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Use a SATA PCI Card to expand number of non-booting drives on High Sierra?

Joined
Apr 12, 2018
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seems like we're definitely in a very specific minority here... Ive run out of ports on my board, and the only thing I have left available is an open PCI slot.
i tried a very very old SI 3512 card, but it turned out to be a later revision that wouldnt work with the mac firmware flasher. but then again, I dont even know if that card would work on an intel machine.
i also considered looking at HighPoint 15xx series cards which worked in PPC macs too. Being as highpoint has better OSX driver support than most it might work. Ive seen them going for less than $20 on ebay.

I suppose the trick would be to find a SATA controller chip that is known to be working with OSX later versions, and then see if there's a PCI card version of it.
Any luck in your search?
 
Joined
Feb 11, 2012
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Supermicro X8DTL
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Any luck in your search?
Sorry, no. Ive only had a chance to pick up one card, an older SIL3512-based card, but it did not work due to there being a newer hardware revision that is not compatible with the firmware flashes I found online. Im going to look into some Marvell-based cards and see if I can turn up something a bit newer to try out. I will post back when I have some good news.
 
Joined
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GA-Z170X-Gaming 7
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Just chiming in, two years later, I also never found a solution. I ended upgrading my MOBO to a GA-Z170 Gaming 7 with 8 SATA ports plus Thunderbolt. I work in music production so being able to swap out SATA drives is very important, and I gave up dealing with my old board. Thunderbolt is nice, too. Upgrade wasn't too expensive getting a board that was 2 generations old. FWIW.
 
Joined
Feb 11, 2012
Messages
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Motherboard
Supermicro X8DTL
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2x X5670
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GT 730
I actually did find another way to make the SIL3512 work. not sure if rules allow to link to a kext on another site or not, but i added the device ID (v1.3 is 0x65121095, versus 0x35121095 for older drivers) and it showed up. ive copied about 300GB onto the attached drive so far without issue.
 
Joined
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Lisa
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Found this thread, looking for a solution to this myself and all I have found was the two ebay listing for unbranded cards that was posted here. Anyone else have luck finding a sata card that will work?
 
Joined
Sep 22, 2011
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290
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Thinkpad T61-Clover
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T9300/ICH8M
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EDIT2: Sorry about the mixup. The card I describe below does work in Mojave. I was playing with a couple of configurations and had switched to a non-working configuration. Prevously, I had incorrectly stated that the I/O Crest controller card worked OOB. I did need to install AHCI_3rdParty_SATA.kext. Attached is a screenshot showing performance of an old SanDisk SSD. Also attached is a screenshot showing how the card appears in System Report. I have corrected the text below to accurately reflect my configuration.
------------------------------------------
I installed an "I/O Crest 4 Port SATA III PCI-e 2.0 x2 HyperDuo RAID Hard Drive Controller Card" based on the Marvell 9230 Chipset. I got the RAID version just to give me options (although I'm not sure the hardware RAID will work with Mojave). It was only $4 USD more than the non-RAID version. The card worked after installing AHCI_3rdParty_SATA.kext. It's a PCIe x2 card, so you'll get the full SATA III drive speed.

I am able to boot Mojave from drives connected to this card and I can use drives connected to this card as non-boot storage. I have not yet tried to use the hardware RAID capability of this card. I paid less than $33 USD for the card. My system configuration is as follows:

  • Biostar TH55HD Socket 1156 Motherboard
  • Xeon X3450 CPU overclocked 20%
  • Mojave 10.14.6
  • MacModel MacPro5,1
  • CLOVER (Legacy) 5070
 

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Joined
Sep 22, 2011
Messages
290
Motherboard
Thinkpad T61-Clover
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T9300/ICH8M
Graphics
Quadro NVS 140m, 1280x800
Mac
MacBook Pro
Posting this update, since I may have caused some confusion with my previous post (and subsequent edit of the post). The SATA III card that I installed (I/O Crest 4 Port SATA III PCI-e 2.0 x2 HyperDuo RAID Hard Drive Controller Card) appears to be working perfectly in Mojave 10.14.6 with AHCI_3rdParty_SATA.kext. I do plan to install a RAID 10 configuration (4 SSDs) and will post my updates when I do. From what I've read about Marvell-based cards, the drives would be configured on the card (via Ctrl-M setup) and should appear as a single drive in Mojave. If anyone else tries RAID with this card, I'd be interested in seeing your results.
 
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