Hello. Inspiron i5577 owner here.
... say the maximum supported SSD is 128GB, yet I've seen other owners use 256GB. It also says the M.2 slot supports the super-fast NVMe drives.
Could someone please confirm that any 256GB NVMe (like Evo 960 NVMe by Samsung) will work in conjunction with the existing 1TB HDD on the SATA port?
Current Setup: M.2 = 128GB Sandisk X400 ; SATA = 1TB Seagate HDD
Desired setup: M.2 = 256GB Samsung NVMe 960 Evo; SATA = 1TB Seagate HDD
Will the Samsung NVMe work at its full 3GB/s potential?
Thanks in advance.
There's no meaningful hardware-based storage capacity limit on modern systems. The last time that happened was in the Windows XP SP1 days trying to use drives larger than 137GB, which required systems to support 48-bit LBA addressing. Then on MBR disks there's the 2TB software-based limit, but that doesn't apply to disks set up as GPT instead. So yes, you can use higher-capacity SSDs, and all indications from my brief research are that the 5577 does support NVMe SSDs. Sometimes Dell specs will indicate maximum capacities based on the maximum configuration that Dell happens to offer themselves and/or the largest capacity that's available at the time; it looks like the 128GB indication is the former in this case.
As for whether the system will be able to run the 960 Evo at full speed, my very basic research suggests no. This page apparently shows results from multiple Inspiron 5577 users benchmarking the 960 Evo in that system, and speeds seem to top our around 2 GB/s, so this system may only have a x2 PCIe configuration. But that's still far faster an SATA, and I would still choose to get a Samsung SSD over other options even if it couldn't perform to its max potential.
Not sure about the 5577 but the 5575 is capped at 512GB on M.2 NVMe.
Also, other threads indicate that on certain systems like the 5575 the M.2 is hardwired (or bios hard set) for a lower power mode so the M.2 NVMe drives will not reach speeds above @1.8K on reads on those systems. Maybe the same for the 5577. User does report 2.8K reads on a XPS running (page 2 of thread) at higher power settings (again hardwired nothing you can change) but is getting weird write speeds.