Range Of Features And Practical Use
The Ultra-X diagnostic card for the MiniPCI interface.
The neat thing about the P.H.D. MiniPCI is that it's operating-system independent. That means all you have to do is plug it into a free MiniPCI port on your laptop and then fire up the laptop, regardless of whether the machine has a hard drive or OS installed or not.
Located on the back of the card are an 8Mbit Flash ROM for the operating system and the diagnostic modes.
The system requires neither a working operating system on the hard drive nor any additional software installation. All test routines are stored in the card's ROM.
The diagnostic card in action - here in the N203 notebook from Gigabyte.
The fact that the diagnostic card can only be run in a notebook's MiniPCI bus slot often means that the WLAN card will have to be removed first from many of the latest portable systems.
The WLAN components have to be removed to make way for the Ultra-X diagnostic card.
Care must be taken here to avoid damaging the antenna connectors as you pull them out. As a rule, then, installation will require opening the portable device. In most notebooks the MiniPCI slot is easily accessible via a flap on the bottom of the case. But the slot is hard to get to in a few devices - particularly with ultra-portable form factors. In such exceptional cases there is no getting around dismantling the unit.