For those that have been following along, I have been testing the Supermicro E300-9D (SYS-E300-9D-8CN8TP) kit in my home lab which I have written about here. One of the last things I was looking into was storage expandability with this platform, especially since Supermicro has a PCIe Add-On Card (AOC-SLG3-2M2) which can add two additional M.2 devices supporting 2260 (60mm), 2280 (80mm) & 22110 (110mm) form factors.
At the same time, our friends over at Intel had just given me access to a couple of their pre-release Intel M.2 Optane 4801x devices which were then released right before the holiday last year. For those wondering why Optane is so interesting, especially from a vSAN perspective, check out this blog post here from my good buddy Pete Flecha over in our Storage and Availability Business Unit (SABU).
This was actually perfect timing as I was also interested to see if there were any high performance and supported M.2 devices that could be used for for vSAN Caching and this device would definitely fit the bill! When I had initially received all the components, I was scratching my head as the AOC was too big to fit horizontally in the E300-9D.