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MSI GAMING => GAMING Gear => Topic started by: dava4444 on 24-April-19, 10:31:53

Title: MSI M.2 Xpander (Rev 1.1)
Post by: dava4444 on 24-April-19, 10:31:53
Hello

Few weeks ago I bought a MSI Expander from a seller on ebay.

It's a standard piece of kit.. it takes 16 lanes and splits them into 4 x 4 for M.2 drives.
People buy these cars so they can increase the count of PCIE cards, especially when you have blocked slots, which are a total pain in the..
My PC is a HP Z600, dual X5650, 24GB of DDR3, GTX 1070.

So again today, this morning.. I tried again to get this working thing working.

No go.

IF it is the case.. and I now STRONGLY suspect this to be true, that the Xpander card will not work with my setup, I am thoroughly dischufffed with the notion of this artificial block.
My PC will do, x16 and 16x, PCIE 2.0.. so not in the least providing a driver.. is what I would call bunk.

Going on MSI's page for the Xpander does not tell me that they are incompatible.
https://www.msi.com/PC-component/M.2-XPANDER-AERO/Specification (https://www.msi.com/PC-component/M.2-XPANDER-AERO/Specification)

I am left having blown over £100 on something that has wasted my money.
https://support.hp.com/ca-en/document/c01719695 (https://support.hp.com/ca-en/document/c01719695)

Save graphics cards.. I don't see why I should buy another MSI gaming product again. 
This M.2 PCIE merely only needs a driver. The QNAP QM2 I will buy one when I can.. but the being cold way of doing business, for the sake of a driver.
This card does not come with a S/N.
Ms 4454 ver 1.1
Title: Re: MSI M.2 Xpander (Rev 1.1)
Post by: LBJistherealchamp on 25-April-19, 02:24:00
Hi,

It is frustrating that the M.2 XPANDER did not work as you expected.

There is a reason that the M.2 XPANDER card is bundled with a certain motherboard.
Only motherboards supporting PCIE bifurcation (the ability to split the x16 lanes into 4x4 lanes) can fully take advantage of the M.2 XPANDER card.
Title: Re: MSI M.2 Xpander (Rev 1.1)
Post by: dava4444 on 25-April-19, 06:26:06
Thanks for your reply  LBJistherealchamp

I understand what you are saying..  but again this could have been done with a simple driver.

I will put all the PCIE drives back into their adapter cards.. I will note though, when I had them in software raid, I was getting the same speeds are MSI stated they did on their instructional videos, even on PCIE 2.0.

For nothing more than interest.. have a look:

(http://i66.tinypic.com/b63fqd.jpg)

Here's another

(http://i68.tinypic.com/2hx7mrt.jpg)

Nothing fancy required, only the slots and cheap adapters.

I also had higher data amounts back then, but I switched some of my drives for higher capacities. I still have all four drives but only 3 slots.
Just chattin' LBJ.. but I have seen Drive Manuf. slow to a crawl over the last while, shocking we don't have multi layered cards on PCIE for much higher capacities, even 100 TB (at a slower data rate)
https://ftr-ceu.blogspot.com/2019/03/drive-capacities-return-or-drive-is.html (https://ftr-ceu.blogspot.com/2019/03/drive-capacities-return-or-drive-is.html)

Anyhoo.. thanks for taking the time to answer.. even if to boost my morale slightly. You have a great day!
Title: Re: MSI M.2 Xpander (Rev 1.1)
Post by: rbleroy91 on 25-April-19, 12:51:54
Hello,
Unfortunately, this adapter can work only with motherboards supporting PCIe bifurcation: only those based on X299 and X399 can. Today, only the >>HighPoint SSD7101A-1<< (http://highpoint-tech.com/USA_new/series-ssd7101a-1-overview.htm) adapter permit to use up to 4 NVMe drives with any system (having a 3.0 x16 PCIe slot available) because it includes the PLX8747 chip who does bifurcation (see >>AnandTech<< (https://www.anandtech.com/show/13511/highpoint-releases-the-ssd7102-a-bootable-quad-m2-pcie-x16-nvme-ssd-raid-card)). But, this chipset is very expensive and explain the high final price: 400-450$ (see >>Here<< (https://www.amazon.com/High-Point-SSD7101A-1-Dedicated-Controller/dp/B073W71K4Z)). As comparison, >>ASRock ULTRA QUAD M.2 CARD<< (https://www.asrock.com/mb/spec/product.asp?Model=ULTRA QUAD M.2 CARD#Specification) is an adapter without this chipset (so that it is limited to mobos able to do bifurcation) and its price is 100-150$ (see >>Here<< (https://www.amazon.com/ASROCK-Upgrade-Board-Ultra-Quad/dp/B079TQ9C6Q)).
Have a good day,
:hat tip: