Category: Device support

IOAPIC all the time


The I/O APIC is now always on unless you say otherwise.  This may not make a clear difference to you, but enabling that kernel option has always been a somewhat iffy thing; working for some configurations and not others.  Now, it’s one less thing to worry about.

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SMP kernels all the time


I posted something about this before, but now it’s definite: bleeding-edge users of DragonFly can boot a multiprocessor kernel on a single-processor machine.

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NICs and how to go through them all


If you’ve ever wanted to really make sure of all the network interfaces supported on your DragonFly system, you can create an exhaustive (and exhausting) list.

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NVIDIA card driver update


Samuel Greear has a totally untested update to the NVIDIA video driver available.  It may not work, but it’s not like that’ll be any different than the current state of the driver.

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A start on TRIM support


Tim Bisson has inital TRIM support working for UFS.  His lengthy posting talks about how it’s done, and shows how much it speeds things up.  He’s looking for testers, so please try it if you have a SSD.  (The usual warnings apply about testing code that specifically deletes things.)

For those not familiar with TRIM in SSD context, here’s the least annoying page with an explanation that I could find in a few seconds of Googling.

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RAID and what to buy


Francois Tigeot did some testing of various hardware RAID adapters (Areca, LSI, 3ware, and Adaptec) in DragonFly, and reported thoroughly on each.  This may come as no surprise, but it sounds like Areca adapters are worth the money.

Update: There’s an updated mpt(4) driver, and the performance issues are fixed by enabling write caching.

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Hardware suggestions:Supermicro


To go along with the recently-added suggested hardware page on the DragonFly website, Francois Tigeot puts in a good word for SuperMicro boards and DragonFly, and links to some good hardware combinations.

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Printing and USB a little bit more possible


If you have a USB printer, you may not have been able to print since the kqueue changes came in for… DragonFly 2.8?  Anyway, Matthew Dillon’s made some changes to ulpt(4) that means USB and kqueue play nicely together.

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Quad port network card support


Hey, it rhymes!  Matthew Dillon’s added support for 4-port Gigabit Ethernet PCI-E cards from Intel.  I wish I had one.

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Swapcache updates, long-term status


Matthew Dillon made some changes to swapcache(8).  Swapcache is now able to cache a lot more data, and the result is that general disk performance for _all_ disks is accelerated by an included SSD using swapcache.  Performance previously restricted to all-SSD systems or serious RAID setups is now possible with much less investment.

In addition to that, the long-term wear on the SSD appears to be less of a problem than expected.

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Virtual disk simplification


Chris Turner is looking to implement something similar to OpenBSD’s mount_vnd(8) operation, where virtual disks can be mounted at boot.  He talks about some of the work and ideas at length.  If you don’t feel like reading about it, you can instead mess with it; he has a tarball of the current state of his work linked in his message.

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Pardon my interrupt


APIC support has been updated, so not only will some machines work better/at all with a multiprocessor kernel, more machines will boot.  Not only that, but Sepherosa Ziehau has a newer version of ACPI and interrupt routing available.  This is wonderful news!  We’ve needed this update for some time.

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Do you have wifi? See Joe Talbott


Joe Talbott has some changes for both Intel and non-Intel wifi NICs; please try out his branch and report the results.

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Meteor(4) fizzles out


Sascha Wildner’s removed the meteor(4) code because it apparently no longer builds, and it’s unlikely anyone uses an actual video board that requires this driver, at this point.  If you do, speak up.

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VirtIO-net drivers disappear


The virtio network drivers for DragonFly (mentioned previously here, here, and here) went away.  Apparently the original FreeBSD code was not supposed to be available publicly, under a BSD license, and it’s having a knock-on effect for DragonFly and probably NetBSD.

(virtio drivers, if this is an unfamiliar term, are for devices in virtual environments, as when DragonFly is running under VMWare or something similar.)

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WD disk notes


Do you have a Western Digital model 1021 external disk drive?  Matthias Rampke does, and he found he had to make some USB quirk entries to get it to work reliably.

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Lazy Reading


I’m going to just title these “Lazy Reading” – I end up with too much diverse information/links to fit within the title.

Posted by     Categories: Device support, Lazy Reading, UNIXish     3 Comments

New virtio stats


Tim Bisson posted new network tests contrasting the virtio driver against emulated re(4) in virtual environments.  Previously, the virtio driver performed worse, but a more developed test suite seems to deliver more positive results.

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tws(4) added


Sascha Wildner is continuing his huge driver-adding streak, this time with tws(4).  It’s a port of the FreeBSD driver, for “LSI 3ware 9750 series SATA/SAS RAID controllers”.  The commit message has a list of individual models, and further credits.

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Burncd comes back


Sascha Wildner re-added burncd(8); it still works for some people.  As Matthew Dillon pointed out, cdrecord is probably the better long-term bet.

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aac(4) update


Sascha Wildner continues the driver update streak, bringing in the updated FreeBSD version of the aac(4) driver.  This adds support for 40+ Adaptec AdvancedRAID cards – the aac(4) man page has a very long list.

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hptmv(4) added


Sascha Wildner’s added the hptmv(4) driver, for Highpoint RocketRAID 182x cards.  It comes from Highpoint/FreeBSD.

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Updates for the new year


Sascha Wildner has updated twe(4), Jan Lentfer has updated ldns to version 1.6.7 (changelog), and also updated pf to match the OpenBSD 4.4 version.  Phew!

Happy new year!

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re(4) support expanded


Tim Bisson put together support for the RealTek 8168E network card, under the re(4) driver.  It’s in DragonFly now.

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No more EISA


Another bus bites the dust: EISA is no more on DragonFly.  I don’t know if there’s even any system that DragonFly could boot on and would use this.  Still, remove your hats and enjoy a moment of silence.

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LSI Fusion-MPT 2 SAS controller support


Sascha Wildner has continued his driver-adding run, bringing in mps(4).  This supports various LSI Logic SAS controllers, taken from FreeBSD.  Support isn’t complete or tested, but it’s enough to start with.

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Virtio driver progress


Tim Bisson posted a note on the progress he and Pratyush have made on a virtio driver for DragonFly, ported from NetBSD.  This is for use in virtualized environments; his post links to graphs (yay!) that show the performance improvement over emulated IDE.  His note also links to the code and documentation.

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Miscellaneous 48-core details


As Matthew Dillon works on supporting his new 48-core system, he’s written some notes on power usage and scheduling/drivers that may be worth a read.

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Thanks, JMicron


Sepherosa Ziehau fixed a clock issue with the JMicron JMC250/JMC260 chipset, used with the jme(4) driver, and apparently JMicron helped out with hardware for testing this fix.  So, thanks, Sephe, and thanks, JMicron(buy their stuff)

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Watch out for scheduler changes


Bleeding-edge DragonFly may suffer some instability issues; Matthew Dillon is making scheduler changes to accomodate larger numbers of CPUs.  On the other hand: yay, better performance!

Posted by     Categories: Device support, DragonFly, Heads Up!     1 Comment

HighPoint RocketRAID support


Sascha Wildner’s been on a RAID rampage lately, adding a lot of drivers.  The latest is hptiop(4), which supports many of (all?) the HighPoint RocketRAID series.

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Horrible accident and other errors


Tim Darby had an error with a particular AMD AHCI chipset, and the entertaining error was:

Attempting to reinitialize the port after it had a horrible accident

This gives me a chance to link to one of my favorite error messages ever.

(The chipset works in current DragonFly, by the way.)

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24 spare CPUs, anyone?


Matthew Dillon has made it possible to boot DragonFly on 24-CPU systems.  Also, we’re currently limited to 32G of RAM.  Oh, to have such limitations; I was considering myself lucky to have 4 CPUs.

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Swapcache benefits


Tim Darby was looking to take advantage of swapcache, and got some advice from Matthew Dillon.  This led to a larger writeup that went into the mechanics and advantages of both swapcache and SSDs.  The swapcache(8) page has been expanded with these notes, and I’m sure I need to buy a SSD for my next upgrade.

SSD devices have tumbled into the sub-$100 range for smaller devices; they are perfect for swapcache if you’ve got the spare SATA connector…

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amr(4) update


Sascha Wildner has added even more RAID controller support, from FreeBSD, this time in improvements to the amr(4) driver.  Check the green lines in this man page diff to see what’s new.

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mfi(4) and mfiutil(8) added


Sascha Wildner has brought in the mfi(4) and mfiutil(8) drivers from FreeBSD, adding support for a number of different RAID controllers – including the Dell PERC 5 and PERC 6.

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arcmsr(4) update for Areca users


Sascha Wildner has updated the arcmsr(4) driver, for you Areca users out there.  I think Areca was one of the vendors kind enough to test DragonFly on their hardware directly, so please consider them next time you are in the market for a SATA RAID card.

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Better AMD chipset support


Matthew Dillon’s made several changes to improve support for AMD SB850 chipsets (for AHCI) and also for 880/890 chipsets.  If you have one of these systems, it may be bootable/more reliable.  Don’t start messing with the hot-plug capability yet, though.

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A Dell laptop fix


Naoya Sugioka had trouble booting DragonFly on his Dell M4400.  He updated ACPICA with this patch, and was able to boot.  I link to it in case someone else with a recent Dell model (or perhaps just a laptop with the same chipset?) has the same issues.

ral(4) support on the way


Chris Turner is working on ral(4) support, specifically the eee901′s 2860 network chip.

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How to run jackd


Chris Turner posted details of how he gets jack (“a low-latency audio server”) to run on DragonFly.  Your mileage may vary.

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psm(4) update


Antonio Huete updated psm(4) using code from FreeBSD; I don’t think it’s been committed yet but the patch is available.  This will be especially valuable to you if you have a synaptics touchpad; it enables many of the functions.

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uguru for ABIT for us


Sascha Wildner has added uguru(4), from OpenBSD, to support the microcontroller on ABIT motherboards which report on temperature/fan speed/voltage.

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ACPI and all its parts


YONETANI Tomokazu wrote out a nice explanation of acpi(4) and the myriad ACPI subsystems which can be enabled or disabled at boot time.  If you do have booting problems, it’s usually ACPI, and it’s usually only one small part.  Finding that small part is easier with this list.

Passport support


If you were thinking of buying a Western Digital Passport USB drive, it’s supported on DragonFly, thanks to Dylan Reinhold and Alex Hornung.

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x86_64 testing available


Matthias Schmidt has set up a x86_64 DragonFly machine at uther.dragonflybsd.org.  Anyone wanting to try 64-bit testing can use a vkernel on that machine.  Mail him for an account.

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Open device driver development, anyone?


Hasso Tepper posted a link to something I had only heard about when it didn’t exist in physical form: the Open Graphics Device v1.  It’s possible to get one if you’re going to write support for it.

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AHCI update with new chipset support


In an effort to support a new system with an AMD 880G chipset, Matthew Dillon has updated the AHCI driver.  If you have SATA drives using AHCI, please test.  (with any chipset, not just 880G.)

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twa, ips RAID driver updates


Sascha Wildner has brought in some changes to twa(4), for various 3ware RAID controllers, from FreeBSD.  Also, YONETANI Tomokazu has added PCI IDs fixed up files for Adaptec ServeRAID 7x ips (4) devices.

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Some wireless drivers return


Due to changes in networking, most of the wireless drivers in 2.7 stopped working a few days ago.  Joe Talbott’s “brought back” iwi, ral, and wi.  If you’re running 2.7 and using one of those drivers, it should be safe, relatively, to upgrade to a newer 2.7.

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Wireless ripped out, being replaced


Well, technically not ripped out, just serialized roughly.  This means if you update your DragonFly 2.7 machine in the next few days, the wireless drivers may not work, except for (I think) ath(4).  They should return, better, by next week.

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Areca cards supported, with credit


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…

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arcmsr(4) added


Sascha Wildner has brought in arcmsr(4), an Areca RAID controller driver.  Please try it if you have the right hardware.

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iwn(4) support updated


Among other things, Joe Talbott has brought in support for the 6000 and 6050 series of iwn(4) wifi devices.

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twa(4) updated


Sascha Wildner has pulled in a bunch of updates for twa(4), adding more devices for this SATA RAID device driver.  There’s a list of what’s supported now on the man page.

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iwn(4) support added


Joe Talbott’s ported over iwn(4), which is the “driver for Intel 1000, 5100, 5150, and 6000 wifi chipsets.”

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HEADS UP: ehci.ko is always there


EHCI support is now always on, for 2.7 users, and will be for 2.8 when released.  It’s possible to turn it off if it causes a problem, but it should generally just mean better USB performance.

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Messylaneous – Unixy articles, clang, pkgsrc projects, more


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How to get more wireless drivers


Joe Talbott wants to write DragonFly/BSD drivers for a whole slew of wireless devices.  These are also all the adapters he doesn’t physically have.  You can fix this by purchasing something off that page, which will ship right to him.  A bwi(4) driver is next, for instance.

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Last-ditch disk effort


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.

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mptutil(8) brought in


And the torrent of new activity continues: Alexander Polakov has imported FreeBSD’s mptutil(8), good for managing LSI Fusion-MPT controllers.

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Tip for ath(4) users


In this recent note about the new wireless driver framework, Rui Paolo noted how to add a ath(4) device as wlan0 automatically.

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Even more new things: multimedia card support


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.

All-new network drivers


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.

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New wireless drivers going into 2.7


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…

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Hooray for DRM work and for testing


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.

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SSD sale at Newegg


Newegg is having a big SSD sale; I’m repasting the email with models and prices here.   Use it for swapcache!  There’s also a promo page with fancy images.

More…

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More I/O scheduling tools


Alex Hornung posted a followup about his I/O scheduler work, with some interesting ways to watch the state of your disk’s activity.

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Flash works too!


Thanks to work from Samuel J. Greear and Alex Hornung:

  1. Install Firefox (natively)
  2. libflashsupport and adobe-flash-plugin
  3. mount linprocfs
  4. null mount devfs within the linux system

There’s occasional video and audio sync problems, but Johannes Hofmann has already found a fix.

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A fan control narrative


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.

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Many ways to tell when the computer overheats


Constantine A. Murenin’s been adding more support for various monitoring hardware; I want to link to it not just cause it’s news, but it’s nice to see how complete his coverage has been.

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Some specials: SSDs, port multipliers


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…

The port multiplier’s SiI3726 chipset might be supported, or potentially supported, by the sili(4) driver.  Someone have $110 to spare to try this out?

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Vinum root mounts possible again


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.

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Another power solution


“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.

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wbsio(4) sensor support added


Constantine Murenin has added wbsio(4) to DragonFly.  It’s the ISA-attached version of the lm(4) sensor, if I remember correctly.

Posted by     Categories: Committed Code, Device support, DragonFly     1 Comment

em(4), igb(4) port added


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.

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aps(4) also added


Constantine A. Murenin has committed support for aps(4).  This supports various sensors for disk and mouse activity, and even acceleration sensors.

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igb(4), em(4) testers needed


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.

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IGD support added


Matthew Dillon’s added support for IGD chipsets, found in various N450-based netbooks.  It was tested on a Gateway LT2104u, for instance.  I didn’t realize there still were Gateway computers.

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alc(4) driver added


Samuel J. Greear and Matthew Dillon have ported the alc(4) driver, for wired Ethernet.  This supports the “Atheros AR8131 PCI Express Gigabit Ethernet controllers and Atheros AR8132 PCI Express Fast Ethernet controllers”.

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