Adding USB 2.0 to a Dell PowerEdge 2650

Just about the only complaint I have about the design of the Dell PowerEdge 2650 is that it only has built-in USB (Universal Serial Bus) 1.1

According to this web page at Wikipedia, “USB was intended to make it fundamentally easier to connect external devices to PCs by replacing the multitude of connectors at the back of PCs, addressing the usability issues of existing interfaces, and simplifying software configuration of all devices connected to USB, as well as permitting greater bandwidths for external devices.”

USB 1.1 peripherals can operate at a maximum speed of either 12Mb/s or an even slower 1.5Mb/s (which might be used by a mouse or keyboard).

In comparison, USB 2.0 has a raw data rate at 480Mbps, so it is rated 40 times faster than its predecessor interface, USB 1.1.

Is it possible to add the much faster USB 2.0 to a Dell PowerEdge 2650? Defintely yes! Here is what has worked for me.

You want to buy a Siig Hi Speed USB 5 Port PCI Card Model JU-P50212-S5

Here is the official Siig web page for their Model JU-P50212-S5 USB 2.0 PCI card.

Siig USB 2.0 PCI Card JU-P50212-S5

Here are the features and specification highlights from that page:


  • Adds 5 high-speed (480Mbps) USB 2.0 ports into your system–with full backward support for USB 1.1 devices
  • Hot-swapping feature allows you to attach/detach USB devices without first powering your computer off
  • Supports simultaneous operation of multiple high-speed USB 2.0 and USB 1.1 devices
  • Works with a variety of USB 2.0/1.1 devices including hubs, data storage devices, PC video cameras, digital cameras, CD-R/RWs, DVD-RAMs, scanners, printers, CF/SM/SD/MMC/Memory Stick memory card readers, and more
  • Compliant with USB 2.0 specification
  • RoHS-compliant
  • Provides 4 ext. and 1 int. high-speed (480Mbps) ports for USB device connections
  • Supports high-speed (480Mbps), full-speed (12 Mbps) and low-speed (1.5 Mbps) data transfer modes
  • Power output: 5V@ 0.5A with 1.1A over current protection per port

The Siig JU-P50212-S5 is available from a variety of sources, including:

  • www.newegg.com – currently for $29.99
  • Amazon – currently for $24.99
  • eBay — I have purchased (both new and used) for a low of $0.99 each to $10.50 each (the average was probably closer to $6).

I’ve purchased a total of 15 Siig JU-P50212-S5 for my Dell PowerEdge 2650’s– most from eBay — and every one of them has worked the first time!

It makes a huge difference, running Clonezilla, to have USB 2.0 and its faster transfer rate, which allows me to do a bare metal restore (BMR) backup in one hour.

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One Response to Adding USB 2.0 to a Dell PowerEdge 2650

  1. Gary H. says:

    Thanks for the post! I recently re-configured backups on a network running the 2650’s. My plan was to push everything for other servers to this one inparticular, then to run NTBackup from Win2k3 on to an external 1TB hard drive. Problem was that the 70GB of data from the NTBackup that was trying to copy over to the external drive was taking FOR EVER!!! Most likely due to the USB 1.1 interface speed on the 2650. 3 Seconds of Googling brought me here to your article when searching for a 2.0 addin card for the 2650. Thanks!!! Nice article and timely as well…

    G

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