MP All Models Blade SSDs - NVMe & AHCI

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startergo

macrumors 65816
Sep 20, 2018
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Heat decompose rubber bands fast, I don’t really know if that material is better, but I really prefer heatsinks with metal clips that lock the heatsink over the blade
For what its worth they say they are "high temperature" silicone bands.
 

Mac_User 0101

macrumors regular
Oct 8, 2017
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hi there!

does anyone have seen this :
http://amfeltec.com/pci-express-gen-3-carrier-board-for-6-m2-or-ngfss-nf1-pcie-ssd-modules

there is an interesting option at the bottom : « additional x16 uplink »

would that mean, that you could actually plug the card to 2 x16 gen2 pcie slot to span the gen3 6ssd over 2 gen 2 pcie x16 slot?

any how the more I deal with PCIEX16 expension with true pcie plex chip, the more I think intel and amd should just exit all pcie lane to a plex chip and let it dynamically manage pcie lanes on demand to pciex16 slot.

if a small company like anfeltec can do it on a smal pcie board i think apple could totally do a proprietary conector that exit all 40 lane of pcie gen 3 bandwith, and have an external box handle all pcie expension.
since i have my custom 10 slot pciex16gen2 expender, life is so easy :
shut down the computer, plug whatever card i want, turn the computer on and « voila » 2 or 3 gpu, 4 ssd, 10gbe, usbc, usb3, you name it it just work.
and it is just a one pciex16 gen2 link.
imagine a box with one cable, that takes all the pcie lane of the processor and put it on a expension box.

they could do a small one with like just 40 lane shared to x16x16x8 with no plex and a « pro » one with 2 connector for dual socket xeon who have 80 lane total.
You are reading it wrong.

The PCIe slots are not part of the PCB, so you can either connect the adapter with 8 or 16 PCIe lanes depending on the "uplink" adapter. You can see it clearly in the picture below.
View attachment 837715
I wanted to let the forum know what I found out from Amfletec about the new Squid PCIe gen 3 carrier board for up to 6 m.2 modules (SKU-086-36). This one is using a PEX8748 (48 Lane, 12 port PCIe gen 3 [8GT/s] switch). Aside from that, I found out it's expensive... I was quoted $768.45 USD not including shipping. As an owner of the Squid gen 2 (quad m.2 carrier), I can tell you that they are well built and dependable performing cards. I forgot to ask them about the "Real-Time performance and temperature monitoring via USB connection" feature. I analyzed the photos but don't see the USB port anywhere. It must be on the board somewhere. I'm also curious about what software will be used for this monitoring and how the fans speeds are controlled. They don't really explain it in detail but I'm thinking they may have developed some software for this. I highly doubt it will be as feature rich as the Highpoint NVMe Manager webGUI, but it's a step in the right direction for Amfletec.
 
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edgerider

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Apr 30, 2018
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yeah quite expensive but there is a real point here : adding 6 drive in one slot is a game changer. they are clearly heading on the right direction!
the thing is : Now that i think of it, i dont know if there is a actual raid controller that was ever designed specially for NVME...
all the raid card maker such as areca or high point just use chip from manufacturers such as intel to do their cards, and those chips where designed with sata/sas plater in mind.
This may be why we dont see a multitude of true hardware raid card for nvme.

the issue here is that in a raid someone have to do the calculations for parity and if you have a software raid, then it is your CPU who do the work.

when you just have 2 ssd in raid0 or in raid 1 it is not too much of a hasle, but if you start looking at 6 x 2tb nvme drive in raid 5 or 6 , then you are definitely going to use a massive amount of cpu to do the parity sum.

to me the absolute sweet spot with this card is the fact that you can do a raid 10 of 6 Tb (1 raid 1 of 2 raid 0 of 3 ssd) without loosing any of the speed of the 16x slot, and gaining a true failure protection.

i never had an issue with 4 sm951 in raid 0 as a boot drive, but lets face it this absolutely not safe, and I do backup every day.

to be honest, when you reach this kind of price I rather spend a extra 500€ to have a host card and an external enclosure.

I am almost sure that they could pass pciex16 with some kind of hdmi cable.

so far the only downside of true external PCIe16 is the bulk of the cable and it’s price.

there have to be a way to shrink this to a hdmi or qsfp size.

for me the future is pcie enclosures because then you can have computer refresh way faster because they will only be brainbox. They will be way cheaper also because the only requirement would be CPU/psu/and minimal i/o = 2 thunderbolt 3 port and some kind of cheap gpu just for monitoring.
 
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joevt

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Jun 21, 2012
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The PEX 8748 is almost twice as expensive as the PEX 8747 because it has 12 ports instead of 5 and maybe some other features, and maybe it's more rare. Still, the PEX price is only a fraction of that $768. Since the PEX 8748 has 12 ports, maybe they added other devices, like a USB controller?

HDMI, DisplayPort, and USB-C cables have four high speed lines equivalent to two PCIe lanes. So x16 would need 8 such cables. HDMI 2.0 only goes up to 6 Gbps so wouldn't be good for PCIe 3.0 (maybe 6 Gbps is close enough to 8 GT/s for it to work). HDMI 2.1 is 12 Gbps.

Thunderbolt cables can do 20 Gbps per line which is good enough for PCIe 4.0 but then you would need a controller at both ends (a switch at the PCIe 2.0 or 3.0 slot to convert to PCIe 4.0 and a switch in the expansion box to convert from PCIe 4.0).
 

tsialex

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Jun 13, 2016
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Firmware 2B2QEXM7 for 970 EVO Plus seems to be macOS compatible, it's one of the 2 corrections:

"firmware 2B2QEXM7 can correct a performance problem of the SSD 970 EVO Plus whose throughput was sometimes less than expected. A compatibility issue with macOS would also have been fixed."

To upgrade, you download the ISO for the firmware upgrade Samsung_SSD_970_EVO_Plus_2B2QEXM7.iso and use Rufus/UNetbootin to create a USB key and then boot from it to upgrade the firmware.

People on tonymacx86 already have instructions for both:
 
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dustwashere

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May 27, 2019
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guys. so as not to have problems - you can buy blade SSDs only from those listed on the first page or now (almost summer 2019) on any controller?
There is a "normal" blade SSDs - they are cheaper ($ 30-50-70 or more). I don’t need a speed of 3000, and 1500 with my mac pro 5.1(4.1) is enough for me, for example, there are inexpensive ssd on controllers:
SanDisk 20-82-007010
Silicon Motion SM2262 (this controller is listed on the first page)
Silicon Motion SM2263 (and this, apparently, a newer version of the controller SM2262)
Silicon Motion SM2263T (and this)
Silicon Motion SM2263XT (and this)
Silicon Motion SM2262EN (and this with very high speed in tests 3200Мb/s-3000mb/s)
Realtek RTS5763DL
Marvell 88SS1093(very high speed in tests 3500Мb/s-2100mb/s)
these controllers are not listed on the first page

I apologize if I missed and these issues were discussed. I would appreciate if you tell me where to read.
english with google translate
 
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tsialex

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guys. so as not to have problems - you can buy blade SSDs only from those listed on the first page or now (almost summer 2019) on any controller?
There is a "normal" blade SSDs - they are cheaper ($ 30-50-70 or more). I don’t need a speed of 3000, and 1500 with my mac pro 5.1(4.1) is enough for me, for example, there are inexpensive ssd on controllers:
SanDisk 20-82-007010
Silicon Motion SM2262 (this controller is listed on the first page)
Silicon Motion SM2263 (and this, apparently, a newer version of the controller SM2262)
Silicon Motion SM2263T (and this)
Silicon Motion SM2263XT (and this)
Silicon Motion SM2262EN (and this with very high speed in tests 3200Мb/s-3000mb/s)
Realtek RTS5763DL
Marvell 88SS1093(very high speed in tests 3500Мb/s-2100mb/s)
these controllers are not listed on the first page

I apologize if I missed and these issues were discussed. I would appreciate if you tell me where to read.
english with google translate
A lot of NVMe blades and drives don't work with Mac Pro. Stick to the ones tested on the first page. Even if a blade have the exactly same controller of one tested, firmware could be incompatible.
 

dustwashere

macrumors member
May 27, 2019
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A lot of NVMe blades and drives don't work with Mac Pro. Stick to the ones tested on the first page. Even if a blade have the exactly same controller of one tested, firmware could be incompatible.
hell. I was hoping to save
will have to buy expensive from the list on the first page
HP EX920 M.2 512 gb

thanks for the experience
 

axxxxe

macrumors newbie
Apr 16, 2011
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Thank you MisterAndrew and tsialex for the super support maintaining this thread!!

I have taken delivery of a 7101A and plan to put it into a 2010 MP5,1 (144.0.0.0.0 firmware) with three 512GB 970 Pros. One will be a Mojave boot volume and the other two will be RAID 0'd and will contain a bunch of virtual machines.

Question: How should I configure the RAID? SoftRAID? The card's own configuration software/controller? Something else? Should the RAID volume be APFS or HFS+?
 
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tsialex

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Question: How should I configure the RAID? SoftRAID? The card's own configuration software/controller? Something else?
Start by doing an AppleRAID. It's free, easy to do with Terminal and the simplest way to make a RAID. Do it, test if works correctly with your use case, use it as a baseline, then you go to the other options.
 

axxxxe

macrumors newbie
Apr 16, 2011
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Will do.

Presumably APFS is the way to go since it's SSDs...? Any gotchas with APFS for such a configuration?
 

dustwashere

macrumors member
May 27, 2019
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guys. I installed the blade ssd, set the mojave on it.
- I recovered data from old hdd - can this cause problems?
1. the system boots from it, but if the option "show external disks on the desktop" is turned on in the Finder settings, then my blade SSD is displayed in yellow, as if it were an external disk). It is a trifle but annoying. so it should be?
https://yadi.sk/i/91Kt_0ZKMFHbVA
2. About this Mac OS, it is also referred to as an external disk.
https://yadi.sk/i/auzsfMjRLLArGQ
3. screenshots of the version 144.0.0.0.0.0
https://yadi.sk/i/94HPbMSE8BPJXg
4. Wi-Fi stopped working :( I can not find a topic on this on the forum
https://yadi.sk/i/cZHKbgu1M4lFjg

or the fact that the blade ssd is displayed as external is not a problem?
 
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tsialex

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Jun 13, 2016
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guys. I installed the blade ssd, set the mojave on it.
- I recovered data from old hdd - can this cause problems?
1. the system boots from it, but if the option "show external disks on the desktop" is turned on in the Finder settings, then my blade SSD is displayed in yellow, as if it were an external disk). It is a trifle but annoying. so it should be?
https://yadi.sk/i/91Kt_0ZKMFHbVA
2. About this Mac OS, it is also referred to as an external disk.
https://yadi.sk/i/auzsfMjRLLArGQ
3. screenshots of the version 144.0.0.0.0.0
https://yadi.sk/i/94HPbMSE8BPJXg
4. Wi-Fi stopped working :( I can not find a topic on this on the forum
https://yadi.sk/i/cZHKbgu1M4lFjg

or the fact that the blade ssd is displayed as external is not a problem?

for information (in the piggy bank data of the first page). blade HP SSD EX900 (Silicon Motion SM2262 Silicon Motion SM2262) works as a boot (Mojave).
https://yadi.sk/i/oqhzYpYmqo6pww
https://yadi.sk/i/BaCwriSefLsdQQ
All PCIe drives are external.

Mac Pro firmware only recognise as internal the drives connected to the 6 SATA south bridge ports.

PCIe drives being external don't make any difference besides for installing Windows via BootCamp.

Wi-Fi has nothing to do to NVMe. Perhaps your AirPort is one from MP4,1 that is not supported anymore.
 
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