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Dell 4500S card cage PCI slots

by janal95 / September 4, 2008 4:01 AM PDT

The computer has 2 PCI slots in the removable card cage.
I use 1 slot for my ethernet adapter, the other is empty.
The card cage riser connects to the motherboard.
The rear card cage plate covers are horizontal.
Directly beside the the card cage inside the computer appears to be another unused PCI slot on the motherboard with a rear verticle cover plate.
What is this setup ?
All the specs list only 2 PCI slots.
It almost seems like 2 out of 3 ain't bad music.
Ps. I gave up on getting an explantation from Dell.

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That is called a riser card.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / September 4, 2008 4:14 AM PDT

It's just a way to accommodate giving you cards in small cases.

For the unused PCI slot, I won't look at dell.com documentation but note I've seen such used for the phone modem. Maybe something else but all this is documented. I didn't look it up but pulled from memory.

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What to expect
by Willy / September 4, 2008 8:20 AM PDT

Here's Dell's link for the manual and/or specs website. If you don't have a manual or need the latest version, this should help.


IMHO, PC makers re-use the same case design and tweak it abit to differentiate it from various models offered. The riser card cage is an attempt to gain space where it is at a premium. Such a riser allows std. sized cards to be used rather than "small/short height cards" due to space and ordination. 4500S is such a model and its card ordination may allow for better cooling as well. As for the spare or 3rd apparent PCI slot, it may not be one or its use is for "testing purposes" only when case is open. If there no direct documentation on its use, disregard it for use and/or it maybe an option that's service related. The 4500S was a basic system much like a small workstation or LAN/WAN int. use.

tada -----Willy Happy

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Direct reference - addenum
by Willy / September 4, 2008 8:35 AM PDT
In reply to: What to expect
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Thanks for responses
by janal95 / September 4, 2008 9:58 PM PDT

The card size option is solid reasonable explanation.
So, you use 2 in the cage and 0 on the board.
Or, 1 in the cage and 1 on the board.
Sounds like the PCI-ISA count on one of my old Compaq Presario.
In the future I may use a graphics PCI card.
I'll never need a modem.
I'm struggling now trying to make ICS work between my dial-up Dell 2400 XP Home and this Dell 4500S XP Home.
The file transfer and printer sharing are ok.
I guess my ICS problem will shortly become another thread !

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