Highlighted
3 Silver

Re: XPS 8900, M.2 NVMe SSD upgrade - boot compatibility

Jump to solution

 

Hi leftblank,

I am sorry to hear that you have a problem.

The Samsung SSD was automatically recognised in my system (an SSD is plug-and-play with RAID on using the native Windows 10 Intel RST driver).  It appeared in File Explorer and in Macrium Reflect, so I actually did not check if it showed in the BIOS.

I hope you can find a solution - I suppose it is possible that your Lycom DT-120 add-in card is a dud....

Highlighted
2 Bronze

Re: XPS 8900, M.2 NVMe SSD upgrade - boot compatibility

Jump to solution

Thank You Martin B for the reply and your sympathy for the problems.

I used an adapter from a different manufacturer as I thought that having a heat sink might be a good option just in case (Yateng).

I am asking the manufacturer to try again with their response as they didn’t answer the question about the inability of the computer to recognize the SSD when inserted into their adapter and will go the return for refund route if they can’t (or won't) help. These are simple enough pass-through types of adapters but am slowly becoming convinced that the one that I received is indeed a dud.  I started with the assumption that because these are relatively simple components that there must be something that I was doing wrong or missed.

Thank You

0 Kudos
Highlighted
1 Copper

Re: XPS 8900, M.2 NVMe SSD upgrade - boot compatibility

Jump to solution

Thanks Martin B.  Your step by step worked out great for me.  I'm now booting from a Samsung 970 EVO Plus 1TB on  the Lycom DT-120 add-in card.

I did the Macrium Fix Boot Problems step on the SSD and wondering why this is needed?

" > run Macrium Fix Boot Problems from Rescue CD to re-create Boot Configuration Data"

 

 

0 Kudos
Highlighted
3 Silver

Re: XPS 8900, M.2 NVMe SSD upgrade - boot compatibility

Jump to solution

Hi Ajond - I am glad to hear that your upgrade went well!

Like you I was puzzled as to why my system failed to boot after cleaning, re-initialising and formatting the old HDD.  I had imagined that the EFI Boot Partition would have been active on the SSD having been cloned across.  However, it seems that if two bootable OS disks are installed the PC will always boot from the HDD by default, and so in order to boot from the SSD the HDD must go (either by temporarily disconnecting it, or by formatting it).  However, I think that the cloned Boot Configuration Data on the SSD must relate specifically to the HDD, and so will not boot the system in the absence of the HDD - hence the need to run Macrium Fix Boot Problems from the Rescue CD in order to re-create Boot Configuration Data for the SSD.

0 Kudos
Highlighted
1 Copper

Re: XPS 8900, M.2 NVMe SSD upgrade - boot compatibility

Jump to solution
Hi Martin and anyone else who wishes to comment,
Your posts have been very helpful. I have a slightly different XPS 8900 starting configuration with a drive C Samsung SSD PM 871 M.2 256GB boot drive, drive D 2T HDD for data, and 32GB SSD cache acceleration set up as RAID 0 with I believe the HDD in Intel RST (see attached BIOS images). 
 
For the desired ending configuration, I want to yank both drives and end up with a new Samsung 970 EVO 1T NVMe PCIe SSD on a Lycom DT-120 mounted in a X4 slot and a new high quality 6T SATA HDD.  I want to load a fresh copy of Windows on the new SSD, so I don't need to do the copy steps, which will hopefully simplify things. I use this PC for video and photo editing and no game playing. 
 
Should I keep the 32GB SSD cache, keep RAID on, and will it work with my new 6T HDD with no BIOS configuration on my part? Or should I yank everything, turn on ACHI, and use the Samsung driver and Magician SSD management software? Below is a summary of both options for your review and thoughts. 
 
Assuming I yank everything including the cache. 
 
  1. Backup all data. 
  2. Yank everything. Install the new SSD on the Lycom DT-120 in the x4 slot. Set to AHCI in the BIOS with “Windows Boot Manager” as the first device. Boot with Windows install USB and install Windows on the new SSD. 
  3. Confirm that the PC now boots to the new SSD.  
  4. Turn off the PC and install the new drive D HDD. Boot and confirm windows can see the new drive D 6T HDD. 
  5. Reinstall my apps on the new SSD. Copy the data over to the new HDD from an externally attached drive. 
Assuming I keep the cache. 
 
  1. Backup all data. 
  2. Yank the old SSD and install the new SSD on the Lycom DT-120 in the x4 slot. In the BIOS make the new SSD the boot drive C. Boot with Windows install USB and install Windows on the new SSD. 
  3. Confirm that it boots to the new SSD and that it can still see the old HDD as drive D. 
  4. Turn off the PC and yank the old HDD and install the new drive D HDD. Boot and confirm windows can see the new HDD. I don't know how to confirm that the 32GB SSD cache is still working with the new HDD. 
  5. Reinstall my apps on the new SSD. Copy the data over to the new HDD from an externally attached drive. 
Thank you! 
 
IMG_5336.JPGIMG_5335.JPG
0 Kudos
Highlighted
3 Silver

Re: XPS 8900, M.2 NVMe SSD upgrade - boot compatibility

Jump to solution

Hi Mas Alto,

Because you plan a fresh install of Windows your upgrade should be rather simpler than mine, although it may be more laborious as you will need to re-install all your programs (including Intel RST) and restore your data!

My preference would be to keep RAID on and retain the 32GB SSD cache, as this will accelerate your new 6TB HDD and should be especially useful for handling large image and video files: it seems a pity to waste it. The RAID 0 pairing is indeed managed by Intel RST (Rapid Storage Technology). I did not need to disturb this for my upgrade and so I am not an expert in its use. However, you will need to use the Intel RST app to set up the RAID 0 again when you have fitted the new HDD. You should find it in the Task Bar (in "hidden icons"), or else you can access it via Start Menu > Intel > Intel Rapid Storage Technology. This should work without any any BIOS re-configuration, but I advise a little internet research just to check how to set up the new RAID with Intel RST.

You can confirm that the 32GB SSD cache is working with the new HDD in the Intel RST app on the "Status" tab - have a look on your PC as it is now before you start the upgrade.

Good luck!

Highlighted
1 Copper

Re: XPS 8900, M.2 NVMe SSD boot compatibility? (details wit

Jump to solution

Finally, an understandable explanation!!! You confirmed my suspicions garnered from reading about 50 other chats. Thank you so much.

0 Kudos
Highlighted
1 Copper

Re: XPS 8900, M.2 NVMe SSD boot compatibility? (details wit

Jump to solution

I also have the XPS-8900 factory default configuration and am planning  to upgrade to Samsung NvMe SSD also. Could you please if not too much to ask give me the exact link and model number of the Samsung 970 EVO that you bought including the adaptor. Will this SAMSUNG 970 EVO M.2 2280 1TB PCIe Gen3. X4, NVMe 1.3 64L V-NAND 3-bit MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) MZ-V7E1T0BW from newegg work as a bootable and data drive?

Also I currently still have no idea how did you update the UEFI like what you’ve said. Is it a straight BIOS update from dell website under download support/drivers? Please help I am new to UEFI BIOS settings and 100% coming from OLD legacy BIOS settings so this is totally new to me.

Any help will be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance.

0 Kudos
Highlighted
3 Silver

Re: XPS 8900, M.2 NVMe SSD boot compatibility?

Jump to solution

Hi Edongzki,

Apologies for my delayed reply - the notification email about your message only arrived this morning!

I purchased the SSD and adapter card from Scan (www.scan.co.uk) here in the UK.  The details are as follows:

  • Lycom DT-120 M.2 NGFF SSD Host Adapter Card, PCIe 3.0 x4, 22x80/22x60/22x42mm:
    -  the purchase link is here and there are useful installation instructions in a YouTube video here
  • 500GB Samsung 970 EVO, M.2 (2280) PCIe 3.0 (x4) NVMe SSD, Phoenix, MLC V-NAND, 3400MB/s Read, 2300MB/s Write, 370k/450:
    -  the purchase link is here (you will see that there is now an uprated model, the 970 EVO PLUS)

UEFI is just the new type of BIOS used in the XPS 8900, and is updated by downloading from Dell Support - Drivers & Downloads as before (or via Dell SupportAssist or Dell Update if you have them installed on your PC).  The current version of UEFI BIOS is 2.5.0 as of March 2019.

The instructions which I posted above are the result of a great deal of preliminary research, and outline the steps but cannot give every detail.  However, further information is readily available on the internet when you know what you are searching for from my summary!

I hope your upgrade goes smoothly!

0 Kudos
Highlighted
1 Copper

Re: XPS 8900, M.2 NVMe SSD boot compatibility?

Jump to solution

Hi Martin B,

Thank you very much for the input you’ve provided. I can now proceed with the upgrades with utmost confidence using the tons of information from this thread as my guide in the process.

Have a nice day!

0 Kudos