Dell Alienware 18 Upgrade Help

Oct 14, 2018
Hi all,
I've got an Alienware 18 with a motherboard ID of VAS10 LA-9332P.
Its a Rev1.0 (A00) and the mobo was made in 2013.

My wifi was cutting out strangly for a while, then some keys intermittently stopped working, the battery would not dependably keep it running so it had to always be on AC power and now the PC is intermittently shutting down.
After numerous OS restores/reimages and OS reloads, I've determined that it's not software I've decided to replace the motherboard.

1. Replace/Upgrade: Must I do a replace in kind or can I upgrade to any other motherboard?

2. Extra Parts: What other upgrade options (other than memory and HDD) are there? (I need a new wifi card, screw is stripped and I can't pull it from the board)

3. CPU: What options would I have to upgrade the CPU?

4. GPU: Also, GPU upgrade options?

This being a laptop I'm sure your upgrade choices are very limited but you may be able to find replacement parts for, like, the wifi, keyboard and battery. Upgrades are probably limited to: memory, drive (SSD if you have a spinner) and a processor IF it's socketed. Maybe the graphics card too, but an upgraded system board to support later tech would be super odd and a rarity.

You'd do much better checking with an Alienware-specific forum to source these things. They can tell you how to spec stuff so you don't have to buy replacements from Dell to save money. Also, if you find a graphics card and processor you'll need BIOS support and Dell is notorious for only supporting what you buy from them. Guys on Alienware forums will be able to point you to the necessary custom BIOS files to get your new gear up and running.
Dell motherboard Alienware M18X R3

1. You're limited to 4th generation Intel CPUs -- nothing newer will work. And no CPU upgrade will expand on the 32G limit the system has -- that's a function of the mainboard, which is not upgradeable.

2. Any 2.5" SATA SSD will work. The system also supports mSATA (the older card format SSD type - NOT the now common M.2 SSD). You'll likely find limitations on capacity in mSATA format -- and since the type is obsolete, the price is likely to be higher than for a 2.5" SSD

Video cards and WiFi replacement cards:
Dell Alienware M18x Replacement Notebook In Stock Parts List
Nov 22, 2018
Hi guys, i want to buy a ssd for my alienware 18 but im confused about what interface is compatible with it. My idea is to replace the HDD for a 1 Tera SSD or just adding a 500 giga SSD to run the OS and programs, keeping the original HD and the mSATA SSD for backup. Is that possible or i must replace the HDD for the new SSD? Considering the Sansung SSDs, which one should fit? Thanks!
-SSD 860 EVO 2.5" SATA III 1TB
-SSD 860 PRO 2.5" SATA III 1TB
-SSD 970 EVO NVMe M.2 1TB
-SSD 970 PRO NVMe M.2 1TB
Nov 24, 2018
I'm curious about this as well as I have the first gen m18. I recently did a search for m18x on ebay and found this: Alienware-M18x-R2-Win-10-i7-32GB-8GB-GTX-1070-512GB-SSD-5TB-HDD-blu-ray-games
you'll have to search for this yourselves.

What I don't understand is how this first gen m18, at least it looks like one in the pics as it is identical to mine, can have the components they say it has:
Intel® Core i7-3920XM Extreme (8MB Cache, 3.80GHz)
English Windows® 10 Pro (64 BIT)
8GB Nvidia Geforce GTX 1070
18.4" 1920x1080 Full HD LED LCD
Stealth Black / Nebula red - Anodized aluminum
Slot-load,DVD+/-RW, Bluray burner drive
Default Wireless with Bluetooth
Integrated Analog 5.1 Surround Audio Support
Integrated Digital 7.1 Surround Audio Support (via SPDIF or HDMI)
Slot-Loading Blu-ray, Dual Layer DVD+-RW, CD-RW
(1x) Power/DC-in Jack
(4x) Hi-Speed USB 3.0 ports
(1x) eSATA 3Gb/s + USB 3.0 Combo port(with USB charge function support)
(3x) Auto-sensing jacks for Line-out (2 line out; 1x SPDIF/Headphone)
(1x) Microphone Input jack
(1x) RJ-45 (10/100/1Gb IPv6)
(1x) HDMI output with Audio
(1x) HDMI in
(1x) VGA Port (DB-15)
(1x) 9-in-1 Media card reader

First of all I have no idea how they could fit a 5tb hd in there. Mine is constrained by just two hard drives with limits on thickness. I believe the 5tb are about as thick as two hard drives and with an ssd as wel... So either this listing is a scam or they figured out how to upgrade these.