Matt Connolly's Blog

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Monthly Archives: August 2010

Cheap SATA pci card for my OpenSolaris server

So I just bought a super cheap ~ $15 Sata pci card (4 ports) for my OpenSolaris time machine server so I can add more drives in the future.

The card turns out to be a Silicon Image 3114 Raid card, which is, apparently, pretty common and popular. However, OpenSolaris doesn’t have a driver for it. There is a bug entry to make one, but it’s not yet fixed:

Reading the bug, there appears to be a work-around, but, this didn’t work for me:

# update_drv -a -i ' "pci1095,3114" ' ata
devfsadm: driver failed to attach: ata
Warning: Driver (ata) successfully added to system but failed to attach

However, a little bit more exploration revealed that my motherboard SATA controller uses the “ahci” driver, not the “ata” driver. Try give that a go:

# update_drv -a -i ' "pci1095,3114" ' ahci

Success. Well, at least no error messages…. no time to add hard disks!!!


The above is totally unnecessary. All I needed to do was flash the card with the latest bios, using the regular IDE bios (no RAID – not needed thanks to ZFS), and then OpenSolaris automatically recognised the card as a PCI IDE card. That’s good because it works, but not quite as fully equipped as a SATA interface that would support hot swapping for example….