02-01-2012 12:23 PM - edited 02-01-2012 12:41 PM
This essentially is a note about the best 2.5" to 3.5" drive/SSD adapters I have found for use with these HP workstations.
The form factors of 2.5" hard drives and SSD's are very similar, and for our teleradiology work we have settled in on a Seagate "hybrid" 2.5" hard drive which is comprised of 500GB conventional drive, and 4GB of SSD-like flash memory that the drive loads with the most commonly used software components. This is the 500GB version of the Momentus XT, with good review at this site: http://www.anandtech.com/show/3734/seagates-moment
This drive has given us a very significant improvement in performance over conventional drives. Pure SSD drives are faster, but these fit our needs at much lower cost. These don't need TRIM, and work equally well in our XPPro32-bit and W764-bit installs. How to mount them in the HP green plastic sleds used in the xw workstations? Use of a SSD would be virtually identical with these adapters, but noise is not an issue for them.
Attached are two pictures, one with 4 options and the drives out, and one with my favorite two adapters, with drives mounted, in the workstation. The descriptions below refer to the pic with all four out of the workstation:
Favorite: Top left, blue anodized strong aluminum alloy with the synthetic rubber blue grommets adding noise reduction in addition to the gray grommets built into the HP green plastic sled's metal attachment points. Those metal attachment point pegs slip perfectly into the threaded holes in the blue aluminum extensions, and thereby this adapter also could be screwed into a conventional 3.5" hard drive bay. Same for all the rest of them. Name, source and cost: This is an OWC Multi-Mount, with web site http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other%20World%20Com
Second Favorite: Top right, also from the same company, is a more rigid cast high quality metal frame with SATA to SATA adapter that centers the drive more to the left in the bay. You can see in my second picture that the combo of the blue one above and the black one below lets the SATA cables hang nicely. The short wires between the two power attachments are not having to be tight, either, with that arrangement. I like the Molex brand latching red cables from Mouser.com, and I noticed that this one's SATA attachment at the rear end of the green circuit board SATA adapter did not have the lips that allow the latching latching mechanism to work. They have a newer version out now with a red circuit board SATA adapter that may have that upgrade, but I am not sure on that. The nice snug Foxconn SATA connectors that HP uses work great on that adapter. The metal is nicely powder coated, high quality and the sides are slightly over 1/4" thick in height, so this is substantial. The power coating is thick and insulates the bottom of the drive from the metal. It is called the AdaptaDrive and the web site is http://eshop.macsales.com/item/NewerTech/ADPTADRV/ and the cost is $20.00.
Third Favorite: Bottom right, a Western Digital IcePack mounting frame, and those come with the Velociraptor 10k RPM drives which are 2.5" form factor, mounted in that frame to perfectly match a 3.5" form factor. Those can be hard to find, but go for about $25.00, are heavy, and supposedly aren't so great in noise reduction. Note how it shifts the power/SATA attachments to the left, similar to #2 above. That can be handy rather than a detriment if you start with #1 above and #2 or #3 below. PDF attached, from Western Digital.
Cheap, and it works: Bottom left, and made by Thermaltake, a good name. It has room to mount two stacked atop the other, but I mount only in the top position for good ventilation. Note how the drive connectors are recessed forward towards the front of the HP green plastic sled. You cannot use right angle SATA cables for these, but straight ones will work fine, and curve downwards to the motherboard out the rear of the drive bay. This one is strong, cheap, and offers excellent venting. It shifts the drive connectors towards the middle of the bay, as in #1 above. It is fine if you only are going to use one drive total, or if you have both drives recessed this way, but the wire length between the top and the bottom drive power connectors is quite short, and to have one recessed and one out at the more normal position would be a tight fit. That is the Thermaltake AC0014, $10.00 at Newegg.com.
Those latching cables..... they come in 0.5 and 1.0 meter lengths, and are made by the Molex company, so you know the quality is excellent. I get them from Mouser.com, and they have both straight-straight and right angle-straight ones, latching at each end. These are about $2.50 each, and we don't have loose SATA connections if we use these. Source is Mouser.com, and there is a PDF attached, with these cables at the bottom, and the right angle ones represented by figure Q at the top. A+ quality, and they're on page 1359 of the Mouser catalog currently online. The latching ribs are built into the top inside face of virtually all of the SATA connectors at the rear end of modern hard drives, SSD's and optical drives these days.
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08-12-2012 10:09 AM
Great post! One thing, how did you get AHCI to work? AHCI bios loads but it says the my System drive is being controlled by the RAID BIOS.
I do have a RAID 0 with LSI not eh ESB RAID. IS ter wa y to disbale teh ESB RAID bios so teh drives will use AHCI only? xw9400.
08-12-2012 10:07 PM
I can get AHCI, and AHCI + RAID, drivers loaded in XP Pro from the very lowest level of OS install via the F6 driver install via floppy drive. Then I update them with the latest from Intel, which is out in late 2010.
In my experience you can't go back on an install of XP and load the AHCI or AHCI + RAID drivers after the fact... that is a waste of time. I just start over, set BIOS correctly, and hook up an outside floppy drive for proper F6 install.
In contrast, you can do a retrospecitive fix with W7, after the fact, as posted previously. And, you can update them too.
You want at least AHCI drivers if you are using modern SATA hard drives.
I have no experience with xw9400........
09-10-2012 09:40 PM
(if my post was helpful, please "mark as a solution" or give "kudos" - thanks)
09-11-2012 04:41 PM - edited 09-11-2012 04:45 PM
Happy to help. I'm assuming of the two types that OWC offers (NewerTech is a subset of OWC) you liked the AdaptaDrive rather than the Multi-Mount (pictures attached). That runs about 25.00, which is about what you'll pay for a WD IcePack. See below for a nice deal off eBay at 20.00/IcePack, shipped.
The AdaptaDrive is very nicely made, and does position things to the left more (just like the Western Digital IcePack that originally was intended to mount the 2.5" Velociraptor 10k RPM drives).
If I could choose between the two with the more leftward positioning of the power/data connectors I'd always choose the Western Digital IcePack mounting frame. Those can be hard to find, but I have bought dead velociraptors off eBay just to harvest those from. That has the special newer SATA-standard recesses that let you use latching SATA data and power cables. Latching is not so necessary if one has the HP Foxconn SATA cables that do a great job..... nice tight fit.
Here's some sources for the IcePack:
Best price right now that I could find, 9/12, with free shipping. At that price I'd go with it over the two from OWC:
09-11-2012 05:50 PM
Only two products work for those cases of the ones you listed: WD IcePack and AdaptaDrive.
For SSDs, it seems that AdaptaDrive is a more elegant option, so I am getting those from OWC. Plus, because I sell systems to the Feds (among other places), I have to be careful what I buy, i.e. avoid grey market items. It looks like WD IcePacks are all "grey" - not sold officially by WD in retail other than to OEMs.
Thanks again Scott!
(if my post was helpful, please "mark as a solution" or give "kudos" - thanks)
09-20-2012 02:38 PM
WD IcePacks are available directly through HP Parts and HP PartSurfer.
HP Part Number 619242-001
The part is described as "Hard drive carrier assembly - For 3.5-inch hard drive mount into optical drive bay" but you can view the photo to see that it is the WD IcePack. Four screws are included that require a Torx T8 driver.
08-31-2014 03:37 AM
Could you possibly help me work out how to instal a standard size SSD drive into the spare 2.5" drive bay in my HP Elitedesk 800 G1 Small Form Factor machine?
I have a standard HP configuration of this 800 G1 SFF which includes an empty 2.5" drive bay, with power supply and SATA connections ready for a 2nd drive to be installed. The problem is that I need some suitably sized and configured bracket, or holder, which will fit securely into the HP drive bay. It's not a 3.5" bay so the HP adapter ref 654540-001 will (I'm pretty sure) be too big. The drive bay is listed by HP as being a 2.5" bay, although when I measure it it is actually 3" high.
HP seem to sell SSD drives for this bay size but they are ferociously expensive, compared to good quality 3rd party SSDs, hence I'm trying to find a suitable bracket or holder to use with a 3rd party SSD.
Any help would be greatly appreciated - thank you
08-31-2014 08:19 PM - edited 08-31-2014 08:25 PM
Welcome to the forum Pecorino,
I don't have one of those workstations, but they do have a listing of having a 2.5" form factor drive bay, and a 3.5" form factor drive bay. It sounds like you want to put a 2.5" form factor SSD in the second (3.5") bay. Getting from the 2.5" form factor to 3.5" is easy.... my two favorite devices to pull that off are the Western Digital Ice Dock and the HP screw on Foxconn-made device that I have posted on here that is easily found via eBay if you search via "HP 2.5 to 3.5 adapter". An image of it is attached above.
You can see the Foxconn BlindMate interface that shifts the SATA power/data attachments to the left to match exactly what a 3.5" form factor drive would look like.
The next step is how to fit the resultant 3.5" form factor into your workstation. For the xw6400, xw6600, xw8400, and xw8600 those all use the green plastic sleds from HP. For the Z620s and Z820s they use the special drawers that slide into the drawer slots of those workstations. I just don't know what your SFF workstation uses as an interface to fit the 3.5" form factor.
Half the battle is the 2.5 to 3.5 form factor transition via the HP/Foxconn device above....... it is top quality. If you find the interface that lets the 3.5" form factor fit into your workstation please let us know what its part number is. Those virtually always are molded by HP into the plastic of the unit. Once one has those Spares or Assembly part numbers they become easier to find via Google and eBay searches.
09-01-2014 02:56 AM
Many thanks for your reply, however I don't think that will work because the bay size is smaller than a 3.5" bay. I've tried to show it in the attached picture - the bay is offset from the 3.5" bay behind it, although the two bays are made from a single piece of metal, this smaller bay in front has an aperture that's exactly 3" high, with a bottom bracket measuring 4 and 3/8ths inches along, and the overall width of the opening is 4.5".
So the bay is clearly smaller than the 3.5" bay behind it, and the Foxconn adapter would presumably be too big. So I'm wondering if it's possible to find a bracket/holder designed to fit into this slightly smaller bay?
I have of course asked HP but so far their technical team haven't been any help.
Do you have any other ideas?
09-01-2014 08:06 AM - edited 09-01-2014 08:34 AM
The picture helps.... I believe the orientation is that you have the SFF PC laying down, and have removed the lid, and have rotated the single metal piece that contains the two drive bays 90 degrees upward. The 3.5" form factor bay is open at the top and facing the keyboard, and contains a single 3.5" form factor hard drive. The 2.5" form factor bay is open at the bottom, and facing the camera, and has no drive in it.
We'll call the side of the PC that is partly shown in black on the left side of the picture the "forwards" end.
Note the blue elastomeric bumpers that are part of the mechanism for holding the 3.5" drive in its bay.... there will be 4 total of those, each is screwed into the standard threaded holes along the drive sides, and the drive then is slid down and forwards in those curving cutouts in the metal, to latch firmly in place using the spring loaded metal part having the green arrow on it. The blue elastomeric bumper thingy also has a metal component with a slot made by two metal round fixed "washers" that allows the 4 of them to slide perfectly into proper position along the metal cutout guides. The elastomeric bumper part helps keep drive vibration from being transmitted to the metal. You won't have that issue with a SSD, of course. You could cobble together some spacers and washers and 4 of the proper screws to fit the SSD side holes and screw it in place, but I'd hunt down the blue units to do it right, personally.
The opposite will be true for the 2.5" bay.... you need 4 more of those special blue elastomeric bumper thingys to screw into the 4 side holes of your new 2.5" form factor drive. You'll slide that drive upwards and then forwards into the bay just like the 3.5" drive was slid downwards into its bay, to snap into position, held in place by the its metal tab with the green arrow.
If you want to dump the 3.5" hard drive and convert over to a 2.5" drive you could get one of the Ice Dock or HP Foxconn 2.5 to 3.5 form factor converters, and take the 4 blue bumper thingies off the original drive. Each of those converters have both side and bottom threaded screw holes that exactly match those that you'll find on a regular 3.5" drive..... exactly same threads and spacing.
Does that help? I have no idea where to buy the blue bumper thingies, but I'd start with the HP Parts web site.
09-01-2014 08:29 AM
Yes you're right the disk drive bay assembly rotates upwards, hinged at the front edge of the case. I planned to keep the existing 3.5" drive in its existing bay, hence all the trouble starts. I know I need 4 of those blue washer type things, and I understand how the disks should be inserted or removed, but even before I get to that point, how the heck do I get a small SDD secured within a holder/bracket of the right size to fit into that 2.5" bay?? It seems to me that my main problem is I can't find an SDD holder or retaining bracket that is going to fit properly into this bay, whilst holding an SDD firmly inside it . .
I feel I need an "SDD bracket/holder for a 2.5" HP drive bay" but I can't find this anywhere.
09-01-2014 08:39 AM - edited 09-01-2014 08:42 AM
That's because it does not exist, I believe.
The 4 blue thingys includes metal components/spacers built in which separate the outside face of the SSD sides from the inside face of the bay's metal sides.... same gap on each side for the 3.5 and 2.5 bays, I bet.
If you add up the width of the SSD and the width of those spacers you'll have exactly the width of the inside-to-inside dimension of the 2.5" bay. The same side gaps should be there if you look at your 3.5" bay with its drive in it......
09-01-2014 09:27 AM
Hmmm, then it maybe boils down to finding a source for those "blue thingys" - my HP technical support engineer is telling me that they may not exist as an HP spare part either, at least not specifically for this SFF PC chassis. However, he's on the case and trying to find whether they exist for other HP models and may also fit ok into mine. Thank you for your help, and I'll send another post if/when I finally get it sorted . . .
09-02-2014 07:25 AM - edited 09-03-2014 12:39 PM
I'd say you're getting closer to the solution:
From a google search:
"There are special guide screws for 2.5" drives. The manual states "Extra guide screws for 2.5-inch hard drives are not provided on the chassis but can be purchased from HP" and that those screws are black/blue instead of silver/blue. I have not been able to find a part number for the black/blue 2.5" guide screws (or isolation mounting screws as they are also named) with M3 threads."
In many HP workstations they come with extra drive mounting screws, and those generally have been silver metal if 6-32" screws and black metal if M3 screws.
Remember that the threading for 3.5" form factor hard drive mounting screws is different from SSDs..... it is #6 screws, 32 threads/inch (UNC) while the threads for SSDs are M3. By convention, if I recall correctly, floppy drives and optical drives use the M3 threading also. It makes sense, given the threading differences, that HP would make these color coded via blue elastomer/silver metal versus blue elastomer/black metal.
You can force these things to fit if you are putting M3 screws into 6-32 holes, but the other way around requires drilling out the M3 screw holes to a slightly larger diameter. That is not so good as getting the correct parts. Once you start digging on eBay you might find them. They do exist from HP with the finer SSD threading because HP sells your workstation with an SSDs in it if you order that way.
If HP refuses to sell them independently, and that may be the case, then you could drill out the SSD's 4 thread holes just the right amount and use the torx-headed 6-32 blue version to create its own threads. They only screw in a short distance, and the SSD case is a softer aluminum alloy. This is nuts if HP won't sell them to you, and that would be the decision of a short sighted manager.
Here's a forum thread on this issue, but they're dealing with the coarser 6-32 threading:
Below is a picture of the coarse-threaded (6-32 UNC) blue elastomer ones with the silver metal. However, you want the fine-threaded (M3 metric) blue elastomer ones with the black metal. I don't know if all the metal will be black, or only the central screw part of the M3 threaded mounts.:
09-02-2014 09:05 AM - edited 09-03-2014 12:40 PM
After searching a bit more it seems HP may not want to sell the blue elastomer/black metal M3-threaded mounts independently. Here is what I think will be your solution, based on the bottom post in this thread:
You don't need the elastomer for SSDs.... they don't vibrate. You'll want to use roughly a 3/8" length M3 machine screw, and I'd go Philips head for that. Stainless washers tend to be thinner than non-stainless. The #4 washers he refers go up against the head of the screw, and the two of them there provide the bearing surface that slides into the metal cutouts. He says the #4 washers are a tight fit on the 6-32 x 3/8 screw he used, so the M3 x 3/8 long equivalent screw you'll be using should fit thru the hole in those washers better. Then comes the wider #10 washers. Note on one side he used 2 of those per screw, and on the other side he used 3. Those will slide against the inside face of the metal drive cage built in to the PC, on both sides.
It looks like you just need to get the right number of #10 washers to have the net transverse dimension wide enough, but not too wide.
So, this will work and be much better than drilling out the mounting holes on your SSD.
I looked at a 3.5" drive in a HP I have access to which uses the blue/silver 6-32 threads..... you cannot just unscrew the 6-32 and screw in a M3 with that without destroying the whole thing.
The sequence of parts for both the front and rear of the SSD: M3 Philips head, 2 #4 washers that will slide down and forward into the metal cutouts, two #10 spacer washers which will slide against the inside face of the metal cage, the SSD, three #10 spacer washers to slide against the other inside face of the metal cage, two #4 washers, and finally the other Philips head. If you go stainless for the washers you may need to buy more. Metric stainless washers tend to be thicker. The #4 washers (or metric equivalent) need to fit inside the cutout grooves in the metal cage.
I'd gently tighten the M3 down against the washers so all is snug, and you don't want the M3 machine screw so long that it bottoms out before the washers get snug. You may want a M3 lock washer between the Philips head and the outer #4 washer. Once all is set properly you should be able to slide the whole thing in and out whenever you need, and the single locking spring loaded tab should work fine against the #4 washers at that one corner.
Finally, when you get the perfect combination figured out please let us know. I generally use stainless for these projects, and find Ace Hardware to be a good source of my stainless metric and UNC/UNF parts. Mcmaster.com has all this too, and has never screwed up an order for me.
Shame on HP, honestly, if they're still refusing to sell the blue elastomer/black M3 fine-threaded SSD 2.5" form factor mounts to their customers.
A final link..... you are not the only one dealing with this, and note that the part numbers provided on the first page are wrong. A correct part number is not provided. Your HP representative may be motivated to break the log jam for us!