Apparently the recently committed support for Areca RAID cards came with some help directly from Areca, facilitated by Venkatesh Srinivas. Perhaps next time you’re searching for a RAID card, consider Areca in light of the effort they are willing to contribute for an open-source project…
Category: Device support
Joe Talbott’s ported over iwn(4), which is the “driver for Intel 1000, 5100, 5150, and 6000 wifi chipsets.”
- IBM’s developerWorks has an article up about GNU screen. It’s not BSD-specific, but the tips in using screen are useful. (Before someone brings it up: yes, tmux too.)
- Another article talks about inspecting network traffic using various tools including tcpdump and wireshark. It is a tremendous advantage to see what happens on a network at the most basic level, so this is a good skill to pick up.
- Oh, and “Setting up UNIX file systems” and “10 steps to Unix nirvana“.
- FreeBSD now ships with clang. (via) I know DragonFly (mostly?) works with clang… Could we switch?
- “hwstat” will gain DragonFly support soon.
- Firmware for ral(4) has been added by Joe Talbott.
- Thomas Klausner has a writeup of some project ideas or goals taken from the recent pkgsrcCon. A followup has me thinking: if the -uu option updates dependent packages with pkg_add, does that mean ‘pkg_radd -uu packagename” will do all updating possible based on available binary packages? Worth trying.
YONETANI Tomokazu pointed out something that could be useful in the future: when you start getting drive errors, before you throw it out, try lowering the speed. Maybe it’s a cable problem, if you’re lucky.
In this recent note about the new wireless driver framework, Rui Paolo noted how to add a ath(4) device as wlan0 automatically.
Sascha Wildner has ported MultiMedia Card support from FreeBSD; SD, SDHC, and MMC cards should work in DragonFly now. Man, there’s been a lot of new additions recently.
Rui Paulo’s work porting the current set of FreeBSD network drivers over to DragonFly has been committed; there’s about a zillion commits (via Matthew Dillon) today to show for it.
Rui Paulo’s work on wireless drivers will be entering 2.7 very soon. (2.6 is unaffected.) This will cause problems if you are running acx(4), bwi(4), iwi(4), iwl(4), rtw(4), rum(4), or ural(4), until someone writes a driver that matches the new framework. If you’re on 2.7 and you need these drivers working, hold off on updates for a bit…
David Shao is working on improving DragonFly’s DRM (kernel graphics drivers, not that other thing). That’s a good project to start, and also Antonio Huete Jimenez is willing to test it. We can always use more guinea pigs; if you want to contribute to DragonFly without writing code, testing someone’s dramatic changes is a big help.
Alex Hornung posted a followup about his I/O scheduler work, with some interesting ways to watch the state of your disk’s activity.
Thanks to work from Samuel J. Greear and Alex Hornung:
- Install Firefox (natively)
- libflashsupport and adobe-flash-plugin
- mount linprocfs
- null mount devfs within the linux system
There’s occasional video and audio sync problems, but Johannes Hofmann has already found a fix.
Constantine Aleksandrovich Murenin posted his work on fan control, involving Winbond Super I/O Hardware Monitors. He’s had a series of commits up to this point, and this message nicely sums up the work done, including the presentations for it at BSDCan last year and AsiaBSDCon this year. Even if you aren’t planning to adjust your system cooling, it’s a surprisingly in-depth writeup, with more details available.
Newegg is running some specials: a 64G Kingston SSD for $140, a 256G (yikes!) Crucial SSD for $660, and a Sans Digital port multiplier for $110. The SSDs are good for using swapcache(8), though 256G is probably overkill. Doesn’t make me want it less, though…
As if Alex Horning wasn’t busy enough with his Linuxulator update, he’s also made it possible to have a vinum root volume in conjunction with using devfs.
“Device initiated power management” via AHCI is now possible, thanks to Johannes Hofmann. If I understand it correctly, it lets the computer handle power reductions automatically, which is more efficient than setting by hand.
Michael Neumann has added his port of the e1000 driver from FreeBSD, though he doesn’t recommend using it yet. He’s looking for testers who have this hardware.
Michael Neumann has ported igb(4) and em(4), and he needs people with the corresponding hardware to test it. Those are network cards, if you aren’t familiar with those short names.
The disklabel64 program will permanently be ‘disklabel’ from now on, with the original disklabel sticking around as disklabel32. This is for a number of reasons, including 4k physical sector size in newer drives, which is still causing problems for other operating systems.
I can’t keep up with all the things to post. I desperately want to clear my inbox, so here’s a week’s worth of posts all smushed together. Enjoy!
- Naoya Sugioka’s tmpfs work is almost ready to go.
- Francois Tigeot is looking to find supported RAID hardware for DragonFly; the LSI1068e isn’t useable. Freddie Cash listed a number of different and fully supported cards, and Francois listed some other potential choices.
- While talking about hardware, Steve O’Hara-Smith reported excellent results with a particular Atom 330-based board and DragonFly.
- Stathis Kamperis has added to ‘hammer snapls’ output; an example is in his submit@message.
- The 2.6 release of DragonFly, scheduled for March, will have version 4 of HAMMER. 2.4 has version 2. Upgrading from version 2 to 4 can happen in place, live, and only needs to happen once per volume, not per PFS. That’s about as easy as it gets. More details are available.
- The default sshd config has been updated; this shouldn’t affect your normal operations unless you’re using one of the mentioned options.
- Oliver Fromme linked to more discussion of SSD durability.
- Also, Matthew Dillon posted more notes and benchmark numbers for his swapcache work. There’s been some side benefits too. A man page for swapcache is now available.
- Aggelos Economopoulos’s libevtr has been added, for event tracing. He’s posted some additional notes on this work-in-progress.
- We now have /var/log/daemon, too.
- Notes on prepping for Google Summer of Code 2010 from the GSOC Discussion list; I don’t know if that link is readable for nonsubscribers.
- The Definitive Guide to PC-BSD is out at the end of this short month. Dru writes good books.
- Did you know FreeCiv (a Civilization clone, of sorts) is playable in a web browser? Goodbye free time! Details are available at my favoritest game site.
Matthew Dillon is setting up DragonFly to be able to use a fast disk (like a SSD) for disk cache, reducing the effect swap has on speed. This means very large amounts of data could be read into memory – greater than the available RAM in the system – without having the normal paging out problems that happen when memory is exhausted. It’ll work for any filesystem on the machine – HAMMER, UFS, or NFS. His inital notes have more. Other notes include details on the NFS benefits, and possibilities with SSDs. Wear-leveling may make SSDs last much longer.
Work has started, and there’s an update (with examples) that people can try, though it may destroy all your data at this point. Test results in that update show, if I’m reading it right, a better than doubling of speed on a repeated md5 test on a large file when using the new caching system. This should be a huge benefit.
Matthew Dillon declared his intention to have REDO working for Hammer very soon. This will improve speed by lowering the number of fsync()s needed in a given period of time to flush data to disk.
Jan Lentfer needs someone with cryptographic hardware that isn’t padlock (e.g. not VIA) to test his recent OpenSSL upgrade. Do you have hardware that matches? Please help.
This has been around for a while, but I’m re-mentioning it because it’s not really linked anywhere: Simon ‘corecode’ Schubert has a version of the FreeBSD NVIDIA video driver that should work on DragonFly: http://gitweb.dragonflybsd.org/~corecode/nvidia.git. It should be possible to clone from that link, build the code, and use it. (Untested by me – if you’ve done it, some explicit instructions would be helpful to others.)
If you’ve previously had problems in DragonFly with AHCI and a DVD drive, there’s a potential fix available.
With some recent reports of people running DragonFly on Eee 900 and Acer Aspire netbook models, here’s a link to a recent O’Reilly column that links to a whole bunch of different netbook vendors. If you have some spare cash and an urge for a netbook, try DragonFly on one and report back…
It’s been mentioned before, but it’s moved: Simon ‘corecode’ Schubert has a version of the FreeBSD NVIDIA graphics driver that works on DragonFly.
Do you have a recent ASUS system? Constantine Murenin has a patch for you, for hardware monitoring.
If you’re running DragonFly 2.4 on amd64, you may have noticed trouble with USB drives or separate issues with ACPI. Both seem to be fixed by the same commit. It’s been merged to the 2.4 branch, so updating on that branch will get the fixes without moving to 2.5.
Alex Hornung has ported FreeBSD’s kbdmux, making it possible to run multiple keyboards. This can help if a system has a built-in virtual keyboard, as some newer HPs do.
If you’re running 10G Ethernet, Matthew Dillon’s turned on the inflight limiter by default, which should help keep your system from being overwhelmed if it’s not handling the greater volume of packets. If you’re not running 10G Ethernet, this shouldn’t affect you. If only we all could be so lucky.
There’s some new HP server hardware out there, and Hasso Tepper found some problems (and lists some potential solutions) with installing DragonFly, mostly centered around keyboard handling. It sounds like NetBSD’s keyboard mux may solve it for us, if someone’s willing to add it…
Alex Hornung has posted a summary of what Unix98 pty devices are, and how they are supported under DevFS. If something screwy happens, there’s even a debug option to turn on.
The 2.4 release will attach disk drives by serial number. Matthew Dillon’s written up a quick HOWTO that describes how to use it. The interesting effect, as he notes, is that a drive can be attached in almost any way – a firewire enclosure, directly to the motherboard, through a card, etc. – and the machine will still happily boot without any changes needed.
Vinum’s been changed to work with devfs, with the advantage that drive labels instead of device paths can now be used. There’s some caveats – read the message for details.
The amount of swap space usable under DragonFly has gone to a theoretical max of 4 terabytes. The practical limit is probably around 512 gigabytes. As Matthew Dillon writes, this could be interesting when paired with SSDs.
There’s some more explanations of how disk serial number support is working from Matthew Dillon, plus a warning that a full kernel/world rebuild is needed because of these changes.
If I’m reading it right, serial number support, combined with a dynamic /dev, makes it possible to identify a disk by serial number, assign a name to it, and then refer to that disk directly by name in places like /etc/fstab. Much, much easier than remembering /dev/ad0c or /dev/ad1a, and so on.
Preliminary serial number support for drive identification has been added to DragonFly, with /dev/serno listing the appropriate devices and numbers.
DevFS has been added. There’s some issues, each with a workaround. Please test, as it’s certain that a major change like this will cause new problems around video and sound. Once those are fixed, however, device management will be a lot easier.
Dennis Melentyev was trying out AHCI support, and as part of that process, Matthew Dillon described the steps needed to deal with disk renaming issues that can come from a NATA -> AHCI switch. This isn’t needed for most people right now, but I wanted to link to it just in case someone hits that moment of panic.
Sascha Wildner has added an option to the installer to create a UFS boot and Hammer volume as an install disk, in addition to the all-Hammer and all-UFS options already available. Programs expecting the booting kernel to be on UFS will be able to find it, but users still get the benefits of Hammer.
Updated: It replaces the all-Hammer option. Thanks for the correction, Sascha!