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XPSJP
1 Copper

XPS 8930, hard drives capacity, upgrades

I currently have an XPS 8930 with a 1TB M.2 PCIe x4 SSD from Dell.  Originally I wanted to install 2 additional Hard Drives with 6tb each.  I spoke with the Dell sales team and technicians, they confirmed the motherboard (DF42J) only supports up to 8tb HD in total.  I ended up installing one 4tb HD which runs great.  Am I limited to only add a 2tb hard drive and another 1tb hard drive (totaling 8tb) or is there any possibility of going more than 8tb? (like adding a second 4tb HD instead).  Does anyone have more than 8tb HD and if so which hard drive capacities do you have?  

Thank you

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19 Replies
Tesla1856
6 Thallium

Re: Upgrading XPS 8930 hard drives/ capacity

If anything, there is a 4tb limit for each drive. There is never a "whole machine" limit.

But with UEFI, Windows-10 64bit, GPT-type, and NTFS-format ... you should be able to break the 4tb barrier.

As is shown here (12tb 3.5inch SATA-HDD installed in Aurora-R7):

https://www.dell.com/community/Alienware-Desktops/Upgrading-my-Aurora-R7-HDD/td-p/6116601

Pretty sure two 6tb drives would-have worked fine ... The MB in XPS-8930 is similar to one in Aurora-R6/R7.


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XPSJP
1 Copper

Re: Upgrading XPS 8930 hard drives/ capacity

Thank you for the quick response

The limit didn't make sense but 3 separate dell employees told me the same thing about a limit to the stock 1tb (one bay 4tb, one 2tb, and one 1tb)  They did tell me Aurora had more capacity.   

Is there a way to check if bigger drives would work prior to purchase?  I would definitely like to put a 6tb even 12tb if possible.  

 

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Vic384
4 Beryllium

Re: Upgrading XPS 8930 hard drives/ capacity

According to the XPS 8930 Setup and Specifications document, the hard drive capacity is up to 4 TB. I assume the limit is for each hard drive. My guess as to the reason why is that the capacity is limited by the BIOS and not the OS.

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XPSJP
1 Copper

Re: Upgrading XPS 8930 hard drives/ capacity

Thank you.  

I looked at the setup and specifications document and it does say 4tb capacity.  The previous reply by tesla1856 showed a thread with an aurora r7 which the owner placed a 12tb HD.  When I looked at the setup and specifications of the aurora r7 it shows hard drive capacity up to 2tb.  

Would placing a higher than suggested capacity have more risk of HD failure or any other adverse events?  I know the basics about computers so this upgrade process has been confusing!  I spent time calling dell but the average answer was 8tb total storage.  I would like to safely put as much storage as possible.  Is there a program that could test the capacities?  

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546insp
3 Cadmium

Re: Upgrading XPS 8930 hard drives/ capacity

It probably won't work or won't work well and then you will be stuck with an extra drive.

Dell XPS 8920 silver edition
7th gen i7 Intel CPU
Samsung 850 evo SSD for boot
Added front fan
16gb of memory
AMD video/graphic card
I buy a new Dell every 4 years for the last 25 years

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Tesla1856
6 Thallium

Re: Upgrading XPS 8930 hard drives/ capacity


@XPSJP wrote:

 

1. The limit didn't make sense but 3 separate dell employees told me the same thing about a limit to the stock 1tb (one bay 4tb, one 2tb, and one 1tb) 

2. They did tell me Aurora had more capacity.   

3. Is there a way to check if bigger drives would work prior to purchase?

4.  I would definitely like to put a 6tb even 12tb if possible.  

 


1. I can't really speak to what Dell employees let you. Sounds like maybe they were all reading the same notes?

2. I don't know why it would. The motherboards use same/similar chipset. 

3. Apparently, it's to read this forum. :Smile:

4. It will work (see previously linked thread). The question is should you.

I don't really even put spinning-HDD inside newer computers any more. They are noisy, power-hungry, run hot, etc. SSDs are just to cheap now-days. Other thing is ... if the house is burning down, it's a lot easier to grab the pet and this 12tb HDD (in external enclosure) off the desk ... and run. 

If you are going to buy one 12tb HDD, you have to buy another (or back it up somewhere). All HDDs crash/fail eventually due to the moving parts. The second one backs-up the first one. NAS and/or cloud are also options.

I'm guessing you are trying to build a make-shift file server. Instead, I suggest you look at the 4-bay Synology NAS units. Not only does it it have Server-like abilities, you can expand it. If you install 4 HDDs in it, you can have a Hybrid RAID-5 Array with 1-disk fault-tolerance. That along with SMART, it about as safe as you can get for on-premise storage (for consumers and SMB).

But even then, you are still suppose to backup the whole thing again (RAID is not a backup). To protect against fire/theft, that backup should be off-site. Candidates for that are:

a. Off-site cloud storage backup. This is the best. You are buying yearly space instead of HDDs. Full Backups and Restores might take weeks. There are other pros/cons. 
b. Back-it-up to a large-capacity USB-HDD occasionally, and just store it off-site (safety deposit box, parent's house, etc.). 


Registered Microsoft Partner and Apple Developer
- Like many of you, I can appreciate a good game-engine.
- I answer questions here, but I'm not a Dell employee.
- Consider giving posts you like a "thumbs-up"
- Posting models-numbers and software versions speeds trouble-shooting.
- Click "Accept as Solution" button on any post that answers your question best.
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Tesla1856
6 Thallium

Re: Upgrading XPS 8930 hard drives/ capacity


@Vic384 wrote:

My guess as to the reason why is that the capacity is limited by the BIOS and not the OS.


Good guess, but No, I do not think so. I think 99% of the time ... it's the OS (at least on newer machines from the last 4 years or so ... ones with UEFI capability).

With UEFI, Windows-10 64bit, GPT-type, and NTFS-format ...

The new limit is : 18 exabytes (~18.8 million terabytes) 

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-hardware/manufacture/desktop/configure-uefigpt-based-hard-d...

 


Registered Microsoft Partner and Apple Developer
- Like many of you, I can appreciate a good game-engine.
- I answer questions here, but I'm not a Dell employee.
- Consider giving posts you like a "thumbs-up"
- Posting models-numbers and software versions speeds trouble-shooting.
- Click "Accept as Solution" button on any post that answers your question best.
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Vic384
4 Beryllium

Re: Upgrading XPS 8930 hard drives/ capacity

I know of no program that will test the hard drive capacity of a computer without first installing the hard drive. I do not believe you will risk hard drive failure; the most adverse event is that you will not realize the maximum capacity of the hard drive. I would not want to pay for a 8 TB hard drive and end up only able to use 4 TB.

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Tesla1856
6 Thallium

Re: Upgrading XPS 8930 hard drives/ capacity


@Vic384 wrote:

I do not believe you will risk hard drive failure; 


In 20 years, in my small circle of managed machines and clients, I've seen about 15 HDDs fail. Many of those within the last 5 years (these newer larger disks, with higher areal densities). Also, with the large ones, that's a lot of data to lose all-at-once.

Some old, some new. Some OEM, some retail. Some internal, some external. Especially troublesome are the ones that die after 3-6 months.

All spinning-HDD fail eventually. The trick is to be finished using them before they do, or to have a backup. I also backup systems with only SSDs (but we have never actually seen one fail yet) . Hopefully, I'm not jinxing it. :Smile: However, we do usually over-provision installed SSDs and only use top-tier brands and models.

SMART really helps now-days. Not only do you sometimes get an early warning of impending doom, SMART is sometimes able to "shuffle the data around" to good areas and buy you a bit more time (sometimes, just enough time to save/backup data).

Now-days, Image files (as in Macrium Reflect) is a good tool in some scenarios. These are Full, Differential, and Incremental. However, sometimes just a straight-file-copy to a different drive or location is enough to save your data-files from extinction. We keep 2 copies of everything. 3 if really important or vital. Don't forget about using offsite/cloud.


Registered Microsoft Partner and Apple Developer
- Like many of you, I can appreciate a good game-engine.
- I answer questions here, but I'm not a Dell employee.
- Consider giving posts you like a "thumbs-up"
- Posting models-numbers and software versions speeds trouble-shooting.
- Click "Accept as Solution" button on any post that answers your question best.
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