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Feature request: Support RAID #987

ms178 opened this Issue Jun 12, 2018 · 8 comments


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ms178 commented Jun 12, 2018

Submission type

  • Bug report
  • Feature Request

Info regarding which version of Calamares is used, which Distribution

Manjaro 18.0 Beta 2

Provide information on how the disks are set up, in detail, with full logs of commands issued

RAID-0 as configured in the Intel Option ROM of my BIOS. It is on a X58 mainboard with ICH10R.

What do you expect to have happen when Calamares installs?

Seeing my Intel ICH10R ( = fake RAID / software RAID solution which is provided on Intel mainboard chipsets) RAID-0 partitions and having the possibility to install the OS on one of them.

Describe the issue you encountered

Currently, the installer only gets to see both HDDs which are physically installed on the system as SATA devices but not the already RAIDed parititions. Hence using these is not possible currently.

Steps to reproduce the problem

Using the mentioned distro ISO and try to install it on a RAID-0 partition on a Intel ICH10R (or possibly any other Intel RAID) system.

Include the installation.log (usually ~/Calamares/Calamares/Calamares.log, of the user Calamares runs as):

n/a since installation is not possible due to not supporting RAID-0


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ms178 commented Jun 12, 2018

By the way, the same issue was already mentioned in #794 and #806 - but as it still persits, this is requested again specifically as a feature request and not a bug this time.


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adriaandegroot commented Jun 14, 2018

Good of you to refer to previous issues that were filed. I think part of the problem is illustrated in #794: I don't have that kind of hardware, and have no idea what it's supposed to look like when it is working. So it's a good feature request, but it's going to need someone to specifically work on it (and submit a PR which looks at least plausible, as opposed to just hacking in some extra calls to mdadm or whatever).

It's possible -- likely even -- that there is also an issue in KPMCore: does KDE partition manager see this kind of RAID'ed disks?


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abucodonosor commented Jun 14, 2018


There is no difference to mdadm SW RAID on howto handle these , except two things.

  • 1 On FAKE RAID the user can name the ARRAY like he wishes with
    the Intel RAID util from BIOS.
  • 2 The array is assembled with metadata etc from BIOS util nothing to do from us.

Meaning for us once normal RAID is supported this:

On RAID UIX an 'Want INTEL FAKE RAID' kind option ( please note no magic can be really
done to detect since you need set the Controller to IDE , AHCI , ATA or RAID in BIOS )

Then offer the user to select his array name and jump over 'create your raid array(s)'
step to 'partition' you array , format etc.

That is all to support that.


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kkofler commented Jun 14, 2018

Uh, actually, the Linux kernel knows 2 kinds of RAID setups:

  • mdraid: pure software RAID set up with mdadm,
  • dmraid: software/fake RAID set up by a "hardware RAID" controller, detected by device-mapper.

(True hardware RAID is entirely transparent to the kernel to begin with, so should need no special setup.)

As I understand it, what is requested here is support for dmraid, not mdraid. But mdraid is not yet supported either.


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ms178 commented Jun 19, 2018

I might add that the Ubuntu and Suse Tumbleweed installer get this (mostly) right and recognizes the Intel Fake-Raid partitions correctly. The correct placement of the bootloader was a minor issue. Maybe a look into their sources could be a source for inspiration? By the way, mdraid is requested by me here as it is the suggested way even from Intel, see this White Paper from 2011:

A very helpful explanation can be read here:


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Vfreeze31 commented Sep 20, 2018

Hi, I am looking at moving over to Manjaro for my Gaming PC but this seems to be the one thing holding me back. I have a system with 3 SSD's that I like to put in a RAID 0 for performance as I am not worried about the longevity of my game binaries.

The following forum article says someone is looking into this but it has not been updated since late last year.

I am wondering what the current progress is and if it is going to be something that we may be able to see implemented soon.

If not, I am happy to try testing workarounds as I am currently doing using virtual machines with 3 small VHD's to try and get a RAID installation going.

To give an idea, I am partitioning the HDD's into 3:

  • 1GB for boot (mirroring only between drives)
  • Most of remaining space for RAID-0
  • A couple of GB for SWAP

I am then creating md0 and trying to continue the installation through the GUI but RAID drive is not visible in the installer.

Please let me know your thoughts at your convenience.

Iestyn Best


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adriaandegroot commented Sep 20, 2018

@Vfreeze31 as a workaround, assuming your interest is mostly in RAID-0 for the gaming bits, is to install Manjaro first to a custom partitioning scheme with just space for / (and possibly swap), then once the system is installed, set up the RAID bits by hand.

That said, Calamares master (will be 3.2.3) has some RAID features from Caio merged in. That may help. For 3.2.3 there is nothing particular planned for RAID support -- I consider it pretty low-priority compared to other fixes and improvements in flexibility of Calamares.


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cjlcarvalho commented Dec 20, 2018

Features for full support for software RAID (i.e. mdraid) are almost completed in kpmcore raid-support branch, but I have to finish implementing some particular features and fixing some processes like resizing and deleting. I hope to get a time during the next months to code it.

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