x3650 M2 Installation notes

I’ve been playing on site with a customer’s x3650 M2, getting it ready to install GPFS.  There are a few notes on this machine:

First impression is that this thing boots like a p-Series machine.  In other words, it takes forever to boot!  First if you plug it in you have to wait about 3 minutes for it to become active.  Then once you power it on, you need to wait a long time for it to boot up.  (time this)

I found myself staring at the boot screen for a long time.

Since the machine was plugged into a QLogic HBA and had all sorts of paths, that took even longer to boot.  I’m not talking about the Linux part where the init starts walking through everything.  I’m talking about before we get there.   AND, when I got there, the local hard drive could not be found!!!

Answer:  It was a bug in the QLogic firmware.  So we had to update it.  That was not easy nor was it fun.

The package you download to do it is here:

http://driverdownloads.qlogic.com/QLogicDriverDownloads_UI/Product_detail.aspx?oemid=376

We got 2.04af at this time.

But how to update?  Would be nice if they had a bin image that run under Linux, but that wasn’t the case.  The solution was to install SAN Surfer and update it that way.

Looking for the eUFI shell?  Its not there.  Too dangerous, so IBM doesn’t ship it.  This is probably a good idea given the support nightmare you could cause yourself, but not when 3rd party tools tell you to boot up into the eUFI.  That just causes more confusion.

After eUFI was updated, boot time improved.  But I think we could do better here.

The silver lining?  This is one solid box.  Performance is outstanding and a good quality piece of work.