Summary: Help with booting a SunFire V440

From: Gene Beaird <>
Date: Fri May 23 2008 - 14:31:24 EDT
Again, thank you to all who replied:

Peter Winterflood
Jeff Marble
Jerry Kemp
Christopher Barnard
Ioan Nemes
Jay Florendo
Stefan Varga
Tim Bradshaw
Kamal Bhusal
Ryan Anderson

I had multiple problems with this system, chief of which was I couldn't get
it to boot from disk1 with the bad disk0 in it.  Disk0 was throwing so many
SCSI errors that the system would never accept a login.  I even had to catch
the system at the right time, go to the SC> prompt and issue a reset to get
it to drop to an OK prompt so I could attempt a reboot.  

After finally getting a bootable Solaris 9 CD of the proper vintage in the
box, I was able to break the mirrors, convert the metadevices to cxtxdxsx
devices and the system actually did boot on disk0, although it did post a
bunch of SCSI errors.  Both disks successfully passed fsck, though.  Jeff
suggested I reseat the drives, but by the time I got the system booted on
the CD, I already had a Sun FE standing in front of the box with a new disk.

Once the Sun FE arrived, and determined it had a bad disk0, we tried to
reboot it to disk1 so he could replace the drive with the box life.  Since
that wasn't happening, we shut the system down, replaced disk0 and rebooted
the system on disk1.  That was successful.  Once we did that, I was able to
re-init the metadevices and resync the mirrors.  That process took about
seven hours.  The system has been running ever since.

Ryan Anderson did note that he had a V440 do the same thing after a power
outage, and it corrupted the bootblock on disk0.  After rebooting to a CD,
and mounting disk0, he simply copied back in the bootblock and successfully
rebooted the server.  Unfortunately, I got that info too late to try, but I
have squirreled that away for later use.  I really think the disk was
physically  hurt, though, given the errors it was throwing.  Here is the
steps Mr. Anderson followed to accomplish the bootblock copy:

OK> boot cdrom -s
# mkdir /tmp/mnt
# mount /dev/dsk/c0t0d0s0 /tmp/mnt
# installboot /tmp/mnt/usr/platform/sun4u/lib/fs/ufs/bootblk
# umount /tmp/mnt
# halt
OK> boot

Thanks again, this list rocks!

Gene Beaird, CISSP,
Unix Support Engineer,
Pearland, Texas

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Received on Fri May 23 14:32:43 2008

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