Page 1 of 1

Is an NVMe SSD (theoretically) possible on an X61?

Posted: Thu Jun 13, 2019 11:08 pm
by axur-delmeria
Let's set aside the BIOS boot issue for the moment.

We have 2 PCIe x1 lanes via the WLAN and WWAN ports.

Is it possible to link those 2 together and use them to connect an M.2 2242 NVMe SSD?

Or will the PCIe v1.1 bandwidth of 250 MB/s per lane make it moot?

Re: Is an NVMe SSD (theoretically) possible on an X61?

Posted: Thu Jun 13, 2019 11:49 pm
by Thinkpad4by3
Theoretically, maybe. But even if you did, it would require reworking the socket and then what are you gaining? Even if the nvme drive ran full speed, it's a core 2 duo when all is said and done and that will be the limiting speed.

Re: Is an NVMe SSD (theoretically) possible on an X61?

Posted: Fri Jun 14, 2019 12:20 am
by axur-delmeria
Thinkpad4by3 wrote:
Thu Jun 13, 2019 11:49 pm
Theoretically, maybe. But even if you did, it would require reworking the socket
Reworking? Maybe a PCB with edge contacts for both slots, with a flush M.2 socket like this one could work.
what are you gaining?
Racking my brain trying to find a hybrid storage (SSD + HDD) setup for the X60/61 family, since I'm using this prodigal son again. :lol:

Re: Is an NVMe SSD (theoretically) possible on an X61?

Posted: Fri Jun 14, 2019 2:47 am
by RealBlackStuff
You (under a different username) discussed this already a year ago: https://www.reddit.com/r/thinkpad/comme ... _possible/

Re: Is an NVMe SSD (theoretically) possible on an X61?

Posted: Fri Jun 14, 2019 3:35 am
by axur-delmeria
RealBlackStuff wrote:
Fri Jun 14, 2019 2:47 am
You (under a different username) discussed this already a year ago: https://www.reddit.com/r/thinkpad/comme ... _possible/
There was no mention of NVMe in that thread, just mSATA. We already know that mSATA won't work on the X6x mPCIe slots, so I was wondering if NVMe (which uses PCIe directly) was possible, even if only theoretically.

Regarding hybrid storage: the "last resort" is tapping the IDE port on the docking connector, which means 32 signal pins that need to be properly shielded plus 8 ground pins. :x

That's asking for even more trouble. :lol:

Re: Is an NVMe SSD (theoretically) possible on an X61?

Posted: Fri Jun 14, 2019 3:48 am
by axur-delmeria
Hmmm, I think I've answered part of my question...

I just Googled "NVMe SSD on mini-PCIe" and this baby showed up.

Sintech M.2 (NGFF) nVME SSD to Mini PCIe Adapter with 20cm Cable
Image

There's also this one, but there may not be enough free space due to the palmrest.

Re: Is an NVMe SSD (theoretically) possible on an X61?

Posted: Fri Jun 14, 2019 10:18 am
by Thinkpad4by3
If you want a dual HDD/SSD in an X61, just get a WD Black2(squared) drive.

128GB SSD, 1TB HDD, 1 9.5mm drive.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Western-Digita ... 1710!US!-1

Re: Is an NVMe SSD (theoretically) possible on an X61?

Posted: Fri Jun 14, 2019 10:27 am
by axur-delmeria
Thinkpad4by3 wrote:
Fri Jun 14, 2019 10:18 am
If you want a dual HDD/SSD in an X61, just get a WD Black2(squared) drive.

128GB SSD, 1TB HDD, 1 9.5mm drive.
Wasn't that discontinued due to compatibility issues, as it uses some kind of internal SATA port multiplier that doesn't work with a fair number of systems?

Reading the reviews... is there Linux support?

Gentoo wiki provides the answer: https://wiki.gentoo.org/wiki/WD_Black2

Unfortunately I already have a 1TB HDD and not in the market for a new one.

Re: Is an NVMe SSD (theoretically) possible on an X61?

Posted: Fri Jun 14, 2019 5:29 pm
by flyingfishfinger
I made an ugly dual HDD hack for my old X61 a few years ago:

viewtopic.php?f=30&t=114432#p735315

Tapped into the SATA interposer card to add a bootable mSATA card, then used a mPCIE->USB3->SATA adapter that was wired back into the HDD bay for a 2nd drive.

Heat problem were definitely a thing.

I didn't use a mPCIE->SATA card because I also wanted USB3, and there was some other issue I"m forgetting about. I did try it though.

Good luck, let us know what you come up with!

R

Re: Is an NVMe SSD (theoretically) possible on an X61?

Posted: Sat Jun 15, 2019 12:51 am
by axur-delmeria
flyingfishfinger wrote:
Fri Jun 14, 2019 5:29 pm
I made an ugly dual HDD hack for my old X61 a few years ago:

viewtopic.php?f=30&t=114432#p735315

Tapped into the SATA interposer card to add a bootable mSATA card, then used a mPCIE->USB3->SATA adapter that was wired back into the HDD bay for a 2nd drive.

Heat problem were definitely a thing.

I didn't use a mPCIE->SATA card because I also wanted USB3, and there was some other issue I"m forgetting about. I did try it though.
I remember your thread from back then. Wasn't the USB 3.0 card damaged while you where trying to install an on/off switch for it?

Re: Is an NVMe SSD (theoretically) possible on an X61?

Posted: Mon Jul 29, 2019 1:35 pm
by flyingfishfinger
I blew up one of them I think, that was a while ago.

I never did get the switch to work properly; routing several differential pairs for SATA through two through-hole DPDT switches messed with the signal integrity too much I guess.

Point being, it worked fine as long as I DIDN'T need to switch them. I could boot off of the mSATA drive and access the 2.5" drive through the SATA->USB3->mPCIe adapter and I used the machine that way for quite some time. I still use that same mSATA drive in my X62, actually!

The card with the biggest temp issues was the direct SATA->mPCIe adapter, that one just fried my hand everytime I touched the palm rest.

R