Geekworm X1011 board adds up to four NVMe SSDs to the Raspberry Pi 5

Raspberry Pi 5 four NVMe SSD NAS

Geekworm X1011 is a new expansion board for the Raspberry Pi 5 with four M.2 sockets enabling the insertion of up to four M.2 NVMe SSDs with data pushed through the PCIe Gen2 interface of the popular SBC. We were already wondering why most people would want to connect two NVMe SSDs to the Raspberry Pi 5 when the Geekworm X1004 HAT+ was launched considering the 5GT/s limitation from the board and the PCIe switch, but the company decided to double the number of drives with the X1011 meaning each drive can achieve up to around 100 MB/s (or 400MB/s) when used simultaneously. It does look nice and fairly compact though. Geekworm X1011 specifications: Supported SBC – Raspberry Pi 5 and other SBCs with a compatible 16-pin PCIe FPC connector and mounting holes Chipset – ASMedia ASM1184e PCI express packet switch with 1x PCIe Gen2 x1 upstream port and 4x […]

GEEKOM XT12 Pro review – Part 3: Ubuntu 24.04 on an Intel Core i9-12900H mini PC

GEEKOM XT12 Pro Ubuntu 24.04 review

We’ve already looked at GEEKOM XT12 Pro specifications and hardware design in the first part of the review and followed up by reviewing the Intel Core i9-12900 mini PC with Windows 11 Pro in the second part. We’ve now had time to review the GEEKOM XT12 Pro mini PC with the just-released Ubuntu 24.04 operating system to evaluate the compatibility and performance in Linux. In this third and final part of the review, we’ll test features in detail, evaluate performance with benchmarks, test storage and network capabilities, check YouTube video playback at 4K and 8K resolution, perform a stress test to check the cooling solution and provide numbers for fan noise and power consumption of the GEEKOM XT12 Pro mini PC. Ubuntu 24.04 installation and system information We’ve resized the Windows 11 by half in order to install Ubuntu 24.04 in dual boot configuration. After that, we inserted a USB […]

Ubuntu 24.04 LTS “Noble Numbat” released with Linux 6.8, up to 12 years of support

Ubuntu 24.04 release

Canonical has just released Ubuntu 24.04 LTS “Noble Numbat” distribution a little over two years after Ubuntu 22.04 LTS “Jammy Jellyfish” was released. The new version of the operating system comes with the recent Linux 6.8 kernel, GNOME 46, and a range of updates and new features we’ll discuss in this post. As a long-term support release, Ubuntu 24.04 LTS gets a 12-year commitment for security maintenance and support, with five years of free security maintenance on the main Ubuntu repository, and Ubuntu Pro extending that commitment to 10 years on both the main and universe repositories (also free for individuals and small companies with up to 5 devices). This can be extended a further 2-year, or 12 years in total, for Ubuntu Pro subscribers who purchase the Legacy Support add-on. Canonical explains the Linux 6.8 kernel brings improved syscall performance, nested KVM support on ppc64el, and access to the […]

GEEKOM XT12 Pro review – Part 2: Windows 11 Pro tested on an Intel Core i9-12900H mini PC

GEEKOM XT12 Pro mini PC Review windows 11

We’ve already checked out the specifications, and gone through an unboxing and a teardown of the GEEKOM XT12 Pro mini PC in the first part of the review, so we’ll now report our experience with the 12th Gen Intel Core i9-12900H mini PC with Windows 11 Pro operating system. In this second part of GEEKOM XT12 Pro, we’ll test the features of the Alder Lake mini PC in Windows 11 Pro, run benchmarks, test networking and storage, evaluate cooling performance, and finally provide some numbers for fan noise and power consumption. Software overview and features testing The System->About menu confirms that we have an XT12 Pro mini PC with a 12th Gen Intel Core i9-12900H processor clocked at 2.50 GHz (base frequency) and 32GB RAM that runs Windows 11 Pro operating system version 23H2. The system was tested with Windows 11 OS build 22631.3447. HWiNFO64 program provides more details about […]

Testing ntttcp as an iperf3 alternative in Windows 11 (and Linux)

ntttcp vs iperf3 testbed

ntttcp (Windows NT Test TCP) is a network benchmarking utility similar to iperf3 that works in both Windows and Linux written and recommended by Microsoft over iperf3, so we’ll test the alternative in this mini review. iperf3 is a utility of choice for our reviews of single board computers and mini PCs running either Windows or Linux, but we’ve noticed that while Ethernet (up to 2.5GbE) usually performs just as well in Windows and Linux, WiFi is generally much faster in Ubuntu 22.04 than in Windows 11. So when XDA developers noticed a post by Microsoft saying iperf3 should not be used on Windows 11, it caught my attention. Microsoft explains iperf3 should not be used in Windows for three main reasons: The maintainer of iperf – ESnet (Energy Sciences Network) – says “iperf3 is not officially supported on Windows, but iperf2 is. We recommend you use iperf2. Some people […]

Intel Processor U300/U300E penta-core Raptor Lake CPU find its way into mini PCs and network appliances

Intel Processor U300 mini PC

Some mini PCs and firewall/network appliances are starting to show up with the Intel Processor U300/U300E penta-core CPU on Aliexpress and Amazon. It looks to be a 15W entry-level part for the 13th Gen Raptor Lake processor that may provide a more powerful and slightly more expensive alternative to the popular Alder Lake-N Processor and Core i3-N305 SoCs. The Processor U300 offers one Performance core clocked at 1.10 GHz to 4.30 GHz (Turbo) and four Efficiency cores clocked at up to 3.20 GHz, with the embedded part (U300E) handling slightly lower max frequencies for a wider operating temperature range. As usual, the Performance core supports multi-threading, so the Processor U300 supports six threads. Intel Ark shows it can support up to 96GB DDR5-5200 RAM, embeds a 48EU Intel UHD Graphics capable of driving up to four independent displays, and offers 20 lanes of PCIe Gen4 (vs 9-lane for Alder Lake-N), […]

Maiyunda M1 Alder Lake-N mini PC comes with four quick-release M.2 NVMe SSD slots, four 2.5GbE ports

Mini PC four M.2 NVMe SSD slots

Maiyunda M1 is an unusual Intel N100 or Core i3-N305 Alder Lake-N mini PC and soft router equipped with four M.2 NVMe SSD slots so users can replace storage devices without having to open the enclosure, as well as four 2.5GbE ports for networking applications. The mini PC also supports up to 32GB DDR5 memory,  wireless connectivity through an internal M.2 socket (that can also be used as a fifth NVMe SSD socket), dual 4K display setups through HDMI and DisplayPort connectors, and offers five USB Type-A ports for expansion. Maiyunda M1 specifications: Alder Lake-N SoC Intel Processor N100 quad-core processor @ up to 3.4 GHz (Turbo) with 6MB cache, 24EU Intel UHD graphics; TDP: 6W Intel Core i3-N305 octa-core processor @ up to 3.8 GHz (Turbo) with 6MB cache, 32EU Intel UHD Graphics; TDP: 15W System Memory – 16GB LPDDR5 4800 MHz upgradeable to 32GB Storage 4x M.2 M-key […]

Intel Agilex 5 SoC FPGA embedded SoM targets 5G equipment, 100GbE networking, Edge AI/ML applications

Hitex eSOM5C-Ex

Hitek Systems eSOM5C-Ex is a compact embedded System-on-Module (SOM) based on the mid-range Intel Agilex 5 SoC FPGA E-Series and a pin-to-pin compatible with the company’s earlier eSOM7C-xF based on the Agilex 7 FPGA F-Series. The module exposes all I/Os, including up to 24 transceivers, through the same 400-pin high-density connector found in the Agilex 7 FPGA-powered eSOM7-xF and the upcoming Agilex 5 FPGA D-Series SOM that will allow flexibility from 100K to 2.7 million logic elements (LEs) for the whole product range. Hitek eSOM5C-Ex specifications: SoC FPGA – Intel Agilex 5 E-series group A and Group B FPGAs in B32 package Supported variants: A5E065A/B, A5E043A/B and A5E043A/B Hard Processing System (HPS) – Dual-core Cortex-A76 and dual-core Cortex-A55 FPGA Up to 656,080 Logic elements 24 x transceivers up to 28Gbps System Memory Up to 2x 8GB LPDDR4 for FPGA 2 or 4GB DDR4 for HPS Storage – 32GB eMMC flash, […]

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