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4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?

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Drew Lahat
4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Aug 7, 2015 at 5:26:56 pm

Hi everyone,

Is there any 4Gb fibre-channel HBA that has working drivers and is known to work reliably under 10.10? (Not to mention one that is expected to work in 10.11).

Support and driver development for the venerable ATTO Celerity 4Gb cards was dropped as of 10.8.5. Do the latest ATTO drivers (4.0.1, I believe) install at all on 10.10? Has anyone tried running them in a production environment?
Yes, I'm aware the FC-81 (and 82) are current and support 4Gb connections, but those cards are $1,200 apiece and we have ten FC-41 and 42's in here. Understandably, no one here is excited to drop $12k to get the same functionality. (We're very happy with the 4Gb bandwidth and have no need for 8Gb.)

What about the Apple/LSI 4Gb cards? Are they still supported?

What about Qlogic or other vendors?

Using MetaSAN here with a SANBox 5602, currently all systems are on 10.85. MetaSAN is fairly hardware-agnostic as long as the FC infrastructure runs smoothly.

Thanks


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Bob Zelin
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Aug 7, 2015 at 8:41:15 pm

Hi Drew -
you do know that MetaSAN is discontinued, and the new product is -

http://www.tiger-technology.com/products/tiger-series/tiger-store/

and when you say "you are full of crap, MetaSAN is not discontinued -
http://www.tiger-technology.com/products/metasan-family/

just like with all excellent products from companies like Apple, Tiger Technology, ATTO, and EVERYONE else, you do not get to spend zero money - you will continue to spend money, until the day you retire, and then you will spend all your money on medical insurance. Welcome to the club.

Bob Zelin

Bob Zelin
Rescue 1, Inc.
bobzelin@icloud.com


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Drew Lahat
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Aug 7, 2015 at 9:06:03 pm

Bob, you always crack me up. :) Yes I'm very much aware that they ceased development. I just pulled up my notes from Sep. 2013 when I talked to Bernard Lamborelle and got the first heads up about it. And this morning I read (again) the EOL notice, they will continue to release maintenance updates to support OS updates in the end of 2015, just no new features. So 10.10 is currently supported in MetaSAN (clients only, no MDC) and even 10.11 may be.

If we were to drop $12k on new 8Gb fiber HBAs and wanted to actually enjoy the extra bandwidth, we'd need two new 5802's ($17k), new storage (another $20k), oh wait, and we'd probably have to replace the OM2 fiber in the walls. In other words, the facility will likely be going straight to 10GbE in 2017, if we're not all using subspace telepathy by then.

All this, and your reply (and mine) were completely off-topic. How about "the Apple 4Gb HBA still works fine in 10.10"? I'm yet to hear direct confirmation, just people excited about XSAN living strong in 10.10 and 10.11.


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Bob Zelin
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Aug 8, 2015 at 12:22:40 pm

You have atto fc41 and atto fc42
They have drivers up to 10.8.5
No support for 10.10 so of course no el capital support

Who was crazy enough to ever get the apple lsi cards?

Bob

Bob Zelin
Rescue 1, Inc.
bobzelin@icloud.com


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Drew Lahat
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Aug 10, 2015 at 10:44:27 pm

Anyone with an XSAN :) I helped support a few of those around L.A. back in 2007-2010, and while the LSI's weren't quite as good as the Atto's, I don't recall egregious issues with them. (Unlike OD binding, Promise array configuration scripts, and all that good stuff.)


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rep_eric
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Oct 26, 2015 at 8:56:44 pm

Hi Drew, I'm in the same boat as you. (went to upgrade to 10.10 and realized the drivers didn't work) Did you end up finding a solution? Thanks!


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Drew Lahat
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Oct 27, 2015 at 12:16:15 am
Last Edited By Drew Lahat on Oct 27, 2015 at 2:32:31 am

Hi Eric,
I do believe that the Apple/LSI cards are by far the most affordable option to have 4Gb fiber on 10.10 or 10.11.

I haven't seen it with my own eyes yet; I did recommend that route to a colleague, and he just updated me that it's been working well for the past week and a half - new Mac Pro and the Apple/LSI card in a (Sonnet) Thunderbolt box. He did have some glitches prior to that but wasn't able to isolate the cause, whether or not it was related to the fiber card.


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Bob Zelin
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Nov 13, 2015 at 11:55:59 pm

it is very important to me to point out that people like Drew that are trying to keep old 4Gig Fiber technology alive are completely crazy.

This is the link from Apple on 4G fiber cards from February 2015
https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201631

the world has moved on. You should not be using these products anymore. Only a fool would be using Apple/LSI 4g fiber products today in late 2015.

You need to update your system. End of story.

Bob Zelin

Bob Zelin
Rescue 1, Inc.
bobzelin@icloud.com


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Drew Lahat
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Nov 14, 2015 at 3:37:53 am

Oh Bob... I should add "fool" to my business card. To further horrify you, I've done consulting and system integration in a professional capacity for (happy) clients around L.A. for the past 8 years. I should contact them all to notify them about the nutcase I am.

Back on topic, 4Gb fiber was an excellent and robust technology for quite a while, and its sustained 380MB/s is at a sweet spot for online HD workflows. If a facility has it working, it's still working. If they're considering a multi-year upgrade plan, then of course 4Gb is obsolete. I tend to forego 8/16Gb FC and recommend 10GbE instead.

In your universe everyone has moved on. In mine, it's an ongoing process as it is gradually phased out.


PS Reminds me of my visit to Modern Videofilm when they said they still had some Cat3 in use running 10Mb/s Ethernet. In 2010.


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Hans Lameijer
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Apr 29, 2016 at 11:27:38 am

Hi Drew,

I know this is an old post, but anyway follow this link, it helped loading the FC41ES drivers. http://dimig.ga/2015/10/16/atto-celerity-setup/

cheers

H


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Drew Lahat
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Apr 29, 2016 at 4:23:08 pm

Hi, good to know. Thanks!


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Scott Thomas
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Nov 13, 2016 at 10:19:28 am

I had the Atto 4Gb FC cards and had to make the leap to Mac OS 10.11 Thankfully we had a bunch of the LSI cards that came from other systems.

Yes, it's crazy, but my other option is a QNAP box connected via 10Gb Ethernet that only works when it wants to. Most recently, the authentication that was tethered to our domain was a problem. I could connect to one share, but not the one a needed. IT turned off all authentication and then had to do a permission reset before it would work.

I don't trust the QNAP, so I'm forced to rely on two 10 year old Ciprico Media Vaults... and now I'm running into issues with 10 year old SFP modules. Diode lasers only last so long.

On the other hand, I'm amazed with how long these things have lasted.

http://scottgfx.com


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Bob Zelin
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Nov 19, 2016 at 11:33:37 pm

scott Thomas writes -

"Yes, it's crazy, but my other option is a QNAP box connected via 10Gb Ethernet that only works when it wants to. Most recently, the authentication that was tethered to our domain was a problem. I could connect to one share, but not the one a needed. IT turned off all authentication and then had to do a permission reset before it would work.

I don't trust the QNAP, so I'm forced to rely on two 10 year old Ciprico Media Vaults... and now I'm running into issues with 10 year old SFP modules. Diode lasers only last so long."

Hi Scott -
since I use QNAP's now on almost every installation, and they are completely reliable, this is what I would like you to try, to show you that they DO work. Move the QNAP near you, move the 10G switch near you. Forget our IT department. Forget your domain - no authentications. Just stop all that nonsense. You are on a closed network. In the QNAP, create a simple shared folder. Click on Users, and enter a user name - NOT TIED to active directory or open directory. Just a simple user name, and assign this user to the shared folder you just created. That's it.
Now go to work. You tell me how unstable it is now. You tell me if you ever develop permissions problems, or the QNAP dismounts, or anything else. OK - so when you see it work, run some Cat 6 cables on the floor to a couple of other users, to the 10G switch, and put in their user name in the USERS icon in the QNAP GUI, and let them all work off of this - and DO NOT involve your IT department, and do not make the users authenticate to the SERVER. Setup
SIMPLE SHARING - no ties to active or open directory. I bet it works great. And if it doesn't work great, I will help you FOR FREE to make it work great. You only have ONE problem from what I can see - an IT department that wants to overcomplicate a simple stable system. You already own everything you need for a perfectly working system and not relying on 15 year old Ciprico Fiber 4G hardware.

Bob Zelin

Bob Zelin
Rescue 1, Inc.
bobzelin@icloud.com


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Scott Thomas
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Jan 21, 2017 at 3:51:07 am

Bob,

Thank you for the response. Sorry I'm so late in finding it.

The QNAP system since its installation has had other mount points added by IT and is being used for other purposes in the building. So I don't think I can just go in and ask them to start changing it around. I'm not sure what's they've done to it but the speeds are super slow now. (~70MB/s Read & Write) I have talked to our chief engineer and I think he see the issues. I've been looking into new storage for my room that can perhaps be expanded to also cover our three Mac edit systems. The next problem is getting them to budget it.

Maybe it's another QNAP? SmallTree? Tiger SAN? Don't know yet.

Thanks again.

http://scottgfx.com


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Jay Mahavier
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Nov 7, 2016 at 11:01:07 pm

Did you try this?

http://dgtech.ga/2015/10/16/atto-celerity-setup/

I have not, but who knows...

Jay


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Bob Zelin
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Nov 8, 2016 at 1:15:40 pm

why would you want to keep an old 4G fiber network running, when you can buy wonderful fast modern products, from even the expensive companies like AVID Nexus and Facilis 8D with 32 TB for around 10 grand.
Are you trying to keep an Antique XSAN running when any cheap NAS blows the doors off of it.

Face it - your old expensive equipment is obsolete, and you will not get one cent for it on ebay. This has happened over the years in our business - from 1" machines, D2 machines, Dig Beta, even HD Cam Decks and DVCProHD Decks.
And old AVID's. You can build a 6 seat AVID Facility with AVID Nexus shared storage for the price of one old AVID Symphony, or AVID Unity (including chairs and desks).

It's OLD - THROW IT OUT.

Bob Zelin

Bob Zelin
Rescue 1, Inc.
bobzelin@icloud.com


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Bob Zelin
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10? - RANT !
on Nov 8, 2016 at 3:27:31 pm

I am going to strangle Jay Mahavier

here is a wonderful AVID feature article on his workflow with Robert Rodriguez using the AVID ISIS (which uses
1G Ethernet) -
http://www.avid.com/pro-tools-hd/customer-stories/detail?story=Sin-City

Editing Sin City: A Dame to Kill For involved myriad editorial venues and staff simultaneously. Rodriguez worked from his Austin, Texas home where he has his own Media Composer and Pro Tools systems. Editor Ian Silverstein, first assistant editor/digital conform editor Jay Mahavier and VFX editor Travis Smith were based at Rodriguez’s Troublemaker Studios in Austin.

So you are an AVID editor, you work with MAJOR production companies on MAJOR feature films, and you are trying to cheap out on updating your shared storage from some ANTIQUE Unity system, instead of buying this -
https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1153056-REG/avid_9935_65955_00_isis_...

14 grand for a complete AVID Nexis Pro with 20 TB of storage - too expensive ? WHAT THE HELL is wrong with you Jay (or the guy that you are working for) - this is what a USED ISIS would have cost just a couple of years ago.
What is happening to this industry, where NO ONE - not even the top professionals like Jay Mahavier are willing to spend ANY MONEY on new modern equipment, that will do exactly what they want.

Is 14 grand over budget for the major feature films that you work on ?

Bob Zelin

Bob Zelin
Rescue 1, Inc.
bobzelin@icloud.com


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Tim Kwong
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Nov 30, 2016 at 2:39:09 am

Just thought I would share this little bit of info... I upgraded to Yosemite from Mavericks a few days ago and learned the hard way that the ATTO FC-42es was no longer recognized. Before I went back to the original Mav config, I went ahead and upgraded to El Cap just for a test. When I did that, mac os x recognized the old ATTO card, and I was actually able to start up XSAN and connect. Saves me $1000 on each ATTO FC-81en


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Ian Liuzzi-Fedun
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Jan 4, 2017 at 6:15:37 pm

Throwing my two cents in here mostly to rile Bob.

I have run Apple LSI fiber cards on 10.10 without any problem.

Also, this is an industry trend and just a penny-wise pound foolish one where spending nothing is a lot better now, even if one has to spend twice as much as they might have otherwise spent in the future.

I have had a few issues with 4GB fiber channel and am being told it's due to my antiquated LSI Apple fiber cards. I have some tape drives for LTO archiving I use and while I don't need the throughput of 8GB fiber, that is what it might come to. From someone who doesn't want to spend the money and wants to hold out as long as possible to see if there is a better move, this is a predicament: do I potentially get rid of my issues by investing in some new cards at $1.2k a piece or do I wait it out until I'm forced to upgrade? I'm sure it'll tickle you even more to know that I have all of this running on an Xserve 2006.



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Tim Kwong
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Jan 10, 2017 at 5:48:19 am

**UPDATE

Updated 10.11.4 to 10.11.6, and the ATTO FC-42ES was no longer working. After many failed attempts of reinstalling drivers or OS updates from Mavericks to El Cap, I almost gave up.

My saving grace was from the few hackintosh systems that I built, and discovered that OS X 10.10 and 10.11 updates were simply deleting the old ATTO kext files from the system/library/extensions folder. If I injected the kexts from a working OS X, to 10.10 or 10.11, the FC-42es adapter would continue to work on with out any issues.

Want to save $1,200?! download a kext installer (http://tonymacx86.blogspot.com/2010/08/kextbeast-simple-kext-installer.html)

Then copy your original ATTO kexts, found in the S/L/E folder. Inject the old kexts after you upgraded your OS, and voila!


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Drew Lahat
Re: 4Gb fiber cards on OS X 10.10?
on Jan 18, 2017 at 7:19:01 am

Obviously this is a topic of interest, and has become one of the better spots online to discuss the matter since I started the thread (just ask Google).

If the facility grows, the work load grows, or clients move from HD to 4K, there's plenty of reason to invest in proper gear upgrades. But if you work in HD, especially in short form, 4Gb is still a sweet spot for an editing bay. The bandwidth of a 1080p ProRes(HQ) stream or the length of a theatrical trailer haven't changed since 2009... and 4Gb Fibre Channel is a known and proven technology, with ever more tempting deals on eBay on robust professional 4Gb gear. The wires are already in the wall, and if you know what you're doing, you can leverage MPIO and enjoy redundancy and double or quadruple the bandwidth.

I think this is an excellent case of forced obsolescence, since some clients don't need 8Gb and 16Gb, but the manufacturers move at the speed of R&D and their competition, so they push new technology and abandon the old, to maintain revenue.

I do not advocate sticking with 4Gb if you have any choice. The support is gone, the laser diodes are aging, and you're relaying on hacks in a professional production environment to bridge the gap between contemporary software and EOL'd drivers. If you can help it, ditch it, join the IT revolution, and switch to 10GbE. You'll enjoy more vendors to choose from and more competitive prices than 8Gb FC (which is in its own already outdated). But if your boss/client is making you keep their 4Gb FC infrastructure alive... there's this thread. :)


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