4. The new retail downloader will work with the OEM BIOS SLP key providing the correct edition is selected:
Thanks for that link! I am assuming a user can just use this to create the installation media in lieu of ordering the discs from Dell.
Also, since I am planning on installing a new ssd in my brand new XPS 8700, just like the OP, I was wondering whether it wouldn't be simpler just to clone the hard drive to the SSD? It seems like cloning is less painful.
From a general perusal of the forums, it sounds like a lot of users have issues with installing drivers if a clean install of Windows 8.1 is undertaken. I would think that by this iteration of Windows, the hardware components would be automatically identified and the appropriate drivers would automatically be installed by Windows 8.1! However, I am led to believe that you have to physically download all the requisite drivers from the Dell support site after the clean install. Am I correct in this assumption?
To the OP, I would love to get some feedback on your experience so far. Thx!
We would like to know if you are configuring RAID on the system? Your system must have the feature to have the configuration set up. You can instead, install the OS on the SSD and use the system normally.
As for the driver, yes you would have to install the drivers from our support site after the installation of windows 8.1
Thanks for your response!
I wasn't planning on configuring RAID on my system. As I understand it, the steps for cloning are :
1. Add an SSD on a free SATA port and then use cloning software to mirror the HDD to the SSD.
2. Disconnect the original HDD, connect the SSD to SATA port 0, enable AHCI in the UEFI/BIOS and reboot
Am I missing something? Why would I need to configure RAID?
Hi GUPSGUPS ,
In order to proceed with the cloning you would have to have both the SSD and the SATA with the same storage space. And a specific software would not be required since the raid feature will be present in the BIOS. If the requirements are met you would be able to clone the hard drives.
One of the easiest ways is to use Dell Backup and Recovery.
Follow the instructions here to make a Rescue Disk (Bootable External Hard Drive) or Factory Backup (Bootable USB Flash Drive):
This should be standard procedure when you get a new Dell system.
Also make a Windows 8.1 UEFI Bootable USB as its required to use DISKPART:
This is useful to have to hand in case you later want a clean installation (For Windows 7 users the OEM .iso is unavailable to download so just use a Windows 8.1 .iso for DISKPART).
Use of DISKAPRT will result in data loss...
Insert the Windows 8.1 Bootable USB. Power up your system and press F2 to get to the Dell BIOS setup. Ensure that the SATA Operation is AHCI (see the start of this video up till 1:21):
Boot from the Windows 8.1 installation media and use DISKPART > CLEAN ALL on the HDD and DISKPART > CLEAN on the SSD:
Power down the system and remove the cables from the HDD. We want the computer setup so it has the SSD only otherwise Dell Backup and Recovery will restore to the HDD.
Use the Rescue Disk or Factory Backup to install Windows 8.1 or 7 to the mSATA SSD. Update Windows and check that its running okay.
Power down your Dell.
You can power down your Dell and reinsert your hard drive. Power it up and log into Windows. Finally you can initialise your hard drive and set it up to use the HDD as a data drive:
This should now have the factory settings installed correctly on the SSD with the HDD being used for your files.
Can you confirm whether the above method is successful when migrating to a 500gb SSD from a 1tb HDD (With different size drives) ?
I carried it out on a 512 GB HDD to a 256 GB SSD so yes it works with different sizes.
If the Factory Image restore disc is used, does that contain all of the necessary drivers or would the drivers have to be installed separately from that? Thanks!