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PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2010 3:38 pm 
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I have a number of IBM desktops, the most recent of which was a NetVista A30 that has expired. I replaced it with a shiny new Lenovo ThinkCenter M90p with Windows 7 Pro 64-bit and a SATA hard drive.

The earlier machines had surplus power connectors and IDE connectors. The new one does not have much spare. Initially I could not find a power connector, but eventually found a loop of cables pinned to the side of the chassis. In there is P8.

There are 3 SATA sockets on the motherboard and two used (existing hard drive and existing DVD). There is one eSATA socket.

I am purchasing a second hard drive (500Gb Seagate SATA) and another serial ATA cable.

I assume the power connector P8 above can be used and I plug the SATA cable into the third hole.

There is another plug P4 obviously for use with a second DVD. What would I plug a second DVD into? and What is the eSATA socket? The hardware maintenance manual is not abundantly clear on these points.


Thanks, ... JDH


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 12, 2010 8:50 am 
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I still have not figured out what the black e-SATA port is for (the other 3 are orange and now all used). So I still do not know how to add a second DVD.

However I did add the second 500Gb hard drive and a PCI modem. Both were painless. Plug in the modem and startup and Windows 7 set it up and it works fine. Nothing to install from the supplied CD.

The hard drive was also very easy. Put it in, plug in P8 (Power), add the Serial ATA cable and start up. Disk management in Windows 7 provides a wizard to set it up (Simple for me vs. RAID or other multi drive setup). Format and it is good to go. I am backing up my Virtual Machines (60Gb in total) right now).

There is a hardware question:

Nothing was supplied with the drive except for screws. Specifically no carrier bracket. The home in the computer does not really have room for a carrier bracket, but there is no room to attach screws. Just one screw is holding it. Now it wants to pivot down in from because only one screw. So the opening is exactly the correct width (no play) but the height is about 50% higher thant the drive itself. So it pivots down.

I put a small piece of wood in the front (insultator) and the front of the drive is secure from pivoting and secure from moving (screw at the back).

But that is a complete Rube Goldberg way of doing things.

How does one install a drive? What did I miss in the manual?

Thanks. ... JDH


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 24, 2010 9:44 pm 
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on the back side of each 5.25" bay cover (the black plastic piece attached to the front bezel) you should find a bracket to attach drives.   you'll find photos here: http://forum.lenovo.com/t5/ThinkStation ... true#M2561

if the eSATA port is the newer "I" style (which it should be) then you can try finding an eSATA to SATA cable online.   the difference between that port and the other three is likely the ability to hot-swap.   internal eSATA ports are somewhat rare and i'm surprised the M90p has one internal and not on the back instead.

regarding drive power, any of the spare 5-wire SATA power plugs will work for either a HDD or ODD.   the 280W PSU is more than enough to power two HDDs and two ODDs with everything running at 100%.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 25, 2010 1:20 pm 
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Thanks for the information.

1. eSATA - Excellent. If I add another optical drive, I will get the adapter cable. I had heard (years ago) that writer drives were less durable than plain reader drives. However, optical drives fail anyway over time, so I will probably stay with one optical drive.

2. Power - I figured there was more than enough power. There are not more than enough plugs. There is one hole (optical drive), one power plug, and one SATA socket. There is nothing more can be added except for another PCI card.

3. Brackets - Sadly, no. None on my machine. I just shut it down, opened it up, removed the bezel and looked all over.

What there IS evidence of is picky, intense cost reduction. If you didn't order it, they are not making any room for it. Not one thing extra in this machine. That is very unlike my IBM (not Lenovo) desktops before this one.
... JDH


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 27, 2010 11:06 am 
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if you have CD/DVD image files then you could mount them virtually using MagicDisc.   it can set up to 15 virtual optical drives.   plus, it's freeware.

http://www.magiciso.com/tutorials/miso- ... erview.htm

i use MagicDisc on all my systems but it's most useful on my ThinkPads as i'm not forced to keep an optical drive with me at all times.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 27, 2010 2:58 pm 
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Thanks. I made a note of that. That is almost enough to make me switch from a "T" to an "X". .... JDH


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 5:25 am 
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Sorry for a late reply but I've installed HDD in M90p yesterday so maybe this will help...

In manual you can see that second HDD is installed in the extra cage (it looks similar to original HDD cage). Cage should be at the bottom of the case, near place where second power fan should be. But there is also a note in the manual - not all M90p comes with extra HDD cage.

But there is 3.5" hole for sd card reader and you can installed it there, as you probably did, because in this case HDD is screwed only with one screw.

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