I found a while ago that there is a BIOS patch for my HP N40L Micro server that basically de-cripples it – to some extent. Had some time today to finally install an additional network card, so I took the opportunity to try the patch.
This guide is pretty thorough although when I applied the patch, the extra options achieved were: SATA II speed and the extra menu “Chipset” -> “SouthBridge Configuration” -> “SB Sata Configuration”
Before patch my software RAID read speeds where about 250MB/s after:
hdparm -tT /dev/md0
Timing cached reads: 2362 MB in 2.00 seconds = 1181.07 MB/sec
Timing buffered disk reads: 1028 MB in 3.00 seconds = 342.16 MB/sec
RAID Write speed:
dd if=/dev/zero of=/home/public/data/DELETEME.txt bs=8k count=256k
262144+0 records in
262144+0 records out
2147483648 bytes (2.1 GB) copied, 13.9022 s, 154 MB/s
“SATA ESP on all PORT” – Option is also good, because it makes all drives hot swappable. It would also be good if it enabled hardware RAID 5, but it’s most likely a hardware limitation.
I have seen screenshots of more options being available but in my case they don’t appear.