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Thread: Z77 Extreme6 and eSATA port multiplier compatibility




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    Default Z77 Extreme6 and eSATA port multiplier compatibility

    I have a Mediasonic ProBox HF2-SU2S2 4-bay USB 2.0 external enclosure with four 1-terabyte hard drives inside. I tried plugging this unit into the red eSATA port of my Z77 Extreme6 board, but it would not activate (it checks for a proper connection, and if not, it automatically shuts down).

    This enclosure will only operate with my board when I use a USB plug. As it turns out, they specify that the motherboard must be port-multiplier-compatible:

    Note: Motherboard's SATA port MUST support Port Multiplier in order for your computer to recognize multiple hard drive if the unit is connectd via eSATA.

    Important Note: When connecting via eSATA interface, customer's computer hardware needs to have Port Multiplier w/ FIS-based switching in order to access multiple HDDs simultaneously.
    So, is the eSATA architecture of the Z77 Extreme6 board port-multiplier-compatible, or is the eSATA port capable of handling only one eternal hard drive?

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    Default Re: Z77 Extreme6 and eSATA port multiplier compatibility

    Bump

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    Default Re: Z77 Extreme6 and eSATA port multiplier compatibility

    "Note: Motherboard's SATA port MUST support Port Multiplier in order for your computer to recognize multiple hard drive if the unit is connectd via eSATA."

    That's a rather generic statement, since you need to determine which chipset the eSATA port is using. On your board, here's the spec:

    2 x SATA3 6.0 Gb/s connectors by ASMedia ASM1061, support NCQ, AHCI and Hot Plug functions (SATA3_A2 connector is shared with eSATA3 port)

    IMO, the chance of the ASMedia 1061 chipset supporting port multipliers is slim. If it did, that feature would be written in the overview as a big deal.

    Basic specs for the ASMedia 1061: ASMedia Technology Inc.

    While it states, Support Port Multiplier, that seems to mean it will work with a port multiplier. Check this link for a discussion on that:

    Gentoo Forums :: View topic - AsMedia ASM1061 Port Multiplier issues

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    Default Re: Z77 Extreme6 and eSATA port multiplier compatibility

    I just bought a single-drive docking bay so that I may be able to connect a single external drives to my machine via eSATA port. Unfortunately, when I connect my docking bay to my eSATA port (there's only one drive connected, since eSATA will not recognize multiple drives unless there is a port multiplier or a port multiplier driver present), I get nothing. The docking bay works with a USB 3.0 connection, but my Etron USB 3.0 ports are occupied, and the Z77 USB 3.0 ports don't work in WinXP.

    Is there a modification I must make in my UEFI to get my machine to recognize an eSATA device? Is there a way to test my eSATA port to see if it is working?

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    Default Re: Z77 Extreme6 and eSATA port multiplier compatibility

    UPDATE: I think my SATA3_A2 socket and SATA3_A3 port (eSATA) are non-functional (both are shared; if one has a drive plugged in, the other must be vacant). I switched my master backup drive from SATA3_A1 to SATA3_A2 and it did not show up on my list of hard drives in either Win7 or WinXP. [My SATA ports are set to AHCI.]

    I hate to think that I will have to take my machine apart to replace a motherboard (once again); this time, because of a dead SATA3_A2/eSATA shared port, unless the UEFI upgrade to version 2.80 disabled both SATA3_A2 and eSATA.
    Last edited by CookyMonzta; 06-28-2013 at 03:13 PM.

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    Default Re: Z77 Extreme6 and eSATA port multiplier compatibility

    I was just ready to post what you discovered about the ASMedia SATA controller and its eSATA port. From your board's specs:

    2 x SATA3 6.0 Gb/s connectors by ASMedia ASM1061, support NCQ, AHCI and Hot Plug functions (SATA3_A2 connector is shared with eSATA3 port)

    What SATA mode is the ASMedia SATA controller set to? You said AHCI, but just to check there are separate settings for the Intel and ASMedia chipset. At least for the eSATA port to work when the PC in on and a drive is then connected to that port, hot plugging must be enabled, which only works in AHCI mode. There is only one ASMedia driver for XP and Win 7, version 1.3.1, and I don't know if XP will support AHCI.

    eSATA cables can have a limit of one meter, is yours longer?

    It sounds like you did not hot plug your master backup drive when you moved it to the other ASMedia port, and it was not detected, so that is not a good sign. Did you check the System Browser option in the BIOS to see if the drives on the ASMedia ports were detected?

    You can enable the ASMedia Boot ROM in the BIOS, which may display information about the connected drives, or at least indicate if the drives are detected by the ASMedia controller during POST.

    I've never tried my Z77 Ex4 board's eSATA port, which has the same ASMedia 1061 chipset and eSATA port configuration. I can try it but that will take a while to get it set up.

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    Default Re: Z77 Extreme6 and eSATA port multiplier compatibility

    e-sata does work in xp as i have used it.
    The setup is pretty flakey as i have the port occupied with an internal drive as well as external.

    It seems the only way to get the change over to work is to switch off/unplug for a certain amount of time.
    Just switching off and giving it 6 seconds doesnt work it needs longer but i dont know how long :(

    In the end i got a pci-e sata board from startech with port multiplier and have given up using the internal e-sata.
    Shame as my old gigabyte motherboard didnt have any problems with e-sata and xp

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    Default Re: Z77 Extreme6 and eSATA port multiplier compatibility

    I've had this board since November, but it was only recently that I discovered that eSATA ports cannot detect multiple hard drives simultaneously (port multiplier or port multiplier compatibility required). Only last night did I check the eSATA port with a single hard drive in an external docking bay, and it wasn't detected. Since the eSATA port and the SATA3_A2 socket are shared, I decided to test for functionality, first by unplugging the docking bay, then by moving my 2TB internal drive from SATA3_A1 (which works) to SATA3_A2. It was not detected.

    Is there any way to check if any power is going through the eSATA port and SATA3_A2 socket? Or should I just go the RMA route? Or did I miss something that requires activation to enable functionality of both the eSATA port and SATA3_A2?
    Last edited by CookyMonzta; 06-29-2013 at 03:27 AM.

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    Default Re: Z77 Extreme6 and eSATA port multiplier compatibility

    Quote Originally Posted by CookyMonzta View Post
    I've had this board since November, but it was only recently that I discovered that eSATA ports cannot detect multiple hard drives simultaneously (port multiplier or port multiplier compatibility required). Only last night did I check the eSATA port with a single hard drive in an external docking bay, and it wasn't detected. Since the eSATA port and the SATA3_A2 socket are shared, I unplugged the docking bay and moved my 2TB internal drive from SATA3_A1 (which works) to SATA3_A2, and it was not detected.

    Is there any way to check if any power is going through the eSATA port and SATA3_A2 socket? Or should I just go the RMA route? Or did I miss something that requires activation to enable functionality of both the eSATA port and SATA3_A2?
    Given the one meter cable length that ASRock specifies, I doubt highly there is any power supplied through the eSATA cable. It is a passive connection, as it is called. So your external drive bay has no power of its own? If so that is the problem IMO.

    There is no setting I'm aware of to switch between those two ports.

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    Default Re: Z77 Extreme6 and eSATA port multiplier compatibility

    My external drive docking bay has its own power supply.

    ORICO 6518SUS3-BK USB3.0&E-SATA SATA HDD Docking Station/Enclosure - Newegg.com

    There's still the matter of my internal hard drive not being detected through the SATA3_A2 socket. The other 7 SATA sockets (including SATA3_A1) work.

    The SATA cable is 1 meter long, and I enabled SATA Boot ROM. It could only detect a device from SATA3_A2. Nothing from SATA3_A3 or eSATA.
    Last edited by CookyMonzta; 06-29-2013 at 10:37 AM.

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