Alienware 15 R4 - Trying to figure out if my onboard storage SSD is a single-dock or a dual-dock

Discussion in '2015+ Alienware 13 / 15 / 17' started by tom_mai78101, Mar 22, 2019.

  1. tom_mai78101

    tom_mai78101 Notebook Consultant

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    I forgot my hardware configuration at the time of purchase, so I went to Dell.com to try to find out what the hardware configurations are.

    I bought the laptop with 128GB M.2 SATA SSD + 1TB Hard Drive, but I don't know if it's single-dock, or dual-dock. It's something I remembered (correctly or incorrectly) at the time of purchase, in which the terms describe how many M.2 SSD sticks you can put in the laptop in total.

    Therefore, I don't know if my laptop can hold 1 M.2 SSD or 2 M.2 SSDs. If it's 2, I can probably purchase an extra M.2 SSD. to expand the primary storage drive C:\.

    Opening it up doesn't tell me much on what it is, for I am not well-verse on Alienware M.2 SSD adapters.

    I'm pretty sure I removed all personal information from the exported CSV from Dell.com. That way, the attached CSV file should be helpful (for you to tell me the info). If there are other ways to find this information, let me know please.

    Thanks.


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    Reason I'm motivated to know about my M.2 SATA SSD and its configuration, it is so that I can learn how to recover the laptop, if the SSD fails. And when it fails in such an unlikely scenario, how do you correctly recover it after inserting a new M.2 SATA SSD.
     

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  2. sisqo_uk

    sisqo_uk Notebook Deity

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    You can hold up to 4 drives at once. 2x 2280 m.2 drives. 1x 2242 m.2 drive and 1x 2.5ā€ drive.

    Iā€™d probably suggest getting a drive and copying the images using a Ron is or macrium reflect.




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  3. tom_mai78101

    tom_mai78101 Notebook Consultant

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    So how should I do this?

    1. Copy the partition onto an external hard drive.
    2. Take out the M.2 SSDs / Replace them with fresh, clean sticks.
    3. Do some magic voodoo to boot up the OS on the external hard drive??? This is the part where I'm literally confused on how to achieve this.
    4. Install Windows 10 Pro onto the M.2 SSDs.
    5. Reboot, and boot the OS partition on the M.2 SSDs?
     
  4. sjbain86

    sjbain86 Notebook Enthusiast

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    Generally its pretty easy with a tool like Macrium Reflect. I don't know if they have changed anything since i have used it in the past, but with step 3 voodoo magic see below:

    You would use an additional bootable flash drive to run Macrium reflect (they explain all the steps on their site) Then you select your Source: external where you copied the partition to, and then your Destination: select then new clean installed hard drive, and the program will copy everything onto the new drive. You reboot your laptop and if all went well you should be good to go.
     
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  5. tom_mai78101

    tom_mai78101 Notebook Consultant

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    Ok, it looks like I would need to find a spare 128GB partition, use Macrium Reflect to clone the SSD partition to the spare partition, then set the BIOS to boot the USB drive, before taking out the SSD, swapping the SSD with new ones, then boot to Macrium Reflect bootable media, then clone the 128GB partition to the new SSDs?

    That also means... if I were to use a 1TB SSD stick and that stick died, I would need to find a spare 1TB partition to clone to and from for a new SSD stick...
     
  6. sjbain86

    sjbain86 Notebook Enthusiast

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    I think we got disconnected along the way here.

    You can copy the existing drive to any drive big enough to hold the data.
    So for example, copy your current hard drive using macrium to an external USB hard drive. If your main ssd fails, you then take the new ssd and put it in your computer, boot from a small flash drive that has the macrium application on it and restore the backup onto the new ssd.
     
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