HP Media Vault Generation 1: New Life for an Old Friend

by Alex Kuretz on May 17, 2011 · 20 comments

in Guides

The following is a guest article written by forum member Dan “Nomad” Muzenjak. The first generation HP Media Vault enjoyed a small but loyal following of users and in some ways was a precursor to the MediaSmart Server, so it’s nice to see Dan breathe new life into these older devices. Thank you, Dan, for sharing another of your excellent guides with the community.

Do you have a HP Generation 1 Media Vault (2010-2050) with a bad motherboard or maybe you just want more power or want to change it’s functionality? Read on, this article is for you!

Back around 2006 HP released the Generation 1 Media Vault NAS (models 2010-2050). All were hardware identical except for the drive size provided. This product offered features like file sharing, media sharing (such as streaming music, videos, movies) and digital pictures. It also provided a secure source for local PC backups and internet access. One important feature was the ability to mirror it’s 2 internal SATA drives. The Gen. 1 platform was later redesigned and updated to become the HP Media Vault 2100 and 5100/5200 series. These look like mini HP MediaSmart Servers with only 2 drives and feature a different processor and file system.

HP offered a RAID 1 “like” mirror system based on the Reiser file system which in theory was a good idea but actually created a number of complications for the user. If a secondary drive failed it was somewhat easy to replace and restore but when the system encountered a primary drive failure special procedures were required to insure the data on the secondary drive was not destroyed. Another issue was the Reiser file system that is not compatible or readable with a PC without special software. If any other hardware failed you were done unless you had a spare platform or special software to read the Reiser formatted disk in a PC.

Another complication was the Media Vault’s power switch. HP designed the Media Vault with a locked on switch where the PC uses a momentary on switch. What does this mean? Depress the Media Vault switch, power is switched on and stays on no mater what happens to the AC power supplying the platform. I can only assume the engineers did this because it was primarily a file server and you would want the system online in the event of a minor power hit. You can just imagine when the AC power grid experiences surges spikes and brown outs. I believe this to be the major reason that so many Media Vault’s have failed over the years. In comparison the PC has a momentary switch that starts the power supply when depressed. In the event of a power failure or surge the PC power supply shuts down and stays off (depending on the BIOS settings) helping to protect the PC internal components from ongoing surges or brownouts. This is important because we are going to modify the power switch on the MV to become a momentary switch and work just like the PC. The best part about this is that you get both options, want to remain powered on? Just modify the BIOS settings.

HP Generation 1 Media Vault and Motherboard

The beauty of this new system is that you are not limited to the proprietary hardware and OS that was incorporated in the HP Media Vault 2010-2050. This is important because parts are no longer available from HP or 3rd party sources for the Media Vault. New internals, new applications: Run Windows XP, Windows Vista or Windows 7 (any version including 64bit versions). You can run Server software such as Windows Home Server, Small Business Server or the new Windows Home Server 2011. Don’t like Microsoft stuff, load Debian, Ubuntu, Fedora, Redhat or others. Want just a NAS, load FreeNas. The possibilities are just about endless. Your new platform will also be very small, fit just about anywhere and be super quiet.

What will this cost?
This depends on your configuration, the upgrade can be accomplished for under $125. The more powerful the system the more it costs. You can even add RAID if you want! But don’t over configure your platform. A home NAS or file server works just great with a Atom or Celeron processor and 2gb of ram. Save money, consider a used processor off EBay. My test platform’s Intel E5300 processor was purchased NEW for under $35.00 from the internet including shipping. Newegg.com is another excellent source for new hardware. Do your homework and look around.

Intel DG41AN LG775 Motherboard

Intel D510MO Atom Motherboard

The most expensive part required is the motherboard. This article will feature the Intel DG41AN. I used it because of the powerful processors available for it. 1Gb lan speed with wake up, full features, flexibility and low cost make it a great performer. Another excellent consideration is the Intel D510MO MB with integrated Intel Atom dual core processor. This combination will cost you somewhat less and features passive cooling. Another advantage is that the Atom processor does not require the 12v core power so you won’t have to tap into the drive power. It also uses DDR2 memory just in case you have some lying around. The DG41AN and D510MO both work great in the MV chassis. Bottom line: the D510MO easier to implement and the DG41AN more powerful. You can use just about any Mini ITX MB, as long you can get the periphery to fit and stay within the limitation of the chassis. If you choose to use something else verify compatibility of all selected components.

Neat Factoid: the original HP motherboard was no powerhouse, it was outfitted with a Broadcom BCM4785 300 MHz processor and 64 MB ram. (yep, that’s right only 300mhz and 64MB of ram). It’s amazing it was able to do what it did so effectively. Kudos’s to the engineers for combining the right combination of hardware and software to create such a capable platform.

Media Vault Upgrade limitations
The HP power supply is limited in output and cooling. Any processor used must not exceed 65 watts. Active cooling will be required for Extreme or Quad core processors.

What does this upgrade involve?

  • Disassembling your Media Vault down to nothing but the metal case and power supply
  • Replacing the original system MB with a new Intel DG41AN or D510MO Mini ITX MB
  • Installing a new compatible LGA775 processor and memory (DG41AN only)
  • Installing a passive or active cooling depending on your CPU (DG41AN only)
  • Add a plug and play HP Slimline to ATX power connector or splicing. (see fig. 11)
  • Tap the hard drive power wires to create the new CPU core connector and power switch led (fig. 10)
  • Modify the original power switch to become a momentary instead of On/Off. (fig. 7)
  • Re-arrange the MediaVault’s status led’s on the 12 pin plug. (fig. 8 )
  • Power up your new platform and load the OS of your choice and configure your platform.

This sounds like a great deal of work but it sounds much worse than it is.

How difficult is this upgrade?
This detailed process has been written for the proficient PC user. If you have loaded an operating system, are handy and not afraid of the inside of a PC, this is challenging but not a problem. You should also have a basic understanding of home networking and computer terms. You should be handy with general tools and have the ability to do some minor soldering. Note: Soldering can be kept to a minimum by using the optional Mini 24 HP SLIMLINE Pin to 20 Pin ATX Converter Adapter. This give you plug and play from the HP power supply to the new motherboard so cutting and soldering is not required for this step. Static discharge precautions should be used through out the project. Please read the complete article before attempting anything, determine your abilities and get help where needed! Proceed at your own risk. The author assumes no liability or responsibility for content.

Planning stage
Decide what platform you want to build. Do you want PC based such as 1 hard drive, 1 DVD unit, or Server/NAS with 1 internal hard drive and 1 removable hard drive? Listed below are a number of suggestions to help in your decision. The key here is to know exactly what you want, order the correct parts and keep costs to a minimum.

4 Possible X64 platform configurations based on application:

(1) Basic NAS or small WHS2011 platform: (Lowest Cost and easiest upgrade)
Intel D510MO Mini ITX motherboard
Intel D510 1.66 GHz Processor with passive cooling (included)
2 or 4 Gig DDR2-800 Memory (4 gb for WHS 2011)
1 Internal SATA Hard drive, 1 additional optional hard drive in a removable drive caddy (or CD/DVD)
OS: FreeNas or Linux based, Optional Windows Home Server 2003

(2) Basic NAS:
Intel Celeron Single or Dual Core 65watt Processor with passive cooling
Intel DG41AN Mini ATX motherboard
2 Gig DDR3 Dual Channel Memory
1 Internal SATA Hard drive, 1 additional optional hard drive in a removable drive caddy
OS: FreeNas or Linux based, Optional Windows Home Server 2003

(3) Performance Windows Home Server 2011:
Intel Dual Core Processor 65watt with passive cooling
Intel DG41AN Mini ATX motherboard
4 Gig DDR3 Dual Channel Memory
1 Internal SATA Hard drive, 1 additional optional hard drive in a removable drive caddy
OS: 64bit Windows Home Server 2003, 2011 or Windows 2011 Small business server, Linux

(4) Full blown Power Micro PC/Windows Home Entertainment System:
Intel Dual or *low power Quad Core (Q8200s) with active cooling
Intel DG41AN Mini ATX motherboard
4 Gig DDR3 Dual Channel Memory
1 Internal SATA Hard drive
Internal CD/DVD Drive (optional BluRay)
Optional Raid controller,
OS: 64bit Windows XP (any version), Windows Vista(any version), Windows 7(any version) or MythTV

Parts list for platform built in this article

  • Intel Pentium E5300 2.6GHz Dual Core Processor 2M L2 Cache 800MHz LGA775
  • Intel DG41AN Mini ITX Motherboard
  • Super Micro 1U PENTIUM D LGA775 PASSIVE Heatsink ( SNK-P0016 ) (not required for D510MO)
  • 4gb DDR3-800 Dual Channel Memory (board supports DDR3-1333/1066/800) available newegg.com
  • Mini 24 HP SLIMLINE Pin to 20 Pin ATX Adapter – Optional (http://stores.ebay.com/KDMPOWER)
  • Optional CD/DVD Drive (eliminates the second hard drive if not required)
  • 4 pin 12v processor power supply plug (from old PS or computer shop, not required for D510MO)
  • 40mm rear circulation fan (optional but recommended)
  • 3 Tie wraps

Tools needed
Nice work area with good lighting and without distractions!!!
Philips Screw driver
Xacto knife (slim pointy and sharp)
Soldering Iron or crimping tool is you would rather not solder.
Volt/Ohm meter (to verify connections or test) not required

Active Cooling/Clearance Notes
If you are using the D510MO with its integrated passive cooling and ATOM processor you can skip down to Memory Notes, these notes only applies to the DG41AN.

When using the original secondary hard drive bay you CANNOT use an active CPU fan without some modifications. The CPU with a fan sits too high for drive clearance. One of the fan supports will contact the rear of the secondary drive bay assembly. Remove 1 of the 4 fan motor supports closest to the front of the unit to create the necessary clearance. This modification will leave 3 supports for the fan motor. Extra care must be taken with the modified fan as it is now more fragile. I would suggest a final installation onto the CPU and motherboard before cutting the supports. Be aware of the position of anything that could hit or infringe on a fan blade when routing the wires. Plug the fan into the 4 pin connector on the DG41AN before installing the MB into the chassis. This process was completed and the fan cooled as normal. Don’t want to cut the fan, read on.

Fan Modification for Active Cooling

Other options are available, mount your secondary drive in a 5 inch adapter (eliminating the bulky caddy) . You could also eliminate the HDD for a CD/DVD Drive. A CD/DVD drive is shorter and will fit without requiring modification to the fan. Another option is to use passive cooling. This works well with single or dual core processor and provides a very quite platform. (Fig 5+6) Don’t use passive cooling with Quad core. Don’t use processors drawing more than 65watts power. Ok, I think I beat this to death and you got the message!

Passive heat sync with HDD drive caddy

Passive heat sync with CD/DVD unit

Memory note
The Intel DG41AN uses to DDR3 memory and the Intel D510MO uses DDR2 memory. DDR3 and DDR2 memory is not interchangeable. The DG41AN supports overclocking and has a number of options for those who want to experiment. Overclocking while fun is really not needed. It creates additional heat, requires more expensive memory and causes reliability problem for which we do not need in a server platform. If you are considering dabbling with overclocking purchase DDR3-1333 memory and add active cooling. You might also want to look at adding an additional fan to the case.

Serial, Parallel and USB Ports
The DG41AN comes equipped with 1 Serial, 1 Parallel and 8 USB ports. This gives you the ability to hang peripherals outside the Media Vault cabinet under the control of the platform. Great for further expansion and flexibility! A serial port connector is also available on the motherboard if you need it.

Let’s Get Started
Were going to build suggested platform 3, Windows Home Server 2011, Intel DG41AN, Dual Core with 4gig of ram, passive cooling and dual drive with the secondary placed in the original removable drive caddy.

On a large work area disassemble and strip the Media Vault. Start by removing the 3 external cover screws. Lift the cover off and place aside. Remove the drive caddy then the internal hard drive. This is done by removing the SATA and power connector, remove the single drive screw and slide downward and out of the assembly.

Remove the secondary drive caddy base, this is accomplished by removing the locking screw next to the L shaped slot. Remove the SATA and power connector and slide the secondary drive base back and up following the L shaped channel. The rest of the drive support assembly is removed by taking out the 2 screws and sliding the assembly down toward the bottom of the unit. It will then simply lift out.

At this point it’s time for the motherboard to be removed, unplug ALL connectors and move them out of the way. Remove 4 screws from the 4 corners of the motherboard and remove it. Keep the rubber spacer that is between the motherboard and case, we will be re-using it. If your motherboard was good sell it on EBay, believe me it will be snapped up immediately as none are available. If it was bad enjoy pitching it into the trash, it has little or no value and no one repairs them. On the rear of the unit remove the motherboard backplane and discard it. Your new motherboard will have a new plate, insert it.

Now it time to remove the front panel. There are 4 plastic retainers that snap in place, if you take a look at them you can see with a little side pressure to unlock them, then push forward and the complete panel will come off in your hands. Be careful not to snag any wires removing from the case assembly. Remove it and set it aside.

Power Switch Modification
Next remove the power switch, it is removed as an assembly from the case via 2 retainer clips similar to the front panel. Once released carefully remove it from the front. Now that you have the switch in your hands Use a magnifying glass or look and look at the side of the shaft then pushes into the switch. Press the switch on and off. You will see a “v” shaped molded area on the shaft. This is easy to see when the switch is in the off position. Operate the switch a number of times, you will see how this “V” shaped molding allows the switch to lock on.

Power Switch Modification

With the switch in the off position carefully take your Xacto knife and remove the “v” shaped raised molded area. Once completed the switch will no long lock. If you have an OHM meter you can verify this by measuring across the red and black leads. You will only have a connection when the switch physically held in, when the button is released you should have no reading. Re-assemble the switch back into the front of the unit. Now re-install the front panel.

Front Panel LED Indicator Rearrangement
The Media Vault has a number of LED indicators, the only ones we will be using are the “On”, “HDD” and “Blue power switch” indicators.. The power switch/blue led will be wired to a 5 volt drive source through a 470 ohm ¼ watt resistor (get it at Radio Shack). The 470 ohm resistor to steps down the voltage and protects the led from burnout. The “On” green led will be used for power supply on indication, the “HDD” for hard drive activity. System sleep function will be reflected by the “on” light flashing. Remove all the wires from the 12 pin block. This is accomplished by lifting up slightly on the retainer clip and pulling out the wire. Do the same thing with the 6 pin block from the front panel power switch. The 6 pin block can be discarded. Using a pointed object make a new hole in the block as indicated below in figure 8. This allows this connector block to be plugged into the new motherboard. Now insert the wires back into the block as indicated. Curl up and secure the remaining wires. You won’t be using them now but these indicators may be useful for a future application.

12 Pin Block Changes

Power supply Modification
The blue/black wires that were removed from the 6 pin block will now be connected to 5 volts through a 470 ohm resistor. Find the 4 pin plug that normally supplies the power for the secondary hard drive caddy. The yellow and black provide 12 volts and the red and black 5 volts. You will tap into this to supply the 12v CPU core voltage. Note: this is not necessary for the Intel D510MO w/Atom processor. You will also be tapping into the red and black leads wired thru the 470ohm ¼ watt resistor to the blue and black leads going back to the power indicator led on the power switch. Fig. 9 shows the connector plugged into and extension.

Secondary HDD Power Connector

Fig. 10 is a graphic of what we want to accomplish, tapping into the HDD drive power connector (Fig 9) and using it to feed both the CPU core and Power Switch indicator. You can remove the pins from the drive connector by depressing the 2 pins that lock them into the nylon connector. Solder on the needed connections bend the retaining pins back out then re-insert them into the slots. The 2 yellow wires can be connected together. The same goes for the 2 black wires. Double check all of your wiring before final assembly.

Modification for Core power and Power LED

Main ATX Power Connector
The main power connector is also different than the HP Slimline plug that plugged into the old HP motherboard. You have 2 choices, you can get a Mini 24 HP SLIMLINE Pin to 20 Pin ATX Converter Adapter part no: KDM CBL-HP-24Mini from KDMPower at kdmpower.com or (http://stores.ebay.com/KDMPOWER) or by using an old ATX board power connector and fabricate your own by cutting off the Slimline plug and splicing the power supply wirers to an ATX plug from a left over power supply. The Slimline and ATX are pin for pin compatible, just plug it in and neatly route the wires, remember to keep the fan output on the power supply clear of wiring.

HP Slimline to ATX adapter

ATX board connector wire routing

Installing the Motherboard
Carefully install the CPU into the motherboard, install either the passive heat sync or active fan. For passive cooling I used a Super Micro SNK-P0016 heatsink. It was originally designed for the Pentium D 95watt processor core which generated much more heat than the E5X00 series processors. It is heavy and massive. It will easily handle the heat load of our E5300 processor and many others. Note the orientation of the heatsink, it has relief cutouts on the bottom to allow it to clear components sticking up from the motherboard. See Fig. 12, you can see the blades of the heatsink run from front to back with the cutouts towards the power supply. I also added a thin strip of Mylar on the end of the heatsink as added protection for the wiring. This is really not needed because there is little chafe possibility. There is also little chance of melting wires because the heatsink would never get hot enough to cause damage.

New fans and heatsinks usually have thermal paste pre-applied. If you are re-using a processor, fan or heatsink use a good quality CPU thermal paste. Artic Silver 5 is about the best you can buy. You can go to their web site for detailed instruction of how much and were to apply for your processor.

Remember that rubber spacer we took off the old MB? Install it directly under the processor on the motherboard. This will help keep the motherboard from distorting under the load of the heatsink pressing on the CPU. For fan application install the spacer directly under the CPU. If using the heat sync cut it in half and stick it in between the heat sync retainer. Now install the new motherboard plate into the back of the case.

Next, install your memory into the SDRAM slots, the strips are keyed and will only install in one direction. Check before you press! The retainer clips should be right up against the memory strips.

Now that the motherboard assembly complete lets install it into the case. Position the 3 audio ports towards the bottom and the keyboard connector at the top. Make sure the new plate is correctly seated fully into the chassis. Lower the motherboard into place. Verify that the accessory connectors have been correctly mated with the holes in the rear plate and that no wires are under the board. Install 4 motherboard screws. Put all 4 in place before tightening. Plug in the following cables:

  1. Front Panel 12 pin connector
  2. CPU Core 4 pin connector
  3. 24 pin ATX connector
  4. USB front jack to one of the internal USB pins, look at the MV quick reference for additional info

Cable routing is very important. You want to make sure nothing can be chafed or block air flow. See Fig 12. and Fig. 13 below for suggested wire routing. This picture really shows how big that passive heatsink is! Notice the added 40mm fan on the back of the unit.

Wire Routing

Additional Fan
The motherboard BIOS expects to see a fan on the CPU and will complain if it does not see one. Since I had an old 40mm fan lying around I thought this would be an easy solution as well as providing a little extra air flow. Use a fan that is a 3 lead and has noise level under 20dba for quiet operation. Plug it into the 4 pin MB CPU fan connector. It is keyed and will only plug in one way. Install the fan so that it blows in. The power supply fan sucks in from the case and blow out the rear. The added fan just aids in cooling. Add any additional fans you may want now. Do this before installing the drive bay, otherwise you will not be able to get to the motherboard connectors to plug them in.

Primary HDD installation
Re-install the drive base assembly securing it with 2 screws. Next install your primary hard drive in the slot under the drive base assembly. Install the drive retaining screw. Plug in the SATA power connector and using a new SATA cable (supplied with the MB). Connect to the SATA connector closest to the rear of the board.

Secondary HDD application
Continue by re-installing the empty secondary hard drive caddy assembly and retaining screw. Using one of the old short SATA cables connect the secondary hard drive to the middle SATA connector on the motherboard. Plug in the 4 pin drive power connecter. Re-install the secondary drive back into the unit when ready.

If you are installing a CD/ROM drive just slide it into place. Secure it with a single drive screw just above the “L” slot. The guide screws from the drive caddy cannot be used because the threads are different and the surrounding case provides all the needed support for the CD/DVD drive.

Now use the combination power/SATA cable provided with the MB. This plugs into the 4 pin power connector that originally provided power to the drive bay and also has an incorporated SATA cable that plugs into the center SATA connector MB. Install any additional accessories you may have. Examples would be serial back panel adapter, usb port adapters. If you are installing the low profile raid controller follow the direction as to configuration and when to plug it in.

If you want extra bling print out on label paper the graphic below. The size of the actual image should be: 6.2 by 1.7 inches. Cut out on the black line and removed the colored areas. . Attach label to the rear accessory panel.

Rear Back Panel


Final assembly and testing
For now leave the case open. Verify ALL wiring and routing, check all connectors, and be sure there are no loose parts. Hook up a keyboard and monitor. Plug a mouse into an available USP port. Connect the AC power cord. The green standby light on the rear of the power supply should illuminate. Everything else should be off. Now depress the power switch, the blue led indicator should come on immediately. The “ON” indicator on the front panel will come on within a second or so and your monitor should display the following startup screen. Depress F2 on the keyboard and the BIOS page will be displayed. Your installed hardware should be reflected in the BIOS page. Make any changes for your specific operation. The default settings will work in most instances.

Power on Screen


Browse the different setting in the BIOS, once you are done shutdown the system. Just depressing the power button will remove the power. This is also true once you system is running an operating system.

Loading an Operating System
If you installed a CD/DVD rom you will be able to load directly from it. If you installed a secondary hard drive you will need to use an external USB CD/DVD drive. Another option is to copy and installation disk to a flash drive and boot from it. Also when loading a new operating system chances are you will need to load the Intel supplied driver disk. This can also be accomplished from an attached CD/DVD or files transferred to a flash drive. If you don’t have access to the included software the system will not be able to configure the network adapter or take advantage of the high resolution graphics. When your system is bootable and stable don’t forget to go to the Intel website for the latest BIOS download. My motherboard was a few versions behind. Now the fun begins, I successfully loaded and ran the following operating systems with excellent results on the DG41AN/E5300 Platform:

Windows XP Pro 64bit
Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit
Windows Home Server 2003 (ver. 1 and 3)
Windows Home Server 2011
Windows Small Business 2011
Fedora Core 14
Unbuntu and Mythbuntu
I didn’t have time to load any more… That’s up to you to try!

Congratulations, you are done! Now the only thing left to do is to reward your new creation with a new badge!

The New Badge

My thanks to those who take the time to share their work making these upgrades possible for all.

Dan Muzenjak

Article by

I'm Alex Kuretz, and I'm the founder of MediaSmartServer.net. I was the Lead Test and Integration Engineer at HP for the MediaSmart Server until April 2008 when I moved on to other opportunities outside HP. I've kept active in the Windows Home Server community, creating several add-ins and helping users make the most of their Home Servers.


Kris Butler May 17, 2011 at 11:50 am

Excellent article- was really sad when my HP MV1 died recently following a power cut- luckily i managed to recover all the data using CnW recovery (worth it’s weight in gold for MV1 users), but was looking at a new purpose for the box… it’s a nice design and just couldn’t part with it! ;)

This has convinced me to save it now- currently ebaying for the parts- long live my MV1 !!! Thanks

Dan (Nomad) May 17, 2011 at 8:15 pm

Hi Kris,

When my MV1 fried I switch over to a MV2 but could not part with the old chassis. I really liked the small footprint and wanted to do something worthwhile with it.

It is great to see it working once again and like the 6 million dollar man faster, stronger and better than it ever was. Good luck on your build!

Uri July 13, 2011 at 10:42 am

Can you possibly update this article with notes on how one can accomplish a total upgrade using an HP MediaVault 5140? That’s the one I have and I’d love to spruce up the system!

ooops August 21, 2011 at 12:18 pm

I would really like to see the same for MV5140 too.

Toke August 11, 2011 at 5:48 am

Thanks for great article. I know this might not be current topic. could someone tell me if Windows Home Server 2011 can be the sole OS for a media server? That is without installing anything like Win 7 or XP or Vista initially. I would like to build a WHS following your guide here.

Thanks again

Alex Kuretz August 11, 2011 at 8:03 am

I suppose it depends on your definition of media server. It will work fine to store and stream all your data, but you won’t be able to connect it to your TV and have it be a full Media Center without significant customization. I suggest you post specific questions in the WHS 2011 or Media Streaming forums as this topic isn’t really related to what you are asking.

Toke August 12, 2011 at 7:06 am


Thanks very much for you prompt response. My thought is that WHS 2011 (now selling for $50) can be install on as an OS, without a base OS like Win 7, on a machine. The I would install MS Media Center or similar open source application on top of that so that it can be connected to a TV. I guess I was wrong.

Thanks again.

Alex Kuretz August 12, 2011 at 3:58 pm

Your thinking is correct, you can customize your server by installing different applications, possibly adding a TV tuner, maybe even output a display to your TV, however doing so with the Media Vault hardware that this topic is about may not work so well. Most people use the server for storage and stream to their display devices.

Bruce Toth August 18, 2011 at 7:31 am

Hi Dan or Alex: Is it possible to add an eSATA port using the PCI slot on the DG41AN? Thanks, Bruce

Alex Kuretz August 18, 2011 at 8:32 am

I’ve not personally tried it but don’t see why not, it appears to be a standard PCI slot and there are eSATA PCI cards available very inexpensively. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16816132007

Kris Butler September 1, 2011 at 2:45 am

Does anyone know where i can get the PSU adapter? (preferably UK)… i keep searching for it but keep finding the lead made the other way around- ie: 20 pin socket to 24 pin plug…

any part number info would be great..


Marcus January 8, 2012 at 5:09 pm

Hi Kris, I ordered this one from Amazon : http://www.amazon.com/KOZMICC-Connector-Adapter-Converter-Slimline/dp/B004J7792M/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1326067456&sr=8-2

…but got a mate to send it over fro the states as Amazon wanted $29 for delivery, yikes! Do you still need one?

P.S. I Built the DG41AN version of this today, complete with a Dual TV Tuner card I have used in other media centre units running Win 7.

Thanks for the information Alex!!

Jeff January 9, 2012 at 12:00 am

Excellent article and now has me drooling.. but for now looking at just replacing the power supply that failed on me a couple days ago.

But I have a question: if I were to swap out the motherboard as recommended above, but leave the current HDDs as is (not reformatting), would it not work just like before, only faster/better? Or would I need to install a new OS (it’d most likely be Ubuntu or possibly FreeNAS) because of the new MB?


Alex Kuretz January 9, 2012 at 11:32 am

It would require a new OS.

Bruce Toth January 9, 2012 at 12:21 pm

Hi Jeff: I have a working power supply that I could sell you. I started this conversion and then decided to buy a small case instead so used a ATX power supply. Regards, B

Kris Butler January 9, 2012 at 12:28 pm

I managed to get the PSU adapter from the mentioned supplier in the article from their ebay store- very reasonable shipping to UK.

I fitted an ASUS Nvidia ION board in mine, with 4gb ram… blistering fast with 7.1 sound and HDMI output.. Has replaced my “hifi seperate” antec fusion mediacenter in the front room. Nice and quiet and my old MV friend still has a home!

Only program i can fully recommend for MV1 data recovery is CnW recovery- completely recovered all my data (including wedding/kids early years pics).. Michael (the author) is a legend and a marriage saver!!!

Marcus January 9, 2012 at 12:45 pm

I couldn’t agree more, CnW recovery saved my bacon as well when my media vault bit the dust!

Jeff January 9, 2012 at 1:45 pm

thanks Bruce, I am going to stop by Fry’s tomorrow, I believe they have a mini itx/flex atx that will work.. I pulled my psu out last night to take with me.. man, had to take the whole thing apart to get to it! (but that’s half the fun) ;-)

Jeff January 9, 2012 at 1:47 pm

plus, worst case I’ll just drop the drives in my Linux box to recover the data.. and then build with new MB as in the article..

Stan Chelchowski July 14, 2012 at 5:08 am

You state the KDMPOWER part KDM-CBL-HP-24MINI is required – WRONG! – that part converts an ATX power supply to suit HP Mini connector on motherboard

I am just about to order from KDMPOWER Mini 24 pin power supply connector to ATX 20/24 pin converter cable which I believe is the correct component.

Comments are closed, visit the forums to continue the discussion.

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