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Lenovo Thinkcentre/ThinkStation Tiny (Project TinyMiniMicro) Reference Thread

Parallax

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Nov 8, 2020
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I got it booting esxi on a satadom with that adapter and the dual 10g card in it. now i just need a back plate to hold the card.


View attachment 22891
A simpler option might be what eBay sellers seem to call a "half slim SSD" which should plug directly into the SATA connector without needing an adaptor, and it has no case so it's pretty small, the same or less than what you show here. SATA to SATA DOM adapters are impossible to find at the moment in the UK and the SATA DOM units themselves generally are fairly expensive here.

If you're looking at ESXi 7 then it requires 32GB minimum for an SSD and will consume up to 138GB for a boot device, so 64 or 128GB looks optimal given ESXi seems to appreciate some scratch and swap space. A 128GB half slim is £24 (~$30) delivered here at the moment.
 

adman_c

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A simpler option might be what eBay sellers seem to call a "half slim SSD" which should plug directly into the SATA connector without needing an adaptor, and it has no case so it's pretty small, the same or less than what you show here. SATA to SATA DOM adapters are impossible to find at the moment in the UK and the SATA DOM units themselves generally are fairly expensive here.

If you're looking at ESXi 7 then it requires 32GB minimum for an SSD and will consume up to 138GB for a boot device, so 64 or 128GB looks optimal given ESXi seems to appreciate some scratch and swap space. A 128GB half slim is £24 (~$30) delivered here at the moment.
Oooh. Thanks for the info on the half slim ssd! I was going to take a spare ssd apart (and still might), but this looks like an intriguing option to add a separate boot drive for a tiny hypervisor.
 

gamerlamer

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Aug 31, 2019
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I checked and he has the 5th gen figured out not the 6th gen. the m90Q seems they are different bracket
You can still use the bracket from the prev gen that kz476 sells and have it fit the m90q/p340th with very miner modification. You just need to shave down the a little bit of the material next to the top cover screw hole. This will widen the opening to accept the bracket.
 

adman_c

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You can still use the bracket from the prev gen that kz476 sells and have it fit the m90q/p340th with very miner modification. You just need to shave down the a little bit of the material next to the top cover screw hole. This will widen the opening to accept the bracket.
Do you have any pics of this?
 

adman_c

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Oooh. Thanks for the info on the half slim ssd! I was going to take a spare ssd apart (and still might), but this looks like an intriguing option to add a separate boot drive for a tiny hypervisor.
I can confirm that a "half slim ssd" or a sata ssd shucked from its plastic case (these appear to be more or less the same thing) fits quite easily in the space behind the SuperMicro AOC-STGN-i2S Rev 2. I'm ever more enthused by the idea of building a Tiny Monster Hypervisor with a P350.
 
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adman_c

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Ugh. Just when I grabbed a couple of those lovely UK-discounted P350s that Parallax discovered, I can't seem to find the compatible riser anywhere except for aliexpress, where there are two vendors selling it for $70. :eek: Oh wait, there's also a Chinese vendor on Amazon selling it for $170. :eek::eek:Anyone know of any place for the Tiny 6 16x risers that my google-fu is not locating?
 

rafale77

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Ugh. Just when I grabbed a couple of those lovely UK-discounted P350s that Parallax discovered, I can't seem to find the compatible riser anywhere except for aliexpress, where there are two vendors selling it for $70. :eek: Oh wait, there's also a Chinese vendor on Amazon selling it for $170. :eek::eek:Anyone know of any place for the Tiny 6 16x risers that my google-fu is not locating?

I got mine here:

It was in stock for a very short time.
 

rafale77

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there was a UK ebay seller also (laptoppartsUK?) but it apparently went out of stock. It was also a lot more expensive with the shipping fees to the US.
 

Parallax

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Are the risers actually electrically different for the Tiny6 from previous gens? I mean they're PCIe 4 but does this actually change anything on the riser?
 

adman_c

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Are the risers actually electrically different for the Tiny6 from previous gens? I mean they're PCIe 4 but does this actually change anything on the riser?
Very good question, but how much is someone willing to risk to test it? The other potential problem (and one I've run into with my M910x Tinys) is that they may be very slightly physically different. The Tiny5 risers are electrically compatible with Tiny4 boxes, but the Tiny4 risers place the "x16" slot 1 or 2 mm higher in the enclosure, which gives PCIE cards a small amount of vertical clearance over the rear baffle opening. This small amount of clearance might also give enough clearance to avoid the issue I had with my NIC contacting the HSF mount in the M910x. Regardless, I'll have a look when I receive my P350s--I presume that Lenovo wouldn't make the physical connector between the riser and the motherboard compatible if they're not electrically compatible.
 

rafale77

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Pure speculation on my part, but based on the looks of it (tiny5 Vs tiny6), it isn't the electrical interface which is different. It is the physical shape of the board. I believe that the location of the holding screw and potentially the relative position of the PCIe connector is slightly different which could potentially create some interferences.
 

Parallax

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Ugh. Just when I grabbed a couple of those lovely UK-discounted P350s that Parallax discovered, I can't seem to find the compatible riser anywhere except for aliexpress, where there are two vendors selling it for $70. :eek: Oh wait, there's also a Chinese vendor on Amazon selling it for $170. :eek::eek:Anyone know of any place for the Tiny 6 16x risers that my google-fu is not locating?
The snappily-named SZWXZY store on AliExpress has the 8x for $53. But yeah, the risers for the Tiny6 seem a lot more expensive than you'd expect compared to the previous gen. Hopefully it's temporary and caused by the general parts shortage.
 

Parallax

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On a somewhat related note, I'm wondering if the SATA ZIF ribbon cable + connector for the Tiny is the same as the several zillion being sold on eBay as spare parts for laptops? Because that's a way cheaper method to get it (~£5) than to buy the official caddy + cable FRU and toss the caddy (£24).
 

poulpor

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Hi, just stumbled on this thread, I'm a M720Q user and wanted to tell other tiny users you have the possibility to enable hidden bios options, like undervolting, Thunderbolt 3 card on M720Q or any other hidden/blocked features, with some grub shell commands. Those changes are permanent after reboot, and even after bios update but as var value offset location may change between versions, best extract new bios and check.
I'm not very good at english, but you can see a short discussion about this on Lenovo forum. I only disabled CFG_Lock and enabled undervolting possibilities on mine (+ egpu)but another M720Q user enabled the thunderbolt 01AJ968 installation (restricted to M920q/x and up).
Love this tiny little beast :)
 
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adman_c

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Interestingly, from looking at the pics of the Tiny 6 risers vs the Tiny 5 risers, they added pins to the Tiny 6 risers. I wonder if that impacts compatibility or if it's like PCIE where the first n pins are always the same so a card with a lower number of pins will work. In any case, Encompass has the Tiny 6 4x riser in stock, so I grabbed one of those to at least test the fit with one of my 1x SFP+ NICs. If I'm feeling frisky, I may dremel out the back of the 4x slot and see how the 2x SFP+ NIC runs at 4x. Even on a PCIE 2 card like the x520 there's like 80% of the bandwidth of those 2 10gbit ports, and I can't route at linespeed in pfsense virtualized anyway. Although with the higher single core performance of the 11500 it might get close.
 

Phenic

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Mar 17, 2015
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Bought a Intel P3605 in the deals section and managed to fit into a M920Q without any clearance issues. The heatsink of the SSD is in contact with the top of the case when closed so that acts as a nice big heat spreader. However, I prefer a 10gbe NIC in that slot so the P3605 is going somewhere else.

photo_2022-07-03_12-03-03.jpg
 

gamerlamer

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Aug 31, 2019
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Bought a Intel P3605 in the deals section and managed to fit into a M920Q without any clearance issues. The heatsink of the SSD is in contact with the top of the case when closed so that acts as a nice big heat spreader. However, I prefer a 10gbe NIC in that slot so the P3605 is going somewhere else.

View attachment 23393
Thanks for sharing. Another great option with these Tinys
 

Parallax

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Nov 8, 2020
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London, UK
Hi, just stumbled on this thread, I'm a M720Q user and wanted to tell other tiny users you have the possibility to enable hidden bios options, like undervolting, Thunderbolt 3 card on M720Q or any other hidden/blocked features, with some grub shell commands. Those changes are permanent after reboot, and even after bios update but as var value offset location may change between versions, best extract new bios and check.
I'm not very good at english, but you can see a short discussion about this on Lenovo forum. I only disabled CFG_Lock and enabled undervolting possibilities on mine (+ egpu)but another M720Q user enabled the thunderbolt 01AJ968 installation (restricted to M920q/x and up).
Love this tiny little beast :)
Thanks very much for this. Would you be ok if I added this to the original post (with attribution to you, of course)?