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don't put 6 Gig SATA drives in your HP PC's

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Bob Zelin
don't put 6 Gig SATA drives in your HP PC's
on Feb 6, 2011 at 4:50:29 pm

If you are a professional user, and own the xw or Z series HP computers (which is all that I recommend), you CANNOT install the new, super fast 6 Gig SATA drives into your HP workstations.

What does this mean to you - it means that if you want to use 6 Gig drives, you will be buying an ATTO or Areca host adaptor.

Bob Zelin'>http://h20000.

HP Workstations - 6Gb per second SATA hard disk drives are not supported on Workstations featuring only 1.5Gb per second (SATA Gen1) and 3Gb per second (SATA Gen2) SATA ports

SATA 6Gb per second drives should not be installed or used in HP Workstation products that do not support SATA 6Gb per second drives.


•SATA Hard Drives are not detected on boot-up.
•SATA Hard Drives are missing after resuming from Sleep or Hibernate states.
•Certain STOP Errors (BSOD)
Power cycling the system will generally result in the drives being properly detected, however use of 6Gb per second drives are not supported on the following platforms:

•HP xw4200 Workstation
•HP xw4300 Workstation
•HP xw4400 Workstation
•HP xw4600 Workstation
•HP xw6200 Workstation
•HP xw6400 Workstation
•HP xw6600 Workstation
•HP xw8200 Workstation
•HP xw8400 Workstation
•HP xw8600 Workstation
•HP Z200 Small Form Factor Workstation
•HP Z200 Workstation
•HP Z400 Workstation
•HP Z600 Workstation
•HP Z800 Workstation


Hardware Platforms Affected: HP Z200 Small Form Factor Workstation, HP Z200 Workstation, HP Z400 Workstation, HP Z600 Workstation, HP Z800 Workstation, HP xw4200 Workstation, HP xw4300 Workstation, HP xw4400 Workstation, HP xw4600 Workstation, HP xw6200 Workstation, HP xw6400 Workstation, HP xw6600 Workstation, HP xw8200 Workstation, HP xw8400 Workstation, HP xw8600 Workstation
Operating Systems Affected: Not Applicable
Software Affected: Not Applicable
Support Communication Cross Reference ID: IA02711513
©Copyright 2011 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P.

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Steve Kallevik
Re: don't put 6 Gig SATA drives in your HP PC's
on Feb 7, 2011 at 6:03:07 am

What about 6G SAS or 6G Sata connected to the SAS ports in a Z800 (dual 6-core, Areca 1680ix is full)?

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Bob Zelin
Re: don't put 6 Gig SATA drives in your HP PC's
on Feb 7, 2011 at 10:34:18 pm

I have only tried the 6 Gig drives on an Areca 1880 6 gig SAS card - I have never tried it on a 1680x - I would like to ASSSUME that it would work, and that is backward compatible, but I have not tried it.

As a matter of fact, until I saw this HP notice, I ASSUMED that 6 Gig drives just plugged in and worked. I now question whether you can put a 6Gig drive into a MAC Pro, and have it "just work". I just don't know. Assumptions get me killed every time.

Bob Zelin

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Maurice O'Driscoll
Re: don't put 6 Gig SATA drives in your HP PC's
on Feb 6, 2014 at 6:18:52 pm

Thanks for this useful information Bob, I was just about to buy some HDD for a backup. I see from HP's info that the MAx size you can install is a 3TB. Perhaps you might be able to help me with what I want to do.
I wish to install 2 HDD in a mirror configuration, 1 for backup and 1 for fail-safe. Can you advise me as the the drives you would recommend?


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Joshua Helling
Re: don't put 6 Gig SATA drives in your HP PC's
on Feb 16, 2011 at 7:25:55 pm

Thanks Bob,

That is really odd. Even if the SATA controller is just a SATAII 3Gb controller (which I believe it is), the drives SHOULD step down nicely and just run happily at 3Gb.

The fact that it doesn't is disturbing as I would imagine that eventually the SATAII drives will start to dry up in favor of the SATAIII drives.

I will ping my buddy at HP and see what he can tell me on this issue.


Director of Support
Blackmagic Design Inc.

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George Roberts
Re: don't put 6 Gig SATA drives in your HP PC's
on Aug 1, 2012 at 1:23:34 pm

Hey Joshua
Anything come from your buddy at HP? I just bought a WD 3tb drive for my hp xw4400, it recognises the drive but says its about 750MB not 3gb. Will make some more enquiries tomorrow.

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Scott Harrison
Re: don't put 6 Gig SATA drives in your HP PC's
on Nov 5, 2012 at 12:45:15 am

There has been a recent HP service message release on this issue, and it is pretty easy to find via google. The essence is that there was a problem with the SATA GenIII drives being able to autonegotiate down to SATA GenII or SATA GenI status with the HP workstations (likely a "timing" issue). HP now states that the problem is fixed on HP-source SATA GenIII drives. Those will work on the older workstations.

The caveat is that "third party" sources of the same drives likely will not have the fix and likely will not work with those workstations reliably.

So, the way I read this is that it is a firmware update on those SATA GenIII drives that fixes the problem, and that HP is not making that firmware update available on their drivers firmware updates to help with this issue. Buy GenIII from HP you'll be OK. Otherwise, stick with GenII.


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Scott Harrison
Re: don't put 6 Gig SATA drives in your HP PC's
on Nov 6, 2012 at 9:54:16 pm

Here is the link to read from HP, dated late July 2012 after they figured out the fix:

The document to google for is: Document ID: c02711513

A few critical statements in the document:

"Third party 6Gb/sSATA hard disk drives are not supported on HP Workstations featuring only 1.5Gb/s (SATA Gen1) and 3Gb/s (SATA Gen2) SATA ports. HP has worked with the hard disk drive vendors so that all 6Gbps SATA hard drives provided by HP will work on 3Gb/s and 1.5Gb/s ports."

"Third party 6Gb/s hard disk drives will more than likely not include the fix that allows proper operation on 3Gbp/s and 1.5Gbp/s ports. Third party 6Gb/s (Non HP) drives are not expected to work correctly."

So, there is a fix, and it is virtually certain to be a firmware update. It would be great if HP would make that available via their driver pages, where they have other firmware updates. However, if their engineers figured out the solution they do deserve some benefit from that. Personally, I'll be sticking with SATA GenII drives in my HP xw6400, xw6600, xw8400, and xw8600 workstations.

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