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Intel 900P SSDs Preventing Entering F2 Setup on Intel C612 Chipset Workstations

JRox0
Novice
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We deal with many Xeon Dell Workstations (T7610, T3610, T7910). We're in the process up upgrading to Dell 7910 Workstations (Intel C612 chipset) with Intel 900P SSDs.

All the 7910 units have the latest A34 BIOS and the 900P Optane SSDs also have the latest Firmware E2010480.

All the workstations are set to boot EFI mode, with legacy rom options disabled. With these settings, these workstations can BOOT the Intel 900P SSDs fine.

Yet, with these settings, and a Intel 900P SSD installed, we cannot enter F2 setup. We are just presented with a black screen with solid cursor in the upper leftmost corner of the display. Even if we leave it like that for thirty minutes it doesn't move past it.

If we remove the Intel 900P SSD, we can enter F2 setup fine.

If we pull the CMOS battery, and install the 900P SSD, we can enter BIOS one time and see the 900P SSD reported correctly in F2 setup. Yet, any subsequent attempts to enter BIOS present the same black screen solid cursor problem.

If we enable "legacy option ROMs," we can once again enter BIOS no problem. This is even with the Intel SATA controller and SAS controllers disabled in BIOS.

Please help us fix this, so we can enter F2 setup normally with legacy option ROMs disabled.

UserBenchmark.com indicates there are at least seven other persons running these Optane 900P SSDs on their HP Z840 workstations which are the identical Intel C612 chipset to Dell T7910, so we do expect this behavior is fixable.

Though a slightly lesser Xeon chipset of the same generation, Intel C236, here is another Intel customer that ran into a possibly related problem with their 900P SSD
https://community.intel.com/t5/Solid-State-Drives/Optane-900P-in-HP-Z240-workstation/m-p/523131

They had to set "Early PCIe delay' from disable to 5 sec." Such a setting doesn't exist in the 7910 F2 setup. That customer also indicates their option rom policy was set to "ALL UEFI," so that seems to indicate that "legacy option roms" shouldn't be requisite for these 900P SSDs to function correctly.

Western Digital NVME and Hynix NVME drives do not prevent entering F2 setup with the exact same settings, but of course we wish to use our Intel 900P SSDs.

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BrusC_Intel
Employee
2,213 Views

Hello, JRox 0.


This post is to share what we discussed via e-mail with the community.


With this issue being currently reviewed, a possible fix is being implemented on a new firmware version to address similar scenarios.


There is no ETA for this new firmware at the moment, but please look forward to new releases of the Intel Memory and Storage Tool

- Intel Memory and Storage Tool: https://downloadcenter.intel.com/download/29428/Intel-Memory-and-Storage-Tool


The thread will be closed right now, but if you require any type of assistance from Intel in the future, please open a new thread, or contact us via any of the available support methods:

- https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/contact-intel.html


Best regards,


Bruce C.

Intel Customer Support Technician


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BrusC_Intel
Employee
2,599 Views

Hello, JRox0.


Thank you for posting on the Intel Community Support Forum.


I received your thread and I will be working on the issue reported with your Optane SSDs, I will be glad to assist you.


Please allow us to review the details you have provided and I will contact you back as soon as possible.


Best regards,


Bruce C.

Intel Customer Support Technician


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BrusC_Intel
Employee
2,576 Views

Hello, JRox0.


Good day,


I wanted to let you know that we continue reviewing your situation, and we would like to know if you can share the following details with us:


  1. How many 900P have you tested?
  2. What is the exact model/version of the 900P? (capacity and if it is 2.5inch or add-in card)
  3. How many T7910 systems have been tested and how many could possibly be impacted?
  4. Have you tested the 900P in the other systems you mentioned (T7610, T3610) with the same results?
  5. Is this the retail 900P or is this an OEM version? (I can confirm this with one of the serial numbers).


We will continue working on this and I will follow up on October 25th, but you can let me know if additional time is required to obtain this information.


Best regards,


Bruce C.

Intel Customer Support Technician


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JRox0
Novice
2,498 Views

The drives are SSDPE21D280GAX1.  I've tested two of them with three separate Dell 7910 units.  The behavior does not exist with the three T3610 and two T7610 when they are used with SSDPE21D280GAX1.  All eight of the Dell workstations have the latest BIOS.  These drives are retail.

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BrusC_Intel
Employee
2,473 Views

Hello JRox0.


Thank you for the response and information.


I will get back to you as soon as there are any updates we can share or in case other details are required.


Best regards,


Bruce C.

Intel Customer Support Technician


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BrusC_Intel
Employee
2,371 Views

Hello, JRox0.


Thank you very much for waiting.


As we continue working on your case, we would like to know the following:


  1. Is the error reproduced if the drive is blank? let's say, not being used as the boot drive, but used as secondary storage?
  2. Have you tried formatting the drive?
  3. When the error occurs, are there any other drives in the system?
  4. Have you tried to contact Dell to see what options they may have in the BIOS that can help? Since the drive boots normally other than being able to get in the BIOS, they may be able to help as well.


I will follow up on October 29th, but you can let me know if additional time is required.


Best regards,


Bruce C.

Intel Customer Support Technician


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JRox0
Novice
2,349 Views

Yes, it happens even with blank drives out of the box, or those that have been diskpart cleaned / without being used as a boot drive.

 

Yes, the problem exists with only the Optane 900P installed.

 

No, there are not BIOS options to help.  Like I said, "enable legacy option ROMs" the problem doesn't exist.  Disable legacy option ROMs the problem exists.  Customers shouldn't have to enable legacy option ROMs just to be able to enter F2 setup on their PCs.

 

If these were OEM drives it would squarely be for Dell to address.  Dell ProSupport indicates since it's a retail drive Intel has sold into the market for general use with PCs, the onus is on Intel engineers to test for broad compatibility and work with the major PC vendors/equipment and collaborate with OEM engineers through your pre-established channels as issues arise.  Sounds logical.

 

This PC is an implementation of Intel chipset firmware that Intel signed off on and Intel’s SSD firmware that Intel signed off on.  Dell Workstations and Intel C612 chipsets are commonplace Intel enterprise equipment.

 

These drives are under warranty with Intel, please treat this as such, and escalate this concern.  I’ll give you exact serial numbers if that’s what's needed to escalate warranty service resolving this problem.  I can also share with you the email contact the Dell ProSupport Technical Analyst I've corresponded with.

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BrusC_Intel
Employee
2,291 Views

Hello, JRox0.


Good day,


Thank you for all the additional details.


We will continue working on this and I will get back to you as soon as possible.


Best regards,


Bruce C.

Intel Customer Support Technician


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BrusC_Intel
Employee
2,241 Views

Hello, JRox0.


Good day,


Thank you very much for your time.


As we continue working on the issue you are reporting, there are some additional details we would like to obtain, but this will take place via e-mail.


I will contact you using the e-mail registered on file, and I will update the community thread when it is possible.


Best regards,


Bruce C.

Intel Customer Support Technician


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BrusC_Intel
Employee
2,214 Views

Hello, JRox 0.


This post is to share what we discussed via e-mail with the community.


With this issue being currently reviewed, a possible fix is being implemented on a new firmware version to address similar scenarios.


There is no ETA for this new firmware at the moment, but please look forward to new releases of the Intel Memory and Storage Tool

- Intel Memory and Storage Tool: https://downloadcenter.intel.com/download/29428/Intel-Memory-and-Storage-Tool


The thread will be closed right now, but if you require any type of assistance from Intel in the future, please open a new thread, or contact us via any of the available support methods:

- https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/contact-intel.html


Best regards,


Bruce C.

Intel Customer Support Technician


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