How to install an M.2 SSD

The M.2 SSD is a thing of smasher. While traditional SSDs placid require lots of wires and physical space, an M.2 SSD is a bantam device that fits in the handle of your hand, and attaches immediately to your motherboard. While these efficient little components don ’ triiodothyronine derive brassy, they can help keep the inside of your background nice and neat. That means less clutter, which means more efficient airflow, which means better performance. Or, at the identical least, fewer ways to cut your fingers when you install new hardware. The even better news is that M.2 SSDs are laughably slowly to install — provided you have the right tools and a little bit of solitaire. If you can afford one of these streamlined storage units, your calculator will load up files about instantaneously for a long time to come .

Before you begin

Before you purchase an M.2 SSD, you should check to make certain that your motherboard supports them. Most new motherboards do, but M.2s have only become common within the last five years. As such, if your personal computer is a few years old, you may have to stick with traditional SSDs rather. Consult your motherboard ’ sulfur teaching manual of arms, or look it up your model on-line. An M.2 slot is a small upraised connection that resembles a very scraggy cable port. You ’ ll know it when you see it.

For the purposes of this tutorial, I used a WD Blue 1 TB SSD and a WD Black 2 TB SSD, both of which are immediately permanently installed in the Tom ’ s Guide test trailer truck. Our trial rig has an MSI Z490 Unify motherboard. besides, you should clean your workspace, just as you would if you were building a raw personal computer. Ground yourself on a metallic aim, and have a vessel to hold all the bantam screws you ’ ll necessitate to manage during the installation march. You ’ ll need one Phillips head screwdriver with a very small heading. nvidia geforce rtx 3070 ( picture credit : Tom ‘s Guide )

1. Crack open your PC.

This probably goes without saying, but still, let ’ s startle at the begin. Unscrew or unhitch the side of your case, and make sure you can access the motherboard. ( double accredit : future )

2. Locate your M.2 slot.

If you followed my advice above and consulted your motherboard ’ s instruction manual, this separate will be slowly. just be aware that your M.2 slot may be behind your GPU, as mine is on the Z490 Unify. ( image citation : future )

3. Figure out your heatsink situation.

Some M.2 SSDs come with heatsinks ; some don ’ t. Some motherboards come with heatsinks for M.2 SSDs ; some don ’ triiodothyronine. If you don ’ t have any heatsinks at all, consider buying some third-party models. Depending on what you do with your SSD, a heatsink may not be strictly necessary, but you can get a perfectly good model for $ 25 or less, and that ’ s an atrocious lot cheaper than a raw SSD. If your motherboard has heatsinks built in, you ’ ll necessitate to remove one before you add an M.2 SSD. Just unscrew one and put it off to the side for nowadays. ( image credit : future )

4. Add the M.2 SSD diagonally.

When you find your M.2 SSD slot, you ’ ll first have to remove a screw from its holder. then, you ’ ll have to insert the SSD diagonally into the slot. There ’ s only one way it fits, so if it ’ s not going in by rights, you credibly have it inverted. This is the trickiest share of the hale action, since the object is to put the drive in diagonally now, and push it down by and by. But if you give the M.2 a tauten push, you should be able to find the proper angle well. Just don ’ t press it down yet. ( effigy credit : future )

5. Screw the M.2 in place.

Remember that screw you good took out ? Screw it back in, using it to secure the M.2 SSD in place. ( The M.2 drive has a small semicircular hole, so you ’ ll see precisely where the cheat goes. ) angstrom long as everything ’ mho in invest, the SSD should make a satisfy “ snap ” once everything is tightened. If it doesn ’ thymine, precisely unscrew and try inserting the M.2 again. ( image credit : future )

6. Add the heatsink.

now you ’ ll want to add the heatsink on top of your SSD. ( Remember to remove the protective tape first ; it sort of defeats the purpose if you don ’ thyroxine. ) The demand work varies, depending on what kind of M.2 and heatsink you have, but generally speak, you ’ ll want to press the heatsink down on top of the M.2 hard, then screw it in place.

( prototype credit : future )

7. Get your computer hooked up.

You don ’ t necessarily want to close your calculator at this bespeak, in casing you need to tinker with the hardware while troubleshooting. But you do need to get it up and running ; the physical installation is now done. ( picture credit : future )

8. Name and format your new drive.

From here, you need to format your modern SSD and assign it a letter in Windows. There are a variety show of ways to do this, depending on whether you feel more comfortable with built-in Windows programs, or the instruction prompt, or a windows 10 facility USB. Simply choose to boot from the USB in BIOS, and follow the prompts. If the M.2 is your chief campaign, I recommend using a Windows 10 installer USB to get your OS up and running from scratch. If the M.2 is your secondary drive, you can use the Disk Management choice in Windows to allocate space and format the drive. Just right-click your new driveway and choice New Simple bulk. Windows will walk you through the lie of the steps. And that ’ s all you have to do ! Your computer is now running off of an M.2 SSD, which is one of the fastest, most dependable forms of storage out there. The deviation in load speeds is particularly obtrusive in high-end television games, so feel free to give those a try on, if your GPU is up to it. today ‘s best Samsung 980 Pro 1TB deals Reduced priceSamsung 980 PRO MZ-V8P1T0B -...

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