SOLVED: How To Install an Add On Video Card into A Dell T620 Server

Well this is frustrating and after 4+ hours including 2 with Dell support, my T620 is being returned to Dell.  The answer is; yes, you can install a third party video card into a Dell T620 but that video can ONLY be used as a secondary processor… it will NOT be capable of producing video output.  This explains why add-on video cards show up in Device Manager and install in Windows but do not produce video output when you connect a monitor to them.  For more details click HERE and note the SECOND post down from DELL-CHRIS.

dell-poweredge-t620-power-distribution-boardWhile I am here, I might explain that currently only two NVidia cards (including the C2075) and ATI AMD FirePro V7800 are “supported” by Dell.  Each of these cards REQUIRES external power.  The power distribution board is UNDER the main server board (I THINK you can get to it by taking off the outside panel, but I have not tested this).

In my case I was trying an old Radeon card and a FirePro V4900, neither of which should require power.  However I thought it was worth verifying so I did.  Below are the power ratings for each slot in a Dell PowerEdge T620 and you will note that the full slots (x16) provide up to 75 watts of power and the FirePro V4900 has a peak of “Less Than 75 Watts” so power should not be a problem.  As described above the power was not my problem, it was the intentional design.

Slots

Power

Slot 1   (x8 lanes)

Up to   25W

Slot 2 (x16 lanes)

Up to   75W

Slot 3   (x4 lanes)

Up to   25W

Slot 4   (x16 lanes)

Up to   75W

Slot 5   (x16 lanes)

Up to   75W

Slot 6   (x8 lanes)

Up to   25W

Slot 7   (x16 lanes)

Up to   75W

Comments

  1. Avatar
    Ufuk Turuncoglu August 31, 2015 at 4:06 am

    It is very nice article. Thanks for it.

    I am also trying to install Nvidia K5200 hard to Dell T620. I am trying to use 10-to-6pin GPU cable to get extra power from the power board because K5200 needs 150 W. In my case, i connect the 10pin side of the cable to power board and 6pin to GPU card but when i try to boot the server the power supply light goes orange and the server does not boot. The power supply is 1100 W and it seems enough when the overall power consumption of the server (~200-250 W) is considered. By the way, i also installed second power supply (1100 W) but it does not help. Do you have any comment about it?

    • Ian Matthews
      Ian Matthews September 2, 2015 at 6:48 pm

      Hi Bart, I have not had that configuration so if you are stuck I would call Dell support.

    • Avatar
      andrew October 22, 2015 at 6:52 am

      Thanks for the info, I have the same problem with a T630. Did you finally manage to make it work?

      • Ian Matthews
        Ian Matthews October 23, 2015 at 5:39 pm

        Hi Andrew;

        I did not. I ended up returning it to Dell and sourcing a different model… what a mess.

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