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Last reply by 08-23-2021 Solved
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22079

XPS 8940, add 2nd 3.5" HDD

My new XPS 8940 has a 256 GB SSD and a 2 TB 3.5" drive. I would like to add a 2nd 3.5" Hard Drive to the enclosure. The chassis currently has a couple of unused Hard Drive cages. One of them is 2.5" and appears to be riveted to the chassis. The other unused cage is slightly bigger and held in place with screws, but still looks to be too small to fit a 3.5" hard drive. 

Is there any way to replace one of the smaller unused hard drive cages with a 3.5" cage?

 

bbdude
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13469

The front top position is for 3.5. I moved mine from the front to the front top position (super easy). The rear top is 2.5 (you can fit two in there).

 

Page 12 of the service manual. 4 and 9 are the 3.5 HD cages. The riveted unnumbered one at the top back is 2.5

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5 Rhenium
13518

@the bbdudeThe picture on page 12 of the Service Manual shows two hard drive cages separated from the case and one attached to the chassis, so there appears to be three cages. The text below the picture does not indicate the size of the drive that go in those cages. The Setup and Specifications indicates there is only space for one 3.5" SATA drive and space for two 2.5" SATA drives.

13511

Thanks Vic384,

Yes, I realize the design / specification of the chassis does not support more than one 3.5" HDD. My question was regarding a possible modification by replacing one of the 2.5" cages. Just wondering if anyone here has ever done anything similar?

 

bbdude
13502

@the bbdude

Lots of 2.5" SATA3 laptop HDDs that also work in desktops, so why not one of those? For example.

Or what about a 2.5" SATA SSD?

Ron

   Forum Member since 2004
   I'm not a Dell employee

13494

Thanks RoHe,

Actually I am planning to use this PC to host Blue Iris Security S/W and write multiple 4K IP Cam video streams to HDD.

I am hoping to use a Western Digital Purple Surveillance HDD, 10TB, 7200 RPM Class, SATA 6 Gb/s, 256 MB Cache, 3.5".

Probably can't find something with those specs in a 2.5" HDD.

 

bbdude
13489


@the bbdude wrote:

Thanks RoHe,

Actually I am planning to use this PC to host Blue Iris Security S/W and write multiple 4K IP Cam video streams to HDD.

I am hoping to use a Western Digital Purple Surveillance HDD, 10TB, 7200 RPM Class, SATA 6 Gb/s, 256 MB Cache, 3.5".

Probably can't find something with those specs in a 2.5" HDD.

 


Good luck with that...the specs say:

  • 3.5-inch hard drive
  • SATA AHCI, up to 6 Gbps
  • Up to 2 T

Don't know if that only applies to the boot drive. And for a PCI-e NMVE SSD, it also says: up to 2T.

So do you have to go to NAS?

Ron

   Forum Member since 2004
   I'm not a Dell employee

13477

Thanks for your reply Ron,

I was guessing that the Dell XPS8940 spec for the 3.5" drive says "Up to 2 TB" because that is the largest drive (customer ordering option limited to) they factory install in the XPS8940, ie I was assuming that a larger capacity drive could be installed for the drive but that just is not one of the Dell ordering options. Am I wrong here? Is there some system limitation (eg addressing range) that limits the maximum drive size to 2 TB?

 

bbdude
13470

The front top position is for 3.5. I moved mine from the front to the front top position (super easy). The rear top is 2.5 (you can fit two in there).

 

Page 12 of the service manual. 4 and 9 are the 3.5 HD cages. The riveted unnumbered one at the top back is 2.5

13437

@the bbdude  Good questions.

I don't know if there's an actual limit on size capacity of a HDD in this PC, or if that's Dell's own limit because that's the largest HDD they validated and offer in this model.

Here's another possible option. If you don't already have one, install a big PCI-e NVME SSD as your boot drive, remove the existing 3.5" HDD and install the large capacity HDD you want in that slot, with the caveat about whether a HDD >2T is supported. Or, if necessary, partition the big HDD into separate 2T drives, assuming your files will each be <2T.

You will have to format any HDD that's >2T as GPT because Windows MBR format has a max size limit of 2T.

Ron

   Forum Member since 2004
   I'm not a Dell employee

8104

Thanks kanadian-kaos and RoHe,

Both of you provided some valuable information.

kanadian-kaos - Previously I had the box opened a upon quick look-over concluded that the HDD cage marked '9' on page 12 of the Service Manual was a 2.5" cage. After seeing your response, I opened the box back up and measured cage #9 and I see that you are right it is big enough for a 3.5" HDD. Did you need any additional hardware to mount the HDD in cage #9 (other than some 6-32 screws)?

RoHe - I did not realize that a different format (GPT) would be needed for HDD > 2TB. Good to know. Given that, I think it would be less impactful to continue to use the existing 2TB HDD (it contains the user Documents directories) in addition to adding the 2nd 10TB HDD dedicated to surveillance data.

Before or after adding the new 10TB HDD, would I need to make any changes to the BIOS?

 

bbdude
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