HP Smart Array P212 not recognizing SAS LTO drive


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Messages: 1

Hi fellow FreeBSDers,

I am trying to use an external LTO-4 tape drive, connected to a HP Smart Array P212 HBA via external SAS cable.
HBA bios initialization is showing a detected drive without any issues.

I can see the drive when using Windows, run diagnostics via Quantum software, etc.

However when booting into FreeBSD it does not show any sa() devices attached to ciss().
Dmesg snippet below:
ciss0: <HP Smart Array P212> port 0xdc00-0xdcff mem 0xf7800000-0xf79fffff,0xf76ff000-0xf76fffff irq 16 at device 0.0 on pci1
ciss0: PERFORMANT Transport
Uname info:
FreeBSD FreeBSD 11.2-STABLE #0 r343678: Sun Feb  3 01:25:57 CET 2019
When I switch the drive off/on DMESG shows:
ciss0: *** Hot-plug Non-disk device removed, Port=2E Box=0 Bay=0
ciss0: *** Hot-plug Non-disk device inserted, Port=2E Box=0 Bay=0
I did try to play around the transport modes hw.ciss.force_transport in the file /boot/loader.conf on ciss(), however drive still not recognized.
When I took the drive out of the external case and connect it via internal SAS (SFF-8087) cable directly FreeBSD will recognize the drive.

If I were to connect the drive internally I am losing a cooling fan that's in external casing and drive becomes too hot to hold (estimating around 60 'C) when doing a backup operation which is less than ideal.

Worth mentioning that in the past I've used the same HBA with an internal HP Ultrium LTO-3 drive, which was recognized correctly:
ciss0: <HP Smart Array P212> port 0xdc00-0xdcff mem 0xf7400000-0xf77fffff,0xf78ff000-0xf78fffff irq 16 at device 0.0 on pci1
ciss0: PERFORMANT Transport
sa0 at ciss0 bus 32 scbus1 target 2 lun 0
Am I missing something obvious here?

Any suggestions or pointers welcome.

Thank you all.



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In summary: Your HBA works generally, it can handle disks, and an LTO-3 drive, and the LTO-4 drive on the internal SAS connector. Your LTO-4 drive generally works too, when connected to the internal SAS connector. But when connected to the external SAS connector of your HBA, it does not work.

Here are my suspicions, in descending order of probability: First check the external cable and power supply, although the fact that they work under Windows makes it unlikely that this is the problem. Second, check whether the enclosure that the drive sits in when external has a SAS expander in the data path, because that might be incompatible or defective or in need of firmware update for use with the FreeBSD driver. Third, check whether the HBA treats external devices different from internal ones (I know NOTHING about HP's HBAs, not having used them in 20 years, so can't help you there). Lastly, read the man page for ciss, there is an interesting hint there: Non-disk (meaning tape!) devices can be "masked" (no idea what that means), and you can turn on using them by setting the "hw.ciss.expose_hidden_physical" control. This sounds promising.