JCBP
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XPS 15 9570 HHD to SSD SATA

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My XPS 15 (9570) is the basic version that comes with a 1TB HD and the 56WHr battery. I will like to remove the current hard drive to use it as an external backup HD and install an m.2 SSD SATA drive (Samsung 860 EVO m.2 500GB).  I'm planning to clone the new drive.  My concern is about what it might need to be done with the SATA Operation mode in the BIOS.  I have read some comments in this forum  (https://www.dell.com/community/XPS/Dell-XPS-15-9560-HDD-SSD-Replacement/m-p/6046602#M9143) where they recommend to change the setup from RAID to AHCI, although at that point I think they were talking about an NVMe drive installation.

Do I need to change the BIOS SATA Operation mode to AHCI if I'm replacing the HD with an SSD SATA drive?  Actually, is there anything else I need to do after replacing the HD?

 

 

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Re: XPS 15 9570 HHD to SSD SATA

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If you intend to clone an existing installation, you should NOT change that setting, because changing that will prevent your cloned Windows installation from booting.  The recommendation to change to AHCI applies for people who install Samsung SSDs and want to use Samsung Magician, which requires the system to be in AHCI mode rather than RAID in order to be used.  AHCI is also required if you want to run Linux.  The problem is that changing that setting in either direction typically requires you to perform a clean OS install to the new SSD, because an OS installed for one configuration won't boot when it's changed in-place.  I've read that there are sometimes hoops you can jump through to change that setting and still boot the original installation (going through Safe Mode, making registry changes, etc.) but I haven't verified that.  So if you don't you don't care about Samsung Magician, don't worry about that setting.  If you do, then you'll probably want to do a clean install, regardless of whether you go SATA or NVMe for the new SSD.

All that said, you really may want to consider an NVMe like the 960 Evo instead, since they are significantly faster.  Whereas SATA SSDs like the 860 top out around 550 MB/s, NVMe SSDs top out around 3 GB/s.  However, some people seem to be having issues with the 970 series, even though the 960 works fine.  And again, you could technically stay in RAID mode even if you cloned to NVMe as long as you didn't feel the need to run Samsung Magician.

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Re: XPS 15 9570 HHD to SSD SATA

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If you intend to clone an existing installation, you should NOT change that setting, because changing that will prevent your cloned Windows installation from booting.  The recommendation to change to AHCI applies for people who install Samsung SSDs and want to use Samsung Magician, which requires the system to be in AHCI mode rather than RAID in order to be used.  AHCI is also required if you want to run Linux.  The problem is that changing that setting in either direction typically requires you to perform a clean OS install to the new SSD, because an OS installed for one configuration won't boot when it's changed in-place.  I've read that there are sometimes hoops you can jump through to change that setting and still boot the original installation (going through Safe Mode, making registry changes, etc.) but I haven't verified that.  So if you don't you don't care about Samsung Magician, don't worry about that setting.  If you do, then you'll probably want to do a clean install, regardless of whether you go SATA or NVMe for the new SSD.

All that said, you really may want to consider an NVMe like the 960 Evo instead, since they are significantly faster.  Whereas SATA SSDs like the 860 top out around 550 MB/s, NVMe SSDs top out around 3 GB/s.  However, some people seem to be having issues with the 970 series, even though the 960 works fine.  And again, you could technically stay in RAID mode even if you cloned to NVMe as long as you didn't feel the need to run Samsung Magician.

JCBP
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Re: XPS 15 9570 HHD to SSD SATA

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Thanks jphughan, your explanation finally clarifies all this confusion I had about additional steps that might need to be done.  I won't be using Samsung Magician so that should keep it simple.  

The NVMe is insanely fast compared to regular SSD SATA, but I need to keep the cost low, and so far SSD SATA speed has been enough for the work I do.  I'm also looking forward to having this upgrade extend the duration of the battery because I heavily use my laptop away from the desk.  Perhaps if I ever need to change the battery I may have the option to pick the bigger 97WHr battery since the HD 2.5 bay will be empty. 

Thanks again for your advice!

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DistFriend
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Re: XPS 15 9570 HHD to SSD SATA

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I have a similar problem.  I am trying to install Debian 9.7 on XPS 15 9570 with a Samsung 860 EVO M.2 Sata.  I made sure that I changed the AHCI before the installation, but the laptop still will not boot from the 860 SSD.  I checked that the system information did recognize the 860 as M.2 Sata drive, while both the Primary and ePCI are empty.

Are there any special BIOS settings to allow XPS 15 to boot from a internal M.2 Sata SSD drive?

Thanks

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mhbuzios
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Re: XPS 15 9570 HHD to SSD SATA

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Fallow this guide from chrismith it works 100% with XPS 9570 with Samsung 970 EVO with magician installed. Guide by Steve Schardein can be found here: https://goo.gl/M3iyZc Command prompt code to boot to safe mode minimal: bcdedit /set safeboot minimal enter to the BIOS change from RAID to AHCI , save... restart and your computer will start in safe mode, enter and execute the : Command prompt code to boot back to normal windows: bcdedit /deletevalue safeboot Restart and you able to use the computer in AHCI and also the Samsung Magician will reconize your 970 EVO without any problem.
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iline
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Re: XPS 15 9570 HHD to SSD SATA

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So, I did this with my XPS 15 9550 and my brand-new 9570.

Opened the Dell box, took out my unused laptop and immediately got the backplate off with a Torx driver.

Swapped out the tiny crappy mSata and replaced it with a brand-new M.2 - formatted to NTFS, GPT
Bought and updated win product key with  OEM win 10 Pro key - otherwise say goodbye to networking
I got the partitioning wrong so many times, but at this point I switched to AHCI

Win 10 thankfully contains all the SSD optimisations that Win 7 lacked, but there's always firmware and drivers to grab off the Dell product support page.

This all worked incredibly smoothly. In fact, the smoothest setup of any PC I've owned in thirty years.

The one thing I didn't do was update the BIOS - yes there is a failsafe partition for BIOS in case of corruption, but three people I know on Twitter bricked their machines during install. Hopefully the BIOS update has been fixed, but I am aware I'm being superstitious rather than scientific.

 

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