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Dell XPS13 9350 Samsung NVMe SM951 Windows 10 clean install

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
Hello All,

Just leaving a message here for people to find that might run into the same problem trying to clean install their XPS13 9350.

This laptop will not load the SSD under the default BIOS settings until you either load the drivers into the windows installation or change the s-ata settings to AHCI (which makes no sense for NVMe, but don't shoot the messenger).

Don't forget to create the installation USB with the official Microsoft tool
Otherwise it will not be able to find the USB in the UEFI boot.


How-to:


1. Create a bootable usb with the official Microsoft tool
2. Put the Intel RST in a folder on that usb stick (the .zip file)
3. Boot into the options menu at start-up (when the obnoxious Dell logo appears), F12 for this model
4. Boot from USB and go through the steps of the Windows 10 installation
5. Select "Load Driver" once you have to select a drive (which isn't visible), and browse to the folder where you put the Intel RST files
6. Let it load the driver and voila, it should have detected the SSD.


Proceed with the installation as you would normally.


Hope I was able to help anyone with this post!
Edited by ericie - 11/6/15 at 12:54pm
Main PC
(13 items)
 
Asus N75SF
(10 items)
 
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
2600k @4,5 1,325v P8P67 Deluxe 2x Asus 780GTX CU-II 1.2ghz, NVS450 Dominators @ 1600 7-8-7-20 
Hard DriveCoolingMonitorKeyboard
250, 128GB SSD, 12TB NAS Swiftech MCR320 - GT AP-15 Dell U3011, 3x U2211H (wtb 4th), HC5500 > 90" Ducky Shine 2 TKL Blue switch 
PowerCaseMouseAudio
AX850 Lian Li PC9F (silenced by Caseking) Roccat Kone XTD Sphinx Project 10, M1 DAC, Mirage M3-Si, HE-500... 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel 2630QM Asus N75 HM65 GT555M 6 Gig 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
500 Gig Multi DVD drive Windows 7 Ultimate x64 17"  
Mouse PadAudio
Synaptics B&O ICE Power 
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Main PC
(13 items)
 
Asus N75SF
(10 items)
 
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
2600k @4,5 1,325v P8P67 Deluxe 2x Asus 780GTX CU-II 1.2ghz, NVS450 Dominators @ 1600 7-8-7-20 
Hard DriveCoolingMonitorKeyboard
250, 128GB SSD, 12TB NAS Swiftech MCR320 - GT AP-15 Dell U3011, 3x U2211H (wtb 4th), HC5500 > 90" Ducky Shine 2 TKL Blue switch 
PowerCaseMouseAudio
AX850 Lian Li PC9F (silenced by Caseking) Roccat Kone XTD Sphinx Project 10, M1 DAC, Mirage M3-Si, HE-500... 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel 2630QM Asus N75 HM65 GT555M 6 Gig 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
500 Gig Multi DVD drive Windows 7 Ultimate x64 17"  
Mouse PadAudio
Synaptics B&O ICE Power 
  hide details  
Reply
post #2 of 4
Thank you, yes. You have already helped me.
post #3 of 4
Hi, I'm davide form italy and I've got the same laptop... As you do, I want to get the best performance out of this ssd too, so I'm doing a lot of search on the web.
I just want to ask you: if I load the drivers on the usb stick, which sata connection mode should I choose on the bios? raid? but isn't raid supposed to work with
arrays of drives (while 9350 support only one drive)? and is there any other tweak to do on the bios (boot option etc.) to get it perform the best?
I get very poor write performance now, far less good benchmark then samsung official ones.
post #4 of 4
Just a heads-up based on what i've found - using the Intel RST drivers during the Windows 10 UEFI Installation process will connect your SSD through the Intel SATA RAID controller. I haven't run any benchmarks in this mode, but none of the NVME drivers or Samsung software works in this configuration, and i suspect that i may be operating at SATA-3 speeds... frown.gif

Most of the Samsung NVMe SSDs with which I've had the pleasure of working support both SATA and NVMe connectivity, specifically to enable compatibility with a broader range of systems. It seems that when during the Windows installation process, if you enable a previously undetected storage device through a third-party driver (such as with the Intel RST driver), windows then utilizes that specific connectivity path in the Windows UEFI Boot loader entries. Long story short - if you install Windows to your NVMe SSD through the SATA controller, you can't later switch/upgrade to NVMe, as the UEFI table will then be invalid. At least that's what i experienced with my XPS-13 after upgrading the OEM Samsung PM961 to an after market Samsung 960 EVO and trying to do a fresh installation of Windows 10 Enterprise.

I'm trying to do a POC for my company's next batch of standard end-user laptops. In order to make this feasible in a business settings, we'll need to be able to deploy Win10 Ent x64 via some kind of imaging platform, but we will also need the end result to be completely secure (ie: encrypted) and remotely supportable. They sure don't make it easy to (1) deploy Windows 10 Enterprise Edition to a (2) Samsung NVMe SSD in (3) UEFI mode in a way that can leverage the built-in (4) hardware encryption with the centrally managed integration of (5) BitLocker - all in a way that can be (6?) remotely supported by an enterprise IT staff... frown.gif I've found tons of guides online about how to enable one, two or even three of my requirements, but not all 5 or 6... :*(
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