Leap 15.4 15.5 and Optane support

This is a long post, but my own time-wasting experience with problems using Intel Optane memory might be useful to others - see https://forums.opensuse.org/t/zypper-update-freezes/170050

I have an HP EliteDesk 800 G6 with an Intel chipset which was sold with Windows-11 pre-installed. This was bought with the sole intention of deleting all partitions on the SSD NVMe hard drive in order to install Linux but, like some others who have commented on this topic, I’ve had problems which appear to arise from use of Intel HBRPEKNX0202AH “Optane” memory. Sometimes this stuff seems to work well enough, sometimes not, and sometimes it just creates ongoing problems and wastes everyones time.

The manufacturers of the Framework laptop https://frame.work/au/en/products/laptop16-diy-amd-7040 even have a separate “DIY Edition - Build it yourself and bring your own OS, including Linux” as well as a pre-installed Windows version.

Apart from its’ doubtful inherent value, Intel state that that Optane memory requires the Windows RST driver - see https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/articles/000090648/memory-and-storage/intel-optane-memory.html

The H series contains what can be viewed as 2 SSDs on one M.2 form factor

  • The Intel® Optane™ memory side
  • The Intel® QLC 3D NAND side

As a result, the BIOS has to contain the proper support to detect each portion of the device. They will be detected as two individual PCIe* x2 devices. These devices can be combined, or “paired”, into a single volume using the Intel® RST driver and applications.

  • If the device is placed in a system that isn’t properly supported, only the Intel® QLC 3D NAND side of the device will be recognized and accessible.
  • A system that is “Intel® Optane™ Memory Ready” doesn’t mean that it supports the Intel® Optane™ memory H Series.
  • Using the device in this state is not validated or supported by Intel, so results aren’t guaranteed.

But according to larryr, and on good authority too:

Can anyone confirm that running Optane memory without RST support will result in the whole of SSD memory being available, but only via two of the four lanes? Is this the correct way to interpret the Intel statement quoted above that “only the Intel® QLC 3D NAND side of the device will be recognized and accessible”?

Just do not use Intel RST - it is useless for Linux. Intel uses Optane drive to accelerate QLC SSD drive via RST. Modern TLC SSD drives are faster than Optane + QLC combo. If you can - replace Intel QLC 3D NAND drive with TLC (MLC) solution.
You can use Optane drive as a separate drive. You can put something useful on it - swap file, some system folders, some logs, etc.
Do not use QLC SSDs with BTRFS.

IMHO you have 2 drives - QLC SSD and Optane.

https://www.hardware-corner.net/wp-content/uploads/compare/HP_EliteDesk_800_G6_Mini_motherboard.jpg

Oh no - 2-in-1: https://i.ebayimg.com/images/g/KikAAOSwHOZkj6ra/s-l1600.jpg
If 2-in-1 then replace drive with TLC SSD.

and

I completely agree, and I’ve received that advice from others in the course of the original post.

But OpenSUSE is now available from the Microsoft Store - see https://apps.microsoft.com/detail/9PJPFJHRM62V?hl=en-US&gl=US - and is supported by MS. From memory, Windows 10 & 11 offers two levels of compatability: one where certain Linux utilities run in a VM environment and another where the full Linux O/S is supported in dual-boot mode. Please note, this may not be quite correct as I haven’t checked the details recently, but it should all be authoritatively explained on the link quoted above.

I have no idea how many Windows desktops with Optane memory were sold with Windows pre-installed, or how many users may wish to run Linux. Or for that matter, how many long-established Linux users (like me) bought a similar desktop from other manufacturers (HP, Dell, etc.) with the express intention of installing Linux.

But clearly there’s scope for what is sometimes known in politics as “reputational damage”.