Difference between revisions of "MiniPCI Express slot"

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m (Models featuring MiniPCI Express slots: + T430s)
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A MiniPCI Express slot is a version of the PCI-Express x1 slot for Notebooks.
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=== MiniPCI Express slot ===
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The MiniPCI Express slot is a miniaturized version of the PCI Express slot, generally implemented as a 52-pin connector. This is not to be confused with the MiniSATA (mSATA) slot, which uses the same connector, but has a wholly different electrical pin-out.
  
* [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PCI_Express#PCI_Express_Mini_Card Wikipedia article on Mini PCI Express]
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Some MiniPCI Express slots used in certain ThinkPads are meant to only accept 26 x 30 mm cards, or otherwise known as half-length MiniPCI Express cards. These do not fit properly in MiniPCI Express slots that are meant to accept 50.95 x 30 mm cards, or otherwise known as full-length MiniPCI Express cards. If needed, they can be fitted by using half-length to full-length adapters; it cannot be done the other way round though (full-length to half-length adapters do not exist).
  
{{NOTE|There are two physical form factors, a standard 30×50.95 mm, and a half-height 30×26.8 mm. Which one fits depends on the slot.}}
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[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PCI_Express#PCI_Express_Mini_Card Wikipedia article on Mini PCI Express]
 
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=== Overview ===
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The MiniPCI Express slot in full detail, is a dual-voltage 3.3V and 1.5V PCI Express (1.x/2.x) x1 slot. The PCI Express version depends on the I/O controller's capabilities. Note that not all MiniPCI Express slots have the same pin-out, as some slots are meant for WLAN/WWAN/Miscellaneous devices. Depending on the slot's purpose, it may or may not have PCI Express lanes wired to it, it also may or may not have USB lanes wired to it.
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MiniPCI Express slots that are meant to contain WiFi/WLAN cards, will generally have PCI Express lanes wired to them. Slots meant for WWAN on the other hand, will generally have USB lanes wired to them. Slots meant for miscellaneous cards, such as the Turbo Memory card, will generally have both PCI Express lanes and USB lanes wired to them. If the slot is meant for a Wireless USB card, the slot will only have USB lanes wired to it.
  
=== Models featuring MiniPCI Express slots ===
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Unfortunately (for expandability), all known ThinkPads with this slot are loaded with a BIOS whitelist. This would mean that only Lenovo-branded MiniPCI Express cards will work in a ThinkPad, although there are some workarounds or complete fixes for this hassle. See [[Problem with unauthorized MiniPCI network card]] for more information regarding workarounds and fixes.
* ThinkPad {{Edge 11"}}, {{Edge 13"}}, {{Edge 14"}}, {{Edge 15"}}
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* ThinkPad {{L Series}}
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* ThinkPad {{R60}}, {{R60e}}, {{R61}}, {{R61e}}, {{R61i}}, {{R400}}, {{R500}}
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* ThinkPad {{SL300}}, {{SL400}}, {{SL400c}}, {{SL410}}, {{SL500}}, {{SL500c}}, {{SL510}}
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* ThinkPad {{T60}}, {{T60p}}, {{T61}}, {{T61p}}, {{T400}}, {{T400s}}, {{T410}}, {{T410i}}, {{T410s}}, {{T410si}}, {{T430s}}, {{T500}}, {{T510}}, {{T510i}}
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* ThinkPad {{W Series}}
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* ThinkPad {{X60}}, {{X60s}}, {{X60 Tablet}}, {{X61}}, {{X61s}}, {{X61 Tablet}}, {{X100e}}, {{X200}}, {{X200s}}, {{X200 Tablet}}, {{X201}}, {{X201i}}, {{X201s}}, {{X201 Tablet}}, {{X220}}, {{X300}}, {{X301}}
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* ThinkPad {{Z Series}}
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=== MiniPCI Express Adapters ===
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==== MiniPCI Express, WLAN cards ====
'''WLAN'''
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* [[Intel PRO/Wireless 3945ABG Mini-PCI Express Adapter]]
 
* [[Intel PRO/Wireless 3945ABG Mini-PCI Express Adapter]]
 
* [[Intel PRO/Wireless 4965AGN Mini-PCI Express Adapter]]
 
* [[Intel PRO/Wireless 4965AGN Mini-PCI Express Adapter]]
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* [[ThinkPad 11a/b/g Wireless LAN Mini Express Adapter]]
 
* [[ThinkPad 11a/b/g Wireless LAN Mini Express Adapter]]
 
* [[ThinkPad 11b/g/n Wireless LAN Mini-PCI Express Adapter II]]
 
* [[ThinkPad 11b/g/n Wireless LAN Mini-PCI Express Adapter II]]
'''WWAN'''
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==== MiniPCI Express, WWAN cards ====
 
* [[Sierra Wireless MC5720]] - EV-DO WWAN
 
* [[Sierra Wireless MC5720]] - EV-DO WWAN
 
* [[Sierra Wireless MC5725]] - EV-DO WWAN
 
* [[Sierra Wireless MC5725]] - EV-DO WWAN
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* [[Ericsson F3507g Mobile Broadband Module]]
 
* [[Ericsson F3507g Mobile Broadband Module]]
 
* [[Qualcomm Gobi 2000]]
 
* [[Qualcomm Gobi 2000]]
'''Other'''
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==== MiniPCI Express, Miscellaneous cards ====
 
* [[Intel® Turbo Memory hard drive cache]]
 
* [[Intel® Turbo Memory hard drive cache]]
 
* [[Wireless USB (UWB)]]
 
* [[Wireless USB (UWB)]]
  
=== Compatibility ===
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=== External sources ===
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* Lenovo [ftp://ftp.software.ibm.com/pc/pccbbs/mobiles/accessories_guide_us_can_dec2007.pdf accessories guide].
  
==== Designated slots ====
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== Models featuring this technology ==
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=== with a MiniPCI Express slot (WLAN) ===
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*{{W700}}, {{W701}}
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*{{X100e}}, {{X120e}}, {{X121e}}, {{X130e}}, {{X131e}}, {{X140e}}
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*{{R60}}, {{R60e}}, {{R60i}}, {{R61}}, {{R61e}}, {{R61i}}
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*{{G50}}
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*{{Z61e}}
  
According to the design, each slot is intended for a specific purpose. In the X200 for example, the three slots are for:
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=== with a MiniPCI Express slot (WWAN) ===
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*{{Z60m}}
  
* [[Intel® Turbo Memory hard drive cache]] or [[Wireless USB (UWB)]] (half-length slot)
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=== with two MiniPCI Express slots (WLAN+WWAN) ===
* WWAN 3G card (full-length)
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*{{W500}}, {{W510}}, {{W520}}, {{W530}}, {{W700}}, {{W700ds}}, {{W701}}, {{W701ds}}
* WLAN card (full-length)
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*{{T60}}, {{T60p}}, {{T61}}, {{T61p}}, {{T400}}, {{T400s}}, {{T410}}, {{T410i}}, {{T410s}}, {{T410si}}, {{T420}}, {{T420i}}, {{T420s}}, {{T420si}}, {{T430}}, {{T430i}}, {{T430s}}, {{T430si}}, {{T430u}}, {{T500}}, {{T510}}, {{T510i}}, {{T520}}, {{T520i}}, {{T530}}, {{T530i}}
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*{{X220}}, {{X220i}}, {{X220 Tablet}}, {{X220i Tablet}}, {{X230}}, {{X230i}}, {{X230s}}, {{X230 Tablet}}, {{X230i Tablet}}
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*{{L410}}, {{L412}}, {{L420}}, {{L421}}, {{L430}}, {{L510}}, {{L512}}, {{L520}}, {{L530}}
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*{{SL Series}}
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*{{R60}}, {{R500}}
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*{{Z60t}}, {{Z61t}}, {{Z61m}}, {{Z61p}}
  
The purpose of each slot decides over:
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=== with three MiniPCI Express slots (WLAN+WWAN+Miscellaneous) ===
 
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*{{W700}}, {{W700ds}}, {{W701}}, {{W701ds}}
* antenna cable routing (or placement of other connectors)
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*{{T61}}, {{T61p}}, {{T400}}, {{T500}}
* details of some pins of the MiniPCI Express connector
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*{{R400}}
** RF kill signal (one pin)
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*{{X200}}, {{X200s}}, {{X200 Tablet}}, {{X201}}, {{X201i}}, {{X201s}}, {{X201si}}, {{X201 Tablet}} {{X201i Tablet}}, {{X300}}, {{X301}}
** LED signal lines (several pins, one for each type (WLAN, WWAN) of LED)
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** SIM card slot access (three/four(?) pins giving access to a SIM card (in a slot somewhere))
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In case of the X200, I can confirm that the WLAN LED pin of the WLAN slot is connected to the WLAN LED (as everyone might have guessed). Same is true of the WWAN LED pin in the WWAN slot.
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Some questions which remain open:
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* Does the RF kill hardware switch kill the WWAN slot?
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* Is the WWAN LED pin in the WLAN slot connected to something and vice versa?
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* Are the wires from the SIM card slot connected to all MiniPCI Express slots or only the WWAN slot?
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Questions answered for the ThinkPad X200:
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* The WLAN LED pin in the WWAN slot does not go the WWAN LED.
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* The RF kill pin is active (grounded) in the WWAN slot at least under some circumstances and there is a SMAPI software switch which might be able to toggle that signal.
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* Antenna cables go to their supposed slots by default, but are long enough to be rerouted to any slot.
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==== BIOS checks ====
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The BIOS is know to check PCI IDs (via whitelist) and block the boot process if it’s not satisfied (<tt>1802</tt> error). The details vary. Above mentioned hardware might only be accepted if it comes with one set of possible IDs (for Lenovo). The same hardware (from the driver’s viewpoint) is often also available with other IDs if it is sold though other channels. (see also [[Problem with unauthorized MiniPCI network card]], [http://forum.notebookreview.com/showthread.php?t=69445 1802 with MiniPCIe on t60],[http://forums.lenovo.com/lnv/board/message?board.id=T_Series_Thinkpads&message.id=274 same]).
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Non-official patched versions of BIOS files are available for X300, X61, X61s, T61, T61p, R61, R61e (and others, i did it to x60s) which remove whitelist restrictions allowing non-lenovo PCI-e devices.. (see forum post: [http://forum.notebookreview.com/lenovo-ibm/459591-t61-x61-sata-ii-1-5-gb-s-cap-willing-pay-solution-8.html#post6501443 Ultimate R61/T61/X61/X300 BIOS (inc SATA-II)]
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[[Category:Components]]
 
[[Category:Components]]
 
=== External sources ===
 
* Lenovo  [ftp://ftp.software.ibm.com/pc/pccbbs/mobiles/accessories_guide_us_can_dec2007.pdf accessories guide].
 

Latest revision as of 16:27, 24 December 2019

MiniPCI Express slot

The MiniPCI Express slot is a miniaturized version of the PCI Express slot, generally implemented as a 52-pin connector. This is not to be confused with the MiniSATA (mSATA) slot, which uses the same connector, but has a wholly different electrical pin-out.

Some MiniPCI Express slots used in certain ThinkPads are meant to only accept 26 x 30 mm cards, or otherwise known as half-length MiniPCI Express cards. These do not fit properly in MiniPCI Express slots that are meant to accept 50.95 x 30 mm cards, or otherwise known as full-length MiniPCI Express cards. If needed, they can be fitted by using half-length to full-length adapters; it cannot be done the other way round though (full-length to half-length adapters do not exist).

Wikipedia article on Mini PCI Express

Overview

The MiniPCI Express slot in full detail, is a dual-voltage 3.3V and 1.5V PCI Express (1.x/2.x) x1 slot. The PCI Express version depends on the I/O controller's capabilities. Note that not all MiniPCI Express slots have the same pin-out, as some slots are meant for WLAN/WWAN/Miscellaneous devices. Depending on the slot's purpose, it may or may not have PCI Express lanes wired to it, it also may or may not have USB lanes wired to it.

MiniPCI Express slots that are meant to contain WiFi/WLAN cards, will generally have PCI Express lanes wired to them. Slots meant for WWAN on the other hand, will generally have USB lanes wired to them. Slots meant for miscellaneous cards, such as the Turbo Memory card, will generally have both PCI Express lanes and USB lanes wired to them. If the slot is meant for a Wireless USB card, the slot will only have USB lanes wired to it.

Unfortunately (for expandability), all known ThinkPads with this slot are loaded with a BIOS whitelist. This would mean that only Lenovo-branded MiniPCI Express cards will work in a ThinkPad, although there are some workarounds or complete fixes for this hassle. See Problem with unauthorized MiniPCI network card for more information regarding workarounds and fixes.

MiniPCI Express, WLAN cards

MiniPCI Express, WWAN cards

MiniPCI Express, Miscellaneous cards

External sources

Models featuring this technology

with a MiniPCI Express slot (WLAN)

with a MiniPCI Express slot (WWAN)

with two MiniPCI Express slots (WLAN+WWAN)

with three MiniPCI Express slots (WLAN+WWAN+Miscellaneous)