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JeremyMcDev
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Connecting a Thunderbolt Cinema Display to TB16 Dock/Dell XPS 15 9560

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Has anyone had experience with this. I just purchased an XPS 15 9560 with a TB16 dock and I'm hoping to use the dock and my old Apple Cinema display, but I can't seem to get the monitor to work in the dock. I purchased an Apple Thunderbolt 3 to 2 adapter and the screen works fine when I hook it directly into the laptop, but I get a USB malfunctioned error when I hook it into the dock. Any information or tricks anyone else has found would be helpful. Thank you in advance.

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jphughan
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RE: Connecting a Thunderbolt Cinema Display to TB16 Dock/Dell XPS 15 9560

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According to the manual, the Thunderbolt output port (which they call USB-C) does support display output, and even up to 5K @ 60 Hz with a system that can transmit that, which means that it's definitely capable of Thunderbolt display output, not just regular USB-C.  But are you getting a picture AND the "USB malfunctioned" error, or are you getting that error message and no picture?  Errors when running one USB hub (the display's) through another one (the dock's) aren't entirely unheard of, but if you haven't already, try installing the latest version of the ASMedia USB controller driver for the dock. An update was released in the last few days.

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JeremyMcDev
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RE: Connecting a Thunderbolt Cinema Display to TB16 Dock/Dell XPS 15 9560

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Thank you for the reply and you had read what I had prior to purchase. Sadly I get no picture from the cinema display when hooked into the dock. It's like it's a dock paradox or something. It also doesn't show up as an attached thunderbolt device under my attached device chain in the software when on the dock either. It's like it's ignoring it. I wonder if it has something to do with first device chain restriction which I do have on (also have tried with it off). Also all of my drivers are up to date. I'm really hoping that a future update fixes it where it should work in theory.

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jphughan
5 Rhenium

RE: Connecting a Thunderbolt Cinema Display to TB16 Dock/Dell XPS 15 9560

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That's very strange, and unfortunately I don't know enough about the internal wiring of the dock or Thunderbolt in general to theorize what might account for this.  Out of curiosity though, does the USB error message give the name of the device that's malfunctioning?

Lastly, there are recently released BIOS and Thunderbolt firmware updates for that system.  I know you mentioned all drivers were up to date, but just in case you weren't thinking about that piece.  However, be warned that the latest BIOS updates for some XPS systems are causing several users to see USB devices connected to the WD15 and TB16 docks to intermittently disconnect.  Actually, if you're already on the latest BIOS, and given that you're having a USB issue, I guess it's possible that whenever Dell fixes that, the display will start working through the dock, especially since it already works when directly connected.

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JeremyMcDev
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RE: Connecting a Thunderbolt Cinema Display to TB16 Dock/Dell XPS 15 9560

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I will have to double check on if gave the exact name of what was malfunctioning. The dock is back at the office and I'm home for the weekend. I did update the BIOS, but didn't do that until after I saw it wasn't working and the update didn't fix it. It seems like something that could start working after a driver update and I guess that's what I have to hope for. Seems like firmware updates and drivers have been coming out at a pretty good pace which is nice.

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JeremyMcDev
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RE: Connecting a Thunderbolt Cinema Display to TB16 Dock/Dell XPS 15 9560

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The issue seemed to be the Apple Thunderbolt 2 to 3 adapter. Although the adapter seemed to work fine without the dock it wouldn't' play well with the dock. I came across someone else who had the same exact problem and the fix was to buy the startech tb3 to tb2 adapter. Although it's expensive it worked the second I plugged it into the dock. Not sure why, but the Apple thunderbolt 3 to 2 adapter doesn't like Windows.

delliberate
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RE: Connecting a Thunderbolt Cinema Display to TB16 Dock/Dell XPS 15 9560

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I have the same problem with the same Apple Thunderbolt 3 to 2 adapter.  It works great on the 9560's own port, but when plugged into the TB16 I get a Win10 notification "Thunderbolt device functionality might be limited.  Make sure that the Thunderbolt device you're connecting to is supported by your PC".

It seems to be misidentified as a USB device.  You can see it in Device Manager, where it's listed under USB Devices, and if you sort the entries by Connection, you can see it hangs off the Intel USB 3.1 X controller (deep inside the Thunderbolt-typical PC-to-PCI Bridge hierarchy).

It seems likely that the Thunderbolt controller's firmware on the TB16 simply doesn't recognize this adapter, and so refuses to use it.  When connected directly to the XPS port, you do get a warning that it's not certified for use with Windows, but you can choose to use it anyway and then it works.  So maybe the TB16 firmware simply refuses it without giving the override option?

I rely on getting this working (with the extra Apple Firewire adapter for use with Firewire audio interfaces, works fine off the XPS port).  Is there any way Dell can look into getting this in the TB16 controller's  firmware?

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delliberate
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RE: Connecting a Thunderbolt Cinema Display to TB16 Dock/Dell XPS 15 9560

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... or alternatively, can the TB16 controller be hacked/tricked into accepting non-certified devices (if that is the problem)?

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delliberate
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RE: Connecting a Thunderbolt Cinema Display to TB16 Dock/Dell XPS 15 9560

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... I caved and bought that Startech TB3->2 adapter, and sure it enough it works fine.  So the Apple adapter is the problem and probably only needs to be supported in the TB16 controller's firmware.

(I didn't want to spend the money on the Startech and it's much bigger/less convenient on the move, but I got a cheap ex-display one).

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