XPS Desktops

Last reply by 12-18-2019 Solved
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XPS 8900, how to install Windows and boot from M.2 SATA SSD?

I have a XPS 8900 still in stock hardware configuration, with HDD and M.2 SSD. Trying to do a fresh install of Win10, but I can't figure out how to get Windows installed on the SSD. The HDD shows as disk 0 and the SSD as disk 1, which I thought was odd, but carried on.

I tried the following:

1. Changed BIOS mode from Legacy to UEFI (left Legacy Options enabled). Changed SATA mode from RAID to AHCI. Using a Linux Live distro, I deleted partitions on both disks, and created GPT partition tables on both, and left them unallocated. Booted to Windows installer on USB, selected SSD as destination. Once Windows install process restarts PC (I remove USB during countdown to restart), "No boot device found".

2. Coming off attempt #1, I changed BIOS to Legacy. Using Linux Live, deleted partitions on both disks, and created MBR partition tables, and left them unallocated. Booted to Windows installer on USB, selected SSD as destination. Once Windows install process restarts PC (I remove USB during countdown to restart), I get a blank screen with a blinking cursor.

3. I ran Dell diagnostics and everything checks out fine, but I noticed that in diagnostics, "Boot Path" shows as "MBR of Hard Drive 0-0-0" which is the hard disk. So it seems there's something about the hardware configuration that's telling the startup process to look to the HDD during boot (independent of the BIOS boot sequence, which didn't even have the HDD listed until attempt #3, when I added the HDD and moved it to the top of the list). To test my hunch, I installed Windows to the HDD, and it installs fine and reboots into Windows to complete the setup.

How do I configure the M.2 SATA SSD as the boot disk the system looks to during bootup?

 

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3 Silver

I resolved this by disconnecting the HDD, and then installing Windows (BIOS set to UEFI and Windows USB flash drive set to FAT32, GPT, UEFI).

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3 Silver

I resolved this by disconnecting the HDD, and then installing Windows (BIOS set to UEFI and Windows USB flash drive set to FAT32, GPT, UEFI).

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