Subject: Re: Adaptec AAA-131SA?
To: NetBSD-current Discussion List <>
From: Harry W. Waddell <>
List: current-users
Date: 04/15/1999 20:40:12
On Thu, 15 Apr 1999, Greg A. Woods wrote:

> [ On , April 13, 1999 at 12:33:21 (-0600), Chris Jones wrote: ]
> > Subject: Re: Adaptec AAA-131SA?
> >
> > I don't know about that, but I'm using an external RAID controller
> > made by Adaptec, and I've had good luck with it.  It's an AEC-4412.
> > It's got 3 Ultra-Wide interfaces:  One to the host, and two for
> > disks.  It has a serial line that you can plug into a port to run
> > kermit for a full-screen interface to the controller, or you can tweak
> > things using the front-panel LCD display and buttons there.
> Adaptec's AEC-4312 is/was an attrocious device -- it worked okay on the
> bench, but it was quite slow (much slower than expected), wouldn't
> tollerate pulling of an active drive, and couldn't rebuild on-line,
> didn't follow the SCSI spec very well, etc.  I've no idea how it differs
> from the 4412 -- maybe it's just the additional front-panel LCD
> interface.  I never tried it with NetBSD, but even with the latest
> FreeBSD CAM stuff at the time it wouldn't handle two simultaneous
> checkouts of the source tree without causing the whole system to hang.

I am genuinely glad that Chris Jones had good luck with his devices, but we
bought about ten of them, as I recall, we found them to be very erratic for
arrays with more than a few drives in them. We tried pretty hard to make them
work, but to no avail. Everyone I know who likes them has only used them for a
small number of disks, but that's just anecdotal. Currently we are testing  a
new extrenal raid frob that we hope will be more promising.