[SOLVED] Dell XPS-8900 will not recognize Samsung 860 EVO as boot drive

Oct 19, 2019
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I am having issues with my Dell XPS-8900 PC recognizing a new Samsung 860 EVO as my boot drive. Original PC came with a 2Tb drive w/32GB flash. I wanted to upgrade to a 860 EVO 1Tb drive as my new W7 boot drive (will also be upgrading to W10 soon but wanted to just clone W7 to new drive for now). I installed the SSD and PC recognized it as a new blank drive. Not sure if matters, but I also have two other 6 TB HDDs connected in addition to the original 2TB drive and new 1 TB SSD drive. I tried using the Samsung Migration Tool to complete a clone of my existing HDD to the new SSD. The tool immediately error-ed out on start where it would not start the clone. Samsung Tech support did not know why but suggested I could run a disk check on my existing HDD to make sure it did not have any bad sectors (which I did and all was good). Switched to using Macrium Reflect clone software to clone my HDD to the new SSD. rebooted PC and in the bios setup all four drives are recognized. I updated the boot sequence to boot to the new SSD but it only continued to boot to the old HDD still connected. I than disconnected the old HDD to drive again (along with the other two 6 TB HDD storage drives and this time I received an error that a boot drive could not be found. I also connected the new SSD to the same SATA that the original 2 TB boot drive was connected to.

I understood from Samsung that the new SSD does not need to have any new firmware to install to use drive as a boot drive.

Using the Marcium Reflect clone software, I thought the software correctly cloned the drive, but when I review the partitions in disk management I am not yet sure. Does not look like I can attach an image her to show the Disk Management window but in the Disk Management under Disk 0 (Original 2TB HDD) there are three partitions:

1) 39MB Healthy (OEM Partition)

2) 11.73 GB Healthy (Active, Recovery Partition)

3) OS (C: ) 1851.24 GB NTFS Health (Boot, Page File, Crash Dump, Primary Partition)



But when I look at the three partitions cloned to the SSD drive, they are not identical in their descriptions for Disk 1:

1) 39 MB Healthy (OEM Partition)

2) 11.73 Healthy (Recovery Partition)

3) OS (P: )919.74 GB NTFS Healthy (Primary Partition)

Does the fact that the new (P: )drive does not show Boot, Page File, Crash Dump, before the primary partition description imply that the clone did not actually clone it correctly some how?

Using the Reflect software, I selected the "Clone This Disk..." option which they allowed me to select the three partitions of the existing 2TB boot drive and select the new SSD as the source drive. I have also originally tried using the AOMEI standard version which I understand should allow to me clone a drive but when I tried to start it is then required me to upgrade to the Pro Version.

Any idea on what else I can try to get the drive to be recognized as a boot drive?
 

USAFRet

Titan
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Mar 16, 2013
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2 things:

For a successful clone operation going into a 1TB SSD, the source data needed to be below 800GB. That's why the Samsung Data Migration errored out at the start.

Second, at the end of the clone operation, you needed to power OFF, disconnect the old drive, and see if it will power up with the new drive.
This is a common mistake.


-----------------------------
Specific steps for a successful clone operation:
-----------------------------
Verify the actual used space on the current drive is significantly below the size of the new SSD
Download and install Macrium Reflect (or Samsung Data Migration, if a Samsung SSD)
Power off
Disconnect ALL drives except the current C and the new SSD
Power up
Run the Macrium Reflect (or Samsung Data Migration)
Select ALL the partitions on the existing C drive
Click the 'Clone' button
Wait until it is done
When it finishes, power off
Disconnect ALL drives except for the new SSD
This is to allow the system to try to boot from ONLY the SSD
Swap the SATA cables around so that the new drive is connected to the same SATA port as the old drive
Power up, and verify the BIOS boot order
If good, continue the power up

It should boot from the new drive, just like the old drive.
Maybe reboot a time or two, just to make sure.

If it works, and it should, all is good.

Later, reconnect the old drive and wipe all partitions on it.
This will probably require the commandline diskpart function, and the clean command.

Ask questions if anything is unclear.
-----------------------------
 
Oct 19, 2019
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It does not look like I can just upload a photo but only insert an image that is on a website (that I don't have). I tried to share a link on my Google Drive of what I believe you were looking for so hopefully you can see it. The image shows when both disks are still connected. The amount of data on the 2TB shown to have 913 GB (or 980,783,321,088 bytes and not sure why that is so different than shown 913 GB value) so I was expecting all of it would fit on the 1 TB SSD drive.

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1aNL1ghUAKQQfVKkL_Ax3zfbFJgvSEMKb

Does the Storage Boot Option in the BIOS related to "Legacy" or UEFI have any impact on the use of this new SSD drive? Currently set as Legacy.
 
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USAFRet

Titan
Moderator
Mar 16, 2013
114,625
2,129
157,290
18,659
2 things:

For a successful clone operation going into a 1TB SSD, the source data needed to be below 800GB. That's why the Samsung Data Migration errored out at the start.

Second, at the end of the clone operation, you needed to power OFF, disconnect the old drive, and see if it will power up with the new drive.
This is a common mistake.


-----------------------------
Specific steps for a successful clone operation:
-----------------------------
Verify the actual used space on the current drive is significantly below the size of the new SSD
Download and install Macrium Reflect (or Samsung Data Migration, if a Samsung SSD)
Power off
Disconnect ALL drives except the current C and the new SSD
Power up
Run the Macrium Reflect (or Samsung Data Migration)
Select ALL the partitions on the existing C drive
Click the 'Clone' button
Wait until it is done
When it finishes, power off
Disconnect ALL drives except for the new SSD
This is to allow the system to try to boot from ONLY the SSD
Swap the SATA cables around so that the new drive is connected to the same SATA port as the old drive
Power up, and verify the BIOS boot order
If good, continue the power up

It should boot from the new drive, just like the old drive.
Maybe reboot a time or two, just to make sure.

If it works, and it should, all is good.

Later, reconnect the old drive and wipe all partitions on it.
This will probably require the commandline diskpart function, and the clean command.

Ask questions if anything is unclear.
-----------------------------
 
2 tb drive, plus a 32 GB Optane?

I'd upgrade to Win10 first, get it activated, then do a fresh install to the 860 EVO...

you don't need any of Dell's included nonsense, which likely includes 3-5 unneeded resource hogging support apps, and, possibly even a 10-20 GB restore partition...

Once you have the EVO, the 32 GB Optane is useless anyway. (In fact, it's a waste of an M.2 NVME port that could easily be used to an Intel 660P that costs even a bit less than typical SATA drives..
 
Oct 19, 2019
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[B]USAFRet[/B]: Thank you for the input. I am not sure what part of my changes actually made the clone work, but I removed additional data from by 2TB drive to get it to about 725 GB (790,000,000,000 bytes). I first then tried to get the Samsung Migration software to work and it still error-ed out. Since Macrium Reflect did not work (maybe due to the clone size), I tried the AOMEI clone software. This time the software allowed me to complete the clone without upgrading to the Pro Version. I wonder now if the AOMEI software was not allowing the clone the first time I tried using the software due to the amount of data on the 2 TB drive even though it was already under 1 TB. Anyway, after the clone completed, I shutdown the PC, disconnected all my other drives and then rebooted using the same SATA cable as the 2TB drive (not sure that was required) and this time it was able to reboot from my clone drive. THANK YOU!

[B]mdd1963[/B]: Thank for the advice but I am not yet all in on W10 as I still use Windows Media Center. I have been trying to migrate to Plex but it has not yet been stable for me so still wanted the WMC as a backup. So my thought was to clone my W7 boot drive onto the SSD. Boot up W7 on the SSD and then upgrade the W7 SSD drive to W10. Check to see if Plex is more stable on the W10 software. If it is, I would eventually re-purpose by 2TB HDD for storage but at least I can always go back to that if I need to.

Two other things to comment on your suggestion: I am not sure how or what I would use the Dell recovery partitions for and consequence if I removed them so not knowing how they work, didn't take the chance. If you can address why they are really not needed, I would re-consider my plan.

Similarly, I know doing a fresh install of W10 likely is the right clean path, but I am not aware of simple way of re-installing all your programs again and having all the user data files come over without having to redo everything. For example, both plex and adobe files have appdata files that they have created and not sure how to easily migrate my data over without having to recreate all the data files needed.

Lastly, you mentioned the 32GB M.2 drive slot and using the Intel 660P. I did not know if removing that 32GB and adding a 1TB M.2 SSD was the same as just adding a new drive and if something more would need to get updated in the bios to make that work as using the bios setup that drive shows up differently for some reason. Also, I read the Intel was can get bogged down in the cache over the Samsung EVO. With that said, I don't know how much real speed I am losing using the Samsung EVO over a SATA cable vs the slower Intel drive over the M.2 connection which I understand is much faster than SATA.
 
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