For my Xen server setup one key bit was using relatively cheap Dell (LSI) Perc5 raid hbas. I bought one and ran into a world of trouble trying to use it in my Intel DP35DPM mainboard’s PCIe 16x slot.
as it turns out, this is a common issue due to some problem with P35/P38 chipsets.
A friend of mine found the following thread:
I will summarize it here later on, short version: Disable two pins.
A few months later I happened to find out this board, to make things worse, does NOT work headless at all.
And once you put a card into the PEG slot, it will “override” a card in the pcu slot.
Also, I should point out that the guy (lets say his name was “John Doe”) at Intels web support was a completely useless idiot and that my “boxed” board was considered an OEM piece and will not get real support. In the end I really had no options left than telling *him* that he would never be able to help me.
Of course the firstline guy can’t handle or solve bios bugs, but asking me if the “8x PCIe Dell Perc raid controller” were seated in a PCI or PCI Express[tm] slot and thinking it must be a graphics card shows an incredible amount of dumbness / lack of knowlegde.
Quite sad to experience stuff like that after being so happy with sticking to “intel only” for some time.