Intel launched its first consumer-class Optane memory earlier this week, which basically consists of 16GB and 32GB cache memory sticks. To be able to use Optane, you need a 200-series motherboard with a Kaby Lake processor but it seems there are some exceptions.
eTeknix reports that if you have a Celeron or Pentium class Kaby Lake processor, your system will not support Optane. No reason was provided.
As we noted during the launch, only Kaby Lake processors on the new 200 series platform or Xeon C series platform are supported. This is due to an additional 4 PCIe lanes from the chipset which are used with Optane Memory drives. However, it appears that even some Kaby Lake processors such as the lower end Pentium and Celeron CPUs will also lack support. This leaves just the Kaby Lake Core series processors as supported.
At this stage, Intel has not revealed any technical reason to prohibit Pentium and Celeron processors. While there may be concerns about performance for Celeron processors, Kaby Lake Pentiums are merely 200 MHz slower and lack AVX compared to their Core i3 counterparts. In fact, some Pentiums even have Hyper-Threading, giving the same total thread count as the i3. The limit appears to be more for segmentation purposes than anything else.