giftmugs
1 Copper

Re: External SATA Port Multiplier Box 1-to-5 SATA2 Port Multiplier

Windrider6

Thank you very much for your posting here and the great effort you make to get this problem at least exposed, if not solved.

It is unbelievable that a company like DELL would pay so little attention to it's loyal customers ( I alone had bought over 8 machines from them over the hears), and have the very same problem you have and I too did not receive any satisfaction either up to this date.

It seems that DELL should stand by their products as these particular machines come with an e-SATA port multiplier ready board - at least that's what they say in their sales literature.

Please keep up the good work and I hope that all your effort and time spent with DELL will eventually pay off. Good Luck and many thanks.

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giftmugs
1 Copper

Re: External SATA Port Multiplier Box 1-to-5 SATA2 Port Multiplier

Windrider6

Thank you very much for your posting here and the great effort you make to get this problem at least exposed, if not solved.

It is unbelievable that a company like DELL would pay so little attention to it's loyal customers ( I alone had bought over 8 machines from them over the hears), and have the very same problem you have and I too did not receive any satisfaction either up to this date.

It seems that DELL should stand by their products as these particular machines are e-SATA multi-port replicator ready - at least that's what they say in their sales literature.

Please keep up the good work and I hope that all your effort and time spent with DELL will eventually pay off. Good Luck and many thanks.

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Windrider6
1 Copper

Re: External SATA Port Multiplier Box 1-to-5 SATA2 Port Multiplier

Another day, another frustrating call to Dell XPS Support.  Given Dell's propensity to censor my posts to this thread, I'm not sure if this post will make it...

This technician was a male based overseas (rhymes with vanilla).  I told him that I wanted him to find out the status of my case, and who in "Level 3 Support" was handling it.  He said that there were no notes about this case being handled at all, and that there was no such thing as "Level 3 Support".

He wanted to schedule a call-back. I said I've already been through that, plus Dell-On-Call, and no one could help me, so the case was elevated to "Level 3 Support". I told him that I wanted to talk to a XPS support person in North America, and he resisted. He said he could transfer me to paid support, which is in North America. I said no.

When I said that the XPS support person I talked to on Friday was based in North America, he said no, that she was also based where he was.

I expressed the opinion that “Level 3 Support” does not exist, and that no one could help me, so the case was being ignored. He then changed his mind, and said that they do have “Level 3 Support” where he was, and he put me on hold while he checked with them. When he came back on the line, he asked me all the questions about the problem again. It seemed that he did really not understand about the eSATA port multiplier capability. He said that the case file did not have any notes in it about the port multiplier device I was using, despite the fact that I have given details about it to multiple Dell technicians.

After putting me on hold a number of times, he eventually stated categorically that the Dell XPS 420 does not have eSATA port multiplier capability. I told him about my call before I bought my dual hard drive dock, asking about the eSATA port multiplier capability, and that the technician I had talked to said that both the Dell XPS 420 and 430 had the capability, and that's why I bought my device. He just reiterated that the XPS 420 does not have the capability.

Since there was nothing left to talk about, I ended the call.

Given my own experience with computers (I'm a computer technician), and my interactions with Dell support, I have come to some conclusions about Dell technical support, and this problem with eSATA port multiplier capability.  I doubt that those opinions would get by the censor here, not because of any profanity, but because they will necessarily mention procedures that Dell technicians use.  From experience with this thread, mentioning such things gets the post deleted.

During the next few days, I will create a webpage on my website detailing my experiences with Dell support on this issue.  Dell won't let me put my website address here, so let's try this:  My domain name is my first and last name at the top-level domain for Canada.

I don't think I will buy Dell computers in the future, and I will recommend to my clients that they do not also.

- Bruce A. Johnson in Hardisty, Alberta, Canada


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Windrider6
1 Copper

Re: External SATA Port Multiplier Box 1-to-5 SATA2 Port Multiplier

Apologies for taking so long.  I've finally finished my webpage about my experience with Dell support on this issue.  Life got in the way of completing it earlier.

You will see a link on my website for "My experience with Dell Support".  My website address is my first and last names at the top level domain for Canada.

- Bruce A. Johnson in Hardisty, Alberta, Canada


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pohheng
1 Copper

Re: External SATA Port Multiplier Box 1-to-5 SATA2 Port Multiplier

I bought a Thermaltake BlacX Duet and tried to use 2 drives via eSATA on my Studio XPS 16 (XPS 1640).  The laptop could see only drive 1.  The message says "A storage device was connected.  If this device is a port multiplier, only port 0 of the port multiplier will be active." 

After much effort, I found a document from Intel saying that the PM45 express chipset, which the XPS 1640 uses, does not support port multiplier.  URL: http://www.intel.com/Products/Notebook/Chipsets/PM45/PM45-technicaldocuments.htm.  Document: "Intel® I/O Controller Hub 9 (ICH9) Family Datasheet". 

It looks like only ICH9R supports port multiplier. See article http://www.intel.com/design/chipsets/matrixstorage_sb.htm.  The XPS 1640 uses ICH9M-E/M.

I am disappointed that I can't use 2 drives on the Duet via eSATA on my (2 month old) XPS 1640.  Good thing the Duet also comes with a USB connector.  With the USB connection, XPS 1640 can see both the drives.  For people who are interested in the Duet, note that "Safely remove hardware" will release both drives at the same time.  Also, note that Intel Matrix Storage Manager needs to be installed to get the "Safely remove hardware" feature for eSATA connection.

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giftmugsman
1 Copper

Re: External SATA Port Multiplier Box 1-to-5 SATA2 Port Multiplier

Hello pohheng,

Thanks for your posting. It's a nice Thanksgiving gift in view of the fact that I am very disappointed the way Dell treated me when I was trying to find out why my machine would not accept an

External SATA Port Multiplier

as they had told me it would.

Well, in the future I'll have to buy my computers elsewhere in the hope that I'll get better service than from DELL.

 

Happy Turkey - if you're in the US.

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zrtom
3 Argentium

Re: External SATA Port Multiplier Box 1-to-5 SATA2 Port Multiplier

Any updates to this issue?  For my XPS 420 I bought a Roswill RSV-S4-X port multiplier with SiliconImage 3726 chipset and Matrix Storage Manager says only Port 0 will be active (like all of the current comments here).

Next I installed the eSATA PCI-e adapter that came with the box.  Windows 7 x64 RTM found and installed drivers for the card and they work fine for all 4 ports inside the multiplier....... that is until the system sleeps.  Upon resume from sleep, the device (eSATA card) is no longer present and I need to reboot to get it back.

Frustrating.  But I thought I'd mention it here in case someone else has had success getting the onboard Intel eSATA to support more than one port.  I've emailed Intel and will post here if they have anything to help.

 Tom

XPS 420, Q6600, 4GB, 500 GB, WIndows 7 x64 RTM Ultimate

XPS 420, Q6700, 8GB G.Skill 1.9v, OCZ Vertex 30GB x2 (RAID0), Windows 7 x64 RTM Ultimate

XPS M1330, 2.4 GHz, 4GB, 60 GB OCZ Vertex, Windows 7 x64 RTM Ultimate

XPS M1330, 2.4 GHz, 4GB, 320GB, Quad Boot: XP Pro x64, Vista x64 Ultimate, Ubuntu, Media Direct

Mini 9, 1.6 GHz, 2 GB, BT, 1.3MP Webcam, 32 GB Runcore, Windows 7 x86 RTM Ultimate

Mini 10, long gone and good riddance

Mini 10v,  1.6 GHz, 2 GB, Dual Boot XP & Windows 7 x86 RTM Ultimate

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Tesla1856
6 Thallium

Re: External SATA Port Multiplier Box 1-to-5 SATA2 Port Multiplier

Any updates to this issue?  For my XPS 420 I bought a Roswill RSV-S4-X port multiplier with SiliconImage 3726 chipset and Matrix Storage Manager says only Port 0 will be active (like all of the current comments here).

Next I installed the eSATA PCI-e adapter that came with the box.  Windows 7 x64 RTM found and installed drivers for the card and they work fine for all 4 ports inside the multiplier....... that is until the system sleeps.  Upon resume from sleep, the device (eSATA card) is no longer present and I need to reboot to get it back.

Frustrating.  But I thought I'd mention it here in case someone else has had success getting the onboard Intel eSATA to support more than one port.  I've emailed Intel and will post here if they have anything to help.

When you install the Intel software, it permanently replaces the Microsoft HDD driver the the Intel one. Even if you remove the Intel HDD software app, the driver stays behind.

What you need to do is remove the included PCIe card and fresh install Windows 7-64 . Then install Intel chipset drivers (only) and all proper Dell drivers as needed. However, DO NOT install any Intel Matrix Storage or Intel Rapid Storage Tech. software.

Then, test the RSV-S4-X in Windows and after sleep. If it doesn't work (or you are just curious) re-install the included PCIe card. Try it with Windows and sleep test. You might find that one or both ways work and it was the Intel HDD software causing the compatibility problem.


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