Intellistation Pro M power supply

IBM or Lenovo Desktops, Workstations, ThinkStations, etc. Recent vintage, hardware/software..
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lparsons
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Intellistation Pro M power supply

#1 Post by lparsons » Tue Aug 19, 2008 8:44 am

It looks like our Intellistation needs a higher wattage power supply than the 340 that was in it from the factory.

The IBM power supplies are just standard 20-pin ATX, right? I know some devious manufacturers like to screw with the standard, but our beloved big blue wouldn't do that to us, would they?

I was just about to buy a new 500W power supply for it, but I wanted to check around and make sure that IBM didn't do something sneaky that will cause the system to go up in smoke if I do that.

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#2 Post by leoblob » Wed Aug 20, 2008 10:28 am

Is that the Intellistation that had the intermittent re-boot problem?

As for your question, I seem to recall that the power supply in my Intellistation has at least one extra connector not present on a "regular" power supply. Maybe these workstation/servers don't have a standard PC power supply in them?
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lparsons
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#3 Post by lparsons » Thu Aug 21, 2008 10:12 am

Yes, this is that same intellistation. I figured a new thread might be in order, since we're now going with the power supply as the culprit after a thorough cleaning and diagnostics run.

Interestingly enough, the system rebooted twice this morning (though not any time in the 48 hours prior), and those two reboots occurred within an hour.

As for the power supply, I obtained a 20pin ATX power supply from a colleague, and compared it to the one in the intellistation. I didn't see any additional connectors on the IBM PS, though I wasn't explicitly looking for them. Rather, I was checking to make sure that the screw holes lined up, and the wires for the main connectors on the motherboard were all the same (which they were). I'll down the system again and double check for any additional connectors on the OEM PS.

Do you remember how many pins were on the additional connector, or what it looked like?

Unfortunately the power supply I was given was only rated 300W, and was hence less useful than the 340W originally in the system.

I ordered a new StarTech 500W ATX power supply on Tuesday. We'll see when that shows up. Hopefully then the system will be reliable for the long work runs it is about to face :)

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#4 Post by virge » Thu Aug 21, 2008 1:05 pm

I'm not sure what model M Pro you have, but I have two M Pros that I bought for their cases. These were originally single CPU P4 machines. I can try to find the actual machine type when I get home. I pulled the motherboards and put in standard ATX ones using the original power supplies with no problems.
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Found the connector

#5 Post by lparsons » Thu Aug 21, 2008 2:22 pm

The connector that was earlier referred to is the "6-pin auxiliary" connector. It so happened that the 300W (still not enough wattage) PS that a colleague gave me had that connector, so I didn't think it was odd at the time.
Then the 500W PS I ordered came in, and of course it doesn't have it. Some people have suggested that connector was related to AGP-pro video, which obviously I do not have, use, or care about in this system. I am now hunting for proper hardware to fasten this new PS, and we'll see if we can run without it. I have also seen ATX adapters for the main power supply connector that give the 6-pin aux, which might be another solution.
Because of the dedicated purpose of this system (specified by a vendor), swapping motherboards would be a very last resort. I'll actually consider pulling a hard drive to reduce watt consumption before I will consider motherboard swapping.


UPDATE:
I have installed the 500W power supply, skipping the auxiliary connector altogether. The system booted fine and seems happy so far. I'll let it run over the weekend and see what it does when I get back.

I'm contemplating setting up some sort of stress-test for it before the weekend begins. Maybe a huge BLAST job while defragmenting the hard drives... Something that would put a load on the new power supply...


UPDATE, part deux:
The system has survived the weekend. I also threw a few things at on Friday to tax the power load (moving files between drives, and defragmentation). So far, so good.
Last edited by lparsons on Mon Aug 25, 2008 9:45 am, edited 1 time in total.

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#6 Post by leoblob » Thu Aug 21, 2008 9:47 pm

Glad you're getting to the bottom of the problem on your computer.

I don't remember much about the extra connector on mine, but I do have AGP Pro (which I'm using), so perhaps that's what it's for...

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