Compaq DL360 Multiprocessor Problems

As I blogged before, I’ve been having some fun with some Compaq Proliant DL360 servers we recently acquired. After fixing the Fedora Core 5 install issue on the first server, my second server installed correctly, but upon booting up, it only recognized a single processor. No matter what I tried, it wouldn’t see the second processor. I even tried taking the drives from the working machine and putting them in this one. The problem stayed with the hardware.

After attempting BIOS upgrades, BIOS downgrades, system partition re-creates, etc, I finally broke down and did a systematic line-by-line comparison of BIOS settings to see if there was anything going on. There’s a BIOS setting labelled “Operating System”. On the working machine, this was set to “Windows 2000” (I never bothered changing the setting from when I acquired the machine). On the broken machine, it was set to “Other”. I have no idea what deep underlying changes this setting makes, but for Fedora Core 5 on a Compaq DL360, it needs to be set to “Windows 2000”. Crazy.

Fedora Core 5 on Compaq Proliant DL360

I recently spent a whole bunch of time banging my head against a wall trying to get Fedora Core 5 installed on some Compaq Proliant DL360 machines I have. Core 4 installs fine, but Core 5 has a problem with the hardware RAID on these machines. The installer fails to identify the driver (cpqarray) successfully, and if selected manually, it finds it but fails to find any hard drives attached.

After quite a bit of searching, I found a posting at the Fedora Forum describing the fix. The trick is to boot the installer with:

linux noprobe noapic noapci

Once the installer fails to find the hard drive, select ‘cpqarray’ and ‘sym53c8xx’ drivers. After that, the install will complete successfully. All credit to this fix goes to ‘Mesu’ from Fedora Forums.