Hi there, got some fundamental Q's


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Hey everyone,

I managed to install Xpenology on one of my older i5 4th Gen PC for testing puroses and everything is working fine and very well. I was used to a QNAP TS419PII 4-Bay NAS with ARM CPU, which is as slow as a turtle. Now that I liked Xpenology very much,  I decided to buy new hardware to set up a 4-6 bay NAS because prices of real Syno-boxes are just hilarious.

 

There are now some fundamental quastions:

- Why do some users use EXSi for virtualization? What ist the benefit of running Xpenology on a virtual machine?

- I read about the extra driver packages from user IG-88, really brilliant work! They are very well done... Is it possible to implement own drivers I eventually need into Xpenology and is there something like a tutorial out there?

 

There may be some more questions in the future :)

 

Thank you for answering!

 

Greetings from Germany

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Speaking as a former ESXi user and now bare metal, I think that the advantages are isolation from the underlying hardware, which can help with driver issues, and flexibility.

Apart from being able to run other things on the box, it gives you the opportunity to fire up and test the next version of the loader / DSM in another virtual machine on the same hardware and make sure that it all works before committing your production system to an upgrade.

The disadvantage from my point of view is that it means that there is another software layer to install and maintain (or to have fun with).

I am sure that current ESXi users will add to this.

 

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@billat29 assessment is correct.  There are things that can only be done with ESXi from a hardware standpoint.  And if you have powerful enough hardware it cannot be fully utilized by DSM due to processor thread limits.  So if you want to fully leverage your very powerful system, virtualization to make the unused hardware available to other workloads is required.

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@flyride Thanks for your answer. As I see, you have the Intel C236 working. Do you know if the oculink from a Intel C246 would work with Xpenology? I don't have any experience with that oculink. Is it just another connector used to save space on mini ITX boards? I wonder if it needs a special driver, but it uses Oculink to SATA connector cables...

 

Greetings

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Another question:

What will happen if the USB-Drive with the bootloader somehow gets faulty or damaged? Is it possible to setup a new one to replace the old one and get DSM starting again?

 

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5 hours ago, Dialin said:

Another question:

What will happen if the USB-Drive with the bootloader somehow gets faulty or damaged? Is it possible to setup a new one to replace the old one and get DSM starting again?

 

 

Yes, just burn a new/equivalently configured loader and it will boot back up no issues.

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1 hour ago, Dialin said:

Is it possible, to change CPU on a configured system (G5420 to i3 9100) or is a complete reinstall of DSM recommended/neccesary?

As long as you’re not changing the motherboard you should be able to just swap out the cpu.

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Regarding the boot stick: if the system was upgraded in the past it‘s advisable to make an image of the stick. The reason is that DSM not only makes an upgrade on it‘s system partitions but also on the stick itself. Afaik this was the case in one of the last major updates. 

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DSM usually modifies the boot loader during upgrades.  The recent 6.2.3 error 21 issue requiring SynoBootFix is because the loader was not accessible for upgrade due to incorrect initialization of the synoboot devices.

 

But if an old loader encounters a newer DSM version, it will just be upgraded in place with no notification.  So you can replace a loader stick with a fresh burn and a working system should just boot.

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On 10/11/2020 at 12:25 PM, Dfds said:

As long as you’re not changing the motherboard you should be able to just swap out the cpu.

 

you will be able to change the board as long as a storage and network driver for the new board is present in the loader, in most cases the storage is sata/ahci and the loader does support a good variety of network drivers already, the disks position are not important as dsm will look for this by itself (disks now days can be identified by uuid)

the only things might be 4th gen intel cpu minimum for 918+ 1.04b loader and csm/legacy in bios for 1.03b loader (3615/17)

the only one thing you need to look after is the usb boot devices vid/pid, new usb with old image or old usb with default image, in both cases the vid/pid needs to be changed in grub.cfg to match be vid/pid of the device that is used for booting

Edited by IG-88
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I have my ASRock E3C246D2I (Intel C246) started with Juns loader 1.04b 918+, but I can't get up one of the NICs, its just blinking but not recognized in the router. Aren't these i210 and i219 natively supported or do I need the xtra.lzma? Any hints? I put in the right MAC's, got them from a previous Win10 installation...

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14 minutes ago, Dialin said:

Aren't these i210 and i219 natively supported or do I need the xtra.lzma?

i'm not sure, just try the additional drivers, it cant get worse with that

also keep in mind that its an assumption to blame it on the drivers

as long as you dont use a serial 0-modem cable so see the local console you cant say for sure if the kernel did come up properly, maybe the driver is not loaded because the boot/start ended earlier, befor loading the driver

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Its now working with 6.2.2 and xtra.lzma, it seems like the drivers for both NICs have been missing. Would like to switch to 6.2.3 tomorrow with a new installation.Thanks for your fast response!

 

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9 hours ago, Dialin said:

As far as I read, the 6.2.3 won't work with any xtra.lzma containing the drivers for my i210 & i219-LM NICs...

the drivers in the 6.2.3 extra a re the same as in the 6.2.2, just newly compiled with different kernel settings to match 6.2.3

so maybe try it yourself, its easy, just take the loader and any usb flash drive, replace the extra/extra with the new one and boot,no need to change anything in the grub.cfg like vid/pid so see if its booting and coming up in network

just remove the usb you use for 6.2.2 and try it, you can even let the disks in place as long as you just boot it up

 

9 hours ago, Dialin said:

Does it work by using ESXi to get rid of driver issues?

the only driver issue i'm aware of is that there might be newer hardware versions of the onboard intel's that need a newer driver, there should be no difference in that with the 6.2.2 and 6.2.3 extra

and esxi uses the ancient e1000 driver, should work

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