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Step 1: The Plan
Today, I'll show you how to install an SSD module (M.2 2280 slot) in a brand new Dell Inspiron 5570 Laptop. These instructions may be the same or similar for other laptop models in the Inspiron 15 line, but I am specifically working with the 5570. With an 8th Generation Intel i5-8250U processor, 8GB RAM, and a 1 TB 5400rpm hard drive, the one thing slowing the laptop down the most is the hard drive. I'll install an Intel HP 360GB SSD by disassembling the cover, with the intent of booting from the SSD instead of the slow hard drive.
Step 2: The Tools
The tools that you'll need are a Phillips head screwdriver for removing the screws from the laptop's cover, and you might need a smaller one for the SSD. You'll want to use an ESD strap or ESD mat because you'll be exposing the insides of the laptop to install the SSD. Finally, a couple throwaway gift cards or expired credit cards will come in handy for prying the cover off the bottom of the laptop.
Step 3: Remove Screw for DVD Drive
To install the SSD, you'll need to flip the laptop on its back and remove its bottom cover. So the first step is to remove the screws holding the cover. You'll first want to remove the DVD drive, which is held in place by this one screw.
Step 4: Remove the DVD Drive
Once you remove the screw, the drive will slip right out.
Step 5: Remove the Remaining Screws
The rest of the screws are immediately apparent - there are twelve remaining screws that you need to remove. As you begin, screw #1 (in the photo) has a long body so you may need to use your fingernail to pull up on the screw head while turning the screwdriver. Make sure to keep track of where each screw goes, because there are different lengths of screws.
Most laptops have an easy-access cover to gain access to the memory or the M.2 slot, but the Dell Inspiron 5570 requires you to pretty much dismantle the entire cover. Having a magnetized screwdriver isn't required, but it certainly helps to pull out the screws.
When you get to Screw #9 (in the photo), it's not going to want to come out, even with a magneitzed screwdriver. I believe it's spring-loaded and I'm positive it's unscrewed from the other side, so I will just leave it.
Step 6: Get Into the Groove
You'll now need to pry open the bottom cover. Flip the laptop over and crack open the lid. The idea here is to wedge your gift cards in between the groove going all around the edge of the laptop. This will undo the tabs holding the bottom cover to the top half of the computer.
Step 7: Start at the Top Right
Start at the top right side of the laptop, right below the corner. Once you have the first card wedged in, you can take the second card and work it into the spacing caused by the first one. As you work along the edge, you'll hear some snapping sounds, meaning that the internal tabs are being unfastened. And as you continue along the edge, you can alternate between the cards to maintain spacing between the two shells.
Step 8: Continue Along the Bottom Edge
Go along the bottom edge of the laptop. Again, alternate cards as you go along.
Step 9: Continue Along the Left Edge
Go along the left edge of the laptop. Again, alternate cards as you go along.
Step 10: The Corners
Once you have freed the right, bottom and left sides, work on the two corners where the hinge is, using the two cards. Wedge the card in horizontally, but at a slight angle - but you want to be careful. There are tabs underneath that can break if you force the cards in too hard.
Step 11: Complete Opening the Cover
Swing open the bottom cover - the two cards in the corners may pop out while you do so. But it should come off fairly easily. The cover is made of plastic with some internal metal shielding.
Step 12: The SSD
This is a 360GB 2280 SATA M.2 SSD, made by Intel and branded as HP. According to Dell, the M.2 slot does support NVMe, but again, I'm just installing a garden variety SSD.
Step 13: Remove the Screw for the SSD
Remove the screw. If your screwdriver bit is too big, you'll want to use the smaller screwdriver that I mentioned earlier.
Step 14: Install the M.2 SSD
Next, let's align the keys with the keyed slot, and slide the module in at an angle. Push it down.
Step 15: Fasten the Screw to the SSD
We'll finish it off by fastening the screw back on again.
Step 16: While You're Here...
While you're here, you can upgrade the memory as well, for which there's two slots - one already configured with 8GB of DDR4L memory (in my configuration). It takes up to 32 GB, so you could upgrade to two 16 GB sticks if you wanted to. You can also access your internal 2.5" hard drive, which you could upgrade at a later time.
Step 17: Place the Cover Back On
Once you install the SSD, you'll want to reverse the steps - basically you'll re-attach the bottom cover.
Step 18: Snap Everything Back On
Flip it over and open the lid again, making sure to snap each tab around the edges.
Step 19: Screw Everything Back In
It's just a matter of screwing everything back together, which you can do in no particular order.
Step 20: Check Fit and Finish
Once all the screws are in, flip it over one more time and reopen the lid. Make sure to check the fit and finish, especially around the edges. You should now have an extra 360GB of fast storage in your Dell Inspiron 5570!
In a future instructable (and Youtube video), I'll show you how to use Macrium Reflect software to clone the bootable Windows partition on your 1 TB hard drive to the SSD drive, and I'll show you how to successfully boot off the SSD. Feel free to subscribe to my channel to find out how in my future videos.