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Re: Screwiness with PCI-E SATA card?

Your problem may be the e-sata hardware itself.  I recently bought a
(cheap) e-sata PCI card from Newegg:


that uses the Initio INIC 1623 chip.  I bought the card because I had
just one internal Sata port left and I thought I'd "upgrade" my old
system.  I put a 1Tbyte drive on the e-sata.  Straight ext3 w/
journaling; single filesystem; no raid; no LVM.  (Use it for
incremental system backups.)

I needed to pull in a file from a backup at one point couple of weeks
ago and found it was corrupted.  Ran fsck.  The fsck started
locking-up, then continuing again. It found all sorts of inode
problems.  My /var/log/messages file was full of error timeouts and
resets on this drive.

On a lark, I plugged the drive directly into the remaining internal
sata with an e-sata --> sata conversion cable.  The timeouts stopped.
After many hours of data moving I was able to reconstruct most
everything. I re-made a fresh ext3 on it, moved the data back, and the
disk has been running fine since.  Fsck's don't stop and start and
lockup, and they find no corrupted inodes.  All seems well.

Aside: the e-sata card seemed to work fine (no lock-ups) when short
amounts of data were transferred.  But when I started pulling 55MB/s
for more than 3 or 4 seconds during the fsck, the lockups and resets
would start.


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