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Old 08-11-2011, 11:57 PM
Frank Cox
 
Default smartd and palimpsest

I notice that the smartd service is not running by default on a new
installation. But palimpsest seems to get updated statistics every so often as
when I check the statistics on a drive it says "last updated" some number of
minutes ago.

So if smartd isn't running, where does palimpsest get its information from and
what is updating it?

Second question, what would enabling the smartd service gain me that I don't
have right now?

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Old 08-12-2011, 12:42 AM
Robert Heller
 
Default smartd and palimpsest

At Thu, 11 Aug 2011 17:57:59 -0600 CentOS mailing list <centos@centos.org> wrote:

>
> I notice that the smartd service is not running by default on a new
> installation. But palimpsest seems to get updated statistics every so often as
> when I check the statistics on a drive it says "last updated" some number of
> minutes ago.
>
> So if smartd isn't running, where does palimpsest get its information from and
> what is updating it?
>
> Second question, what would enabling the smartd service gain me that I don't
> have right now?

Almost all modern disk are S.M.A.R.T capable. What this means is that
various information about the disk, mostly relating to its health can be
monitored. This includes things like sector errors. If smartd is
running root will get E-Mail if/when something (however minor) happens
to the disk.

>

--
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Old 08-12-2011, 03:44 AM
Frank Cox
 
Default smartd and palimpsest

On Thu, 11 Aug 2011 20:42:46 -0400
Robert Heller wrote:

> Almost all modern disk are S.M.A.R.T capable. What this means is that
> various information about the disk, mostly relating to its health can be
> monitored. This includes things like sector errors. If smartd is
> running root will get E-Mail if/when something (however minor) happens
> to the disk.

As smartd isn't running in the default Centos configuration, where does
palimpsest get its information? Is it a self-contained program that doesn't
require smartd or is something else happening behind the scenes?

--
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www.creekfm.com - FIFTY THOUSAND WATTS of POW WOW POWER!
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Old 08-12-2011, 04:05 AM
"Joseph L. Casale"
 
Default smartd and palimpsest

>As smartd isn't running in the default Centos configuration, where does
>palimpsest get its information? Is it a self-contained program that doesn't
>require smartd or is something else happening behind the scenes?

I think you misunderstood the first reply: smartd, as in the init script is a means
to alert root of pending issues, _it_ doesn't present the data, _that_ init script
simply checks it and reports it. You don't need it running to make the data
available, the attributes exist in the device.

jlc
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Old 08-12-2011, 04:24 AM
Frank Cox
 
Default smartd and palimpsest

On Fri, 12 Aug 2011 04:05:47 +0000
Joseph L. Casale wrote:

> I think you misunderstood the first reply: smartd, as in the init script is a
> means to alert root of pending issues, _it_ doesn't present the data, _that_
> init script simply checks it and reports it. You don't need it running to
> make the data available, the attributes exist in the device.

Which still doesn't answer my question. Perhaps I'm wording it poorly -- I'll
try again:

I load palimpsest and click on the entry for my hard drive, then click on the
button labelled "SMART Data" and I see this on the first line of the window
that opens:

Updated: 14 minutes ago

My question is, what happened 14 minutes ago? I didn't do anything 14 minutes
ago, so something apparently ran in the background and updated that data. What
is that something and how often does it run?



--
MELVILLE THEATRE ~ Real D 3D Digital Cinema ~ www.melvilletheatre.com
www.creekfm.com - FIFTY THOUSAND WATTS of POW WOW POWER!
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Old 08-12-2011, 04:31 AM
"Joseph L. Casale"
 
Default smartd and palimpsest

>Which still doesn't answer my question. Perhaps I'm wording it poorly -- I'll
>try again:

Perhaps palimpsest runs smartctl and queries the device itself? Perhaps it borrowed
code from the project and runs the query itself? I don't have any servers with GUI's,
couldn't tell you...
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Old 08-12-2011, 12:11 PM
Robert Heller
 
Default smartd and palimpsest

At Thu, 11 Aug 2011 22:24:23 -0600 CentOS mailing list <centos@centos.org> wrote:

>
> On Fri, 12 Aug 2011 04:05:47 +0000
> Joseph L. Casale wrote:
>
> > I think you misunderstood the first reply: smartd, as in the init script is a
> > means to alert root of pending issues, _it_ doesn't present the data, _that_
> > init script simply checks it and reports it. You don't need it running to
> > make the data available, the attributes exist in the device.
>
> Which still doesn't answer my question. Perhaps I'm wording it poorly -- I'll
> try again:
>
> I load palimpsest and click on the entry for my hard drive, then click on the
> button labelled "SMART Data" and I see this on the first line of the window
> that opens:
>
> Updated: 14 minutes ago
>
> My question is, what happened 14 minutes ago? I didn't do anything 14 minutes
> ago, so something apparently ran in the background and updated that data. What
> is that something and how often does it run?

The disk's *firmware* updated itself. So long as the *disk* is powered
up and spinning, its *firmware* is 'running' (or runs when the disk is
accessed or something like that). Modern disks are a long, long way
from the simple MFM drives of the 1970s (which presented little more
than a buffered interface to the drive mechanism and read/write heads
to the host controller -- eg little more than a simple floppy disk
drive) -- modern disks have actual embedded micro-processors on them
doing various stuff, including monitoring and logging things like
sector errors, drive temp., and so on.

Appearently, palimpsest does some of what smartctl does: accesses the
SMART data on the drive. This is completely independent of smartd.
Smartd is a daemon that runs in the background and periodicly accesses
the SMART data on the drive(s) and if there is some sort of notworthly
problem or condition (too hot, bad sectors being remapped, etc.), it
logs it and sends an E-Mail to root@localhost.

>
>
>

--
Robert Heller -- 978-544-6933 / heller@deepsoft.com
Deepwoods Software -- http://www.deepsoft.com/
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Old 08-12-2011, 05:27 PM
Frank Cox
 
Default smartd and palimpsest

On Fri, 12 Aug 2011 08:11:58 -0400
Robert Heller wrote:

> The disk's *firmware* updated itself.
...
> Appearently, palimpsest does some of what smartctl does: accesses the
> SMART data on the drive. This is completely independent of smartd.
> Smartd is a daemon that runs in the background and periodicly accesses
> the SMART data on the drive(s) and if there is some sort of notworthly
> problem or condition (too hot, bad sectors being remapped, etc.), it
> logs it and sends an E-Mail to root@localhost.

Ah! The light just came on.

Thanks ever so much for the explanation!

--
MELVILLE THEATRE ~ Real D 3D Digital Cinema ~ www.melvilletheatre.com
www.creekfm.com - FIFTY THOUSAND WATTS of POW WOW POWER!
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Old 08-12-2011, 07:36 PM
Keith Roberts
 
Default smartd and palimpsest

On Fri, 12 Aug 2011, Robert Heller wrote:

> The disk's *firmware* updated itself. So long as the *disk* is powered
> up and spinning, its *firmware* is 'running' (or runs when the disk is
> accessed or something like that). Modern disks are a long, long way
> from the simple MFM drives of the 1970s (which presented little more
> than a buffered interface to the drive mechanism and read/write heads
> to the host controller -- eg little more than a simple floppy disk
> drive) -- modern disks have actual embedded micro-processors on them
> doing various stuff, including monitoring and logging things like
> sector errors, drive temp., and so on.

So does accessing some of the smart data cause any disk i/o
at all, or is this all done from directly firmware?

Kind Regards,

Keith Roberts

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Old 08-12-2011, 08:22 PM
Robert Heller
 
Default smartd and palimpsest

At Fri, 12 Aug 2011 20:36:25 +0100 (BST) CentOS mailing list <centos@centos.org> wrote:

>
> On Fri, 12 Aug 2011, Robert Heller wrote:
>
> > The disk's *firmware* updated itself. So long as the *disk* is powered
> > up and spinning, its *firmware* is 'running' (or runs when the disk is
> > accessed or something like that). Modern disks are a long, long way
> > from the simple MFM drives of the 1970s (which presented little more
> > than a buffered interface to the drive mechanism and read/write heads
> > to the host controller -- eg little more than a simple floppy disk
> > drive) -- modern disks have actual embedded micro-processors on them
> > doing various stuff, including monitoring and logging things like
> > sector errors, drive temp., and so on.
>
> So does accessing some of the smart data cause any disk i/o
> at all, or is this all done from directly firmware?

Depends. Some of the SMART information is stored on special sectors of
the platter (sectors that are not part of the sectors available for
normal use). Some of the information is fixed burned into the
(E*)ROM(s) (eg serial numbers) on the disk's logic board and some
information is 'live' (eg current disk temperature). There IS I/O
between the host system and the disk's logic board.

>
> Kind Regards,
>
> Keith Roberts
>
> -----------------------------------------------------------------
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>
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>

--
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Deepwoods Software -- http://www.deepsoft.com/
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