Orin Nano M.2 Key E compatability


I’m quite new to hardware and the Jetson Orin Nano so this may be a simple question / answer. The Orin Nano connects via a M.2 Key E interface, will this work with any hardware. For example, if I had a device running Linux with an M.2 Key E interface, I could plug in an Orin Nano and it would work OK for model inference? Or can the Orin Nano only be used with certain hardware?

Mostly hardware will work, but it isn’t the hardware you should worry about. It’s the driver. If the driver and other software can be built in arm64/aarch64 architecture, then very likely it will work. However, this is not 100% the case since some software will use hardware-dependent assembler in it, e.g., an MMX instruction set on a PC would not be available directly on arm64 (someone would need to port it, but this does not often happen to need this).

So far as drivers go, if the host PC uses a driver which is part of the Linux kernel, but not yet configured on the Jetson, then it would be unusual that you couldn’t just add that to the Jetson (though you’d have to compile it).

User space software is the same story: It has to be compiled on arm64, but if it exists on the PC and is available as source code, then likely it can compile on the Jetson. This can get more complicated though since user space programs usually link to various libraries; if the library is not present, then you need to install that library, and most are just “available” with the package manager, but there are cases where you’d have to compile this yourself (and perhaps it has issues on arm64, but usually this won’t be the case; the biggest issue is for programs or libraries which are proprietary and thus distributed only in binary format for a PC architecture).

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That’s great, thank you for the quick reply.

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