IBM M1015 Firmware - What to flash with

PigLover

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Jan 26, 2011
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The M1015 native firmware "personality" is the same as an LSI 9240-8i, with the exception that Raid5 functionality is disabled unless you install a "key" onto the card.

The M1015 can be flashed successfully with the LSI 9240-8i firware from LSIs website using megacli, although access to Raid5 is still controlled by the raid key. In fact, there is some evidence that IBMs native load and LSIs 9240 load are identical, though that is difficult to confirm because IBMs firmware always seems to have a minor rev level difference which makes a simple bitwise compare impossible.

The M1015 can also be flashed with 9210-8i or 9211-8i using a procedure detailed earlier in this thread. It can apparently accept either the IR or IT load for these cards.

There is no "IT Mode" for the native M1015 or 9240 drivers. It simply is not needed. The reason people wanted the IT load when running as a 9211 is because the 9211 doesn't really do single disk passthrough correctly - it builds the disk as a single-drive raid 0, which puts nasty little headers on the disk and mucks up your ability to share disks directly with other systems. The 9240 firmware does not doe this - any drive not part of a raid is just passed through directly as a single drive - and no special 'IT mode' driver is necessary.

The only reason to flash this card to a 9211 personality is to use it with an OS that does not support the 9240 (e.g., freeBSD). For others (Windows, Linux, Solaris, etc) the 9240 drivers are available and work well - some would suggest work better (e.g., the Solaris imr drivers for the 9240 do a better job of passing through disk temps and SMART).
 

Abit@HHC-001

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Sep 29, 2011
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Hi, i flashed my M1015 to a 9211-8i with IR firmware, everything went well.... at the first start i didn't see the screen of the bios of the controller, but, after i installed the driver and the management console i re-flashed with the last firmware (P11 in my case) and i put the bios (to see the CTRL+H screen), that i find on the complete packet from lsi website.

In the end, the card is fantastic, it works very well for me.
 

xnoodle

Active Member
Jan 4, 2011
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I'm unable to get the m1015 to work with its native firmware. esxi 4.1 and 5.0 both hang on loading megaraid_sas. 2008 R2 shows a code 10, device cannot start error message.

Do I need to flash them with the 9240-8i firmware to get it to work in a non-IBM system? =/
 

sotech

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Jul 13, 2011
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Australia
I'm unable to get the m1015 to work with its native firmware. esxi 4.1 and 5.0 both hang on loading megaraid_sas. 2008 R2 shows a code 10, device cannot start error message.

Do I need to flash them with the 9240-8i firmware to get it to work in a non-IBM system? =/
We have two ESXi boxes that were 4.1 and are now 5 which have stock M1015s in them - one is an ASUS board, one an Intel. No issues loading/installing/using them here..
 

xnoodle

Active Member
Jan 4, 2011
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Well. Shame on me. Gave it another try with the relatively new MegaRAID SAS Driver - Windows Signed, Version 5.1.112 (Aug 11, 2011) drivers and it worked.

There's still no newer driver for ESXi 4/4.1, and no mention of 5 on LSI's page for 9240-8i. Bahhumbug.
 

xnoodle

Active Member
Jan 4, 2011
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Thanks! Now to figure out why hardware virtualization isn't being detected by esxi anymore even though vt-d is on.
 

xnoodle

Active Member
Jan 4, 2011
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Got VT-d working (had to reflash BIOS/clear CMOS/whole 9 yards).

ESXI 5.0 boots successfully now with the M1015 in the system. Passthrough to a 2008 R2 VM worked, so I know the cards are functional.

However, I'm not able to get the card working in OpenIndiana (running the native/9240-8i firmware). Didn't work with the native SUNWmrsas, or the mrsas driver off LSI's page (dated Aug 11, 2011). Driver wouldn't attach even when I manually added the PCI device codes.

Anyone have this card working successfully with OpenIndiana (151a)? What firmware level / driver are you using? At this point I'm willing to downgrade the firmware level just to get this working :mad:
 

meatincereal

New Member
Jul 20, 2011
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Any success stories flashing the M1015 with an Asus P8B WS (or a Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R :D - all I have available)? From what I've read, flashing it yields some kind of PAL error on certain motherboards?
 

dswartz

Active Member
Jul 14, 2011
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Got VT-d working (had to reflash BIOS/clear CMOS/whole 9 yards).

ESXI 5.0 boots successfully now with the M1015 in the system. Passthrough to a 2008 R2 VM worked, so I know the cards are functional.

However, I'm not able to get the card working in OpenIndiana (running the native/9240-8i firmware). Didn't work with the native SUNWmrsas, or the mrsas driver off LSI's page (dated Aug 11, 2011). Driver wouldn't attach even when I manually added the PCI device codes.

Anyone have this card working successfully with OpenIndiana (151a)? What firmware level / driver are you using? At this point I'm willing to downgrade the firmware level just to get this working :mad:
Hmmm, I am running OI 151a with a m1015 passed in and it works fine. I flashed it with the IT firmware following directions (I think) on this site and it worked with no driver fiddling. Unfortunately, I'm not sure how to find out the firmware revision without rebooting the whole box, which is not possible until late tonight :(
 

xnoodle

Active Member
Jan 4, 2011
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Do you still have the files?

With the latest 9240-8i firmware (20.10.1-0037) the card works in 2008 R2 with the 5.1.112 drivers but not the 4.33 drivers. With Solaris (10 and 11), it does not attach with the 4.26, 3.03 and 3.01 drivers, and causes system faults with the latter 3.0x drivers.

At this point I'm going to have to try downgrading the card firmware or flashing it to a different type. Sigh.
 

Falloutboy

Member
Oct 23, 2011
221
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My M1015 setup

Although I did not have to flash the bios on this, my current setup seems quite stable:
Xigmatek Elysium Case fitted with ASUS Maximus IV Extreme - Z
16 GIG PC 1600 DDR3
Intel i7 2600K (not overclocked yet)
2 x EVGA 3072MB GTX 580's, 1 in the first slot, 1 in 2nd to last slot. in SLI
Onboard 1 ADATA 128GB SSD, Cacheing 1 x 1TB WD Caviar Black Edition Sata 3
IBM M1015 running 4 x 2TB WD Caviar Black Edition Sata 3
Onboard ASUS DVD /RW
Silverstone Strider ST1500W Power Supply

I can access the Web Bios interface by going into the system bios and telling the system bios to run the addon bios ; however I can not do so from the press CTRL+H or whatever it is.

I also hope to add a 3444E in my last remaining slot to run 4 x WD Caviar Black edition Sata 2 drives

I will run my remaining to Sata II drives as data backups until the flooding ends in bangcock and we start getting more drives in.

I copied the entire contents of the windows 7 home premium 64 bit to one 2TB drive and from there to the other drive I moved it, now I know it was cached by memory but DAMN! sas is quick.
 

storrgie

New Member
Nov 19, 2011
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The M1015 native firmware "personality" is the same as an LSI 9240-8i, with the exception that Raid5 functionality is disabled unless you install a "key" onto the card.

The M1015 can be flashed successfully with the LSI 9240-8i firware from LSIs website using megacli, although access to Raid5 is still controlled by the raid key. In fact, there is some evidence that IBMs native load and LSIs 9240 load are identical, though that is difficult to confirm because IBMs firmware always seems to have a minor rev level difference which makes a simple bitwise compare impossible.

The M1015 can also be flashed with 9210-8i or 9211-8i using a procedure detailed earlier in this thread. It can apparently accept either the IR or IT load for these cards.

There is no "IT Mode" for the native M1015 or 9240 drivers. It simply is not needed. The reason people wanted the IT load when running as a 9211 is because the 9211 doesn't really do single disk passthrough correctly - it builds the disk as a single-drive raid 0, which puts nasty little headers on the disk and mucks up your ability to share disks directly with other systems. The 9240 firmware does not doe this - any drive not part of a raid is just passed through directly as a single drive - and no special 'IT mode' driver is necessary.

The only reason to flash this card to a 9211 personality is to use it with an OS that does not support the 9240 (e.g., freeBSD). For others (Windows, Linux, Solaris, etc) the 9240 drivers are available and work well - some would suggest work better (e.g., the Solaris imr drivers for the 9240 do a better job of passing through disk temps and SMART).
I've recently purchased a sandy bridge based server (X9SCA-F-O and the Xeon 1230) and paired that up with two of the M1015. I'm a Linux user who is coming from 1068E based cards (USAS-L8i, heres my post on fitting the supermicro UIO in normal slots http://blog.agdunn.net/?p=391).

I got past all the dragons of getting the supermicro board to work with these cards (requires bios 1.1a or newer) and flashed the cards with the 9240-8i rom... I believe revision -0061.

I cannot see any drives when I boot into linux (Ive installed to drives on my motherboards controller. I do see both controllers, but no connected drives.

Do I need to do something with the configuration to make them pass the drives? specifically the part you mentioned about strait pass-through without writing anything on the drives would be most desirable in case I have to move these to another controller in the future.

Thanks in advance.
 

Falloutboy

Member
Oct 23, 2011
221
22
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I've recently purchased a sandy bridge based server (X9SCA-F-O and the Xeon 1230) and paired that up with two of the M1015. I'm a Linux user who is coming from 1068E based cards (USAS-L8i, heres my post on fitting the supermicro UIO in normal slots http://blog.agdunn.net/?p=391).

I got past all the dragons of getting the supermicro board to work with these cards (requires bios 1.1a or newer) and flashed the cards with the 9240-8i rom... I believe revision -0061.

I cannot see any drives when I boot into linux (Ive installed to drives on my motherboards controller. I do see both controllers, but no connected drives.

Do I need to do something with the configuration to make them pass the drives? specifically the part you mentioned about strait pass-through without writing anything on the drives would be most desirable in case I have to move these to another controller in the future.

Thanks in advance.
Hi
I am not using Linux I am using windows 7 ; however when I first installed the card I found that <Ctrl><H> wouldn't get me into the cards bios but.... If you have UEFI motherboard you can try what I did, when it got to the point of saying press <Ctrl><H> I did so, as soon as the screen cleared I held down and did not let go of the DEL key until the normal motherboard bios came up.

Nows the tricky part - On my system the section I found what I needed was the Boot order control section but it may be different in your bios, I found an entry that Said boot bios 00:DD FE:00 or something very similar, this is the bios on the M1015, when you press enter on that entry, and be carefull cause it can appear twice, one as an entry to add to a list and one as an entry to boot to now. It takes you out of the motherboard bios and into the controller bios.
Under the controller bios setup a new config, tell it to add your drives individualy as JBOD.
Save the config and repeat the process if you want to create a raid set but this time tell it to make a virtual drive and add the two jbods to it. Give it a name, save the settings and boot into linux.
As to your specific flavor and setup for linux - I have to leave that to you, I know a little about linux but not raid under linux so your on your own.

Hope this helps
 

The Lost

New Member
Dec 1, 2011
6
1
0
pwnd.

So, after reading this post and its several pages from to back, back to front i felt confident in purchasing a M1015 ibm branded card and flashing it to IT mode. I went through the steps to flash this card.

I went down down the list...

Megarec -readsbr 0 backup.sbr {CHECK}
megarec -writesbr 0 empty.bin {CHECK}
megarec -cleanflash 0 {FAILS!} it tells me erasing flash memory fails error 64.

Anyone know whats going on here? the card was working fine in IR mode before.

This is a somewhat new IBM M1015 card purchased just a few days ago from ebay.

so i reboot and get a blue message bios is not available etc... press any key, ok no problem.

figured i'd continue on the steps,

sas2flsh -o -f 2108it.bin -b mptsas2.rom {FAILS!} no lsi adapters found!

so i attempted to put back on the original firmware which i downloaded...

MegaRec -m0flash 0 imr_fw.rom {FAILS!}

currently flashing component = BIOS
erasing flash ....
programming flash ....
completed 100%
verifying the flashed data ....

currently flashing component = HIIM
erasing flash ....
programming flash ....
completed 100%
verifying the flashed data ....

currently flashing component = APP
erasing flash .... FLASH ERASE ERROR!
error in downloading image.
error code = 64
failed to flash the image please retry recovery.

at wits end here. any ideas guys?

on a side note, the back of my m1015 says, sas9220-8i on one sticker and then has another sticker right next to it that says sas9240-8i(B) maybe i got a new version of this card that doesnt work with this flash method?
 

Patrick

Administrator
Staff member
Dec 21, 2010
12,171
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on a side note, the back of my m1015 says, sas9220-8i on one sticker and then has another sticker right next to it that says sas9240-8i(B) maybe i got a new version of this card that doesnt work with this flash method?
Just wondering, do you see a revision number on the card or a firmware marker? If this is going to become an issue with newish cards I want to make sure we know which are affected.