Installing an SSD into a Dell XPS 8300 Desktop

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Installing an SSD into a Dell XPS 8300 Desktop

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Hi,

I have a relatively new Dell XPS 8300 Desktop, with 16GB RAM, 2TB HD and Windows 7 Home Premium.  I would like to add an SSD, move the OS there, and have it boot from there.  I don't have much new data yet on the HD, except for what was installed at the factory, so I could easily copy everything over to the SSD.

However, from what I've been reading, I gather that it is best to do a fresh install of the OS onto the SSD, then use the boot device selection menu to instruct the computer to boot from the SSD.  Is this correct?  I understand that this is because of certain hidden partitions which do not copy over properly, and because of certain settings that have to be different for booting from an SSD vs. booting from a magnetic HD.  Is this so?

If anyone has done this, can you please share with me what else I need to do and what pitfalls I need to watch out for?  So, far I am aware that I am to use SATA 3 connectors, and that I need to be sure that I am properly grounded.  Oh, also that I need to use a 3.5" to 2.5" bay converter.  Do you know of any diagrams of the innards of my computer that identify each part clearly?

I would appreciate your help!

David

Verified Answer
  • Yes it is higly recommened that when you add a SSD as a boot device you do a clean install of windows One of the main reasons is window will recognize the SSD and set the proper conditions for operatin the drive. You can leave all your programs on the orginal drive and then just add shorts on your desktop to them.  This is what I did.

    You will also need some type of adapter for the drive to convert it to either a 3.5 or 5.25 drive bay.

     HomeBuilt SandyBridge P8P67 i7 2600k @ 4.5 ghz 8gigs GSkill Ripjaws. Corsair 800D Case and AX1200 Ps X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty pro PCIe Sound Card
    Dell Studio XPS 1645  Window 7 Pro

    Forum member since 2003

  • Yes. That is the standard.  F8 is used to enter safe mode and in some systems access the system restore function

     HomeBuilt SandyBridge P8P67 i7 2600k @ 4.5 ghz 8gigs GSkill Ripjaws. Corsair 800D Case and AX1200 Ps X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty pro PCIe Sound Card
    Dell Studio XPS 1645  Window 7 Pro

    Forum member since 2003

  • Yes it should automatically set it as the C: drive. Your other hard drive will then be assigned a new letter it might end up as d or not but you will we able to I'd it

     HomeBuilt SandyBridge P8P67 i7 2600k @ 4.5 ghz 8gigs GSkill Ripjaws. Corsair 800D Case and AX1200 Ps X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty pro PCIe Sound Card
    Dell Studio XPS 1645  Window 7 Pro

    Forum member since 2003

All Replies
  • If the XPS 8300 case is like the Vostro 460 case then you'll also need to get the two hard drive brackets if you haven't already.  As far as I know Dell doesn't sell these individually so you may have to look elsewhere.

    Vostro 460 – Intel Core i7 2600 @ 3.4Ghz - 16GB DDR3 @ 1333MHz –Kingston 240GB SSD – Seagate 320GB HDD – ASUS GeForce
    GTX 550 Ti 1GB DDR5 – 16X DVD-RW – 16X DVD-ROM - Antec 550w PSU - Windows 7 Home Premium X64 SP1- Dell E2211H 22"Flat Panel Monitor

  • Yes it is higly recommened that when you add a SSD as a boot device you do a clean install of windows One of the main reasons is window will recognize the SSD and set the proper conditions for operatin the drive. You can leave all your programs on the orginal drive and then just add shorts on your desktop to them.  This is what I did.

    You will also need some type of adapter for the drive to convert it to either a 3.5 or 5.25 drive bay.

     HomeBuilt SandyBridge P8P67 i7 2600k @ 4.5 ghz 8gigs GSkill Ripjaws. Corsair 800D Case and AX1200 Ps X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty pro PCIe Sound Card
    Dell Studio XPS 1645  Window 7 Pro

    Forum member since 2003

  • Dave,

    Does Windows 7 "automatically" detect that it is being installed on an SSD, or do I have to use some sort of configuration or setup screen and set the appropriate parameters?  If so, what are the correct settings (or parameters, or environment variables, or whatever they're called)?

    Thx,

    David

  • Mine appeared to detect it automatically. I just pop in the disk and loaded it up.  

     HomeBuilt SandyBridge P8P67 i7 2600k @ 4.5 ghz 8gigs GSkill Ripjaws. Corsair 800D Case and AX1200 Ps X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty pro PCIe Sound Card
    Dell Studio XPS 1645  Window 7 Pro

    Forum member since 2003

  • On this Dell XPS 8300, is it F2 to get to setup, and F12 for the boot device selection menu?  Are these function keys pretty much standard these days?

  • Yes. That is the standard.  F8 is used to enter safe mode and in some systems access the system restore function

     HomeBuilt SandyBridge P8P67 i7 2600k @ 4.5 ghz 8gigs GSkill Ripjaws. Corsair 800D Case and AX1200 Ps X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty pro PCIe Sound Card
    Dell Studio XPS 1645  Window 7 Pro

    Forum member since 2003

  • Dave,

    Thank you for help.

    One more quick question, if I may.  Once you boot from the SSD, does Windows automatically recognize it as the c: drive and your original magnetic HD as the d: drive?  Or do you have to configure this in setup?

    Thx,

    David

  • I was considering putting a Crucial Adrenaline SSD in my XPS 8300 as here. I need to have a look at the reviews before deciding to get it or not.

    Delivers dramatic PC performance gains at an affordable price
    Crucial Adrenaline enables your Windows® 7-based PC to start up twice as fast and boosts access speed to data by up to 8 times.*

    Comprising a 50GB Crucial m4 SSD, a 3.5" adapter bracket, SATA cable and Dataplex™ software, Crucial Adrenaline intelligently places, or "caches", the most frequently needed files (active data) on the SSD and keeps the less frequently used files (inactive data) on the hard drive. Fully automated, the software runs in the background and requires no user management.

    A simple upgrade that allows you to keep your existing hard, and thus eliminating the need to transfer files and programs, Crucial Adrenaline offers the best of both worlds: SSD-like performance and the capacity of your hard drive at an affordable cost.

    SSD-like performance. Hard Drive capacity.
    Crucial Adrenaline combines your existing hard drive and solid state cache into a single storage system to give you the best of both worlds: SSD-like performance without compromising the capacity of your hard drive.

    Simple upgrade. Simple installation.
    Crucial Adrenaline is a simple upgrade that allows you to keep your existing hard drive, eliminating the hassle of transferring files and programs. Simply connect the SSD to your motherboard with a standard SATA cable, start the computer, and then install the caching software. Fully automated, the software then runs in the background and requires no user management.

    Quality you can depend upon
    Crucial is a trusted name when it comes to SSDs, and that’s no coincidence. As a brand of Micron, a leading innovator and manufacturer of SSDs, we work with our engineers to refine them, test them, and back them with terrific service, support, and a limited three-year warranty.

    Philip Yip

     

    Windows Reinstallation Guide and Related Wikies See here for other wikies such as Customising and Using Windows 8.1, Dell Wireless Cards and Unofficial Drivers.

  • natakuc4

    I've using the Crucial Adrenaline SSD in my home built AMD T1090 desktop, for a couple of months, without any issues and yes, it does speed the system up,

    Bev.

     

    If my answer was helpful, please use the 'Did this answer the question' and click: Yes
    Forum Member since 2001
    I am not employed by Dell

  • Yes it should automatically set it as the C: drive. Your other hard drive will then be assigned a new letter it might end up as d or not but you will we able to I'd it

     HomeBuilt SandyBridge P8P67 i7 2600k @ 4.5 ghz 8gigs GSkill Ripjaws. Corsair 800D Case and AX1200 Ps X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty pro PCIe Sound Card
    Dell Studio XPS 1645  Window 7 Pro

    Forum member since 2003

  • shesagordie

    natakuc4

    I've using the Crucial Adrenaline SSD in my home built AMD T1090 desktop, for a couple of months, without any issues and yes, it does speed the system up,

    Bev.

    I bought one of these and have nothing but problems when the software is installed. It always give me this screen upon reboot.

    I evenutally have to keep booting to hard drive (F12 and then select one of my hard drives). Till I get

      

    I press d to get rid of the software. Crucial support have been less than helpful any ideas?

    Philip Yip

     

    Windows Reinstallation Guide and Related Wikies See here for other wikies such as Customising and Using Windows 8.1, Dell Wireless Cards and Unofficial Drivers.

  • natakuc4

    It's better to contact Dataplex directly about software issues, not Crucial.

    If the software is installed correctly, the Adrenaline SSD is hidden, not assigned any drive letter, does not show in Disk Management and should never be used as the C: / drive. The C: / drive is only used as the 'Target Drive' where the windows operating system is installed.

    To verify that Dataplex is installed, go to 'All Programs' and open Dateplex and check the Dataplex Status to see if it's enabled

    Bev.

     

    If my answer was helpful, please use the 'Did this answer the question' and click: Yes
    Forum Member since 2001
    I am not employed by Dell

  • natakuc4

    Have you read and followed the installation instructions, the install guide is here,

    http://www.crucial.com/store/ssc.aspx?gclid=CI2qysmht7ACFSMDQAod_hNP9Q&cpe=pd_google_us

    Bev.

     

    If my answer was helpful, please use the 'Did this answer the question' and click: Yes
    Forum Member since 2001
    I am not employed by Dell

  • Yeah unfortunately I have done all that. The dataplex works on the reboot after it is installed and everything seems to be fine. However if I am to shut down or restart my computer after that, then I get the screens as before. I have remade the issue 2 or 3 times now. I guess I will try to contact dataplex.

    Philip Yip

     

    Windows Reinstallation Guide and Related Wikies See here for other wikies such as Customising and Using Windows 8.1, Dell Wireless Cards and Unofficial Drivers.

  • natakuc4

    Good luck.

    Please post back any solutions that Dateplex has, that resolves the issues.

    Bev.

     

    If my answer was helpful, please use the 'Did this answer the question' and click: Yes
    Forum Member since 2001
    I am not employed by Dell