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M.2 NVME SSD

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Beginner
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Is Acronis TI 2017 running under Windows 10 (64--bit) compatible with M.2 NVME SSDs? 

1.    Will it clone to/from and restore backups to an M.2 NVME SSD?

2.    Will it make backups from an M.2 NVME SSD?

3.    Will it run a continuopus file backup to an M.2 NVME SSD?

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Legend
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Peter Smith wrote:

Is Acronis TI 2017 running under Windows 10 (64--bit) compatible with M.2 NVME SSDs? 

1.    Will it clone to/from and restore backups to an M.2 NVME SSD?

2.    Will it make backups from an M.2 NVME SSD?

3.    Will it run a continuopus file backup to an M.2 NVME SSD?

  1. Yes but do not do this when running under Windows, use the bootable Acronis Rescue Media, and in particular, create the Windows PE version of the Rescue Media which in turn uses the Windows 10 ADK files.  If you attempt to clone from within Windows, then it defaults to trying to boot into a Linux OS environment which does NOT have the support needed for your M.2 NVMe SSD drive(s).
  2. Yes, this can be done from the Windows ATIH 2017 application as this uses the Microsoft VSS snapshot service to capture locked OS programs/files etc.
  3. Yes, if you configure and use the option for Non Stop Backup.

Please see post: 128231: [IMPORTANT] CLONING - How NOT to do this!!! before attempting the first bullet point.

Forum Hero
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Ditto to Steve - yes, M.2 drives are fully supported.  I've been backing up and restoring with a Samsung 950 Pro for quite awhile now.  I've also switched from SSD to PCIE NVME and vice-versa (although I did have an issue returning from NVME PCIE to SATA SSD due to a locked drive which is fixed by booting into safemode first).

It works - WinPE rescue media is ideal for these newer drives and can be built with Acronis and can be built even better with an MVP tool we designed to help with driver support and is very easy to use.

As for constant backups, I am not a fan of Nonstop backup - there are some limitations and ultimately, I think it's overkill.  A better plan of attack would be well timed incremental or differentials, but the option is there so it's up to the user.

Acronis has a 30 day free trial and a 30 day return policy if you purchase and find that it doesn't meet your needs.  

Beginner
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Thanks to both of you for the timely answers

I was just going to try this tonight

Several of the Crucial M.2 sticks I saw in the store today had Acronis slips of paper included 

Legend
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Robert, one word of caution with the bundled Acronis application per your "Acronis slips of paper included" comment - these are OEM versions of the product and may be older versions too, so if you do go that route please ensure that it can do what you want and most importantly, make a full backup before doing anything and do not attempt to do any cloning etc from within Windows.

Beginner
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@Steve Smith and @Bobbo_3C0X1.   Many thanks for your quick response.

I have just successflly done the following:

1.  Installed a SAMSUNG 960 EVO M.2 NVME 500GB SSD on my MSO Z170A Gaming Pro Carbon motherboard; and initialised it as Basic GPT drive.

2.  Installed the latest SAMSUNG driver for the new SSD.

3.  I Used Acronis TI 2017 (Latest Purchased version) to make a full system backup (Windows 10 Pro, 64-bit) to an external USB 3.0 Hard Drive.

4.  I booted up my system from a freshly-made standard Acronis TI 2017 Recovery Disk (DVD).

5.  Used the TI Recovery Disk (Linux) to recover the backed up full system image to the new NVME SSD

6.  Shut down Desktop.  Removed old system hard drive.

7.  Booted desktop.  No problems; fully up and running.  Samsung Magician verifies the new SSD is fully functional with latest firmware and driver.

8.  Acronis TI 2017 recognised the previously set up backup schedules (as done on the old HDD) and immediately continued with Non-stop backup as it would have after booting the old HDD.

I did not clone due to the new SSD being a 500GB disk and the cource disk was 512GB --I was concerned size difference (smaller) might have been an issue. Anyway, I believe full image recovery is better than cloning (a personal opinion that others may differ with).

(It seems a Win PE Recovery disk is not required, or perhaps I was just lucky!!).

Legend
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Peter, great to see positive feedback and results.  Thank you for providing detailed steps of how you approached this situation.

Forum Hero
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Glad to hear of the success and ease of use!

For the most part WinPE is only needed if the system uses RAID as the SATA mode in the bios. If it is set to use AHCI, the current Linux media should work fine for NVME PCIE drives.  Also, just to clarify... m.2 is a form factor only.  You can get m.2 SATA drives which function just like a regular SATA drive, but have the m.2 form factor - those work just fine with the Acronis Linux recovery media in AHCI mode as well.  You have a 960 EVO which is m.2 PCI NVME though - good drive.

Also, some motherboard bios have Intel IRST drivers baked in - usually custom boards for home builders which can handle RAID sets at the firmware level and pass that onto the OS.  Most OEM systems (Dell, HP, etc) dont' have that feature, and not all custom boards do either.  Just curious, but I'm guessing your SATA  mode is AHCI since you did the upgrade yourself from an existing SATA SSD?  

If you tried setting it to RAID (don't boot the OS though) and tried to boot the recovery media, depending on your motherboard's capabiltiies, the default linux media may not see the drive then.

OEM's are shipping new systems with PCI NVME drives in RAID mode by default - even when using just a single drive.  NVME can use deeper que depths with RAID than AHCI.  Most home users propably won't notice the difference, but for full performance of the drive, RAID mode is ideal. 

Beginner
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@Bobbo_3C0X1:  Thanks for expanding on the info.  Yes, My upgrade was from an SATA SSD (AHCI mode). The Samsung Magician Performance Benchmark is showing I am getting 3 300 MB/s Sequential Read and 1 600 MB/s Sequential write; so I am pretty much maxed out without being in RAID.  (Incidentally, my Mobo does not "see" the new drive (other than in the "Boot Priority" menu).  Weird!  There is an "NVME Raid" option; but when I click on it I am warned "Slecting Raid, all data wil be lost", so natually I am reluctant to go any fiurhter!!)

Forum Hero
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Peter,

Yeah, I think that RAID option is to specifically make a RAID set such as a RAID 0, 1, or 5.  YOu don't want to mess with that at all as you would have to initialize the drive(s) to make it part of a RAID set. 

However there should be a separate SATA mode somewhere in the bios that would let you pick AHCI or SATA (and in some cases IDE if the system is old enough) simply for the connection type.  

Ultimately, you probably won't notice much difference at home, but take a look at this quick post and the article in it which explains how NVME can benefit from being set to use RAID as the SATA mode since AHCI is an older technology desiged specifically for SATA.  Realworld, will you see a difference - probably not, but perhaps if you do things like video rendering, CAD, Illustrator a lot where seconds saved can turn into minutes or hours of performance over time.  

https://forum.acronis.com/forum/128771#comment-405860

I'm using Windows 10 and have been able to switch between AHCI and RAID pretty easily as Windows 10 handles thsi pretty well, but may be different on some boards and whether or not the bios has RAID controller drivers embedded in the firmware.  If you do ever plan to test it out, just be sure to take a full disk backu (just in case) and then try swithching the SATA mode in the bios - earlierl in that other thread mentioned just up above are some ideas about prepping the OS for AHCI to RAID, or vice-versa, prior to making the change in the bios as well.  Most likely, it will be able to handle the change on it's own, or sort it out if you can use a safemode boot or run the Windows installer startup repair.  

May not be worth your time or trouble to even try, but good to know.  

Beginner
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@Bobbo_3C0X1: Thank you once again.  Yes, good to know.  Of interest, my Mobo now sees my M.2 NVME SSD and clearly states it is in AHCI mode.  (Why the delay of about three boot-ups, I have no idea.  Nevertheless, "all's well that ends well", as they say!

Forum Hero
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Excellent.  Yeah, my board does funky stuff too and wiill clearly boot the NVME drive and see it in the bios as a boot option and let me change the SATA mode from AHCHI to RAID (or vice-versa - without having to build an actual RAID).  However, unless I have it set to UEFI only (disable legacy/scm) and change from "other OS" to Windows  8/10, I can't use the RAID setup for 0,1,5.  Then again, if I do that and use 2 NVME drives, all my SATA ports get disabled so I don't see the beneift on this board as I need those SATA ports.  I also learned that it's not possilbe to RAID NVME drives that are attached with PCIE cards on this board - has to be the 2 onboard m.2 slots.  Go figure - so many variations in bios firmware these days!

In reply to by Bobbo_3C0X1

Beginner
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Hello,

I'm having an issue with a Toshiba Nvme M2 image using TI 2018 to a Samsung Nvme M2. The restore looks good but then Windows 10 has a problem booting and goes to repair mode.. Any ideas?

 

Thx,

ITSup

Legend
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ITSup, welcome to these User Forums.

My initial thoughts are that there may be a device driver issue at work here with the two different makes of NVMe M.2 SSD drives involved.  It may be worth trying to boot with the Acronis Universal Restore media after doing the restore to the Samsung SSD and see if this then asks for any device drivers?

Beginner
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My personal experience with ATI 2020 is lousy; ATI 2019 was much tighter and just worked.  This new format makes it impossible to use an earlier rescue key build to restore backup files.

I am going to try to build an ATI 2020 WinPE rescue key to see if that works better than the Linux build.

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It is always preferable to use the Win PE/Win RE version as it should incorporate all drivers necessary to support devices on the particular PC.

Ian 

Beginner
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Hi there:

So I built the ATI 2020 WinPE and if I leave RAID on in the bios, it wouldn't see the SSD.  If I switch it to AHCI, it sees it fine.  I know the ATI Rescue media Linux-based build does this, but I thought the WinPE (with the built-in Intel RST drivers) would see the SSD without making that change (the ATI 2019 WinPE works just fine).   I am using the MVP program to create the WinPE rescue media.