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SM951 as OS boot device information

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odiebugs View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote odiebugs Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2015 at 7:32am
Originally posted by Xaltar Xaltar wrote:

Important update:

It has come to my attention (thank you Parsec) that the SM951 is not in fact an NVMe supporting drive, while it was originally claimed by Samsung that it would support the feature the final release product is in fact AHCI not NVMe. 

Boot support for the Z97 Extreme6 is confirmed as being applied in beta bios 2.04 and then in release version 2.10. Interestingly the 2.10 bios revision only notes the addition of NVMe support and not improved M.2 support as stated on the 2.04 beta bios. This did not help my confusion Angry LOL

So as it stands I can only confirm support on the Z97 Extreme6 with bios version 2.10 and Z77 Extreme4 with the bios download linked here in this thread.

I do however suspect that all boards updated with NVMe support likely also received the same improved M.2 support the Z97 Extreme6 received and as such should support booting from the SM951.


I have added this info to the OP
Offically Samsung has said that the drives are AHCI, but in a few OEM hardware there are NVMe out for testing and the company has tried to hide it because they won't be retail for a while. 
The AHCI version carries the code H in the model number and the NVMe has a V in it.

The AHCI is MZ-HPV xxx0,  and the NVMe is a MZ- VPVxxx0.  Sent out I guess to be tested in a few OEM machines but probably close to no one can get their hands on one until they decide to push them out. 

Kind of guessing, when they first denied they were any NVMe.  I guess it's good they see what can happen before producing for retail and finding problems over time.  They didn't have many happy people with the last EVO problem. 

Lots of the same story about the NVMe, but I see that even Anandtech has run some benches and got their hands on one.

I have followed them for a long time and they are tops among the hardware crowd. 

Even Toms hardware, say they have a NVMe tested. They also have a different story in a way, saying they are close to going to the shelf.

Looking at the bench tests, looks like they are NVMe.


Edited by odiebugs - 22 Jul 2015 at 8:40am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote odiebugs Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2015 at 10:19am
Xaltar, also on the main post I say you add driver info.

We have all seen what windows AHCI, RST, drivers and the Intel AHCI, RST drivers can do in a per board case.  People seen where the win AHCI beat the Intel AHCI.  

Sometimes  some found the Intel was better, especially in RAID. 

Maybe adding how people should bench both to see what their system will run like with drivers. 

As time goes on we should see many update to the NVMe drivers from Intel and from Windows.

As of now, windows has it's driver using Force Unit Access,  IO writes, which go by the DRAM and write to flash, lowering bandwidth where the Intel doesn't.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote parsec Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Jul 2015 at 12:43pm
I tried to load the Intel IRST "F6" AHCI driver into my SM951 once, but it did not work, and I was afraid to keep trying.

One odd thing I've found while using the SM951 (AHCI) is the Intel IRST Windows UI will not install when you install the Windows IRST driver and UI package. The IRST installer just hangs at the end, which is the UI installation stage. I must kill the process with Task Manager. The IRST driver was installed, but the IRST Windows UI won't. Even the latest IRST 14.5 version failed to do so.

Fortunately when UEFI booting Win 8/8.1/10, the Ctrl i Intel RAID OROM interface becomes an option in the Advanced section of the UEFI. So I have the basic IRST RAID creation and deletion features, but not the entire IRST Windows UI feature set.

Yet another interesting thing I learned while installing Windows on the SM951, if you don't have at least one drive connected to the Intel SATA ports, you cannot install the Intel IRST driver. Both the F6 and Windows IRST package fails to install until a drive is connected to the Intel SATA ports.

Interesting how the SM951 will choose, or be assigned, the Windows AHCI driver during a Windows installation, while the IRST driver included with Windows could be used. Well, that driver might only be the RAID driver and not the AHCI driver.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote parsec Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31 Jul 2015 at 12:53am
Originally posted by Gunslinger Gunslinger wrote:

yeah, the whole m.2 format is a minefield, and then Samsung go and drop 2 different versions of the same SSD with the same model name... lol, typical.

Does the NVMe version also support AHCI ? .... and there goes the can holding all the worms lol


NVMe SSDs do not support AHCI AFAIK.

The AHCI and NVMe versions of the SM951 have slightly different model numbers. Both are enthusiast level products that are not plug and play devices (when used as OS drives), and not meant for those that don't understand what they are all about.

The same can be said for M.2, which really only has two versions, SATA and PCIe. IMO that is not a "minefield", but requires more attention than just grabbing an M.2 SSD off a shelf. Wink

Several reasons for that, the main one being the SSD's internal controller must be capable of using the NVMe protocol, which is more than simply driver/software support. The architecture of the SSD controller and the support chips for the controller (memory buffer) must be designed to work with NVMe.

NVMe is a major change in non-volatile storage IO. AHCI was designed to work with the SATA storage hardware that existed at that time (ironically, HDDs), but NVMe was designed independently and cannot be applied to existing storage hardware. NVMe would be worthless for use with HDDs, since they cannot even keep up with what AHCI provides.

While SSD users are still stuck with file systems designed for HDDs, NVMe is a major step beyond AHCI.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kechlion Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Aug 2015 at 1:00am
This appears to be as good a place as any to ask about the SM951. I'm planning on doing a nice clean sweep install for Windows 10 (Win 7 then upgrade). The SSD I'm looking at is (http://www.amazon.com/Samsung-SM951-256GB-AHCI-MZHPV256HDGL-00000/dp/B00VELD92U). I have an ASRock X99 Extreme 4. I would have purchased it last year sometime around Christmas. My understanding is that since that particular SM951 is an AHCI board I won't need to do anything special, right?

I saw someone mention that the new M.2s aren't precisely plug and play, but it seems like it should be fine as an OS drive with no extra effort. Would that be correct?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Xaltar Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Aug 2015 at 1:14am
At most you will need to update to the latest bios to support booting from the SM951.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kechlion Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Aug 2015 at 1:17am
Thanks for the quick answer - that's simple and easy enough, I definitely appreciate it.

Since this thread is kind of about the SM951, I thought I'd share the fairly in depth review I saw of that particular SSD. So far it looks pretty nice - http://techreport.com/review/28446/samsung-sm951-pcie-ssd-reviewed

Cheer!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote robman1 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Aug 2015 at 10:14am
Having a hard time finding the SM951 NVMe model but definitely holding out till its pointless. Does the Z97M OC Formula have enough PCIe 3.0 for above stated and a PowerColor Radeon R9 285 2GB TurboDuo Video Card to operate at max potentials?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Xaltar Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Aug 2015 at 10:02pm
An R9 285 will not max out the bandwidth of a PCIE 3.0 x8 slot so even if you end up with only 8 lanes you will not see any performance hit. In fact, the R9 285 shouldn't noticeably bottleneck at x4.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote robman1 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Aug 2015 at 12:44am
Including the SM951 NVME model installed to PCIE slot? What configurations can I use for the Radeon 285 and SM951 to both be in PCIE 3.0 slots?
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