandro G. Belluscio () baldusi arroba on mailto:baldusi arroba

            STFW=Search The Fsck Web?
            STFA=Search The Fsck Archives (from the mailing lists, I suppose)?

        2. By Anonymous Coward () on

          Thanks Ben. This operating system is a sure cure for lazyness. I had forgotten about the resources on your website.

  2. By Piotr Kapczuk () on

    I've run OpenBSD 3.1-stable on Compaq PR 1600 since it was announced. It works for me.

    # config -e /bsd
    OpenBSD 3.1-stable (KLUCZNIK) #3: Mon Feb 24 14:05:39 CET 2003
    warning: no output file specified
    Enter 'help' for information
    ukc> find pcibios
    211 pcibios0 at bios0 disable flags 0x0

    # grep cac dmesg.boot
    cpu0: Intel Pentium II ("GenuineIntel" 686-class, 512KB L2 cache) 399 MHz
    cac0 at pci2 dev 0 function 0 "Compaq SMART2P RAID" rev 0x03: irq 11 Compaq SMART-2SL
    scsibus2 at cac0: 2 targets

    1. By venglin () on

      Yeah, but it doesn't work on recent Proliants. I've tried to run 3.3 on Proliant ML350 with no results, but FreeBSD works fine.

    2. By thorna () on

      I have OpenBSD-3.0 stable on Compaq Proliant DL 360 (first generation). Itīs rock solid. Only Problems with these machines were miserable Power Supplies, but I think thereīs no patch for that ;)

      here my infos...
      $ dmesg | grep cac
      cac0 at pci0 dev 1 function 0 "Symbios Logic 53c1510" rev 0x02: irq 3 Compaq Integrated Array
      scsibus0 at cac0: 1 targets
      $ config -e /bsd
      OpenBSD 3.0-stable (GENERIC) #10: Tue Nov 5 18:02:27 CET 2002 thorna@intranet:/usr/src/sys/arch/i386/compile/GENERIC
      warning: no output file specified
      Enter 'help' for information
      ukc> find pcibios
      204 pcibios0 at bios0 flags 0x0

  3. By Anonymous Coward () on

    Anyone gonna write a FAQ for what Compaq hardware works with OpenBSD and FreeBSD and which does'nt.

  4. By Chris Cappuccio () on

    It's called

    Right before the 3.3 release, Mickey committed a fix to the cac driver which should fix the stability issues reported with it in the past. I am using it with one of the lower end Compaq controllers. It works really well.

    So, based on this bug report, I would have no experience to correlate the problem with. You do absolutely nothing to help anyone figure out what's going on either. No dmesg, no explanation of what makes it unstable or what happens. How do you expect anyone to help you ?

    1. By Bards () on

      I didn't want to 'spam' the site with a dmesg straight away, I'm quite happy to provide one from a smartarray 3200 and an smart2/p.

  5. By mark () on

    I have been hoping for support of this controller as it is embedded in our compaq DL380 G2's. The controllers are very nice but i have to stick in an additional openbsd supported scsi controller to be able to see any drives, which eats up one of only 3 pci's. I talked with mickey about it over a year ago, and tried to help get whatever was needed from compaq, who was very helpful BTW, but i don't think he had any interest in working on it, and he said it would only happen if he had one to work on (logical enough). so if anyone else is willing to work on this i will gladly help get whatever information is needed from compaq or rather hp. Sorry i can't afford to donate a dl380 with smartarray 5i in it for dev...

    1. By Pete () on

      I installed FreeBSD R4.8 on a pair of DL360G2 with 5i RAID controllers, since OpenBSD lack the 5i support. Works very stable & fast even under heavy load. Maybe someone could port the freebsd drivers over ?? (I'm to stupid to manage it)

    2. By Brad () brad at comstyle dot com on mailto:brad at comstyle dot com

      I provided pb@ a Smart Array 5300 so he could start on an OpenBSD driver. Hopefully he will have something to show for it within a month or two.

      1. By mark () on

        wow, the 5300 has lots of firepower, but i couldn't determine if the driver would be the same as for the smart array 5i. if any one is interested here is a comparison on hp's site:

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