SC846 with consumer motherboard

pablocool

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Mar 13, 2012
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Hi

I would like to collect inside this thread list of complatible consumer boards with SM PSU/PDU. If someone successfully built such configuration please post.

There are tons of topics over the internet about weird incompatibility issue between SM power supply PSU/power distributor board PDB and consumer motherboards (like Asus P9D, Asus P9D, Asus X99, Biostar etc):

example ones:
https://www.reddit.com/r/homelab/comments/exv54g/requesting_help_with_new_server_build/

Motherboards simply refuse to boot with SM stuff. I think reason for that is still unknown. Even SM support claim 3rd party motherboards should work inside SM chassis. Also there are some users eg @kapone that claim they successfully run consumer motherboards inside SM chassis.

I would like to run consumer motherboard in supermicro chassis due to two main reasons:

1. Consumer motherboard (even professional Asus P9B/P9D WS) posts quicker than supermicro ones. I boot my fileserver from time to time with WoL and I would like it to be quick.
2. Consumer PSU inside SM chassis is not an option. Even Corsair rm1000x 1000W cannot handle 24 SAS disks. Backplane reports power shortage with red leds. Supermicro PSU is more reliable when it comes to such big amount of disks. Consumer PSUs push most of their power to GPU 6/8 connectors. While I need most of power over 6 molex connectors to the backplane.

Thanks
/Paweł
 

kapone

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May 23, 2015
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Wow, I didn't realize I made the list! :)

Seriously though, running a consumer motherboard in a Supermicro chassis is NO different than running a server motherboard. And that's with the stock PSU/PDB in the SM chassis.

I have run Asrock/Gigabyte/MSI ITX boards in a SM chassis (with the stock PSU), I have run OEM boards, like Dell 9010/7010 (has a standard ATX power socket), and obviously server boards.

In 99.99% of the cases where I see people struggling with getting their system to boot is...user error. Sorry, but that's the truth. There is no "magic" in a SM chassis/PSU/PDB that separates it from consumer equipment, other than being of much higher quality (designed to run 24x7) and much cheaper. A Supermicro PSU with the PDB plugged in, is 100% identical to a consumer PSU, operationally speaking. There is no difference.
 

i386

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I would make a list of not working configurations, that list will be a lot shorter and have more valuable information for troubleshooting.
 

pablocool

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Known not working boards are:
Asus X99-a
Asus P8B WS
Asus P9D WS
Biostar TB250-BTC (some post mining mb lend from Friend, doubt anyone would consider using it with SM chassis ;), just used it with my tests)

Known working board:
Old Pentium 4 board booted without issues.

I have no more modern motherboards to test. And I just dont to buy them to verify. That is why I just wanted few examples that users successfully use with SM PSU/PDB.

SM stuff I refer is:
PSU: PWS-920P-SQ
PDB: PDB-PT846-8824

@kapone Can you post your PDB model?

And yes I know this sounds weird that some ATX motherboard may not work with SM ATX PSU/PDB.
You may think user error etc, but really not this time. I am struggling with this from few days. I checked almost everything. I measured all voltages. Checked if there is full contact between ATX connector and socket and same for EPS12V.

One thing I discovered is about Power Good pin in ATX connector. When SM stuff boots supermicro or old P4 MB successfully then there is 5,06V. When it fails to boot for example Asus P8B WS there is 4,87V. Looks like PSU/PDB is not passing kind of self test?
I do not know if there is any protocol that motherboard could talk to PSU over ATX and vice versa.. I even disconnected that pin from Corsair PSU and Asus mb booted successfully. Other voltages are very close in both PSUs. So why 3rd party MBs refuse to boot?

So for now I just want one example of tested customer grade motherboard, then I buy it and test.

Regarding Corsair PSU and 24 SAS disks from time to time I got Red LEDs on Backplane. I found in manual that may be power shortage. But maybe it was something about SAS Expander? Not sure but besides that I would really prefer to use Supermicro PSU/PDB.
 
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pricklypunter

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Nov 10, 2015
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About the only reason I can think of, for a working mainboard failing to boot, with a poor power good signal from the PSU, although the voltages you quoted are well within spec to run normally, would be that the mainboard itself is simply not pulling enough power at start-up for the PSU to regulate properly. That or at the opposite end of the scale, excessively loading a rail so that the PSU is folding back :)

There is nothing fundamentally different that I'm aware of, between what a consumer ATX PSU and a SM one with a PDB in a chassis presents to a mainboard in terms of voltages or signalling, that will prevent a mainboard from operating normally.
 

pablocool

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I agree that it maybe something about amount of pulled power.

Looking for new motherboard for testing purposes I have found and bought Supermicro X9SCM-F
It has really good price. 74PLN is about $20
And it is also socket 1155 like my Asus P8b Ws.
It booted fine from the first try. So there is definitely sameting wrong with pairing customer grade mobos with SM PSU.

I think I will stay with this SM mobo. It boots really Quick.
It has ipmi.
It has 4 pcie ports.

There are of course few disadventages.
It doesnt support i5/i7 only celerons, i3 and xeons
It has poor integrated GPU and does not support cpu GPU, so I have to find pcie x8 graphics card, as I often use server locally.

Thanks for all your input.
 

itronin

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Nov 24, 2018
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I agree that it maybe something about amount of pulled power.

Looking for new motherboard for testing purposes I have found and bought Supermicro X9SCM-F

Thanks for all your input.
did you ever try with a couple of 3.5" spinners attached to see if that generated enough load to boot your consumer boards?

X9SCM-F is good. You might also look at X10SLL, X10SLM

IPMI is improved, cpu's newer (albeit a little more expensive), same memory type.

But if you want lowest cost and SM then X9SCM-F or its siblings.
 

i386

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I had a X10SDV-2C-TP4F in a 846BE1C-R1K23B without any hdds and it was booting windows without any problems.
 

pablocool

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Yes sure, initially I just swapped PSUs inside SM chassis. That means there were 24 SAS drives attached, MegaRAID controller and SAS Expander. Total power consumption about 250W in peak.

I also checked that X9SCM-F with only cpu and ram takes 35W total with fully loaded Linux from pendrive. It is even less than not booting Asus P8b WS. So the only difference may be the power consumotion in 3.3V rail, as spinners use only 12V and 5V as far as I know. And that differences may be the cause of issue.

Thanks for other SM mobo sugestions. I will check them. Before that small itx mobos I used 2011v3 MBD-X10DRL-I-P. It was really cool besides booting terribly long.
 
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pablocool

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By thw way. I am looking for low end GPU for this SM motherboard. The only requirement is max resolution 2k (2560x1440), and Digital video output dp/hdmi/DVI.
It would be great if it is pcie x1 or x4 or x8 long.

That would be good besides being x16 long

https://allegro.pl/oferta/karta-nvidia-quadro-nvs-295-grafika-low-profile-9697757501

Do you think it would be possible to hack it to run in SM board? I am sure x16 GPU can be run from even x1 slot. It is slower in 3d of course. But I Wonder if SM has possibility to use external GPU over internal one?



This terrifies me, but should work:
 
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