T7910 SAS/SATA drives don't work after installing nvme system disk

Got a T7910 with no disks.  Ordered an Evo 970, but didn't realize there was no built in m.2. slot.  So I ordered a x4 PCIE adapter. While I waited I wanted to ensure that the machine worked.  So I put an 850 evo in a caddy and installed ubuntu via usb.  Worked great.  Then I realized that Dell preferentially supports Windows for upgrading BIOS.  So I installed Windows on the disk.  Worked great.  Upgraded the system BIOS to A34.  Woohoo.  Then the nvme adapter came in. Installed that, and have windows running.   'Nother "woohoo".  All is working well.  But then I tried to hot install a sata drive.  Didn't work.  No recognition of the disk, but nothing much else happened.  System still boots, and runs great.  But I can't get the system to recognize any disks in the bays.  I have a 1Tb nvme, so I can run this and install software and such (next step is to install Ubuntu onto the unused portion of the nvme ssd.).  But I'll need to have drives in the bays working. 

When I boot to windows, the system just doesn't recognize these disks.  I can go to disk mananger and refresh and rescan.  No joy.  No visible disks except the nvme drive, and the CD ROM.   In BIOS:

Boot Sequence/Boot List Option is UEFI

SATA Operation is AHCI

Advanced Boot Optoin/Legacy Option ROMS is enabled

SAS Raid Controller is disabled 


Any suggestions to get the bay drives recognized?  Thanks.

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  • Bump. This question gives the experts at greenpcgamers.com to show their expertise! Just sayin.... Thanks in advance.

  • While I personally do not own said machine (I do have a 7600 which have a similar config), I do know that the on-board bays are handled through the on-board SAS RAID controller (some machines were configured with a separate SAS PCIe card). You can safely enable that since the SAS controller can handle both SAS and SATA drives.

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  • stormson weathers  You figured it out.  I think that I turned off the SAS controller to install the nvme drive.   Here's what my process should have been:

    1) Power up, and check BIOS.  Make sure that system doesn't throw any errors, and set BIOS to enable boot from USB, AHCI, and so forth.  I think (but can't confirm) that to install nvme you should turn the RAID controller OFF which forces the system to look for your nvme (can someone confirm?)

    2) Turn off, and then Install nvme SSD on a PCIE adapter card, install in appropriate slot (e.g an x16 slot for the Dell Ultraspeed card, x4 for a cheapie x4 adapter card.

    3) Boot using USB install disk for Windows or Ubuntu and install OS.

    4) If the machine does not recognize nvme ssd, it may be BIOS.  Boot to BIOS to check to see if version is the latest (A34 as I write this).  Turn RAID controller on in BIOS, install Windows on an SSD in a bay, and update the BIOS (go to Dell site).  Then repeat steps 1-3

    4) Boot to BIOS and turn RAID controller ON (Which also controls the SAS controllers on).  

    5) Turn off and install SATA or SSD disks in bays using caddies.

    6) Boot up 

    • Jim Bosley You shouldn't have to turn off any other boot controller for NVME to show up. At best (at least on older hardware) it will simply show up as a storage drive.  Good on you for getting it to work! 

      You have a decent machine. I was looking into installing a T7910 board in my 7600 mainly for the 12Gbs SAS controller. I had a 12Gb SAS SSD I was using as a cache drive for my PC before using a Intel Optane M10 on a cheap NVME to PCIe card. But would like to take advantage of the 12Gbs SAS Hard drives (I mostly need the storage and not the speed, but thats what the cache drive is for.) 

  • I do math simulations of disease - so I need processing power.

  • But I wanted additional ssd for linux filesystem space and the HDD for reliable backup.   But this think is a really nicely made machine.   Good on you, Dell!

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