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Will a PCI-E adapter allow me to use an unsupported M.2 SSD with my motherboard?

Hey, so I've always been able to find an answer to anything I need to know with a quick google search and I normally find this information here. This time I've found nothing and wanted to ask if anyone knew this.

My brother bought an M.2 SSD (Samsung 850 EVO) on sale without looking to see whether it was compatible with his motherboard (Gigabyte Z170XP-SLI) first. The 250GB version is listed as compatible but the 500GB version isn't and we were unable to get the motherboard to recognize it.

My question was, could he just buy a PCI-E to M.2 adapter to work around this or do you think it will remain incompatible? I know M.2 uses the PCI-E lanes and I'm not sure whether this would work or not.

If not, do you think a SATA adapter would work then by avoiding the PCI route entirely? The drive isn't any faster than my SATA SSD so I doubt it would bottleneck it either way.
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  1. Best answer
    No it wont work like that. All the m.2 pcie slot adapters need pcie m.2 drives.
    The 850 evo is a sata drive in an m.2 formfactor. Its no faster then the regular sata 850evo.

    Return it if he wants the superfast m.2 drives.

    If he is ok with regular sata ssd speeds then his motherbd is supposed to be compatible with sata m.2 drives so I would look thru the bios for a setting to turn the m.2 sata mode "On"
  2. Ah okay, I wasn't aware of that; I guess that's why they say sata or pci even when they're M.2 form factor, kinda confused me.

    Anyways, I'll go look through the BIOS again this evening and look for a sata mode setting for the M.2 socket.
  3. popatim said:
    No it wont work like that. All the m.2 pcie slot adapters need pcie m.2 drives.
    The 850 evo is a sata drive in an m.2 formfactor. Its no faster then the regular sata 850evo.

    Return it if he wants the superfast m.2 drives.

    If he is ok with regular sata ssd speeds then his motherbd is supposed to be compatible with sata m.2 drives so I would look thru the bios for a setting to turn the m.2 sata mode "On"


    Sorry I forgot to give you an update. I didn't get it done that night and didn't get a chance to look at his computer again 'till a couple days ago but I got it working. I couldn't find any "SATA mode" or any sort of settings for the M.2 socket at all.

    I'm not exactly sure why it started working, I actually just reinstalled it and then it was suddenly recognized by the BIOS, maybe it was something as simple as being installed wrong somehow; I wasn't the one who installed it originally and the way it goes in the socket I can't really see how you could do that wrong. I did change some settings to force it to start in UEFI mode too so maybe that had something to do with it but I'm not sure how because I think the BIOS still should've recognized it prior to booting any operating system.

    Anyways, it works. Thanks for the help!
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