Reply to Message

Reply to Message

View discussion in a popup

Replying to:
1 Nickel

Vostro 5481 + m.2 SSD installation + incompetent support



First, sorry for the click-bait subject but I really have bad experience regarding the support I received regarding my brand new Dell Vostro 5481 laptop. The price of my laptop in Hungary is almost 1000 USD which is the monthly average salary in the country so I am a bit sensitive if my problem remains unresolved after a tons of emails and calls with the product support.


My laptop is a Vostro 5481. Core i5, 4Gbyte RAM + 1Gbyte HDD, No SSD. As you can see this is the cheapest version. The reason I bought this version is that I wanted to expand the memory and install the SSD myself. This is cheaper than buy it pre-installed from Dell and I already got a 256Gbyte M.2 Samsung 950Pro NVME SSD which is far better than anything Dell can offer for this laptop, and again it was already in my possession so why would I buy a laptop with an SSD right?

So I bought the Vostro two weeks ago, and 16Gbyte RAM separately (which has the right parameters to be 100% compatible). So I opened the bottom of my laptop and installed the RAM and well... tried to install the M.2 SSD. The fact is that the M.2 slot is there, I can put my m.2 SSD in it, it is working perfectly, but the standoff which could be used to secure the SSD to the chassis is completely missing. So I can't screw the standard M2x3 screw - which is also mentioned by the service manual for this laptop - anywhere to secure the M.2 SSD (and lock in place). The following picture (captured from the service manual) showing the part my laptop is missing. It is marked as red:


The same area of my laptop is looks like this:


As you can see there is only a bridge with a hole pressed into the chassis, but the standoff is completely missing. The same thing for 2230 M.2 SSD. Only a bridge with a hole (it is covered by my SSD on the picture since it is a 2280).

The support told me that the hole on the bridge is the standoff itself and I should be able to use a screw which is under Dell Part number H1M5R, which is guess what, is a standard M2x3 screw (also mentioned in the Service Manual). If somebody ever seen a standard M2x3 screw and a standard M.2 SSD, based on my pictures it is a clear thing that the hole on the bridge is simply too big for this screw and that is a piece of metal with a hole, and it has no comb where you can screw the M2x3. The second thing is that since my M.2 SSD is already laying on the 2230 bridge, tightly securing it to the 2280 whole in it is current form would generate tension in the M.2 SSD. So it is a clear thing that you need a standoff (as you normally do) to ensure that after you secured the SSD it will remain level and will not touch anything beneath especially the standoff/bridge/whatever for 2230.

The support is claiming the only thing I need is the H1M5R screw despite I already told them that an M2x3 screw (which I already have) is too small for that hole and the standoff is clearly missing.

There is no indication in the service manual that for the HDD only models the standoffs are missing and to be honest it would be insane if Dell would like to spare some money by intentionally leaving the standoffs out while the M.2 socket and the required electronics is still there (which I guess a more expensive part than a 0,0003 USD metal bit).

Can someone help me what to do because my laptop is either a faulty one (the standoffs were not pressed to the chassis during manufacturing), or there should be another part which I can use to fix my SSD professionally and securely to the chassis. The current solution on the pictures I think is not worthy for a 1000 USD laptop and it is not secure as the SSD eventually can slide out from the socket.

Labels (3)
Tags (3)
0 Kudos