Burned myself a "ServeRAID Support CD v8.30 " and a "ServeRAID Application CD v8.30 ".
I booted with the v8.30 Support CD and since the controller BIOS/firmware doesn't detect any drives attached to any channels, it didn't provide me with any new option.
I can add that the ROM Update Wizard in that version won't update a ServeRAID-6M also since they came out with this version for the 8i/8k/8k-l series controller support and this is shown in the IBM ServeRAID Software Matrix.
I then thought that I would try the "IBM Hard Drive Update Program (Windows package) " and took out my Adaptec 2940u/UW to do this but I stopped and thought of a few more things to try with the ServeRAID-6M.
There is a jumper with the mention FLASH beside it, I tried to look up any info of this in the documentation but to no avail. Still I proceeded to install a jumper on it and powered up the machine.
The whole row of RED LEDs lit up and this made the boot-up process skip the POSTing of the card, like it disabled the BIOS of the card.
I then powered down the machine and looked at the Timer block wich is the yellow cube underneath those just mentionned RED LEDs and beside the black connectorthat has silkscreened next to it JTAG.
I looked at its underside with a jewellers monocle/magnifier and saw that I could remove that yellow top. This yellow top is a Lithium battery that powers the chip/IC under it ( I'm learning new stuff here, I had never seen that arrangement) I felt lucky as I was pretty sure I would erase totally the BIOS, except for the boot block,
I then replaced the lithium battery after taking it off for about 30 seconds and I also removed the previously installed jumper. After re-seating the controller on the motherboard, I powered up the system and the ServeRAID-6M POSTed and reported that there was an irrecuperable configuration failure and if I wanted to continu on or press F9 to reset its configuration to a default state; I pressed F9, of course
I restarted the machine and it was the sad same behaviour as if I hadn't done anything
I was resigning to repack the card and make arrangements for its trip back to the seller.
As I was removing the card from my machine, I said to my self that I should make a thourough Visual Inspection of it with my jewellers monocle/magnifier hoping to maybe find a strand of conducting fine wire or a speck of metal or solder, anything that could create a short, solid or intermittent.
I hope you are still with me here
and that this full account is entertaining and maybe even instructive.
Drum roll please --> I found three damaged surfacemount components. They are near the faceplate/backplate of the card on the backside/solderside where there is less parts on.
It appears that the seller has damaged, mishandled the card before puting it in the antistatic bags and in the shipping box before sending it out to me . I looked in the antistatic bags and there was no parts in them.
If you have a ServeRAID-6M next to you please have a look at these three parts:
L6 inductor ( black rectangular)
R158 resistor (very small black rectangular)
C67 capacitor ( very small beige rectangular)
-The resistor was hanging by one side and I succeeded in replacing it and resoldering it.
-The capacitor was very damaged and I evaluated that the card might work without a perfect one
-The inductor was nowhere in whole or in part, but by the size of the two surrounding similar ones
I figured a lenght of small gauge of stranded wire would do the trick in its place.
After this surgery, I re-seated the card in my machine and it worked , it recognized my attached drives to both channels.
I am trying it out with a RAID-0 array and a RAID-5 array. The controller appears to test right
If it performs without any glitch I would consider keeping it.
The seller fully recognized my efforts, didn't have another one to exchange it for and very gentlemanly agreed to compensate me for my work! Another eBay transaction going well