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using standard PCI card(s) in DL380 G5

proliant_1
Occasional Visitor

using standard PCI card(s) in DL380 G5

Hi, I intend to use the above as part of my recording studio setup, and I need to install a couple of studio-specific PCI cards.

The DL380 currently has a PCI/e & PCI/x expansion cage installed.

What do I need to do to install these PCI cards?

Thanks
6 REPLIES
Johan Guldmyr
Honored Contributor

Re: using standard PCI card(s) in DL380 G5

Hi,

http://h18000.www1.hp.com/products/quickspecs/12477_na/12477_na.html

there is no PCI slot on the DL380 G5, even with the help of riser boards.

Maybe there are PCI-e or PCI-x versions of your studio cards?
proliant_1
Occasional Visitor

Re: using standard PCI card(s) in DL380 G5

Hi

Page 53 of the "HP ProLiant DL380 Generation 5 Server User Guide" states the following:

"Expansion board options
The server supports PCI, PCI-X, and PCI Express expansion boards."

Is this a typo?

Regards
John
Matti_Kurkela
Honored Contributor

Re: using standard PCI card(s) in DL380 G5

PCI-X is backwards compatible with regular PCI cards, IF the PCI standard version supported by the PCI card is 2.x and the card can use 3.3 volt I/O signal levels.

Older PCI cards using 5.0 volt signal levels are not compatible with PCI-X slots.

Some regular PCI cards are "universal": they can accept either 5.0 or 3.3 volt signal levels.

The card slots are keyed in such a way that a 5.0 volt only card cannot be inserted to a 3.3 volt slot, or vice versa (unless you use an excessive amount of force :-).

Please see:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:PCI_Keying.png

Mechanically, PCI-X slots are identical to 64-bit 3.3V PCI slots shown in the picture linked above.

When you install PCI cards into PCI-X slots, the entire PCI-X bus will slow down to the speed supported by the slowest card. However, many servers have a dedicated "bus" for each slot, so this might not be an issue.

MK
MK
proliant_1
Occasional Visitor

Re: using standard PCI card(s) in DL380 G5

Hi Again

I have located an PCIe to PCI adapter from Startech:-
http://www.startech.com/product/PEX1PCI1-PCI-Express-to-PCI-Adapter-Card

...which may be a solution, however it has a PCIe 1x connector - can I plug this into one of the PCIe slots in the mixed pcix/pcie riser cage which is fitted?

Regrds
John
gregersenj
HPE Pro

Re: using standard PCI card(s) in DL380 G5

Just to add in.

PCI / PCI-X is a parallel bus.
PCIe is a serial bus.

BR
/jag
Matti_Kurkela
Honored Contributor

Re: using standard PCI card(s) in DL380 G5

Although the PCIe to PCI adapter might be an acceptable solution electrically, there might be problems in fitting the card in place mechanically.

As the information of the adapter indicates, the adapter increases the physical height of the card so that only low-profile PCI cards will fit into a standards-compliant full-profile PCIe slot. A full-profile PCI card with the adapter would protrude out of the available space. As there is not much extra space in a DL380 G5, I guess there might be problems.

Furthermore, the picture of the adapter includes a power cable with a Molex connector like the one used by full-size CD/DVD drives and non-hot-swap 3.5" IDE or SCSI disks. You won't find a convenient Molex power cable within a DL380 G5: all the power is routed through the circuit boards and proprietary connections.

Also, you said you're planning to use this in a recording studio? Be aware that low noise level is typically *not* a primary design requirement of rack-mount servers. I seem to recall that the G5 model was in fact rather loud among the DL380 family.

(A project manager in a certain company we support once made a snap decision to buy a DL380 G5 for a certain project and install it in the office along with the workers... it was a smallish room, and nobody wanted to work in that room when the server was running. Lesson learned: there is a reason why rack-mount servers are often placed in a dedicated server room.)

MK
MK