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A case of confusion with M.2 drives

Radium_Angel
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I have a 120GB M.2 (the name of which escapes me at the time...adata perhaps? Probably not important) and on my motherboard with an m.2 slot, the speeds are expected (i.e. superfast)

I have upgraded it to a 240GB and all is well. (this one, for ref: https://flash.newegg.com/product/9SIADF17442121)

 

 

For fun, I thought I'd take the 120GB one and slap it in my Dell PowerEdge T310. (all the specs you'd care to know about this system are here: https://downloads.dell.com/manuals/all-products/esuprt_ser_stor_net/esuprt_poweredge/poweredge-t310_owner's manual_en-us.pdf)

 

Which, of course, doesn't have an M.2 slot. So I grabbed a no-name PCIe adapter off ebay and attached the M.2 drive into it.

 

Works fine, but the speed isn't so hot. I tested it with HDTune and get about 150MB/sec. Is that standard when dealing with an adapter, or should I be seeing better? IIRC the slot is an x8 PCIe but if memory serves me right the card is naught but an x4

So rise up, all ye lost ones, as one, we'll claw the clouds

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12 minutes ago, Radium_Angel said:

I have a 120GB M.2 (the name of which escapes me at the time...adata perhaps? Probably not important) and on my motherboard with an m.2 slot, the speeds are expected (i.e. superfast)

I have upgraded it to a 240GB and all is well. (this one, for ref: https://flash.newegg.com/product/9SIADF17442121)

 

 

For fun, I thought I'd take the 120GB one and slap it in my Dell PowerEdge T310. (all the specs you'd care to know about this system are here: https://downloads.dell.com/manuals/all-products/esuprt_ser_stor_net/esuprt_poweredge/poweredge-t310_owner's manual_en-us.pdf)

 

Which, of course, doesn't have an M.2 slot. So I grabbed a no-name PCIe adapter off ebay and attached the M.2 drive into it.

 

Works fine, but the speed isn't so hot. I tested it with HDTune and get about 150MB/sec. Is that standard when dealing with an adapter, or should I be seeing better? IIRC the slot is an x8 PCIe but if memory serves me right the card is naught but an x4

Is the PC you put it into PCIe 2.0 or 3.0?
Also, do you have the correct NVMe drivers installed?

An m.2 SATA drive and an m.2 NVMe drives will be VASTLY different in speed.

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Even the Generation 2 runs faster than SATA: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PCI_Express

image.png.4ea3ea22e4553b26914326934c8123dc.png

If the problem is only when the adapter is connected, then it is the adapter that limits the transfer rates of your unit.

 

Seagate Technology | Official Forums Team

IronWolf Drives for NAS Applications - SkyHawk Drives for Surveillance Applications - BarraCuda Drives for PC & Gaming

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7 minutes ago, Electronics Wizardy said:

What os is the system running? If on linux run lsipci.

 

Also how are you testing speed?

 

1 minute ago, GoldenOne said:

Is the PC you put it into PCIe 2.0 or 3.0?
Also, do you have the correct NVMe drivers installed?

An m.2 SATA drive and an m.2 NVMe drives will be VASTLY different in speed.

Windows 9.

Aka 8.1 Industry Pro embedded with a Windows 7 skin attached. System picked up the device natively.

Using HDTune to test sped.

 

According to the Dell spec manual:

PCI Express Interface The Intel 3420 provides up to 8 PCI Express Root Ports, supporting the PCI Express Base Specification, Revision 2.0. Each Root Port supports 2.5 GB/s bandwidth in each direction (5 GB/s concurrent). PCI Express Root Ports 1-4 can be statically configured as four x1 Ports or grouped together to form one x4 port. Ports 5 and 6 can only be used as two x1 ports.

 

I'm pretty certain the card is an nVME, as when I had it under my Windows 7 box, I was getting the insane speeds one is used to for direct M.2 interface.

But it is certainly possible the adata drive is m.2 SATA rather than M.2 nVME. I'll have to check when I get home to be certain.

So rise up, all ye lost ones, as one, we'll claw the clouds

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5 minutes ago, seagate_surfer said:

the adapter that limits the transfer rates of your unit.

 

Have to check into this...do you have a recommended adapter that is better than the no-name one I bought?

So rise up, all ye lost ones, as one, we'll claw the clouds

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Personally, I prefer not to use adapters, it implies additional troubleshooting because you are adding equipment, we do not know the manufacturer and what the controller they use, they also require driver updates so you can try to find updated drivers as well. The main reason why I prefer not to use adapters is because when there is something between the unit and the MOBO, an RMA request can be rejected because your devices, your MOBO and your storage unit are not directly connected and they require the electronic connection to be in contact to determine where might be the problem.

If you are missing the M.2 slot on your computer, I can only suggest that you try a different adapter, perform firmware updates in your computer's BIOS and driver updates. You can even try the adapter with the M.2 unit in another machine and see if the problem persists if it happens again in another machine, then it is definitely a problem in the adapter, you may have a defective piece of equipment.

Seagate Technology | Official Forums Team

IronWolf Drives for NAS Applications - SkyHawk Drives for Surveillance Applications - BarraCuda Drives for PC & Gaming

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Found the card I bought, this is it

 

SAMSUNG PM961 MZ-VLW1280 M.2 NVME PCIe Gen3 x4 NVME 128GB SSD

https://www.amazon.com/Samsung-PM961-Polaris-128GB-MZVLW128HEGR-00000/dp/B071RCFGLZ

 

 

 

and this is the adapter card I got

PCI-e to 2x SATA3.0 SATA III Expansion Controller Adapter Card For Windows Linux

https://www.ebay.com/itm/PCI-e-to-2x-SATA3-0-SATA-III-Expansion-Controller-Adapter-Card-For-Windows-Linux-/162913571165?hash=item25ee67d15d

 

So rise up, all ye lost ones, as one, we'll claw the clouds

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1 minute ago, seagate_surfer said:

Personally, I prefer not to use adapters, it implies additional troubleshooting because you are adding equipment, we do not know the manufacturer and what the controller they use, they also require driver updates so you can try to find updated drivers as well. The main reason why I prefer not to use adapters is because when there is something between the unit and the MOBO, an RMA request can be rejected because your devices, your MOBO and your storage unit are not directly connected and they require the electronic connection to be in contact to determine where might be the problem.

If you are missing the M.2 slot on your computer, I can only suggest that you try a different adapter, perform firmware updates in your computer's BIOS and driver updates. You can even try the adapter with the M.2 unit in another machine and see if the problem persists if it happens again in another machine, then it is definitely a problem in the adapter, you may have a defective piece of equipment.

I totally agree with you about using adapters, that it adds complexity and points of conflict.

I've listed the devices I got in a prior post, and when I get home I'll put the card in a different system (lord knows I have enough systems to try) and see what I can see.

Tagging @GoldenOne and @Electronics Wizardy for their kind help

So rise up, all ye lost ones, as one, we'll claw the clouds

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4 minutes ago, Radium_Angel said:

(lord knows I have enough systems to try)

1

LOL ??? Ok, post again if you still need more help.

Seagate Technology | Official Forums Team

IronWolf Drives for NAS Applications - SkyHawk Drives for Surveillance Applications - BarraCuda Drives for PC & Gaming

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12 minutes ago, Radium_Angel said:

I totally agree with you about using adapters, that it adds complexity and points of conflict.

I've listed the devices I got in a prior post, and when I get home I'll put the card in a different system (lord knows I have enough systems to try) and see what I can see.

Tagging @GoldenOne and @Electronics Wizardy for their kind help

SInce its just a pcie to m.2 adapter, there should be no chips, and its just a connection. It shouldn't affect speed at all.

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6 minutes ago, Electronics Wizardy said:

SInce its just a pcie to m.2 adapter, there should be no chips, and its just a connection. It shouldn't affect speed at all.

Looking at the image, and thinking about the device, yeah, it's just a slot for the M.2 and the PCIe interface...(plus blue and red leds for indicators)

So rise up, all ye lost ones, as one, we'll claw the clouds

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1 minute ago, Radium_Angel said:

Looking at the image, and thinking about the device, yeah, it's just a slot for the M.2 and the PCIe interface...(plus blue and red leds for indicators)

I really don't know what could cause this problem. Id personally try using a live linux usb to see if its a driver or windows problem, or move the drive to second system.

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26 minutes ago, Electronics Wizardy said:

I really don't know what could cause this problem. Id personally try using a live linux usb to see if its a driver or windows problem, or move the drive to second system.

OK. will try another system when I get home, and let everyone know.

BTW, do you have a preferred disk benchmark software?

So rise up, all ye lost ones, as one, we'll claw the clouds

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3 hours ago, Radium_Angel said:

OK. will try another system when I get home, and let everyone know.

BTW, do you have a preferred disk benchmark software?

Ok, here is my main system with the native M.2 slot.

Looks ok to me.

 

Will post from PCIe interface from my T310 shortly, then will move card over to main system and see if I'm getting anything different.

 

Main System.jpg

So rise up, all ye lost ones, as one, we'll claw the clouds

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28 minutes ago, Radium_Angel said:

Ok, here is my main system with the native M.2 slot.

Looks ok to me.

 

Will post from PCIe interface from my T310 shortly, then will move card over to main system and see if I'm getting anything different.

 

Main System.jpg

So the drive is fine, must be a weird pcie error or os problem. Id try linux or booting from a windows 2 go drive to remove any os problems.

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50 minutes ago, Electronics Wizardy said:

So the drive is fine, must be a weird pcie error or os problem. Id try linux or booting from a windows 2 go drive to remove any os problems.

That's from my main system (the image above) here is the run from my T310 with the PCIe adapter. They actually look ok (to me anyway, what say you?)

And the second shot is the 15k SAS RAID 5 drives in the same T310, for comparison

 

 

PCIe nVME.jpg

15k SAS RAID 5.jpg

So rise up, all ye lost ones, as one, we'll claw the clouds

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1 hour ago, Radium_Angel said:

That's from my main system (the image above) here is the run from my T310 with the PCIe adapter. They actually look ok (to me anyway, what say you?)

And the second shot is the 15k SAS RAID 5 drives in the same T310, for comparison

 

That ssd seems oddly slow, as the other benchmark shows it at 3000mB/s read. What are the pcie link speeds?

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7 hours ago, Electronics Wizardy said:

That ssd seems oddly slow, as the other benchmark shows it at 3000mB/s read. What are the pcie link speeds?

PCIe is 2.0 (the adapter itself is PCIe x4 interface) the other benchmark was at native m.2 interface

So rise up, all ye lost ones, as one, we'll claw the clouds

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9 hours ago, Radium_Angel said:

PCIe is 2.0 (the adapter itself is PCIe x4 interface) the other benchmark was at native m.2 interface

then that seems fine

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