HP DL380 G3 support for USB 2.0 exists!

A Hewlett Packard HP DL380 G3 server running Windows 2003 needed support for USB 2.0 to transfer files from the server to an external hard drive as a backup. There didn’t seem to be any definitive answer or resolution to this after several hours of Internet searches. After coming across a USB 2.0 adapter card at a reasonable price, it turns out there is a definitive answer.

The HP DL38 G3 supports PCI-X. Not knowing the minimum specification for PCI to work in a PCI-X slot, however, reading indicated PCI rev 2.2 (3.3/5V) would work.


It turns out this 3 Port PCI High Speed USB 2.0 Adapter Card by StarTeck.com works perfectly. Page 3 of the documentation shows the bus interface as PCI rev 2.2. The box reads compatible with among other operating systems Server 2003. The card actually tested was PCI220USBLP (LP means low profile, had to modify the riser so that it would fit). The card to use should be PCI220USB (which should be identical to the PCI220USBLP except for the riser).


After plugging into the server, the operating system installed the drivers and a USB 2.0 hard drive worked successfully.

However, for some strange reason, upon two of the four reboots, the server went to a blue screen about a “Non-Maskable Interrupt (NMI) which can be found in the event viewer under System Event ID: 4196. This has been ignored since the system last successfully booted into Windows. Even armed with that knowledge, the risk is worth it, since now USB 2.0 works! After another dozen or more reboots, the blue screen was not encountered again.