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Re: URGENT: SCSI problems

On Thursday 30 July 1998, at 23 h 11, the keyboard of Jason Gunthorpe 
<jgg@gpu.srv.ualberta.ca> wrote:

> I ugently need to know what the status of the AIC7xxx driver is in the
> 2.0.x kernels. Currently master.debian.org is running .32 and has

[Warning: I'm not a developper, just the unhappy manager of several 
PC-with-Adaptec-SCSI and a reader of the aic7xxx mailing list.]

> experianced a scsi write timeout. I'm concerned this may be due to a
> driver bug. Last time I tried upgrading the kernel the scsi driver blew up
> horribly and we can't afford to repeat that now.

The Adaptec driver on Linux is broken and has always been. I *strongly* suggest to never use an Adaptec card on a Linux machine.

Since Adaptec cards vary wildly (even in the same series, you cannot trust the official number), it can work perfectly or produce horrible results.

Here is a summary:

- kernel up to 2.0.33 included : version 4 of the driver, works more or less for most people.
- kernel 2.0.34 : new driver, version 5, with a new maintainer (on a *stable* release of the kernel, rats). Breaks many things: CD-ROMS not detected, tons of endless error messages on boot. Unfortunately, Debian 2.0 (and RedHat 5.1) choose this kernel for their boot disks. Bad move. Good thing, it's easy to change the kernel on a Debian boot disks and it is well documented.
- kernel 2.0.35 : update version of the driver, not really better (timeouts at boot).

The current beta driver is 5.1pre5 (I don't think it is included even in 2.1.x). You can find it on <ftp://ftp.dialnet.net/pub/linux/aic7xxx/testing/>. For *most* cards, it's a huge improvment. For Ultra2 cards (7890 chip), it's the only solution.

It runs fine over 2.0.35. (Patch available above.)

Note: the issue of "whose fault is it" is irrelevant. Choose any one, the maintainer, the Linux SCSI code, Adaptec corp.

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