Re: ServerWorks LE and MTRR

From: Eric W. Biederman (
Date: Mon Apr 30 2001 - 03:55:26 EST

Steffen Persvold <> writes:

> wrote:
> > On Sun, 29 Apr 2001, Steffen Persvold wrote:
> >
> > > I've learned it the hard way, I have two types : Compaq DL360 (rev 5) and a
> > > Tyan S2510 (rev 6). On the compaq machine I constantly get data corruption
> on
> > > the last double word (4 bytes) in a 64 byte PCI burst when I use write
> > > combining on the CPU. On the Tyan however the transfer is always ok.
> > >
> >
> > Are you sure that is not due to board design differences?
> No I can't be 100% certain that the layout of the board isn't the reason since
> I haven't asked ServerWorks about this and it doesn't say anything in their
> docs (yes my company has the NDA, so I shouldn't get to much in detail here),
> but if this was the case it would be totally wrong to disable write combining
> on any LE chipset.
> The test case that I have been using to trigger this is sort of special because
> we are using SCI shared memory adapters to write (with PIO) into remote nodes
> memory, and the bandwidth tends to get quite high (approx 170 MByte/sec on LE
> with write combining). I've been able to run this case on 5 different
> motherboards using the LE and HE-SL ServerWorks chipsets, but only two of them
> are LE (the DL360 and the S2510). Everything works fine with write-combining on
> every motherboard except the DL360 (which has rev 5).
> One basic test case that I haven't tried, could be to enable write-combining on
> your PCI graphics adapter memory and see if the X display gets screwed up.
> I will try to get some information from ServerWorks about this problem, but I'm
> not sure if ServerWorks would be happy if I told you the answer (because of the
> NDA).

I'd like to put my small plug in that this make me a little nervous.
It could also be a problem with the firmware (aka BIOS) missetting
something up. Working with linuxBIOS I have seen burst-writes
(enabled with write-combining or write-back) cause data corruption
when non-burst-writes to memory don't cause problems, when the memory
controller is setup wrong. (This is was with intel 440GX & 440BX

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This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Mon Apr 30 2001 - 21:00:24 EST