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How To Install Windows On A PCIe SSD

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Dan View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31 Aug 2017 at 5:40pm
Parsec,

Well, that explains it! My little H110M-STX works nicely. I'll be using those two Crucial SSDs, one for backup and the other for data. They both are happy little SSDs, knowing that SATA is good for them.

Dan

Edit: In an earlier post, I showed pictures of how I added two USB ports to the H110M-STX motherboard. I can report that both ports work as specified in the manual. I'm using one for the mouse and the other for the keyboard. We need USB ports! We also need an audio output jack on the rear of the board. That front audio jack looks ugly when using speakers.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Svetlio Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Sep 2017 at 4:49pm
Hello,

I have the following configuration:
 - Asrock B250M PRO4
 - Intel CPU Desktop Core i5-7500
 - Samsung UDIMM 16GB DDR4 2400 1.2V PC17000
 - Samsung SSD PM961Me 256GB OEM, M.2 PCIe, Read 2800 MB/sec, Write 1100 MB/sec
 - MSI RADEON RX 550 2GT LP OC
 - Cooler Master MasterBox Lite 3 MCW-L3S2-KN5N, mATX
 - Cooler Master MasterWatt Lite, 400W 80+
I try to install Windows 7 Pro (I have VL MAK license)via method 1 from the first post but unfortunately without success.

Can you help with some advice? 
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Sarithis View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sarithis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Sep 2017 at 7:05am
Hello, 

I've got a problem with my NVMe SSD I've recently purchased. 
Motherboard: ASRock Z87 Extreme 3
UEFI version: 2.70 (updated today)
SSD: Plextor M8Pe(Y) 128GB

The SSD is not recognized in the System Browser. I've tried both PCI-E x16 slots. The SSD is supposed to work with PCI-E x16/8/4 gen. 3 slots. In the description of the latest UEFI update, you can find the following information: "3.Add NVMe support". Why is my UEFI's System Browser not recognizing the SSD? It simply says "PCIE2: empty, PCIE3: empty". I connected the additional SATA power cable to the SSD when I was installing it on my motherboard. The SSD has two light indicators: red and white, both are lit (not flashing). CSM is completely disabled and SATA mode is set to AHCI.
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sauria View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sauria Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Sep 2017 at 7:09am
Is this an M.2 drive?   I have never been able to get one recognized on my Z-87 chipset .
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sarithis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Sep 2017 at 7:20am
Originally posted by sauria sauria wrote:

Is this an M.2 drive?   I have never been able to get one recognized on my Z-87 chipset .

No, it's directly connected to the PCI-E slot - it doesn't need an M.2 - PCI-E adapter. You can read its specs here.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote parsec Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Sep 2017 at 9:34am
Originally posted by Svetlio Svetlio wrote:

Hello,

I have the following configuration:
 - Asrock B250M PRO4
 - Intel CPU Desktop Core i5-7500
 - Samsung UDIMM 16GB DDR4 2400 1.2V PC17000
 - Samsung SSD PM961Me 256GB OEM, M.2 PCIe, Read 2800 MB/sec, Write 1100 MB/sec
 - MSI RADEON RX 550 2GT LP OC
 - Cooler Master MasterBox Lite 3 MCW-L3S2-KN5N, mATX
 - Cooler Master MasterWatt Lite, 400W 80+
I try to install Windows 7 Pro (I have VL MAK license)via method 1 from the first post but unfortunately without success.

Can you help with some advice? 


Sorry, missed your post for a while... Embarrassed

Not much detail in your post, but there are two main problems with Windows 7, NVMe SSDs, and UEFI booting:

1. Windows 7 does not have a built in NVMe driver, so an NVMe SSD like your PM961 has no driver to use. You can try to install the Samsung NMVe driver used with their 960 series, but you must use the driver extracted from the Samsung NVMe driver installation program. You can install this driver in the Load Driver option in the Custom Installation section. That would be the "pure" NVMe driver, as it is called on the page below. It also has a guide for installing Windows 7 on an NVMe SSD.:

http://www.win-raid.com/t29f25-Recommended-AHCI-RAID-and-NVMe-Drivers.html

A method of integrating the driver into the Windows 7 installation ISO can be found here:

http://www.win-raid.com/t750f25-Guide-Integration-of-drivers-into-a-Win-image.html

2. The Windows 7 installation files have a mistake in the location of the EFI boot loader file. That can be fixed but takes some work, and you must modify a Windows 7 ISO file. But there are multiple ways to accomplish this. One is in the guide on the page below, scroll down to find the Windows 7 modification section. This guide is just another method for installing Windows 7, but does not address the missing NMVe driver issue:

https://www.eightforums.com/tutorials/15458-uefi-bootable-usb-flash-drive-create-windows.html

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote parsec Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Sep 2017 at 9:50am
Originally posted by Sarithis Sarithis wrote:

Hello, 

I've got a problem with my NVMe SSD I've recently purchased. 
Motherboard: ASRock Z87 Extreme 3
UEFI version: 2.70 (updated today)
SSD: Plextor M8Pe(Y) 128GB

The SSD is not recognized in the System Browser. I've tried both PCI-E x16 slots. The SSD is supposed to work with PCI-E x16/8/4 gen. 3 slots. In the description of the latest UEFI update, you can find the following information: "3.Add NVMe support". Why is my UEFI's System Browser not recognizing the SSD? It simply says "PCIE2: empty, PCIE3: empty". I connected the additional SATA power cable to the SSD when I was installing it on my motherboard. The SSD has two light indicators: red and white, both are lit (not flashing). CSM is completely disabled and SATA mode is set to AHCI.


Mother boards designed before NVMe existed may not recognize an NVMe drive even in the System Browser tool. Particularly if they are used in a PCIe slot. The Intel 9 series chipset boards (Z97, etc) and Intel X99 are the first systems that will show an NVMe SSD in System Browser. So you normally won't get an NVMe SSD recognized in System Browser on a Z87 board.

Adding NVMe support simply allows an NVMe SSD to be used as the OS drive. My ASRock Z77 board also does not show an NVMe SSD in System Browser, but I was still able to use it as the OS drive. Nothing is wrong besides the UEFI/BIOS not being fully modified, if that is even possible, to display NVMe drives in System Browser.

Did you look in the Boot Order for your NVMe SSD? If you boot from your Windows 8.1 or 10 installation media, is the SSD recognized? If you have that SSD in a PC with Windows 8.1 or 10 already installed, it should be recognized by Disk Management. Have you checked any of those things?

The SATA mode used has nothing to do with an NVMe SSD, except in the latest Intel chipset boards, if you use RAID mode and have the PCIe Remapping options, which your board definitely does not have.

What version of Windows are you using? If it is Windows 7, you have a problem and will need a modified Windows 7 ISO installation.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sarithis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Sep 2017 at 6:17pm
Originally posted by parsec parsec wrote:

Originally posted by Sarithis Sarithis wrote:

Hello, 

I've got a problem with my NVMe SSD I've recently purchased. 
Motherboard: ASRock Z87 Extreme 3
UEFI version: 2.70 (updated today)
SSD: Plextor M8Pe(Y) 128GB

The SSD is not recognized in the System Browser. I've tried both PCI-E x16 slots. The SSD is supposed to work with PCI-E x16/8/4 gen. 3 slots. In the description of the latest UEFI update, you can find the following information: "3.Add NVMe support". Why is my UEFI's System Browser not recognizing the SSD? It simply says "PCIE2: empty, PCIE3: empty". I connected the additional SATA power cable to the SSD when I was installing it on my motherboard. The SSD has two light indicators: red and white, both are lit (not flashing). CSM is completely disabled and SATA mode is set to AHCI.


Mother boards designed before NVMe existed may not recognize an NVMe drive even in the System Browser tool. Particularly if they are used in a PCIe slot. The Intel 9 series chipset boards (Z97, etc) and Intel X99 are the first systems that will show an NVMe SSD in System Browser. So you normally won't get an NVMe SSD recognized in System Browser on a Z87 board.

Adding NVMe support simply allows an NVMe SSD to be used as the OS drive. My ASRock Z77 board also does not show an NVMe SSD in System Browser, but I was still able to use it as the OS drive. Nothing is wrong besides the UEFI/BIOS not being fully modified, if that is even possible, to display NVMe drives in System Browser.

Did you look in the Boot Order for your NVMe SSD? If you boot from your Windows 8.1 or 10 installation media, is the SSD recognized? If you have that SSD in a PC with Windows 8.1 or 10 already installed, it should be recognized by Disk Management. Have you checked any of those things?

The SATA mode used has nothing to do with an NVMe SSD, except in the latest Intel chipset boards, if you use RAID mode and have the PCIe Remapping options, which your board definitely does not have.

What version of Windows are you using? If it is Windows 7, you have a problem and will need a modified Windows 7 ISO installation.


Thank you, I didn't know that the SSD won't show in the System Browser on my motherboard. I've got Arch Linux - 4.12.13-1 (x86_64) operating system. NVMe is supported in Linux since kernel version 3.3. It doesn't show under /dev/nvm*, there's absolutely no mention of it in dmesg or lsblock. I also have Windows 7 x64 Ultimate (dual boot), but it also doesn't recognize the drive in the disk management tool. I've downloaded the official non-windows OS firmware upgrade for my SSD (it's a bootable ISO). After booting it, I got the following message "No NVMe drives found".
I know that Linux might not be the best option to troubleshoot such problems and I know that the drive officially doesn't support Windows 7. I will try to install Windows 10 and post here whether it recognizes the drive during the installation process. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sarithis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Sep 2017 at 8:38pm
Windows 10 Pro x64 doesn't recognize the drive during installation. I'm out of ideas of how to troubleshoot this problem...
It doesn't show up in the UEFI Boot Order.


Edited by Sarithis - 23 Sep 2017 at 8:40pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote parsec Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Sep 2017 at 11:06pm
Originally posted by Sarithis Sarithis wrote:

Windows 10 Pro x64 doesn't recognize the drive during installation. I'm out of ideas of how to troubleshoot this problem...
It doesn't show up in the UEFI Boot Order.


I'm not sure what you've configured in the UEFI, but have you done anything with the CSM option?

You can either set CSM to Disabled (enabled by default) if your video source supports the UEFI GOP protocol. The Intel iGPU does support GOP. Older video cards do not support GOP.

Or with CSM enabled, go into the CSM settings and set Launch Storage OpROM Policy to UEFI Only. No video source compatibility issue with this method. You must Save and Exit the UEFI for either of these settings to be applied.

After the restart, look for the SSD in System Browser, boot order, or the Windows 10 installation. Also, what are you using for the Win 10 installation, a disk or ISO on a USB flash drive? Either way, you must select the entry for the Windows installation media in the boot order with this format: "UEFI: <device name>" when you boot the installation media. If you are using a disk in an optical drive and you don't find the "UEFI:" entry in the boot order, the optical drive does not support UEFI and you'll need to use a Win 10 ISO on a USB flash drive.

You also need to choose a Custom installation in Windows, delete any/all existing partitions on the SSD in the Custom install screen, and let Windows format the SSD by clicking on New and follow the prompts.

Windows 7 won't work at all, too many problems with UEFI and NVMe support, unless you modify the Win 7 installation files.

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