Express Card USB-3.0 2 port adapter

5 risposte [Ultimo contenuto]
Iscritto: 01/03/2015

where nadebula.1984 suggested that I try a 34mm express-card-to-USB adapter card, so I'm following

After I straightened the USB bus connector, the 2 Port USB-3.0 expressCard inserts smoothly, latches,
and pops back out readily. Then I discovered that my external 1.0TB HDD's USB plugs actually fit the
rather too closely spaced USB ports on this card, so I set about the task of using that card as the
new "home" of the external HDD's USB connections.

While running Etiona on one of the T420's internal HDD's, I can hot-unplug the external HDD from
the T420's standard USB ports and then hot-plug into the expressCard, whereupon the file manager's
popups display the file contents of /dev/sdda and /dev/sdd3. Mate terminal will execute a mount
command for the Data partition in /dev/sdd3. OK so far. About 2 GB of file transfers went smoothly.

After running update-grub, upon the next restart, the boot manager fa‎ils to recognize the
external HDD's /dev/sdd1 partition (identified by its UUID, which I'd previously written down)
forcing me to pick another OS in the GRUB menu. If I can proceed past this impasse, then there
will be two widely spaced standard USB ports made available. Suggestions are welcome.

Iscritto: 01/03/2015

Additional details, i.e., the error message upon restarting Etiona from the GRUB menu, ssd1:
error: no such device: [UUID]
error: HD3 cannot get C/H/S values
error: you need to load the kernel first

Iscritto: 05/01/2018

How often do you get such error? If you always get such error, and if you're confident that your hardware (including converter boards and cables) are reliable, it may be malfunction of the boot firmware (UEFI, although many people erroneously call it "BIOS").

SandyBridge ThinkPads' UEFI are very awkward (buggy). Try to flash coreboot if you can find someone do this for you.

Iscritto: 01/03/2015

GRUB has trouble counting HDD's; when the WiFi dongle was plugged into its USB port
before startup, the external 1.0 TB HDD appears in /dev as /dev/sdc. If the Wifi
wasn't already plugged in, the external HDD appeared as /dev/sdb. No Express Card.

When the external HDD is plugged into the 2-port USB=3.0 adapter, it's /dev/sdd,
but it's always hd3, as there are two HDD's ahead of it.

With the adapter in the 34mm Express Card slot, the external HDD appears consistently
as /dev/sdb with the WiFi dongle plugged into its USB port and nothing plugged into
the Express Card's two USB ports..

My task is to get GRUB to recognize the external HDD as /dev/sdc, which is its "rightful"
place in the scheme of things. When it's /dev/sdd, GRUB doesn't find it.

Fast forward a couple of hours ...

After some trial & error with GRUB and the positions of the external HDD, I managed to
get a version of GRUB which has the external HDD at /dev/sdd while plugged in to the
Express Card's two USB ports and in which the external HDD's Etiona OS is at /dev/sdd1
in the GRUB menu. Even in /boot/grub/grub.config the HDD's Etiona OS is at /dev/sdd1.

Are all the stars in line ? Not so fast. Same error messages as quoted earlier.

Summary: File transfers and file manager working OK, but GRUB isn't letting me use
the operating system on the external 1.0 TB HDD.

Iscritto: 01/03/2015

Further search on the UPD720202 chip development status on the 'Net reveals:
sudo -E hw-probe -all -upload
Install on Ubuntu:
Command line to Run:

sudo -E hw-probe -all -upload
On Ubuntu and Ubuntu based Linux distributions (Kubuntu, Lubuntu, Xubuntu, Linux Mint, Zorin, Pop!_OS,
elementary OS, KDE neon, Peppermint, Linuxfx, Linux Lite, HamoniKR, WindowsFX, Trisquel, Makulu Linux, etc.).

Ubuntu package:
The package is available in Ubuntu 20.04 or newer and its derivatives (

sudo add-apt-repository universe
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install hw-probe --no-install-recommends

Are there pitfalls to avoid here ? Some searches return the impression that these Ex[press Card USB-3.0 adapters
don't work at all.
The ones that I've got appear to be functional, except for GRUB's inability to keep track of
the location of the partition in which Etiona is installed during bootup.

Iscritto: 01/03/2015

Solution: A quick & easy workaround.
Leave the external HDD's main cable plugged into a factory-standard USB port, but use
one of the Express Card's two USB ports for the supplementary power cable of the HDD.
Move the WiFi dongle's USB connection to the second USB port on the Express Card.
That leaves two factory-standard USB ports open for USB thumb drives.
No complaint from GRUB or from the WiFi dongle.
No need to mess with GRUB's settings, nor any need for possibly proprietary firmware.

The only downside apparent at this stage is that the Express Card's latch isn't solid
and will disconnect at any minor disturbance, losing supplementary power to the
external HDD and the Internet connection, but the operating system is connected to one
of the T4420's standard USB ports, which is solid.