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Thread: SiI 3124 Drivers/Lycom PCIe 4 eSATA/10.6.2

  1. #1
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    Jun 2009
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    Default SiI 3124 Drivers/Lycom PCIe 4 eSATA/10.6.2

    Hello,

    I am curious if anyone else out there is running a similar setup on a MacPro:

    Lycom PCIe 4 eSata Host Card
    OS 10.6.2
    using the newest drivers (2.0.5u BETA) linked here:

    http://macgurus.com/productpages/sata/LYCeSATA-4e.php

    I have a 6 drive array in RAID 0 feeding uncompressed HD video to Final Cut Pro and have noticed some occasional dropped frames. This setup ran beautifully under 10.5.4 using the older driver (never dropped a frame).

    I ran the AJA speed test utility and found performance to be kinda spotty. On the whole, it can keep up to near 300 mb/sec but it will drop suddenly to 100 or so during a read cycle and the back up to around 300. Under 10.5 with the other driver it would stream consistently.

    I had similar problems with a Sonnet Tempo E4P in the past (thread here: http://www.macgurus.com/forums/showthread.php?t=25210 ), but they got so bad I couldn't use the card and had to return it. Turns out the problem (after testing 2 cards) was with Sonnet's drivers failing under 10.5 even though they refused to admit that.

    I am worried I am going to play this same game with my Lycom card. Anyone else out there using a Lycom and noticing speed drops under 10.6 with the new driver?

    Thanks,

    Nick

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    For what it is worth, I have not ever had anyone mention that with the new drivers. They have been pure golden.

    Rick
    molṑn labe'
    "I am a mortal enemy to arbitrary government and unlimited power. I am naturally very jealous for the rights and liberties of my country, and the least encroachment of those invaluable privileges is apt to make my blood boil."
--Ben Franklin

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    Okay,

    I just did a test. My write results under 10.6.2 (using the SI 2.0.5u "beta" driver) are higher but the read are almost HALF than what I am getting under 10.5.8 using the older SI 2.0.3 driver. These test were ran on the same computer with fresh OS installs.

    Something tells me the 2.0.5 driver is not ready yet...

    10.5:


    10.6:

  4. #4
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    ex-Cupertino, CA, USA. Now HU+SRB (Europe).
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    Quote Originally Posted by sampofilms View Post
    Okay,

    I just did a test. My write results under 10.6.2 (using the SI 2.0.5u "beta" driver) are higher but the read are almost HALF than what I am getting under 10.5.8 using the older SI 2.0.3 driver. These test were ran on the same computer with fresh OS installs.

    Something tells me the 2.0.5 driver is not ready yet...

    10.5:


    10.6:
    The driver is so far "golden" that it does not use anything, what is not proven. SImage basically recompiled their 2.0.3 with the new compiler and made it sure that the proper "dependencies" are set. This will make their driver work just fine on Snow Leopard in 32-bit mode without being removed during the system update - and that precisely was the goal. What you see is rather system than driver-related.

    The fact is, SImage left their customers "in cold" with Snow Leopard - there won't be any further development and no 64-bit compatible driver is to expect. My guess is, same applies to Sonnet: they lost the developer years ago and I do not expect any 64-bit driver support on any of their cards designed by them.

  5. #5
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    Jun 2009
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    ataMan,

    Thanks, this helps. Do you know of any other good 2 or 4 port cards not using the SI chip? I hate to think about blowing more money on another card, but I also want something reliable and speedy under 10.6 eventually.

    Nick

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by sampofilms View Post
    ataMan,

    Thanks, this helps. Do you know of any other good 2 or 4 port cards not using the SI chip? I hate to think about blowing more money on another card, but I also want something reliable and speedy under 10.6 eventually.

    Nick
    There are few around. Going with a card from a company committed and fighting for the Mac is a good idea, in particular if they write the drivers.

    A good sign is to see, are the SATA drivers SATA or "SCSI-pretender". There is (almost) nothing wrong with SCSI-pretender ATA driver, I did write a few in the old Mac OS 7.x - 9.x days. But for MacOS-X there is only one benefit of writing "SCSI-pretender" for ATA controller: converting existing Windows driver as cheaply and fast as possible. The one (originally) written by SImage was excellent, but still their goal was to do it as fast as possible. Interesting side-effect: SCSI has no S.M.A.R.T. client on MacOS-X, only (S)ATA. Therefore any driver which goes SCSI way would forego the S.M.A.R.T.

    Many customers like S.M.A.R.T. so a good idea is to rather invest more time but go the (S)ATA way.

    As for the future: obviously, SATA does evolve. I am not sure about SI roadmap at this moment. Hopefully they will present it earlier or later. Other chip manufacturers do have significantly more at this moment but even more has to be done. I am pretty busy to say the least and it is a good news.

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