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Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Adding a Couple of World's Biggest and Most Expensive Hard Drives: IBM 3390 DASD on S/390 Mainframe

IBM 3390 hard drives - direct access storage device
IBM 3390 direct access storage device
Picture courtesy: IBM


So I added a couple of the world's biggest and most expensive disk drives to IBM S/390 z/Architecture mainframe running Ubuntu 18 Linux. In real life, this would have set me back by almost half a million dollars in today's money. Fortunately, I actually spent $0.00 thanks to the rock-solid Hercules-emulated IBM S/390 running Ubuntu Linux 18.

Adding new storage to big-iron is a bit different from adding SCSI or IDE disks to more familiar computers! This post chronicles the steps.



On the host running Hercules, create the virtual disk image file using the dasdinit tool (part of Hercules); new DASD device with device-number 0122:

dasdinit -z -linux ./dasd/ubuntu-s390x.0122.disk 3390-3 0x0122 3200


Edit the Hercules configuration file and add the new dasd image filename for the new device number:

# .-----------------------Device number
# |     .-----------------Device type
# |     |       .---------File name and parameters
# |     |       |
# V     V       V
#---    ----    --------------------

# Display Terminals
0700 3270
0701 3270

# dasd
0120 3390 ./dasd/ubuntu-s390x.0120.disk
0121 3390 ./dasd/ubuntu-s390x.0121.disk
0122 3390 ./dasd/ubuntu-s390x.0122.disk


Then start Hercules and log into the emulated Ubuntu s390x as root.

Make sure Ububtu sees the new drive (although it is not available for use yet). Check for the device number in the output of the lszdev command:

root@s390x:~# lszdev
Reading device information: 100.0% (7/7)
TYPE         ID                 ON   PERS  NAMES
dasd-eckd    0.0.0120           yes  yes   dasda
dasd-eckd    0.0.0121           yes  yes   dasdb
dasd-eckd    0.0.0122           no   no
ctc          0.0.0a00:0.0.0a01  yes  yes   slca00
generic-ccw  0.0.0700           no   no
generic-ccw  0.0.0701           no   no

To activate the new  drive, use the chzdev command and verify with lszdev again:

root@s390x:~# chzdev -e 0122
ECKD DASD 0.0.0122 configured

root@s390x:~# lszdev
Reading device information: 100.0% (7/7)
TYPE         ID                 ON   PERS  NAMES
dasd-eckd    0.0.0120           yes  yes   dasda
dasd-eckd    0.0.0121           yes  yes   dasdb
dasd-eckd    0.0.0122           yes  yes   dasdc
ctc          0.0.0a00:0.0.0a01  yes  yes   slca00
generic-ccw  0.0.0700           no   no
generic-ccw  0.0.0701           no   no

Also use the lsdasd command to see the new drive in the list of drives:

root@s390x:~# lsdasd
Bus-ID     Status      Name      Device  Type  BlkSz  Size      Blocks
==============================================================================
0.0.0120   active      dasda     94:0    ECKD  4096   2347MB    601020
0.0.0121   active      dasdb     94:4    ECKD  4096   1125MB    288000
0.0.0122   active      dasdc     94:8    ECKD  4096   2250MB    576000

At this point, the new uninitialized drive is available with the Linux device name dasdc. As usual, we partition the drive, but using the special fdasd tools (not fdisk). For my case, I just created one big partition spanning the entire drive.

root@s390x:~# fdasd /dev/dasdc
reading volume label ..: VOL1
reading vtoc ..........: ok

Command action
   m   print this menu
   p   print the partition table
   n   add a new partition
   d   delete a partition
   l   list known partition types
   v   change volume serial
   t   change partition type
   r   re-create VTOC and delete all partitions
   u   re-create VTOC re-using existing partition sizes
   s   show mapping (partition number - data set name)
   q   quit without saving changes
   w   write table to disk and exit

Command (m for help): v
Please specify new volume serial (6 characters).
current     : 0X0122
new [0X0122]:

volume identifier changed to '0X0122'

Command (m for help): n
First track (1 track = 48 KByte) ([2]-47999):
Using default value 2
Last track or +size[c|k|m|g] (2-[47999]):
Using default value 47999

Command (m for help): p

Disk /dev/dasdc:
  cylinders ............: 3200
  tracks per cylinder ..: 15
  blocks per track .....: 12
  bytes per block ......: 4096
  volume label .........: VOL1
  volume serial ........: 0X0122
  max partitions .......: 3

 ------------------------------- tracks -------------------------------
               Device      start      end   length   Id  System
          /dev/dasdc1          2    47999    47998    1  Linux native

Command (m for help): w
writing volume label...
writing VTOC...
rereading partition table...


Now at last a familiar command to format the partition with ext4 file system:

root@s390x:~# mkfs.ext4 -t small /dev/dasdc1
mke2fs 1.44.1 (24-Mar-2018)
Creating filesystem with 575976 4k blocks and 576000 inodes
Filesystem UUID: a0010741-a0f4-4465-9629-6fd9a32a2bbc
Superblock backups stored on blocks:
        32768, 98304, 163840, 229376, 294912

Allocating group tables: done
Writing inode tables: done
Writing superblocks and filesystem accounting information: done

The new DASD volume is now ready for use, and can be mounted to a suitable mount-point, or for automatic mounting at boot, to /etc/fstab.

root@s390x:/# mount /dev/dasdc1 /mnt

Many thanks to Frank's post for these steps.

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