Monday, May 09, 2011

Systemax SYX-4025 VLS Intel Server

I am putting this out there because it took me almost a week to get to the solution.

Issue:
CentOS 5.6 wouldn't install to my brand new Systemax SYX-4025
Solution:

Download proper Bios (last updated April 2011), flash and install.
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Description:
Using the DVD Boot CD for CentOS 5.6 the DVD would load and then hang when trying to mount the hard drive. After a long period of time the install would continue very slowly and was unable to complete installation.

A quick Google search and I turned off the RAID controller in the BIOS and tried running the install again with "linux acpi=off" and it continued to plague me.

I installed Ubuntu 10.LTS and have NO ISSUES with the hardware at all, worked very well (almost to the point of converting me from CentOS to Ubuntu but the software and goal of this install was to transition to better hardware for the company not to replace the OS.

Detailed Solution:
After hours of searching the internet and I gave in and called tech support. They had no solution. They did however offer me the details on the SYX-4025 mainboard and RAID controller. This RAID is recognized in Windows but is not in Linux variants. Even Ubuntu used the drives in AHCI or IDE mode rather than inline with the RAID controller.

The motherboard is an INTEL DQ57TM with a Q57 Express Chipset and PCH. A Google search revealed a great INTEL website dedicated to the motherboard.

The bios was updated 04/20/2011 and is the solution that you are looking for.

To flash the Bios, I used a USB drive created a WIN98 boot disk with the HP Flash Drive Utility. Added a Directory called SYXMAX and placed the upgraded bios files in there. *Note change the BIOS settings to allow boot to USB. (Use this site http://www.biosflash.com/bios-boot-usb-stick.htm to create a Bootable USB drive. I used Google Translate in Chrome)