6 Replies Latest reply on Feb 19, 2018 11:04 AM by fnoop

    Powering Compute Card Without a Dock

    coolbloke1324

      Hi folks,

       

      So I'd like to find out what is available to power and connect to the USB-C on the compute card without using a dock. I've already got one with a dock but I'd like to build an array of 10 compute cards, all connected up to a custom metal chassis and some water cooling to create a nice mini server farm.

       

      At present after MUCH googling I couldn't find any details on the "extended USB" connector on the card. I am a bit saddened that Intel didn't just do power and data through a single USB-C like a Macbook...

       

      Anyway, anyone know if there is a way to do this?

       

      Thanks!

        • 1. Re: Powering Compute Card Without a Dock
          Intel Corporation
          This message was posted on behalf of Intel Corporation

          Hello coolbloke1324,

          I understand you are looking for a way to power the Intel® Compute Card without using any kind of dock. Regarding this, you would need to get in contact with your assigned  Intel® Sales Representative so they can provide the most appropriate information. If you do not have an Intel® Sales Representative assigned to you, then you will need to fill up the following form:

          https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/forms/support/presales-form.html

          Once this form is complete, you submit the request and the appropriate support team will take care of it providing you with the needed information.

          I hope you find this helpful.


          Regards,
          David V

          • 2. Re: Powering Compute Card Without a Dock
            fweerdenburg@eltan.com

            Hello Coolbloke1324,

             

            For a minimal functioning Compute Card you do not need the extended part of the specified connector, so a standard USB-C connector is sufficient. However to boot Compute Card you need an embedded controller to handle the authenticate process. It looks like an interesting design project to use one embedded controller for the array of 10 compute cards.

             

            Best regards,

            Frank van Weerdenburg

            fweerdenburg@eltan.com

            www.eltan.com

            • 3. Re: Powering Compute Card Without a Dock
              Intel Corporation
              This message was posted on behalf of Intel Corporation

              Hello coolbloke1324,

              I am following up with your case and see that we have not heard back from you.

              If you need more assistance do not hesitate to reply.


              Regards,
              David V

              • 4. Re: Powering Compute Card Without a Dock
                fnoop

                So you can't just buy a compute card and use it through say a usb-c hub without a docking station?  They've forced it to be embedded in a wider hardware platform?  I read it was going to be locked down by hardware partners, but assumed that the standard modules you can buy off the shelf would be unlocked.  If that's the case, you have to wonder, again, why Intel are trying to sabotage their own products..

                • 5. Re: Powering Compute Card Without a Dock
                  coolbloke1324

                  Yup, that appears to be the case.

                   

                  Tried to get some details about IO and power connections and had to jump through many (unnecessary) hoops... not sure I can be bothered to do that given I can just buy a bunch of Raspberry Pi's to run the stuff I'm looking to power. Would have preferred the form factor and x86 cpu of the compute card but I'm not THAT bothered. Seriously silly to lock this down. Just sell some bloomin' connection cables for pete's sake, or be more sensible and allow a USB-C to do it all. Making the connector proprietary is fairly ill conceived and I'm sure that during the engineering phase of this product someone at Intel would have said the same thing, then someone else would have been like "Oh but if we make it proprietary then we can sell some connector dock nonsense to some of our OEM partners"...

                   

                  So sad.

                  • 6. Re: Powering Compute Card Without a Dock
                    fnoop

                    It's even more insane than that if the extra connector isn't needed and it will function (albeit with reduced capacity/functionality) with just the usb-c connector, it means they've actively and deliberately locked it down from use unless you've plugged in a (presumably proprietary) authenticator.  This would explain why there is zero interest in the marketplace for these things.  Again, <slow hand clap>well done Intel, well done</slow hand clap>, on yet another catastrophically bad business decision around a perfectly good engineered product.