Linux smartd SATA drives support

Posted on in Categories Debian Linux, FAQ, Linux, RedHat/Fedora Linux, Suse Linux, Ubuntu Linux last updated December 12, 2006

smartd is SMART Disk Monitoring Daemon for Linux. Does smartd support SATA drives?

Yes and No.

This is one of the tricky situation – sometime smartd does support SATA drives and sometime it simply does not support smartd.

Smartmontools should work correctly with SATA drives under both Linux 2.4 and 2.6 kernels, if you use the standard IDE drivers in drivers/ide. If you use the new libata drivers, it won’t work correctly because libata doesn’t yet support the needed ATA-passthrough ioctl() calls. Jeff Garzik, the libata developer, says that this support will be added to libata in the future.

smartd does not support SATA drives. However you can try your luck by modifying smartd.conf file:
# vi /etc/smartd.conf

You can add support to smartmontools for a new SATA/libata device adding ‘-d sata’. Typically, to force an SATA disk to run using the standard (non-libata) drivers, you must use the BIOS to select “legacy mode” for the controller.
Look for line that read as follows:
/dev/sda -d ata -H -m [email protected]
Replace with:
/dev/sda -d sata -H -m [email protected]
Save and close file. Restart smartd:
# /etc/init.d/smartd restart

You may need to download and patch the system to use above hack.

Otherwise it is good idea to turn off samrtd. Under RHEL or CentOS or Fedora core type command:
# /etc/init.d/smartd stop
# chkconfig smartd off

See also

=> Monitoring hard disk health with smartd under Linux or UNIX operating systems

Posted by: Vivek Gite

The author is the creator of nixCraft and a seasoned sysadmin and a trainer for the Linux operating system/Unix shell scripting. He has worked with global clients and in various industries, including IT, education, defense and space research, and the nonprofit sector. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+.

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