Dell PowerEdge R320, JBOD, mfi(4), and gpart(8)

One of the old webservers at work, a Dell PowerEdge R200, crashed a couple of weeks ago. I suspect the six year old motherboard finally gave up.

A new server was installed this afternoon. The new server, a Dell PowerEdge R320, was ordered with four SAS drives, each of 300 GB, spinning at 15k RPM. When the Dell PERC H310 RAID controller runs its disks in JBOD mode, the disks are named /dev/mfisyspdN.

Each disk exhibited a MBR partition table and a NTFS partition. I wanted to use FreeBSD, GPT, and ZFS, and thus I wanted to get rid of the MBR partition table.

Simply running gpart destroy mfisyspd0, resulted in “mfisyspd0: Device busy“. Only by running gpart destroy -F mfisyspd0, was I able to remove the MBR partition table from each drive.


Accessing the onboard iDRAC7 proved a bit difficult as the web screen shown while “Default Password Warning” is in effect, is simply unintelligible. I tried using IE 11 (11.0.9600.17959) and Google Chrome (44.0.2403.157 m (64-bit)). Select the lowest radio button and click on the barely visible button in the lower right corner. This will bring you further into the iDRAC7 web interface where you can actually configure the iDRAC7 and get rid of the silly “Default Password Warning”.