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We are looking for a way to plug a SD card into a PCI slot without going through a USB interface. We want to read the SD card's serial number directly and issue SD commands.

The Chumby and the Google Android G1 phones both have SD slots that you can read from Linux without going through USB, but the Chumby only has a single SD card that's used for booting, and the G1 doesn't have any other reasonable storage if you use the SD card for that purpose. I'd really like a desktop with a few SD slots that are directly accessible.

Anybody know of anything??

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3 Answers

up vote 1 down vote accepted

This might be what you are looking for . http://www.jinvanisystech.com/sd_goldhost.html

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Precisely what I am looking for. Thanks! –  vy32 Jun 6 '10 at 15:32
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I googled for PCI card reader and I only found this one:

http://www.acheter-moins-cher.com/asp/produit100_rwt_p_446502.htm

The only thing is that this product is sold in france so all of the descriptives is in french...

It's a 5.25" bay slot connecting to a PCI slot. I think that's what you're looking for.

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Unfortunately, that doesn't work. That is a USB interface with a multi-function reader, but the reader converts the SD to USB, then relies on a USB driver. I need something that doesn't work with Windows unless special drivers are loaded. –  vy32 Feb 23 '10 at 8:19
    
Wait, what? You need something that doesn't work without drivers? I need to understand this better as there may be another way of handling this problem. For what it's worth if you can find a SD to PCMCIA (PC Card) adapter, there are PCCard -> PCI adapters. –  Broam Mar 15 '10 at 13:43
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I believe most of the types of products you're looking for don't interface to the PCI bus directly. Instead, they convert the SD or CF card to IDE/PATA or SATA, connecting your flash card to an ATA controller. (I expect this is what the Chumby does for its "internal 2GB microSD card", though I can't find direct confirmation of that.)

For example, this Addonics cardreader reads SD/MS/MMC cards, provides a a standard 40-pin IDE connector. You can connect this to a motherboard or PCI IDE controller, and is available mounted in a 3.5" drive bay bracket or in a PCI bracket, like this (note it's not plugged into the PCI slot, it's just mounted in the space above it):

alt text

These products are something of a niche, but there are many options in that niche. Most products seem to be designed for CF rather than SD; I've seen several CF-to-SATA adapters but no SD-to-SATA adapters. You could chain the SD-to-IDE adapter above to a IDE to SATA adapter to connect to an SATA controller instead of an IDE controller. I personally distrust this type of adapter chaining, but if a straight SD-to-SATA adapter isn't available it might do.

Links are provided for illustrative purposes only. Do not take them to be endorsements of any particular product, manufacturer, or store.

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THanks so much. That Addonics cardreader appears to be just what I am looking for. –  vy32 Mar 30 '10 at 15:26
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