Step 1: Shut down your system
Turn off your computer completely.
Step 2: Remove the power cable and battery
Now remove the power cable and battery. The battery removal step applies only to laptops when it’s possible to remove the battery. To see how to remove the battery, refer to your owner’s manual.
Step 3: If your laptop has a removable battery, hold the power button for 5 seconds
If the battery has been removed, this will discharge any electricity left in the system.
Step 4: Open the case
How you do this will vary from system to system, so consult your owner’s manual for exact instructions.
Step 5: Ground yourself
Touch an unpainted metal surface to ground yourself. This protects your computer’s components from the static electricity that’s naturally present in your body – grounding is an extra safeguard.
Step 6: Locate the M.2 PCIe slot
This slot is usually easy to find in desktops, but in laptops the location will vary – it’s typically under the bottom panel, or under the keyboard. Refer to your owner’s manual for the exact location, as every system looks slightly different.
Step 7: Insert the SSD
Depending on your computer, there might be a heat sink or screw that needs to be removed prior to inserting your new NVMe PCIe SSD. To insert your Crucial NVMe PCIe SSD, hold the SSD carefully by the sides. Do not touch the gold connector pins. Align the notches in the SSD with the ridges in the PCIe slot, then insert at a 30-degree angle. Do not force the connection.
To secure the drive, it might be necessary to insert the screw into the provided mount on the motherboard. Do not overtighten the screw.
Step 8: Reassemble your system
Turn on your computer, but you’re still using your old drive.
Step 9: Turn on your computer
For laptop installations, reconnect the battery.
Look closely at the old storage drive you removed for any brackets, adapters, support frames, braces, pull tabs, or screws that might be attached to it. If anything is attached to the old drive, remove it and put it on the SSD in the same manner. Now reinsert the SSD into the storage bay.
For Laptops (spacer):
If it still doesn’t fit snug, use the spacer you set aside earlier and attach it to the SSD by peeling off the adhesive and sticking it onto the drive as shown. Attaching the spacer allows the SSD to achieve the same level of thickness as the existing drive you removed. Note: many installations don’t require the spacer, so you may not need to use it.
Some storage bays and existing hard drives are significantly larger than a standard size SSD. If this is the case in your system, you’ll need a 2.5-inch to 3.5-inch converter to make the SSD fit snug.
If you can use a screwdriver, you can install an SSD. While the inside of your computer looks scary and foreign, there’s nothing to fear. As long as you’ve grounded yourself, you’ve eliminated most of the risk that comes with accidentally touching components. Electricity is naturally present in the human body, but when you ground yourself, you get rid of it and make it safe to touch your system’s parts. No need to fear – you’re never in danger during the process and the electricity in your body is natural and can’t hurt you.