add new disk (usb stick) to offload services

  • Hello,

    i want to add a new disk (usb stick) to a pair of SG2440 to be used for ntopng's db offloading and avoid writes on internal SSD. I placed it on the frontal (bottom) usb port. OS is factory embedded ADI 2.4.4-p1.
    I successfully initialized new disk (fdisk, bsdlabel, newfs commands) and mount it with no issue at all.

    dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/da0 bs=1k count=1
    fdisk da0
    bsdlabel -w da0 auto 
    newfs /dev/da0
    mount /dev/da0 /mnt/ntopng

    Since i did not use any "-BI" option with fdisk i expected usb stick to be skipped at boot time but my box halt on manual selection just before pfsense splash screen. In this case labels are:

    F1: pfsense
    F5: Drive 2

    If i press F5 it reads my usb stick but there aren't boot stuff there so it cannot load, with F1 it starts pfsense.

    If i remove usb stick labels on boot time turn to:

    F1: pfsense
    F5: Drive 1

    and within 2 secs pfsense autostarts.

    What can i do?

  • Netgate Administrator

    You can boot into the boot-order payload from Coreboot and change it to boot from eMMC first. You will have to select USB manually if you ever need to re-install though.

    Better would be to add an mSATA device and just install to and boot from that rather than trying to use two drives which pfSense is not setup to use.


  • Thank you Steve. I did some test with boot priority options editing payload. I set eMMC but it works 9/10 times. Sometime it hangs on F12 boot menu selection. Any idea? Could this be related to coreboot version or usb format type (ufs)?

    BIOS Vendor: coreboot
    Version: ADI_RCCVE-
    Release Date: Mon Sep 18 2017

  • Netgate Administrator

    Hmm, hard to say what might cause that. Does it do it if the USB drive is not present at all?

    I still recommend using mSATA instead if you can.


  • I would like to install and mSATA disk but there was not space close firewall boxes so i had to rely on usb stick.

    I did not report anymore issues with F12 menu. It always go smooth and pfsense boot up.
    I then configured ntopng to work with new disk throught a symlink but at first restart while pfsense was loading, i got a mount error over usb stick. I did an fsck, reboot and i had a clean boot. Ntop automatically restarted but lost settings.

    It seems every reboot leave usb stick's fs in a bad state and fsck repair corrupt ntopng's db.

    Since working with symlink is not a good idea, i would like to know how to edit ntopng's db location (only old infos on forums)

    (sorry if query is no more OP)

  • Netgate Administrator

    @nagaraja said in add new disk (usb stick) to offload services:

    I would like to install and mSATA disk but there was not space close firewall boxes

    Perhaps I'm missing something but the SG-2440 has an mSATA slot on the motherboard. There is no space requirement, you just fit it in the device.


  • I already have an mSATA disk inside. Do you mean is there a secondary slot?

  • Netgate Administrator

    No sorry, I had assumed you wanted to avoid writes to the on-baord eMMC. Writes to an mSATA SSD should be no problem.


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