Upgrading m17x R4 : SSD SAMSUNG 850 PRO (128gb) + Dell Repair

Discussion in 'Alienware 17 and M17x' started by Asmolol, Oct 19, 2014.

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  1. Asmolol

    Asmolol Notebook Enthusiast

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    Hi there,

    3 weeks ago, my R4 kinda died. I was playing some LoL when the screen turned black, and although the sound was still audible, nothing could be done to get the pc to unfreeze from its state of blackness.
    Following a hard reboot, it started being hit by random bluescreens, over and over again.

    In the end, I decide to send it to DELL via their repair service. Which is taking ages by the way.

    This prompted me to think about upgrading the HDD to an SSD, but I was horrified to see that the price of an SSD on the Dell website is 3 times the price of other SSDs. I also researched and found that the SSD SAMSUNG 850 PRO would be a good pick.

    My question is, to your knowledge and expertise (and maybe experience), does upgrading to the SSD SAMSUNG 850 PRO require any change of BIOS or software? Has anyone tried? Can any issues be foreseen from here?

    Apologies for these simple questions, although I did my research, I am no tech expert.

    Thanks for your help and have a great day!!!
     
  2. MickyD1234

    MickyD1234 Notebook Prophet

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    Hi, what GPU did you have? This is a classic GPU failure on the R4 and I've seen quite a few lately :(.

    Not done it myself but I've seen a lot of people go for the 850 pro without any problems or special requirements.

    The only thing to watch for is the RAID setting. The SSD OEM's advise turning this off (for optimum performance). In reality, and I have tested it, you save around 2 seconds on boot and in use it's only detectable in speed tests. The SSD is just so fast that everything else is only needed if benchmarking is your thing. Once you install in AICH then you can never use RAID or caching in the future without a fresh install :( or some very tricky registry manipulation.

    If you already have a cached drive or use RAID then there are things you need to know (just ask ;)). If you just have a single HDD then just pop the new drive in the spare bay and change the boot order in the bios. Boot from the win CD and clean install.

    HTH
     
  3. FrozenSolid

    FrozenSolid Notebook Evangelist

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    I would support everything Mickey said regarding RAID. I haven't installed an 850 pro but I have installed an 840 pro and I believe they would be the same. The installation is very simple and straightforward. All you need to do after is a clean install of Windows (whatever your flavour) and then reinstall your Alienware drivers. It is a good idea to go to the Dell site and get the latest drivers for your computer before you start the installation.
     
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  4. Meaker@Sager

    Meaker@Sager Company Representative

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    Go for a 256gb lesser model (840 evo for example) if the budget is tight.
     
  5. Asmolol

    Asmolol Notebook Enthusiast

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    Guys, Thanks for your prompt answers! I don't mind the price, I just want the best quality and I definitely don't need more than 128 gb on the SSD (which I would use for OS and Games).

    MickyD1234 - It is a Radeon 7970m (GPU). They quoted me 300 pounds to replace it! Gosh! so imagine when they quoted 210 pounds for the SSD (256gb - a dell one!).

    I'm almost thinking of changing to desktop as it takes more than a month to get my laptop repaired!

    Thanks again for your input guys!
     
  6. MickyD1234

    MickyD1234 Notebook Prophet

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    yeah, getting a gaming laptop can be a painful experience, especially if you have built desktops before. It's only forums specialising like this one that most upgrades/repairs are even possible!

    That price for the GPU is not a gouge but you'd be much better off spending it on a Nvidia 680m. A rock solid card with a long rep of success. And it works plug and play in an R4. I have seen a few 7970's failing recently and it is strange that the NV 580m and 675m's are doing exactly the same thing of late :confused:. Silicon life-cycle expired??

    The advantage of dell doing it is if a GPU does not fix it (unlikely) then it's their problem not yours. You should also get a new heatsink with the repair.

    Good luck.
     
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  7. shinji257

    shinji257 Notebook Deity

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    I just want to add something here with the clean install. If you install Windows 8 or 8.1 from your own media and try to install in raid mode make sure to have the drivers on a Ian drive. For some reason the generic drivers are no longer present for that mode. You won't see that for ahci though.
     
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