03-28-2023 10:24 AM
Hi there, here is my question...
I'd like to use a second NVMe drive to install a copy of Windows 11 to use it as an experimental enviriment.
I would like to use the M2_1 slot for the primary disk and M2_2 for this second unit, so when I use the main Windows11 installation, I simply choose in BIOS the PCIEX 1 + M2_1 (the M2_2 would be disabled) and PCIEX1 + M2_2 and M2_3 when I need the secondary Windows changing the boot sequence.
Would this work? I tried to install the second drive (it has an old WIndows11 installation from another pc) hoping the second Windows UEFI popped up, but it doesn't... Am I supposed to use a boot manager software (I had terrible a experience iin the past) or I need to format the second drive and go through a new installation?
03-28-2023 11:17 AM
I guess it could work like that, but you should be able to just use the boot priority order, I think, to choose the boot device, which seems like a more normal way to do it. Keep in mind that M.2_2 and M.2_3 are GPU lanes on that board, so your GPU will be limited to x8 (DIMM.2 goes through the chipset, leaving the GPU at full speed and lower performance for the additional storage).
Lastly, I can see potential for problems with TPM and secure boot, due to the keys stored in the TPM. I'm not sure if Microsoft have a clean way to do that with multiple OS instances.
You might want to look at Windows 11 Pro and Hyper-V, and just run your experimental OS instance as a VM.
03-29-2023 10:01 AM
Thanks for your replay!
I know that using M.2_2 & 3 will drop VGA to 8x, but this is not significant to me. I'm using DIMM.2 module with 2 SSDs and I know performances are not equal to the other slots.
I whis I could do all this by just removing NVMe1, install new Windows in NVMe2, put the first back and choose the boot sequence on my needs, but second drive boot option has not popped up whren I tried, hope it's because it was a Windows 11 installation from another pc, but I fear it depends on UEFI and how Microsoft wants the whole think to work.... must take a free day, backup everything and try.
And I was also thinking that even if this way works, I would anyway see NVMe1 when booting from NVM2 (not the other way round with the right BIOS values)... what I miss here is a BIOS option to switch M.2_1 off, strange ASUS didn't think about it in a high end motherboard.
VM is not an option for me, but thanks anyway for the advice.
03-29-2023 11:14 AM - edited 03-29-2023 11:16 AM
I use multiple nvme drives to boot different versions of Windows.
When installing Windows to multiple drives, "at the moment of Windows installation", the drive you are installing to, needs to be "the only drive in the system" while Windows is installing. After Windows is installed to multiple drives in this fashion, all of the drives can then be installed into the same system, together.
Just like pressing F2 to enter BIOS, now you need to press F8 to view a menu of available boot devices and allows you to choose which drive you'd prefer to boot to.
03-29-2023 02:48 PM - edited 03-29-2023 02:49 PM
You gave me a really great news, thanks!
That was what I had in my mind to try as first step.
Just a question, do you have any problem with NVMe drives with OS installed that see each other? I can hide NVMe2 to NVMe1 but can’t do the other way round due to BIOS limitations.
04-01-2023 10:27 PM
Came back to report that I installed Windows on the second SSD and everything is functioning as intended.
Thanks to all!