Can't Get Windows to Use mSATA for Boot Partition on M4600?

Discussion in 'Dell Latitude, Vostro, and Precision' started by Zzyzxtek, Aug 7, 2011.

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  1. Zzyzxtek

    Zzyzxtek Notebook Enthusiast

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    What I mean by "data only drive" is a drive that does not have either the system partition or boot partition -- only normal partitions.

    When Windows 7 is installed to a completely clean drive, it will create two partitions -- the system partition (100 MB contains the boot folder, usually hidden without a drive letter), and the boot partition (usually the rest of the available space on the drive, but you can change the size, contains all the Windows files, usually the C: drive). A drive that contains these partitions is often called the "system drive" or "boot drive."

    There is a pretty good explanation of Windows 7 partitions here: What are system partitions and boot partitions?

    You should not format the mSATA drive separately. In fact, I would recommend using a utility to completely wipe the mSATA SSD (delete all partitions and write 0x00 to all of it). Then remove the second SATA drive, and boot from the Windows install DVD. Let the installation process format the drive, so it will put both the system and boot partitions on the mSATA.

    Sorry, I don't understand the last sentence with "Disk Post 0" etc. What I ended up with is Disk 0: SATA drive (mine is a 750 GB hard drive); Disk 1: mSATA SSD.
     
  2. Zzyzxtek

    Zzyzxtek Notebook Enthusiast

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    Ah, I think I get your question... :eek:

    MBR is probably the best type of formatting to use (there is also the newer GPT). MBR is limited to 2 GB and 3 primary partitions, but is most compatible with everything. Maybe other folks have better advice, but I use MBR.

    When you format the second drive, and create a partition, it will be a "Primary" partition. That's OK. You just don't want it to be labeled with "System" or "Boot" or "Active".

    So, you're OK if the partitions on the second SATA drive are MBR partitions labeled as "Primary".
     
  3. WaNaWe900

    WaNaWe900 Notebook Consultant

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    Yeap.. that's true :D , you got the idea.. event thou DELL representative said once you get mSATA in it will detect automatically but eventually it's not :eek: ... current M6600 bios always set Primary slot as " Disk Post 0 " and Secondary slot as " Disk Post 1 " if occupied by any drive disk :(

    What I do is just remove other drive disk and let the mSATA in before do the Windows installation.. after that only put in back 1 by 1 each follow by Windows re-start so that it get familiar ;)

    Same goes if you need to change the disk again :confused: ... just got into that few days ago... I need to teach mine again with the step :eek:
     
  4. vwrafi

    vwrafi Notebook Consultant

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    Hello. I have got similar problems with my M6600. Long story short: how to install Windows 7 on mSATA SSD and add later on 2xHDD in RAID 0. So what should I do? I know, I must install only mSATA first, install Windows 7 on it and add HDD later on. But what should I set at the beginnig, when installing OS on mSATA drive - AHCI or RAID ON ? ( will add HDD in RAID 0 later on )
     
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