7 Replies Latest reply on Oct 22, 2018 5:43 PM by Intel Corporation

    Are laptop vendors allowed to lock out all but 16GB Optane modules?

    nosirrahx

      I have 2 laptops that I wanted to upgrade from 16GB to larger Optane modules.

       

      The first is an Asus Vivobook Pro. I had no issue at all removing the 16GB module, installing a 800P, reinstalling windows and activating Optane. This worked without issue and Optane reported no errors.

       

      The second laptop is a Lenovo 330S. I have tired a 32GB, 58GB and 118GB Optane module and no matter what I do Optane and RST both report that there are no Optane modules installed. If I go back to the 16GB module I can clean it and active Optane without issue.

       

      I noticed that in BIOS the Lenovo cannot see the Optane module at all in RAID mode unless I use a 16GB module. If use any of the 16GB modules I own I am able to activate Optane cache without issue and BIOS detects the drive correctly.

       

      Keep in mind that both of these laptops came with 16GB modules preinstalled so there is no Optane compatibility issue unless vendors are allowed to lock out certain modules.

       

      If this is the case, this was a terrible idea. Anyone that purchases a larger Optane module to gain more performance should be able to do so without 3rd party vendor interference.

        • 1. Re: Are laptop vendors allowed to lock out all but 16GB Optane modules?
          Al Hill

          What the bios does and does not support is the responsibility of Lenovo.

           

          You should ask them your question.

           

          Doc

          • 2. Re: Are laptop vendors allowed to lock out all but 16GB Optane modules?
            nosirrahx

            The question to them will be very different. I will be asking if future BIOS updates will allow for more than 16GB Optane modules to be installed.

             

            My 2 questions to Intel are:

             

            1. Is Intel aware that vendors can lock out specific Optane modules at a BIOS level?
            2. If Intel is aware of this, why is Intel allowing vendors to make Intel look like it is producing non-functional Optane modules?

             

            The average novice user wont be able to troubleshoot this problem the way I have and will conclude that it is Intel that is the problem when Intel literally has nothing to do with this (unless of course this is something vendors have specific permission to do).

            • 3. Re: Are laptop vendors allowed to lock out all but 16GB Optane modules?
              Al Hill

              I cannot speak for Intel, as I am neither an employee or contractor.

               

              I know, as well as Intel I am sure, that vendors can whitelist and blacklist whatever they want.  And, as I said, their bios is their bios.  I am certain that there is some reason behind what they do, as in positioning a product at a certain entry level, and making sure you pay if you want something more.

               

              As to making Intel look bad, they do it all the time.  It takes someone like you to do the research and go deep into the details.  Kudos to you for doing so.

               

              In my experience, Lenovo has been especially bad.  But, also in my opinion, they all are to some degree.

               

              For an official response, which may not happen, you need to wait for one of the Intel support engineers to respond.

               

              Doc

              • 4. Re: Are laptop vendors allowed to lock out all but 16GB Optane modules?
                Intel Corporation
                This message was posted on behalf of Intel Corporation

                Hello nosirrahx,
                 
                Thank you for having contacted Intel Technical Support and for letting us know about the issue that you are experiencing.  
                 
                We have been monitoring your community post and we would like to let you know the following information:
                 
                •    We do not provide support for third-party platforms as the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) would be best suited to work with them and is up to the OEM and at their discretion to validate a configuration of higher Optane memory capacity or not.
                •    The 800P Modules (58GB/118GB) are not supported for system acceleration as they are SSDs.  Any use as an accelerator is currently not supported or guaranteed to work.
                 
                We will like to know more about your current configuration and we will highly appreciate if you can provide us with the following information:
                 
                1.    Are the 32GB Optane memory modules that you are using an Intel Optane Memory M10, or Intel Optane memory modules?
                2.    When you say the modules (32GB, or the 800P) are not seen in the Lenovo Laptop in RAID mode, do you mean that they do not see the modules as detected in the BIOS at all?  Even under the RST Menu?  Meaning that you cannot even use the 800P as a standalone SSD?
                3.    What happens if you change the settings to AHCI mode and then you try to use the 800P as a secondary drive (i.e. you have another HDD with the OS and you just have the 800P as a data drive), with WIn10 installed and the inbox NVMe driver.  Are you able to see the drive then?
                4.    What RST Windows driver version you are using and what PreOS RST Version is loaded in the BIOS you are using (Should be listed in the BIOS under the RST Menu)
                 
                We will be looking forward to your reply.
                 
                Best regards,
                 
                Josh B.
                Intel® Customer Support Technician
                Under Contract to Intel Corporation
                 

                • 5. Re: Are laptop vendors allowed to lock out all but 16GB Optane modules?
                  nosirrahx

                  1.    Are the 32GB Optane memory modules that you are using an Intel Optane Memory M10, or Intel Optane memory modules?

                   

                  16GB Optane modules work, all of the ones I have tested M10 or otherwise even ones taken from my Asus laptop.

                   

                  2.    When you say the modules (32GB, or the 800P) are not seen in the Lenovo Laptop in RAID mode, do you mean that they do not see the modules as detected in the BIOS at all?  Even under the RST Menu?  Meaning that you cannot even use the 800P as a standalone SSD?

                   

                  If you attempt to use anything other than a 16GB module in RST in BIOS it vanishes from the system. If you are not using RAID mode in BIOS all Optane drives no matter what capacity show up as a regular SSD.

                   

                  If you use a 16GB module (any 16GB Optane module, it literally does not matter which of the 3 I tried) they correctly remap in RST and Optane cache software works as expecte

                   

                  3.    What happens if you change the settings to AHCI mode and then you try to use the 800P as a secondary drive (i.e. you have another HDD with the OS and you just have the 800P as a data drive), with WIn10 installed and the inbox NVMe driver.  Are you able to see the drive then?

                   

                  In AHCI mode any Optane module appears as it should, a regular NVMe SSD. If I install Optane cache and allow it to set RAID mode anything other than he 16GB modules vanish from the system, the 16GB modules complete setup as expected.

                   

                  I want a larger cache and pinning that you get with the 32GB (or larger) modules. This works without issue on my Asus laptop, 100% of M.2 Optane modules remap to RST and Optane can be set up as expected, the capacity is irrelevant.

                   

                  4.    What RST Windows driver version you are using and what PreOS RST Version is loaded in the BIOS you are using (Should be listed in the BIOS under the RST Menu)

                   

                  15.9.1.3271

                   

                  BIOS is up to date.

                   

                  The system is currently setup on a 16GB module for Optane cache.

                   

                  I asked on Lenovo's forum about this issue and they were very clear that only 16GB modules were supported and that 32GB modules will not be gaining support in the future.

                  • 6. Re: Are laptop vendors allowed to lock out all but 16GB Optane modules?
                    Intel Corporation
                    This message was posted on behalf of Intel Corporation

                    Hello nosirrahx,
                     
                    Thank you for your reply.
                     
                    We are going to review the information you provided. Up to this point based on your last community post, the OEM Lenovo* already gave you their final statement regarding the compatible and supported Optane memory hardware for your PC (only the 16GB Optane memory) and we do not have any further information to add to that at this moment.   
                     
                    Thank you for your patience and understanding.
                     
                    Best regards,
                     
                    Josh B.
                    Intel® Customer Support Technician
                    Under Contract to Intel Corporation

                    • 7. Re: Are laptop vendors allowed to lock out all but 16GB Optane modules?
                      Intel Corporation
                      This message was posted on behalf of Intel Corporation

                      Hello nosirrahx,
                       
                      Thank you for having contacted Intel Technical Support.  
                       
                      We have not heard from you since our last communication and we would like to know if you need further assistance or if we can close this case?
                       
                      Important note: Should further assistance or clarification be required, we will greatly appreciate if you reply to this post instead of writing a new one unless your inquiry is completely unrelated. This way we will prevent generating a duplicate post and we will not lose the train of thought.
                       
                      We will be looking forward to your reply.

                      Best regards,

                      Josh B.
                      Intel® Customer Support Technician
                      Under Contract to Intel Corporation