Intel® Optane™ Solid State Drives
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Help identifying my Motherboard for Optane compatible.


Hello guys and Intel.

I have been doing a lot of research and looking inside my pc with not much success. I have identified my Mobo specs I think and I am trying to figure out if my newly acquired Alienware PC Area 51 R2 motherboard will work with any form of the new Intel Optane 900P series and more specifically the Add in Card version 280G. I have some experience but just not a pro. I am a quick study and have been doing a lot of research for my question but I just seem to be hung up because I have a Alienware board I guess. I just bought it 10 months ago but I am guessing it doesnt work but would like your guys help to be certain and would honestly like to contact Intel Sales or Tech but they say to reach out first. I do not know much about M.2 or U.2 but I have looked up the installing procedures and I do not see a Mini SAS connection anywhere on my board unless its hidden good behind my stuff. I dont know what a M.2 connections looks like as the picture from intel doesnt really show much. I do have 3 regular pcie slots that I can see and 2 smaller ones, one of which is smaller yet. I already have a SSD for windows and I do not intend to use a Optane SSD as a bootable drive, only for storage or possibly RAM? I do not know if my board is NVME compatible. If I understand this AID 280 product I am looking at you just put it in a PCIE slot and its powered itself? I dont think you have to use a power cord like a graphics card or like my extra USB card I got in one of my smaller PCIE slots for more USB's.

Please forgive my ignorance on this stuff guys. I am truly sorry I am just very interested in buying either the AID version or the 2.5 version if I must but even looking at that it doesnt look like I have to connection to power it up or connect it. I only see normal SATA and power cords near my drive bays like a normal HDD or SSD Samsung EVO. I will list my PC specs, can anyone please help me or steer me in the direction to find this info out. When I run a search with my Alienware board I get practically nothing good as far as useful info. I dont know why.. Maybe Alienware isn't that good at this kind of stuff. I am a massive gamer and VR enthusiast. I have multiple drives and would like to add more storage on a PCIe slot if I can. I only have 1 regular spot for a HDD or SSD but my boards got more cables then it does slots to screw one in which is odd. Can anyone please help me out? I will send you some bitcoin as appreciation. Can I atleast use the 2.5 STD cable version one? I am very sorry if this is a the wrong place for this post I just cant seem to find out and I know if I contact Dell I will get some low lvl tech from sales or something. I am pretty sure I got the right PCIe slots as its one of the smaller ones and I got two I just know about U.2 or M.2 and NVMe and I know you can get a cable to convert M.2 to U.2. Still clueless..

Alienware Area 51 R2,

i7 6800k intel cpu nothing special I know.. wish id got a bigger one and maybe got a better board

1080ti GTX SLI


SSD Sandisk 128g SSD Samsung EVO 1TB HDD 2.5TB Western Digital

Windows Pro 10

Alienware Board Product ID 09G12C Serial CN697026AP0248 Version A00 Intel x99 express chipset, I think.. Service Tag not sure if I should post that but I do have it if needed. Bios version is A12 I think or its the latest one from Alien.

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4 Replies

Thank you for the new info Al. Ill get into it. It appears that Alienware doesnt support it I guess. I just thought maybe since my PC is new it would all be backward compatible in some way.

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Im not sure if it matters but all those documents are for Optane memory or ram if you will. I dont know if SSD or storage is different. I sort of already new I couldn't get optane memory but I was hoping the storage SSD was different. Thank you though.

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Hello Bradgt,



There's a difference between Intel® Optane™ Memory and Intel® Optane™ SSD 900p. The Memory is used to accelerate compatible Windows 10* systems, while the Intel® Optane™ SSD 900p is a storage device.



Checking the official specs for the Alienware Area-51 R2*, it only mentions storage support for 2.5" and 3.5" SATA drives. There seem to be 3 PCIe slots on the machine, 2 x16 and one x8, however there's no mention of NVMe storage support. M.2 and U.2 don't seem to be an option for this system.



Searching on different online discussion forums, it seems some users have been able to use NVMe drives on this system, but the configuration is not officially supported by the manufacturer. Here are a couple of examples:



- Dell* Alienware* Forums


- Alienware* Arena Discussions



Regarding your question about power, the Add-in-Card version of the Intel® Optane™ SSD 900p (and for most PCIe devices) doesn't require external power.



We also advise to contact the system manufacturer directly to confirm if your computer is compatible with Intel® Optane™ SSD 900p.



NOTE: Links to third party sites are being offered for your convenience and should not be viewed as an endorsement by Intel of the content, products, or services offered there.



Best regards,


Eugenio F.
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