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Computer Components

How to Install an NVMe SSD Into the Motherboard

Important: This guide assumes you’re installing an M.2 NVMe SSD. Traditional SATA SSDs would have a different installation method.

Before You Begin

Compatibility: Double check that your motherboard has an M.2 slot that supports NVMe SSDs.

Anti Static Precautions: Ground yourself to prevent electrostatic discharge, which can damage components. An anti static wrist strap is ideal or touch a grounded metal object.

Screwdriver: Have a small Phillips head screwdriver handy.

Installation Steps

1. Power Off and Unplug: Turn your PC off at the power switch and unplug the power cord from the wall.

2. Access the Motherboard: Open your PC case to gain clear access to the motherboard.

3. Locate the M.2 Slot: M.2 slots are usually long, narrow slots often near PCIe expansion slots or under heatsinks. Consult your motherboard manual if unsure.

4. Remove Standoff Screw: A tiny screw secures the end of the M.2 slot. Remove and set this aside safely.

5. Insert the SSD: Carefully align the notches on the SSD with the M.2 slot. Slowly insert the SSD at a 30 degree angle.

6. Secure the Drive: Flatten the SSD down, and replace the standoff screw securing the drive in place. Don’t overtighten.

7. Close the Case: Close up your computer’s case and reconnect the power.

After Installation

BIOS Check: Enter your BIOS to confirm the SSD is recognized.

Install OS or Migrate Data:

If this is a fresh install you’ll need to install your operating system onto the new SSD.

If you’re cloning an existing drive, you’ll use disk cloning software or a docking station to transfer data from your old drive to the new SSD.

Other Tips

M.2 Keying: Look at the keying (notch arrangement) of your SSD and slot. They must match.

Heatsinks: Some high performance NVMe drives can benefit from a motherboard heatsink to help with thermal management.

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