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December 16, 2015

CentOS and EFI on Supermicro servers

Filed under: General — admin @ 1:59 pm

 

UPDATED 2016-08-14: We found the source of the issue to be a bug in Supermicro BIOS C-State. This discussion explains more: Serverfault BSOD Hyper-V VM. Supermicro as of today hasn’t released a BIOS update even though they’ve confirmed the problem.

To summarize, the solution is in the Advanced Power Management of the BIOS, set the BIOS power management to the following:

Advanced Power Management Configuration

CPU P State Control:

EIST(P-States) – [Enable]
Turbo Mode – [Enable]
P-state Coordination – [HW_ALL]

CPU P State Control

CPU C State Control:

Package C State Limit – [C2 state]
CPU C3 Report – [Disable]
CPU C6 Report – [Disable]
Enhanced Halt State (C1E) – [Disable]

CPU C State Control

Original Post:

We just added new supermicro servers based on the new motherbaord X10DRT-PT and SYS-2028TP Servers , started testing it out, doing what we all techies do, try to make it work!

To our surprise, when we tried to install CentOS 7 or 6.7 x64 on the server, it failed with constant reboot problem when CentOS setup loads.

Well, a brand new system, what could be wrong? Pulled up MemTest86+ and the RAM checked out OK. Perhaps Disk issue?  Tried different disks and all is ok.

The only thing left is BIOS issue. Sure enough, it turned out that for a strange reason CentOS does not play well with some of the “Energy Efficiency” options in the BIOS CPU Menu.

Once we’ve disabled the energy efficiency options, the system ran like a rabbit in a field! Moral of the story, check the BIOS for ACPI or energy options that may hinder performance or even cause issues.

In fact, often times we do disable power-saving options because we believe they cause more trouble than desired.

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