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Trybridtech
Paper Tape
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎11-06-2018
Location: US
Views: 237
Message 1 of 4

ThinkCenter M900 Cannot See NVMe SSD 500GB (PCI-Express 3.0 x4) in Windows 7

Hello Everyone. Does anyone know why my ThinkCenter M900 cannot see NVMe SSD 500GB (PCI-Express 3.0 x4) in Windows 7. This SSD show up in BIOS but not in Windows.

Thanks,

SeniorGuru
Posts: 2,277
Registered: ‎06-13-2013
Location: US
Views: 218
Message 2 of 4

Re: ThinkCenter M900 Cannot See NVMe SSD 500GB (PCI-Express 3.0 x4) in Windows 7

Unlike Win10, Win7 has no built-in driver support or recognition for either USB 3.0 or NVMe drives.  You must manually install those drivers yourself.

 

Assuming you've added say a Samsung M.2 NVMe SSD, just go to the Samsung download site and pick up their NVMe Express Driver (v3.0 is current, supporting all of their models up through the newest 970 series devices).

 

Once at the download site, choose Computing -> Memory and storage -> solid state drives -> pick your device series and model/size -> push CONFIRM -> push the "download" button under DRIVER, and install it.

 

You should now have Win7 capability to recognize and utilize your M.2 NVMe device.

Trybridtech
Paper Tape
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎11-06-2018
Location: US
Views: 198
Message 3 of 4

Re: ThinkCenter M900 Cannot See NVMe SSD 500GB (PCI-Express 3.0 x4) in Windows 7

Thanks DSperber for your expertise. I'll try to install this driver tonight.

BTW, it's Intel SSD NVMe drive. Model 660P series. 

Chat with Intel tech support and never informed me to download their NVMe driver. They asked me to upgrade my OS to Windows 10 instead.

SeniorGuru
Posts: 2,277
Registered: ‎06-13-2013
Location: US
Views: 191
Message 4 of 4

Re: ThinkCenter M900 Cannot See NVMe SSD 500GB (PCI-Express 3.0 x4) in Windows 7

Well, I think I may have to revise my suggested solution.  There's a similar thread to yours that's also currently active, and the reply there suggests that the M.2 slot on the M900 SFF motherboard may actually be for an M.2 WAN card rather than for an M.2 storage drive.

 

"For installing a M.2 drive in a SFF or Tower system, a M.2 SSD adapter card (Lenovo 4XH0L08579 or similar) for PCIe x4 is required.  The M.2 slot on the motherboard of a SFF & Tower is for a wireless adapter."

 

I'm not convinced, but I'm at least concerned.  But the PSREF for the M900 SFF shows specs for M.2 storage, so I would have guessed it's through the M.2 connector on the motherboard.  However the PSREF also talks about a "M.2 Wireless LAN card", so maybe that really is what's supposed to go into this M.2 slot (or perhaps it's just a second possible use for this one M.2 connector on the motherboard).

 

The length form of your Intel SSD NVMe drive. Model 660P is 2280.  The PSREF for the M900 SFF shows M.2 storage performance as x4, which needs a PCIe x4 M.2 connection... either in a proper M.2 x4 M.2 connector supporting a 2280 M.2 storage drive, or perhaps through a "daughter card" providing PCIe x4->M.2 x4 connectivity.  It's honestly not clear from the documentation or PSREF.

 

Note that the 4XH0L08579 adapter card is a PCIe x4 card that installs into the second larger "negotiable" x16/x4/x1 expansion slot.  The Hardware Maintenance Manual shows the M.2 connector for use by an optional M.2 PCIe adapter (no part number given) rather than for use by an M.2 storage drive directly.  This seems to me to provide another PCIe expansion slot via this M.2 connector.  I don't see why an M.2 storage drive can't, itself, be installed directly into this M.2 connector as you've done, in which case it would seem simply that the Win7 NVMe driver (for Intel in your case, rather than from Samsung) is really all that's now needed.

 

So I apologize, but I'm confused hardware wise.  There is only one M.2 connector on the motherboard but there are two different references to M.2 devices in the PSREF.  Honestly, I have no firsthand experience doing the hardware install of an M.2 storage drive into the M900 (either tower or SFF), but I find it hard to believe there would be an M.2 connector on the motherboard that can be used to install an M.2->PCIe adapter card to provide probably x1/x4 PCIe storage, which itself wouldn't be directly usable for an M.2 storage drive.  From your question it seems you had no problem physically installing your Intel M.2 SSD card into this connector, and it IS SEEN BY THE BIOS... but just couldn't be seen by Windows 7, which to my mind is the "missing NVMe driver for Win7" issue to be easily resolved.

 

Nevertheless maybe the Lenovo factory would have installed that 4XH0L08579 adapter into the negotiable PCIe expansion slot and then installed an M.2 storage drive into this "daughter/riser card".  You still need a proper NVMe driver to be manually installed for Win7.

 

Anyway, the fact that you say your Intel M.2 storage drive CAN BE SEEN BY THE BIOS suggests to me that it really can go directly into that M.2 connector on the motherboard, and it's simply a missing Win7 driver issue preventing it from being seen in Win7.  Please reply back as to whether or not installing the Intel driver did or did not allow you to now fully access the Intel NVMe drive in Win7.

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