Dell Optiplex FX160 Thin Client

    • OMV 2.x

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    • Dell Optiplex FX160 Thin Client

      Eryan wrote:

      Been there, done (almost) that.... Dell computers tend to have those "features". Now that I think about it, I experienced something similar with my Optiplex 960. I never really understood the idea behind disabling sata ports.

      In any case, good to know that you managed to fix it!

      Sent from my LG-H955 using Tapatalk


      WOW!!!! Disabling SATA on a 960???? That should be a criminal offense. Did you have a USFF chassis? If you do, then MAYBE such configurations MAY be forgiven BUT ***WHY*** disable ANYTHING on such a nice piece of hardware???


      Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    • Ryoken- was the Crystal HD card plug and play? What model number is it? I am running one as a HTPC for the kids from and need some better graphics. Did you have to modify the BIOS or anything to get it to work?


      Ryoken wrote:

      Interesting thread. I got one of these for free from work when they were about to toss it out, cause why not.
      Now mine is the Single Core Atom version, with the 1GB NVRAM SSD.

      I remembered I had an old Windows tablet that had a mPCIe decoder card (Broadcom CrystalHD, the second version, half-sized card which has better hardware and actually fits the slot), pulled it out and it fit in the mPCIe slot like a champ. Now in XP Embedded it will play almost anything I throw at it, which is just awesome.

      That's when I decided to order the HDD Caddy, and my issue starts. I got the caddy the other day, and tried 3 different 2.5" HDD's (Two of which I KNOW worked as I pulled them out of working laptops). Regardless when I plug it in and boot it up, POST says there's no HDD (even if the nvram SSD is still installed) and the BIOS shows nothing on the second SATA Port. I have a few $1 cables enrute from China which would allow me to at least use the SSD's SATA port, but I was really hoping to be able to use both.
      Has anyone run into this?

      It says:

      No HDD
      Pres F1 to Resume

      >I press F1

      Checking NVRAM

      No boot device available-
      strike F1 to retry boot, F2 for setup, F5 for diagnostics.

      The NVRAM check fails wether the NVRAM SSD is still installed or not.


      If I unplug the HDD Fan, it'll boot to the NVRAM, and not see the hdd. The HDD seems to be spinning up.

      Best guess, it's the SATA Cable or the SATA Port. I don't want to contact the seller who sold me the cable however if it's a known issue and I'm missing something stupid.. Any ieas ?
    • ngevan2k wrote:

      Hacking the BIOS is rather easy. I just needed to get some stuff before I could proceed. I got a 4315 and also an Intel 6200 which works without modifying anything.
      Let me get that straight. Did you successfully tested an Intel 6200 without modifying the BIOS? Or you did modify it to remove the white list? I am asking because I am planning to re-purpose the FX 160 as a secondary back up machine for my main server. I would love to connect it to my network with gigabit, but that is not possible. Therefore, I need a fast Wifi card to do the job and an Intel 6200 or a 6205 could work quite well.
      Custom mini-ITX build
      Coolcube Mini, Intel Desktop Board DQ77KB, Intel Celeron G1610T, 4 GB DDR3 Ram, 30 GB Sandisk SSDnow 200 (OS), 1 TB Samsung M8 HN-M101MBB

      Dell Optiplex 960 sff (deprecated) - link


      Dell Optiplex FX160 (repurposed) - link

      "If you can't find it in Google, it simply doesn't exist!" - The Internetz

    • darakanoit wrote:

      Hello all. How to connect the power supply?I want to put another motherboard, but leave the power supply.Is it possible to?
      It might be possible, given that you find a mini-ITX mobo that can be powered with a 4 pin connector (in order to keep the PSU). However, there are some issues to overcome:

      - You'll have to do some heavy modding to the case. You'll have to cut the back to make place for the backplate/connectors of your new mobo and somehow screw the it to the case, since the screw positions probably won't match. Also, you'll have to find a place to put the HDDs.
      - Assuming that you do find a mobo, you will be kind of limited because of the PSU (the one in the FX160 can't deliver a lot of juice).
      - If you succeed with the 2 previous points, then you will need a really low profile cooler, ideally passive.
      - If you want to use the Power and HDD lights, you'll have to mod that also (all of them are integrated into a small PCB in the front of the FX160.

      If you manage to find a mini-ITX mobo with integrated CPU, passive cooler and 4 pin power connector you might be able to do it. I considered the idea some time ago, but quite honestly, I doubt that it is worth the hassle.
      Custom mini-ITX build
      Coolcube Mini, Intel Desktop Board DQ77KB, Intel Celeron G1610T, 4 GB DDR3 Ram, 30 GB Sandisk SSDnow 200 (OS), 1 TB Samsung M8 HN-M101MBB

      Dell Optiplex 960 sff (deprecated) - link


      Dell Optiplex FX160 (repurposed) - link

      "If you can't find it in Google, it simply doesn't exist!" - The Internetz

    • I remember that I managed to find a mobo that could be powered thru the 4 pin power connector only. Those kind of mobos are rather old. Nowadays many (if not all) are powered with the standard 24 pin connector or a DC jack.
      An alternative would be to use a mobo with a DC jack. I am currently using an Intel Desktop Board DQ77KB in my OMV server. It is a hell of a mainboard, somewhat old but still it offers quite a bunch of features and really good quality in a very small package. It can be powered with a regular laptop PSU and it is very power efficient.
      Custom mini-ITX build
      Coolcube Mini, Intel Desktop Board DQ77KB, Intel Celeron G1610T, 4 GB DDR3 Ram, 30 GB Sandisk SSDnow 200 (OS), 1 TB Samsung M8 HN-M101MBB

      Dell Optiplex 960 sff (deprecated) - link


      Dell Optiplex FX160 (repurposed) - link

      "If you can't find it in Google, it simply doesn't exist!" - The Internetz

    • Daer all. I see here is a lot of discussions regarding installing second hard drive to Optiplex 160. Look: Regular hard drive 2.5' has thickness 9.5mm. SSD hard drives and slim factor HDDs have 7 mm thickness. I have turned in lags (2 mm) of a caddy in my Optiplex 160 and installed two drives: SSD and WD750 slim drive. Everuthing were fits to the box size. I tried disconnect a colling fan. But BIOS prevents starting computer without fan. After that I installed Windows 2003 Server with Windows XP drivers (video, audio and LAN). Now my mini server works good and very fast. Have a good luck.
      Images
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    • ngevan2k wrote:

      Hi YALL !

      I got my FX160 some time ago. It's time again for a new router and instead of spending 200 bucks for a very limited little box, I'll make one out of this. It's perfect for the job, has countless improvements over a "normal" router and it's really cheap.

      What's on my list are 8GB RAM, an Intel 7260AC wireless card, a 120GB mSATA SSD connected to Port 0 with adapters and 2 SMA connectors on the top for antennas.

      I heard from a guy who's working as an IT specialist (like me) that you can upgrade a lot of older chipsets with 4GB modules, even when the chipset doesn't officially support it. He knows someone who's running a FX160 like this and after more research I think it's worth a try.

      The 7260AC card can only be used after I finish my BIOS hacking. Since today, I'm already running revision C13 (c for custom) as you can see here:



      It's almost ready. Just can't continue right now because I don't have a DELL 1397 wireless card. I need it's UUID to continue. Went through the whole BIOS already and checked if it has the newest microcodes, fixed typos, cleaned it up a bit from the legacy crap that's inside but not used so flashing is faster etc.

      This is a picture of the 2 adapters put together:



      This should fit great, I just have to saw off a bit of plastic on one side because of the front panel connector.

      I'll just drill 2 holes for the SMA connectors; found some which are longer than usual and they also have a 8 inch long cable.



      Just for the heck of it, one day I'll get a mPCIe to PCIe adapter and connect a graphics card so I can see the Crysis saga running on this little router in Ultra HD :D
      Hi guys! Iì've been using the FX160 for >5 years now (bought it brand new) with a crystalHD for transmpeg decoding (this one wasn't that easy to setup) and an external 4-sata USB 2.0 case with ZFS. I had to give uup the ZFS because of system memory. I have 4GB and despite the 64bit OS, only 3 are seen.
      @ngevan2k are you telling me that your system is using (visible undcer the OS) 8GB?!
      The only "fault" the machine has to be a perfect NAS is the lack of support of jumbo frames in the integrated NIC.
      PS: I always used the crystalHD in the mPCI slot without need for any BIOS mod.

      thanks anyone!
    • Hi @ngevan2k, did you managed to have a stable version of your FX160 hacked Bios? I would really like to use it in my FX160 (probably I am not the only one), mainly to have a little bit more of ram, take advantage of the 64 bit OS and probably add an Intel 7260. Would you be so kind to provide us with your modded Bios? I am willing to buy you a couple of beers in exchange! :D
      Custom mini-ITX build
      Coolcube Mini, Intel Desktop Board DQ77KB, Intel Celeron G1610T, 4 GB DDR3 Ram, 30 GB Sandisk SSDnow 200 (OS), 1 TB Samsung M8 HN-M101MBB

      Dell Optiplex 960 sff (deprecated) - link


      Dell Optiplex FX160 (repurposed) - link

      "If you can't find it in Google, it simply doesn't exist!" - The Internetz

    • Hi everybody,

      I just found this interesting thread and wanted to add.
      Since 1.5 years I'm running FX160 as a Centos 7 home server and am still very pleased with it.
      I bought it for a small price and added a 500GB sata disk to it and 2x2GB RAM (only 3gb is usable).

      The following services are running on my FX160 without any problems:
      - apache webserver
      - haproxy load-balancer
      - mysql server
      - observium (snmp monitoring)
      - smtp server
      - mail server
      - samba + nfs file server
      - FTP and SSH server
      - sabnzbd (newsgroup binary download client)
      - varnish server (caching)
      - tftpserver
      - DNS server
      - owncloud


      Besides the FX160 I'm also running a Wyse R90L (thin client) as a Centos server, but it is less powerful due to
      its single core and 2GB RAM.

      I really hope a new (hacked) bios update will come available so I can benefit from the 4GB ram.
      Cheers
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