I have an HP DL380 G5 server and a PCI-E card that I need to use in the server. The problem: the PCI-E card requires additional power from a 4-pin floppy connector, and the HP DL380 G5's PSU has no floppy connector cables (in fact, the PSU plugs directly into the motherboard and has no connector cables whatsoever).

Is there any other way I can provide power to the PCI-E card? Are there adapters that allow me to draw power from a USB connector or one of the many proprietary connectors on the motherbord? Can I buy another PCI card with a floppy connector that I can use to drive my PCI-E card?

My googling has given me a bunch of USB to Molex adapter cables, but no USB to floppy connector adapters. I know the ideal solution would be to buy a different sound card or somehow find a server with a 4-pin floppy connector, but we're a low-budget college student operation and I'd rather do some MacGyvering than to spend more from our (non-existent) budget.

  • 1
    Did you say sound card?! Commented Oct 14, 2014 at 18:06
  • Yeah, I did. Noise isn't a problem since it's in a different room.
    – haroba
    Commented Oct 14, 2014 at 18:08
  • 1
    A $10 USB sound adapter doesn't have the required connectors.
    – haroba
    Commented Oct 14, 2014 at 18:12
  • 1
    Why are you using a sound card in this server, though?
    – ewwhite
    Commented Oct 14, 2014 at 18:46
  • 1
    @EvanAnderson If you're putting a PCI-E sound card in anything, especially a server, it's probably in a place where quality is important. Encoding servers for internet radio stations, for example.
    – Brad
    Commented Oct 14, 2014 at 19:08

3 Answers 3


For what you need, I'd really suggest trying a different sound card.

But if you want to see MacGyver...

I've needed to provide auxiliary power in various HP ProLiant 2U chassis configurations. I'm sorry you're working with an older G5 HP, but you have some options.

  • Pull power from internal or external USB.
  • Splice power from the PSU connection.
  • There should be a 4-pin or 10-pin Molex connector intended for the drive backplane bay and CD-ROM cage. You can tap that.
  • If you're really desperate, you can tap power from a SAS drive slot.

pulling power from a DL380 G6 drive cage power header enter image description here

pulling from SATA CD-ROM motherboard header enter image description here

HP ProLiant drive backplane enter image description here

running power to the PCIe cage enter image description here

Unusable drive bay enter image description here

  • 4
    Do you have any pictures from after the fire? Commented Oct 14, 2014 at 19:14
  • 1
    Yes... a couple of failed CPUs, two bad power supplies and a system board replacement got things going again.
    – ewwhite
    Commented Oct 14, 2014 at 19:15
  • Thanks for the suggestions! Great pictures. The CD-ROM drive appears to be connected directly to the motherboard through a proprietary connector that combines data and power.
    – haroba
    Commented Oct 14, 2014 at 19:55
  • Yes, you can use that for power...
    – ewwhite
    Commented Oct 14, 2014 at 19:56

If you get an USB->Molex adapter, you can then add a Molex->Floppy adapter. This would also be required for @Gene's solution.

McGyver would not want to be a part of this.

Side note: A USB->Molex adapter would need to be an active part (e.g. with a DC-DC converter), as USB doesn't have a 12V rail which is needed by both Molex and floppy connectors.


PCIe power adpaters exist. For example: check out the Sangoma ST1 Power Adapter.

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