Welcome to the E6440 Owner's Lounge! A place to share tips/tricks/mods with other owners get the most satisfying user experience from this exceptional notebook.
Release date: Sep 2013 Model name: Compal LA-9931P (iGPU) or LA-9932P (HD8690M)
CPU clock TDP x27-TDP
Storage: 9.5mm primary + ODD bay + mSATA
i7-4940MX 3.1 57W
512GB SSD + BD-ROM
FHD_LCD_retrofit, 16GB DDR3L
i7-4810MQ 2.8 47W
250GB+2560B RAID0 Samsung EVO SSDs
EC_retrofit, RAID unlock, 16GB DDR3L
i7-4810MQ 2.8 47W
180GB SSD + ODD
Tech Inferno Fan
i7-4800MQ 2.7 47W 32.3
500GB SSHD + ODD
EC_retrofit, GTX770 eGPU, OC_ME_FW
PURPLE - highest performance AND lowest power consumption in this table
RED - highest performance configuration in this table
GREEN - lowest power consumption in this table
x27-TDP: TDP when running at x27 reflecting overall CPU temps and efficiency as discussed
Operating System, Support, Drivers, Disassembly Guide
Dell's E6440: Driver's link, Manuals link and Upgrade parts link.
Windows 7 Dell OEM Source : Includes additional Dell installation content needed for a fully licensed Win7 clean install.
Dell warranty checker: useful to check an ebay secondhand unit's remaining warranty. Ask vendor for the Support Tag.
Performance upgrade: mSATA SSD
Yes, there is a mSATA slot in the E6440, though is not visible when taking the rear cover off. It needs the left bumper cap removed. It's situated above the WWAN marking as shown in the spoiler below. In fact, this slot is WLAN(PCIe1), mSATA (SATA3 port4) and WWAN (USB 2.0)!! Sharing the PCIe and SATA lines being a new Series-8 Flexible I/O chipset feature : http://forum.techinferno.com/diy-e-gpu-projects/6882-series-8-flexible-usb3-pcie-sata-pcie-i-o-some-more-x2-2-0-possibility.html#post94382
Performance upgrade: i7-quad CPU
Can effectively double the CPU performance going from a factory i5/i7 dual core to a i7-quad CPU. Note: warranty implications of a CPU upgrade - a factory-specced faster dual core up to i7-4610M will not void warranty while a i7-quad will void the warranty if Dell know about it as it wasn't offered with one. I'd keep the original CPU back and swap it back in if necessary. Upgraded E6440 i7-quad system examples are shown in the table above.
One important consideration is whether to get a 37W i7-4702MQ (4-core turbo=2.9Ghz)to keep within the factory-configured CPU's TDP or get a faster and hotter 47W i7-4800QM/i7-4700MQ (4-core turbo=3.5/3.2Ghz). I'm of the opinion that the 37W one should be avoided. That's because (1) the 47W CPUs can be software limited to 37W (2) XTU/Throttlestop allows a negative offset voltage offset to be applied bringing TDP down and allowing higher multipliers to work and (3) the beefier dGPU-model heatsink that can handle the higher TDP and can be retrofitted to the iGPU-only model.
The E6440 BIOS locks the TDP but allows extra turbo bins are accessible using either Throttlestop or XTU. Eg: a i7-4700MQ has +200Mhz unlocked turbo bins (max=3.4Ghz 4-core). A i7-4800MQ has +400Mhz unlocked turbo bins (max=3.9Gbz 4-core). Problem with the 47W TDP limit is it limits performance to 3.5Ghz during a TS 32M/1024M 4-core load test. That result being *after* voltage optimization in XTU/Throttlestop. Meaning then that max performance lies between a turbo unlocked i7-4700MQ (3.4Ghz) and i7-4800MQ (3.9Ghz). Eg: a i7-4710MQ (3.5Ghz 4-core) would be at max TDP limits. Though those newer CPUs are rarer and often pricer than a faster i7-4800MQ. Means then that for the majority of users, a i7-4800MQ gives an easy plug'n'play installation from which highest performance, within TDP and thermal limits, can then be extracted easily using Throttlestop or XTU.
2. INFO: dGPU_heatsink - improve iGPU model cooling by retrofitting dGPU model heatsink+fan
Performance upgrade: external graphics (eGPU)
RECOMMENDED reading: INFO: EC_retrofit - retrofitting an expresscard slot to a E6440
An eGPU has been implemented on a E6440 using a NVidia GTX770 (Tech Inferno Fan), AMD R9 280X (Tech Inferno Fan).
DIY eGPU: attach a desktop videocard via the E6440's 5Gbps expresscard slot. Provides accelerated gaming graphics, CUDA/OpenCL processing and additional HDMI/DVI outputs to drive multiple monitors. A NVidia or AMD card is a straight plug-n-play implementation on a E6440. The system must boot least once with the eGPU attached and detected by the BIOS. This lowers TOLUD from 3.49GB to 3.24GB, storing it in NVRAM thereafter. Both my GTX770 and R9 280x can then be allocated without any error 12. In addition, no PCI Reset Delay mechanism is unnecessary and is best to be disabled. Then the system and eGPU can support a sleep-resume cycle with eGPU activate on resume.
NOTE: The A.02 BIOS handles the eGPU beautifully, running a Gen2 expresscard link. Unfortunately bios A.05 or newer sets the EC port to Gen1 speed if you hotplug the eGPU after BIOS boot (see details). Flash back to A.02 to get the faster Gen2 link speed OR disable any PCI Reset Delay mechanisms on the eGPU adapter so the BIOS sees the eGPU on boot. Note: E6440 iGPU-model can boot with powered eGPU powered plugged into EC slot. dGPU-model E6440 will not boot with powered eGPU plugged into EC slot and so requires hotplugging after boot.
In case anybody is wondering, a x2 2.0 eGPU link is not electrically possible unless there is a USB3 port 4 on a docking connector so can use the http://forum.techinferno.com/diy-e-gpu-projects/6882-series-8-flexible-usb3-pcie-sata-pcie-i-o-some-more-x2-2-0-possibility.html#post94382 feature. The USB 3 ports on the system are 1, 2, 3 and 6. The E6440 PCIe port layout is shown in the spoiler:
If want to experiment with a x2 2.0 eGPU implementation then suggest look at a one-gen older Dell E6430. It's has two mPCIe ports (port 1 + 2) as per the E6430 schematic.
System mod: LCD upgrade
Update Feb-2015: newer E6440 has eDP rather than LVDS connected on the systemboard, with a 1920x1080 LCD option. See details. The FHD LCD retrofit parts required for the 1st E6440 series are in the spoiler:
NOTE: The Intel iGPU Control panel mistakenly lists the LCD as being eDP as explained in the series-1 E6440.
768P->900P is possible as a user upgrade. Required is swapping the HD 1ch LVDS cable for the 2ch LVDS HD+ and of course changing the 768P LCD for a 900P one. The two different LVDS cables available for a E6440 are:
The two different LCDs being:
My system came from the factory with a 900P AUO B140RTN02.2 panel with Dell p/n 0M4RTT. I find brightness and viewing angles quite satisfactory. A photo of my 900P LCD's model labelling is in the spoiler below.
1080P or higher resolution : not possible since the E6440 uses a LVDS rather than eDP internal LCD interface. The max resolution available in 14" LVDS is usually 1600x900, representing 37% more viewing area than 1366x768. Though ebay has 14" 1680x945 LVDS LCDs, giving an additional 10% more viewing area over 1600x900 or 51% over 1366x768. --> 1680x945 LCD does not fit correctly as attempted here.
System mods: cooling
INFO: dGPU_heatsink - improve iGPU model cooling by retrofitting dGPU model heatsink+fan. Useful if see i7-quad thermal throttling under full 4-core load.
RAID_unlock: Enabling E6440's hidden RAID BIOS options (Atonus) giving RAID-0/1 and maybe RAID-5 as discussed.
Using a ramdisk for browser cache (phillofoc) : to extend battery life
I present you a tool to decompress Dell UEFI BIOS (JimboBobB@MDL) - extract the raw E6440 BIOS file from Dell's distribution EXE. Confirmed works. A workaround to the depreciated "-writehdr" option.
Modifying UEFI variables : eg: remove CPU TDP power limits, RAID/Expresscard/max TOLUD, disable dGPU
Dell E6440 reviews
Review Dell Latitude E6440 Notebook (notebookcheck.net)
Review Dell Latitude E6440 (itfroccs.hu)
Dell Latitude E6440 (youtube #1)
Dell Latitude E6440 Notebook (youtube #2)
It turns out that Dell did indeed turn of any RAID settings and hid it from the common user. Or rather didn't make it visible. What you have to do to enable RAID on the Dell Latitude E6440 is:
- Download https://www.sendspace.com/<wbr>file/bouk3i
It's a flash toolkit by Intel with additional batch scripts mostly for Asus boards. You can use fptw to dump your current or flash a new BIOS.
- Extract it to C:\. The new path should be "C:\FTK8_0.11\Windows"
You can extract it, where you want. However, it will be easier to handle the next steps, if it is C:\.
- Start > type "cmd" > right click > Open as Administrator.
You need full rights to run fptw.exe
- Type "cd C:\FTK8_0.11\Windows" to change your current directory to the toolkit folder
- Type "fptw.exe -D backup.rom -BIOS"
This command will create a dump (-D) of the BIOS section (-BIOS) to the file backup.rom. The Management Engine section for example is read/write protected, so it won't be possible to do a full dump.
Then you can open the dump with "UEFITool" (just search for it on Google), then search for and extract the module SetupPrep, when you find it, run it trough the "Universal IFR extractor" which will generate a text document of the input. I attached my text document down below so that you can compare. SetupPrep IFR.txt
The interesting part is in my case in line 2030. It tells us the name of the setting ("RAID0"), the hexadecimal address in the NVRAM (0x19D) and its possible values (0 - Disabled/ 1 - Enabled).
In my 6440 the NVRAM 0x19D was 0, so disabled. To change the NVRAM download the following programm: http://brains.by/posts/<wbr>bootx64.7z
An easy way to run the app, would be to place it on a FAT32 formatted thumb drive in a folder named EFI, so the path looks like this:
"EFI\Boot\bootx64.efi". On each boot your notebook looks for this file and if it is found, it is started. If not, go to the boot menu (F12 if I remember correctly) and select your thumb drive at the UEFI boot section. You should then see a GRUB boot loader and possibly you will need to confirm that you want to continue.
The command prompt, which you will reach, will be the place, where you can flip the RAID0 setting - amongst others.
To make sure this tool finds the correct values, read out some settings first. To read out a value you need to write "setup_var <address>", to store values "setup_var <address><value>".
- "setup_var 0x19D" should show you 0x0, which would mean the RAID0 option at address 0x19D is disabled.
For most addresses you will see 0x0, so let's check for a more unique value ..
- "setup_var 0x1AF" should display a value ranging from 0x69 to 0x7F, which is the value for the "Critical Trip Point" at line 1659
If not, you should abort and not use it.
Otherwise you can enter "setup_var 0x19D 0x1" to store 0x1 at address 0x19D and activate RAID0. Then you can reboot and see what happens.
If something went wrong, or you simple want to change the setting back to its default state, boot again from your thumb drive and enter: "setup_var 0x19D 0x0".
I actually did this procedure on a A.07 BIOS by accident, however it turns out that I was able to downgrade to A.02 afterwards and my RAID config was still working. I don't know about any other BIOS versions though.
Also, I want to remind you, that it was only for "Xsmile" over at the www.bios-mods.com forum, that I was able to enable RAID, so the credit goes to him. We got most of the information from this website: http://habrahabr.ru/post/<wbr>190354/ (Google translate works wonders on foreign languages)
Lastly a more personal question. So I set up the Laptop, final specs: i-7 4810MQ 2,8 Ghz (no overcl), 16Gb 1866Mhz, AMD 8690M, 2x250Gb Samsung EVO RAID 0, Win 8.1 Pro 64bit, BIOS A.02
Mods: EC Retrofit, ODD SSD,
eGPU: EVGA GTX770 SC, Corsair ATX, PE4L-EC060A, DIY BOX V1.1, dual monitor 1080p
Nando, I read your eGPU post for the 6440 and you said its simply a matter of plug and boot in order for the TOLUD to lower, which I did. And the Laptop recognized the 770, but when I rebootet the laptop screen just went black (but still bg</value>-illuminated) I was able to see the mouse cursor, but nothing else. Even if I unplug the eGPU there's only a black screen. Please help me if you can. I'm not sure what I've done wrong.</address><address><value>