5

My Dell XPS 9560 uses RAID as a SATA controller mode.

After I change it to AHCI, the Windows 10 will not boot.

What should I do if I don't want to reinstall Windows 10?


RAID = Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks, wikipedia link.
AHCI = Advanced Host Controller Interface, wikipedia link.

3

You need to install the correct driver for your AHCI storage controller before changing the mode in the BIOS.

If you don't do so, after switching the mode Windows cannot load the storage controller driver needed to access the boot volume. Because this driver is loaded before the Plug and Play Manager, Windows can't automatically detect or otherwise search for the correct driver.

Pre-installing the driver should solve this.

That said, you don't mention the reason you want to do this, but if it's for reason of performance, in my experience there's no difference between the two modes on Dell XPS machines.

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9

There is actually another way around this.

Booting into Safe Mode will work even though the storage mode has been changed... Windows will notice the change and load the correct driver on the next normal boot. Basically that means, you can do this:

  1. Run cmd as administrator (not PowerShell, you would have to escape {...})

  2. Copy-paste this command, which will start Windows in Safe Mode the next time you reboot:

    bcdedit /set {current} safeboot minimal
    
  3. Restart the computer and enter UEFI/BIOS setup.

  4. Change the SATA operation mode from RAID to AHCI.

  5. Save changes and exit Setup and Windows will automatically boot to Safe Mode.

  6. Launch cmd again, as in step #1.

  7. Copy-paste this command, which will start Windows in Normal Mode the next time you reboot:

    bcdedit /deletevalue {current} safeboot
    
  8. Reboot and Windows will automatically start with AHCI drivers enabled.

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  • Very interesting. So you're saying that booting into Safe Mode will work even though the storage mode has been changed...and that Windows will notice the change and load the correct driver on the next normal boot? (If so, it would be nice to explicitly state in your answer this is what it accomplishes.) – I say Reinstate Monica Sep 19 '18 at 13:16
  • @TwistyImpersonator I am heading to my bed now. Feel free to improve my answer. And yes, it means what you are saying. – LinuxSecurityFreak Sep 19 '18 at 16:46
  • OK. I wouldn't want to have made that edit without confirming that was your intent. – I say Reinstate Monica Sep 19 '18 at 16:47
  • @TwistyImpersonator Answer edited, thanks for the text. – LinuxSecurityFreak Sep 20 '18 at 2:34
  • 2
    Thanks, this was the solution in my case. I installed Fedora along side my Windows installation on an XPS laptop, but to do so, I had to switch to AHCI so Fedora could see my storage drives. After doing so, Windows wouldn't boot. This allowed me to use Windows in AHCI. Thanks again. – root Mar 2 '19 at 15:29

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