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Marvell Storage Utility on HPE ProLiant MicroServer Gen10

[2019-03-01 Fri] See comment below; some Linux operating systems already provide native support for the Marvell RAID controller in legacy mode.

Marvell SATA controller

Recently I purchased an HPE ProLiant MicroServer Gen10 which comes with the Marvell SATA controller 88SE9230, also called Marvell Storage Utility (MSU). As far as I know, this controller has an ARM chip to provide RAID 0 (non-redundant combination of disks), RAID 1 (straight mirroring) or RAID 10 (a combination of RAID 0 and RAID 1).

Neither Marvell nor HPE do provide drivers for generic Linux systems but they do provide a package for ClearOS which uses the Red Hat Package Manager (RPM).

Initially, I tried to manage the RAID using the Marvell BIOS utility which can be accessed by the EFI shell. The BIOS utility and the user guide can be downloaded from the HPE support center. However, this procedure is slow and complicated, especially if the server is headless, as in my case. Furthermore, monitoring the disks with SMART data is also impossible. So I decided to invest some time in amending the ClearOS package for Arch Linux and provide an AUR package.

Marvell controller package

I had serious trouble running the original scripts and daemons because they are (a) written for ClearOS and (b) expect the generic but outdated SCSI kernel module sg to be loaded. I provide replacements with the same functionality:

  1. MSUAgent - The MSU Event Manager.
  2. MSUWebServer - The MSU Web Server (manual access at port 8045).
  3. MSUStart - A small script to access the web interface.

These scripts also pull the sg module in case it is not loaded.

For my purposes however (I do not need a web interface), the MSU client mvcli, which is located in the folder /opt/marvell/storage/cli is all I need. Don’t forget to manually load the sg module, which sets up the SCSI devices for this script, e.g., with

sudo modprobe -a sg

Then, the SMART data can be retrieved, e.g., with

sudo /opt/marvell/storage/cli/mvcli smart -p 0

Awesome :-)!

In the course of this project, I also stumbled upon other very useful SCSI related software: lsscsi, sg3_utils, sdparm, hdidle.

I am still having trouble with monitoring temperature (e.g., CPU temperature), please leave a note if you know an easy way to achieve this.

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