I have left that system set up and will follow your advice on some of those utilities as a learning tool. Thanks for the help...I don't mean to sound helpless, I just usually need a push in the right direction from a software tools standpoint. I'm a hardware guy (EE).
The board I ended up using for the server was a used ASRiok IMB-181 I had around. This is a commercial imbedded application board based on socket LG1150 and Q87 chipset. Dual intel LAN, old fashioned VGA port plus HDMI, and a pile of serial ports. So pretty optimal for this. I put a reclaimed Xeon in it. No issues at all so far.
Tony Ellis wrote:
Drew, would have thought the output of "lsmod" would have provided a clue...
Using it on the systems here shows a mixture of nouveau, i915 and radeon
Incidentally, what board are you now using for the server - if you don't mind me asking...
Edit: There are some nice utilities around to provide this and more information if you take the time to install the required utilities.. e.g. HW Probe
An example of one of the systems here Linux Workstation - shows an i915 under devices...
For you or anyone else following, I gave up on the subject MB and used a more consumer oriented one for my server...all is now OK there. But I did put the subject board into another case and have been experimenting with it. Whatever the issue is with video, it does NOT occur under CentOS 7. Interesting.
While ClearOS definitely shifts video modes to a tiny font (and I did use nomodeset), CentOS leaves it in the large character mode and boots with no loss of video. There is something different between them. I thought CentOS would be a good "almost ClearOS" experiment. By the way, video does return after about 5 minutes, and I think the system is basically working then. Very repeatable. I don;t know what would cauase the video to eventually recover.
Looking through logs has not given me a clue. I don't know what video driver ClearOS is using, but I would be happy to check if someone can tell me how.
I tried loading the ASPEED driver but instructions with it are very poor. When I got the .sh to run, I received an error message with the instruction to "install manually". Note that the ASPEED package (two chips) includes not only the IPMI SoC, but also a VGA solution and other IO.
Tony Ellis wrote:
Simply mentioned the Intel case to prompt you to see if MSI had similar requirements for your "222" board (CSM-C222-89?)... Just did a search and all the links to the detailed information about this board on the MSI site. None worked (404) - old discontinued board? Worth contacting MSI support? Maybe you already have...
ASpeed have a 'ASPEED Graphics Linux/FreeBSD/Solaris Package' available - maybe worth investigating if ClearOS is using the ASpeed SoC in the ClearOS distribution... What graphics driver is ClearOS loading? This may provide the clue as to which Graphics ClearOS is using.
when the integrated VGA on the CPU is used
Technically with the Intel Xeon E3-1200 v3 series processors the VGA graphics is provided by the Intel "222" PCH which is part of the two-chip package. Follow several CentOS forums - and never seen this type of graphics problem mentioned within those forums...Good Luck...
This was a simple install of the current COS 7.
I'm generally familiar with IPMI and the SOC for it...I just mentioned that as a common factor in all the problematic boards in case it struck a note. Especially since it contains a VGA solution. The installation seems to be generally working, but I don't trust it given the odd video symptoms and earlier instability.
I have always been suspicious that the OEM engineers never seem to be able to explain to me when the VGA solution on chip is used, and when the integrated VGA on the CPU is used. I think this is somehow part of the mess I keep encountering.
I'm not clear on the relevance of that video driver for specific Intel boards to mine...can you explain?
I follow regarding blacklisting drivers, kernel parameters, etc. but wouldn't have a clue where to begin determining that.
Tony Ellis wrote:
IMPI is very useful - see, for example, Here for software and a desciption... It has been around since about 2001 - ipmitool.x86_64 version 1.8.18-7.el7 is available from clearos-centos as is OpenIPMI-modalias-2.0.23-2.el7.x86_64.
Might be worthwhile doing a quick simple install of the current CentOS Version 7 - if that works OK, then it is something about ClearOS that is tripping you up... but read below first.
ASpeed is not just a chipset - it is a SoC - a complete ARM processor system that runs independently of the main processor, usually with its own NIC for remote access, which monitors the main system, performs a number of useful functions such as powering up the main system, remote installing an OS on the main system, monitoring the main system health such as temperature, fans etc. Very useful for enterprise administrators to control systems all over the world from a central location. The graphics in the SoC is very basic - 2D only. ASpeed have a driver to get the best from the graphics for some OS... Intel also supplies a special graphics driver for its server boards when using Redhat V7 - see Here for an older (v7.3) sample giving an idea of the requirements...
Note also that some servers may require setting certain kernel parameters eg "acpi=force" or black-listing a driver...
Sorry - cannot be of much more help. I have been retired now for over 5 years and no longer "in the game". However, if you want to run server hardware and use all its fuctions, you probably need to be a "server" admininstator
All MB, no complete systems. Some are on the list (e.g. the ASRock Rack items), and some are not. But it strokes me as odd that 4/4 server boards have been epic fails when probably 8 or the last 9 unrated consumer boards I have tried have been 100% fine. Only one recent SOC Atom board was an exception.
They always seem to have the same odd video problems, and they all use that ASpeed server chipset for IPMI and video.
I was hoping the very odd symptom of no video at all for 5 minutes, right after the progress bar, and then suddenly video....100% repeatable...was a hint to someone of the issue. Very odd!
I wanted to up my hardware capability a bit and so looked for a MB for my COS 7 server. I decided thought I've had good luck with consumer MBs, I'd be professional and get something server oriented. It's ITX sized, so the selection is limited.
This approach has been frought with problems. Every item I have purchased used the 222, 224 or 226 chipsets. Another common link is the inclusion of a IPMI port, and the ASpeed server chipset. Nothing but error messages, video problems, and instability. The ASRock Rack boards were especially problematic.
I'm now using a 222 based board from MSI. Here are the strange symptoms:
Starts to boot OK.
GIves error: TSC_Deadline disabled due to errata. Please update microcode....etc
Then error i8042: No controller found
Then the boot progress stripe starts and looks normal. Part way through, the video mode changes as I expect, but then the progress stripe has bizarre colors.
When the progress stripe finishes, there is no video. The system stays that way for approximately 5 to minutes. Then, suddenly I get the sign on screen. I can sign in, and the graphic interface seems normal. However, it does not seem stable and often reboots upon changes.
There are boards that supposedly support Linux well. I am using a Xeon E3-1200 v3 series processor. No luck at all. I've tried quite a few "ordinary consumer" boards and every one seems fine.
Is there some major problem with that ASpeed support device, or the 22x Intel server chipset series? Any ideas out there?
For all the kind people helping, Tony and NIck particularly...I am just waiting to hear from the recovery service. Should be today. I'll pass along my feedback on them. Price is good and they have been responsive. Now just need the results.