Vista and ExpressCards: An Update

I have heard from some people that they are not able to get an Sil3132 based eSATA ExpressCard to see an attached drive. I thought it was just a driver issue until recently I was testing a new Dell Inspiron 1420 notebook and experienced the same issue.  I could get the driver to successfully to install on Vista-32, Vista-64, and Windows 2008 RC0.  But only Windows 2008 RC0 actually saw an attached disk drive.

I tried everything, updated the firmware of the eSATA card, the latest drivers, different cards (but same 3132 chipset). Nothing worked on Vista-32 or Vista-64.

I decided to download Vista SP1 and try that.....Voila, it worked the first time. It even loaded the latest version of the drivers from Windows Update.

I will try and see if I can find a hotfix that addresses this issue and post it, but wanted to let you know that if you are having this problem, try installing Vista SP1 on a new disk and see if that solves it.

Note that I installed Vista SP1 slipstreamed as part of a new install, I have not tried an upgrade in place.

BTW, if you are trying to get a Sil3132 card to work under Windows 2008 RC0 x64, go to and get the latest drivers from their site. Use the Vista-64 drivers, they work far 😉

Comments (2)

  1. virtualgoods says:

    I could remove a working card and cable from one Vista 32 install on a Toshiba notebook and plug it into the Dell and it recognized the card, but not the drive.

    I tried the Windows Update drivers and the drivers direct from the SiliconImage site and neither made a difference on the Dell 1420. It was not until I installed Vista SP1 that it worked.

    These were fresh installs on the Dell.

    Soe people reported this on Acer Ferrari 5000 machines also, although they have not tried Vista SP1 yet.

  2. Keith Combs says:

    My SIIG cards work on Vista x86, x64 (RTM) and WS 2008 x64.  One thing to be careful of, the cables.  Make sure the eSATA cables are seated and flush in the drive and card.

    I’ll post the versions of the drivers I use tomorrow.

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