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2 Bronze
2 Bronze
2013

XPS 8950, M.2 and SATA max capacities - 2TB?

I'm about to order a UK XPS 8950  i9-12900K processor + 1TB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD boot .

I believe one of the two M.2 2280 slots will be vacant.

The XPS 8950 “Setup and Specifications” doc page 17 seems to imply that the maximum capacity for a SATA drive is 2TB (!) and an M.2 2280 SSD drive is also capped at 2TB.   

Are both these statements correct?   Surely I must be reading it wrong somehow?

I want to install a 4TB SSD on the SATA and a 4TB M2 SSD (Seagate FireCuda 530 M.2 PCIe Gen4 ×4 NVMe ) on the spare non boot M2 slot.  Can I do this to create an additional 2 * 4TB drives?

Many thanks for any clarification.

Alan

Solution (1)

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2 Bronze
2 Bronze
1799

For the purpose of closure ,,,   After the AHCI change as advised by RoHe ... top tip!

I have installed a Seagate FireCuda 530, 4 TB, Internal Solid State Drive - M.2 PCIe Gen4 ×4 NVMe on the spare M2 socket and a Samsung 870 QVO 8 TB SATA 2.5 Inch Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) (MZ-77Q8T0), Black on the Sata.

I've hit both quite hard, and both are performing as expected with the capacities as expected.

Very happy!

Alan

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Replies (9)
10 Diamond
2003

Dell's specs only list configs they've validated in a particular PC model. That doesn't mean bigger drives etc, won't work, but Dell won't be responsible if they don't.

For other PC models where the spec lists 2T max SATA drive, users have reported 4T and even 10T drives working...

Crucial is currently offering a 4T SATA SSD for the XPS 8950, and they typically guarantee things work, or they take them back. So far they're only offering a 2T M.2 NVME SSD for this PC model, but that doesn't mean 4T NVME SSDs won't work, but they'll be pricey. The Crucial 2T NVME is US$320 so I can easily imagine a 4T NVME SSD is ~US$900-$1000.

Shop around for other OEM SSDs to get the best price per T, warranty etc...

Ron

   Forum Member since 2004
   I'm not a Dell employee

2 Bronze
2 Bronze
1996

Many thanks for your feedback and a good point about Dell only committing to what they have tested - food for thought.

I'm reasonably confident with the 4TB on the SATA.   I've got one in my old XPS 8700 from about 8 years ago!   Its the  M2 4T NVME SSD the worries me because it will be a new expensive purchase and a leap of faith.   A leap I'll be taking next week.   I'm kind of hoping that someone might say that in principle there shouldn't be a technical bios or chipset reason why 2T should work and 4T not - I appreciate no one can give any more firmer reassurances unless they have tried it .

I'll leave this thread as unsolved for the moment so as not to discourage other comments, at least until I take my leap of faith next week and report back here.

Many thanks

Alan.

10 Diamond
1977

AFAIK, there are no limitations on size of the SSD in BIOS or in Windows. And I doubt the Intel chipset drivers have any such limits either.

Maybe you might just start with the 4T SATA SSD upgrade and hold off on the NVME SSD for a while. The XPS 8950 is quite new and others may not have had time to do mods like you're proposing...

Before you install any new drives, you probably will want to change BIOS from RAID to AHCI, because some SSDs don't like RAID. BUT, you have to do it the right way, or you'll make the PC unbootable.

  1. Open a Cmd prompt window, run as administrator

  2. Copy-paste this command, which will start Windows in Safe Mode the next time you reboot: bcdedit /set {current} safeboot minimal and press Enter

  3. Restart the computer and tap F2 to enter BIOS setup

  4. Change SATA mode from RAID to AHCI

  5. Save the change and exit Setup; Windows will automatically boot itself in Safe Mode

  6. Open a Cmd prompt window again, as in step #1

  7. Copy-paste this command, which will start Windows in Normal Mode next time you reboot:
    bcdedit /deletevalue {current} safeboot and press Enter

  8. Reboot and Windows will automatically start with AHCI drivers enabled

Now you're ready for upgrades. And as always, it's your PC, your £ £, and your decisions...

Ron

   Forum Member since 2004
   I'm not a Dell employee

1956

Many thanks for the advice and the AHCI change is a top tip... I would probably missed this in my excitement!    Unfortunately unless I also buy another 4TB Sata SSD as well as the NVME I will need to take the NVME plunge straight away.   

I need to keep my old PC a perfectly viable system so I can cross check my migration of my Music Production system (Cubase) and purchased VSTs. Photography (Lightroom, On1 etc) and Video and other production software.   

The migration task is massive which is why I held off 8 years!

Thanks for the advice.

Alan   

10 Diamond
1914

You know what you need better than anybody...

And it's only a few extra bob for a 4T NVME SSD...OK, it's a lot more than a few..!

Post back and let us know how the upgrade goes.

Ron

   Forum Member since 2004
   I'm not a Dell employee

2 Bronze
2 Bronze
1800

For the purpose of closure ,,,   After the AHCI change as advised by RoHe ... top tip!

I have installed a Seagate FireCuda 530, 4 TB, Internal Solid State Drive - M.2 PCIe Gen4 ×4 NVMe on the spare M2 socket and a Samsung 870 QVO 8 TB SATA 2.5 Inch Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) (MZ-77Q8T0), Black on the Sata.

I've hit both quite hard, and both are performing as expected with the capacities as expected.

Very happy!

Alan

10 Diamond
1790

Thanks for the update. Glad everything is working to your expectations!

How soon will you fill up all that new storage space and start looking for 10T drives...??  ;o))

Ron

   Forum Member since 2004
   I'm not a Dell employee

1782

Ha ha,   I've a few more Cubase Vsts to install but after a weeks worth of migration work I'm pretty close to having made the transition.   I've just started a new a new file history backup to my NAS which could take a day or so,     

On a clean new setup I've plenty of space for now, but I'll do a final cross compare and then run the new system for a couple of months and then decommission the old PC which will free up another 6TB of SSD to move across.

For me this PC is a game changer - just run a 3D render which normally takes 1 min 20.... done in 12 secs!   The boot time for my music production system is now pretty instantaneous.  Fantastic!

Alan

 

387

Great read and insight Alan. I'm waiting on the same with i7. Given large data files, can I ask how you overcome scratch disk size issues (running out of space) on the boot M2 drive?
Mine comes with 512 m2 drive and 1TB SSD and debating replacing 512 with 2TB or a second M2 giving me 2.5TB.

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