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Rampage V Extreme M.2 Setup And Windows Installation FAQ

Chino
Level 15
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Installing Windows isn’t exactly rocket science. Most of us have probably gone through this process more than once in our lifetime. But M.2 is a relatively new technology after all so it’s normal that some questions will arise. If you’re planning to use this new form factor, I’ve put together a list of the most commonly asked questions.

Just a quick note. The tests in this FAQ were done on the Plextor M6e PX-AG256M6e 256GB which comes with its own OPROM. There are a few drives out there that lack an OPROM so you might need to modify additional settings to make it bootable. Unfortunately, I do not own one of those drives so I can’t tell you what to change. But if I happened to get my hands on one later on, I’ll update this post.


What types of M.2 SSD does the ASUS Rampage V Extreme support?
The ASUS Rampage V Extreme only supports M.2 PCI-Express SSDs. Before you go out and make your purchase, you should first verify that the SSD that you are considering is PCIe based.


What settings do I need to change in the BIOS?
There is only one setting that needs changing. If you were previously fiddling with other settings in the Boot tab, press F5 to load the optimized defaults. Then navigate to the Advanced tab and look under the Onboard Devices Configuration. Change the PCIEx8_4 and M.2 Configuration from Auto to M.2.
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Should I install Windows from an USB flash drive or a DVD?
It’s up to you. Personally, I prefer to do my installations from an USB flash drive because it’s quicker. Windows 8.1 PRO took just 7 minutes to install.


Should I install Windows in UEFI mode or legacy mode?
For Plextor M6e owners, you can go with either install. Nevertheless a UEFI installation would be ideal since you get faster boot up times, better integration with hardware and a few extra features.

For Samsung XP941 owners, you're stucked with UEFI. Since the UEFI driver is embedded into the firmware itself, you will have no problems installing in this mode. The problem arises when you want to do a legacy installation because it requires a driver to be loaded during the installation process. With the XP941 being an OEM product, there are no drivers available to install in legacy mode.


How do I install Windows in UEFI mode?
As soon as the ASUS logo pops up during post, spam the F8 key. You will then be presented with a window to choose your boot device. Select your installation media that has the UEFI prefix.
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Do I need any additional drivers during the Windows installation process?
No, you do not. I’ve installed the 64 Bit versions of Windows 8.1 Pro and Windows 7 Ultimate onto the Plextor M6e 256GB without the need to introduce any additional drivers during the installation process.


What kind of performance should I be expecting?
Here's a few benchmarks I ran with the Plextor M6e on a fresh Windows 8.1 PRO install.
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324 REPLIES 324

novemsol wrote:
I have a Samsung 950 Pro installed & it is booting fine under w10, no issues; however, it looks, to me, like it might be bandwidth limited to pcie 2.0 x4. Anyone know if RVE 1701 isn't capable of 3.0 through the m.2? Or am I just crazy?

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It would be worth taking a look at this article.

http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/storage/2015/11/11/samsung-ssd-950-pro-review/1

"The problem turned out to be something as simple as our overclock settings. We use Corsair Vengeance LPX DDR4 modules rated at 2,800MHz, and we were using their built in XMP profile for our system's overclock. However, this automatically sets the base clock to 125MHz, which is a requirement when using high frequency memory (i.e. above 2,666MHz) on X99. However, this also affects the speed of other parts of the CPU, not just the cores, and one of those parts is the onboard PCI-E Gen 3.0 controller. In turn, in order to maintain PCI-E stability at this clock, our motherboard was downgrading the PCI-E interfaces to Gen 2.0. You can force the graphics slots back to Gen 3.0, but there's no such option for the M.2 slot, which makes sense since storage devices require perfect stability. We have not been able to confirm exactly how other motherboard manufacturers handle the situation, but it's probably safest to stick to 2,666MHz DDR4 on X99 when using a PCI-E 3.0 storage device. It should also not be a problem on Z170, where the PCI-E controller's clock is separate to the CPU BCLK. "

BeltFed wrote:
It would be worth taking a look at this article.

http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/storage/2015/11/11/samsung-ssd-950-pro-review/1

"The problem turned out to be something as simple as our overclock settings. We use Corsair Vengeance LPX DDR4 modules rated at 2,800MHz, and we were using their built in XMP profile for our system's overclock. However, this automatically sets the base clock to 125MHz, which is a requirement when using high frequency memory (i.e. above 2,666MHz) on X99. However, this also affects the speed of other parts of the CPU, not just the cores, and one of those parts is the onboard PCI-E Gen 3.0 controller. In turn, in order to maintain PCI-E stability at this clock, our motherboard was downgrading the PCI-E interfaces to Gen 2.0. You can force the graphics slots back to Gen 3.0, but there's no such option for the M.2 slot, which makes sense since storage devices require perfect stability. We have not been able to confirm exactly how other motherboard manufacturers handle the situation, but it's probably safest to stick to 2,666MHz DDR4 on X99 when using a PCI-E 3.0 storage device. It should also not be a problem on Z170, where the PCI-E controller's clock is separate to the CPU BCLK. "



Well the reason the XMP profile sets the BCK to 125 is because it stability is better overall, most CPUs will handle a 100BCK on high clock speed memory fine, but there will be a handful of CPUs that wont which is why its used, but this doesn't mean your memory can't do the same clock speeds on a 100 BCK it just takes abit of turning depending on your CPU, I run my memory @ 3000Mhz and my CPU at 4.5Ghz on a 100 BCK as my 950 Pro is running at max speed as shown below.

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LiveOrDie wrote:
Well the reason the XMP profile sets the BCK to 125 is because it stability is better overall, most CPUs will handle a 100BCK on high clock speed memory fine, but there will be a handful of CPUs that wont which is why its used, but this doesn't mean your memory can't do the same clock speeds on a 100 BCK it just takes abit of turning depending on your CPU, I run my memory @ 3000Mhz and my CPU at 4.5Ghz on a 100 BCK as my 950 Pro is running at max speed as shown below.

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I agree with you 100%. Never in the article does it say you could not tweak your 2666MHz+ memory to work with 100 BCLK. I merely put this here to help people diagnose.

I finally received the Samsung 950 PRO, I managed to move the M.2 motherboard stand-off to the correct position, slide the SSD under the 3 watercooled GPU and screw the SSD.
That was not easy at all but is it doable if you really do not want to remove the GPUs.

Another question, when I am tuning an overclock I am using a spare OS on a SATA drive and I do not want any other drive to be running to avoid data lose. If I want to disabled the M.2 drive (without disconnect it) can it be done using the PCIe switch (n°4) or a setting in the BIOS?
Thanks.
MB: Asus Rampage V Extreme (WC loop1 rad 120x3) Bios 4101
CPU: Core i7-6950X (WC loop2 rad 120x9)
MEM: G.Skill Flare X 32GB (4x8GB) DDR4 3200MHz@CAS14/CR1
GPU: ZOTAC Trinity RTX 3090 Watercooled [double side] {PCIE_X16/X8_3 slot} (WC loop3 rad 120x9 + 140x9)
SSD: Corsair MP600 PRO XT 2To SSD M.2 NVMe w/ heatsink
HDD: 4 x 10TB Seagate IronWolf RAID 0 (WC loop1)
PSU: EVGA NEX 1500 1650W + Seasonic Fanless TX-700W
Main Screen: ASUS ROG Swift PG43UQ 4K 144Hz G-Sync/FreeSync HDR

Powerfull wrote:

Another question, when I am tuning an overclock I am using a spare OS on a SATA drive and I do not want any other drive to be running to avoid data lose. If I want to disabled the M.2 drive (without disconnect it) can it be done using the PCIe switch (n°4) or a setting in the BIOS?
Thanks.


Anyone knows how to disable the M.2 drive without removing it?

Thanks
MB: Asus Rampage V Extreme (WC loop1 rad 120x3) Bios 4101
CPU: Core i7-6950X (WC loop2 rad 120x9)
MEM: G.Skill Flare X 32GB (4x8GB) DDR4 3200MHz@CAS14/CR1
GPU: ZOTAC Trinity RTX 3090 Watercooled [double side] {PCIE_X16/X8_3 slot} (WC loop3 rad 120x9 + 140x9)
SSD: Corsair MP600 PRO XT 2To SSD M.2 NVMe w/ heatsink
HDD: 4 x 10TB Seagate IronWolf RAID 0 (WC loop1)
PSU: EVGA NEX 1500 1650W + Seasonic Fanless TX-700W
Main Screen: ASUS ROG Swift PG43UQ 4K 144Hz G-Sync/FreeSync HDR

Powerfull wrote:
Anyone knows how to disable the M.2 drive without removing it?

Thanks


Try just disabling the M.2 slot in the bios.

LiveOrDie wrote:
Try just disabling the M.2 slot in the bios.


Under Onboard Devices Configuration > PCIEx8 and M.2 Configuration
I only have the option to set it to "Auto" or "M.2", I do not have an option to disable it.

May be it can be disable via the PCIe switch (n°4) , I need to try that.
MB: Asus Rampage V Extreme (WC loop1 rad 120x3) Bios 4101
CPU: Core i7-6950X (WC loop2 rad 120x9)
MEM: G.Skill Flare X 32GB (4x8GB) DDR4 3200MHz@CAS14/CR1
GPU: ZOTAC Trinity RTX 3090 Watercooled [double side] {PCIE_X16/X8_3 slot} (WC loop3 rad 120x9 + 140x9)
SSD: Corsair MP600 PRO XT 2To SSD M.2 NVMe w/ heatsink
HDD: 4 x 10TB Seagate IronWolf RAID 0 (WC loop1)
PSU: EVGA NEX 1500 1650W + Seasonic Fanless TX-700W
Main Screen: ASUS ROG Swift PG43UQ 4K 144Hz G-Sync/FreeSync HDR

I have some boot issues (Fb F6 after post with ROG Logo won't start Windows 10 - not always, but on a more regular basis)....

So, I'm trying a few new things inside bios, maybe a wrong M.2 config may the problem. BUT this 'PCIEx8_4 and M.2 Configuration' entry is missing in my BIOS :eek:.

I used a Plextor PX-G512M6e before and remember to have this entry and no issues. After I installed the much faster Samsung SM951 I had no issues to install Windows 10 from scratch..... only a few days later I ran into this Q-Code Fb / F6 issues.... and I live with them now since about 2 month.

Any ideas why this entry is missing? Or better, why I have this boot issue?


Greetings from lovely Switzerland,
Nick

PS I use BIOS 2101

Hey Novemsol,

I haven't read the whole thread about your problem so i do not know what you did or did not. Please install samsung's nvme drivers and turn pcie_4 8x from auto to m.2.

Here's two benchmarks atto and samsung's magician.

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Hope you find the culprit.

Max
Cpu : Intel 5930K@4.25ghz@1.2v / Cache @4.25ghz@1.20v
Cpu Cooler : Corsair H100i
Case : Corsair 780T
Memory : G.Skills 32GB DDR4-3200mhz CAS 15-15-15-35-1T@1.370v
Motherboard : Asus Rampage V Extreme (BIOS 3504)
M2 : Samsung 950 Pro NVME 512gb (Gaming)
M2 : SSD1 : OCZ RD400A 128gb (windows)
SSD1 : Crucial MX100 512gb (data)
Gfx : EVGA Titan X w/ 980 Hybrid Cooling AiO Liquid Cooler
PSU : Antec HCP-1000W
Monitor : Asus RoG Swift