Booting Windows 7 From an M.2 on an Asus Mini-ITX Mobo Is ... Not Suggested by Asus


Jul 27, 2015
An email was sent to Asus asking:

"Is there a problem with using the ASUS Z170I Pro Gaming motherboard
when the boot drive is a
Samsung 950 Pro M.2 512 GB SSD (MZ-V5P512BW)
that will contain the 64 bit version of Windows 7
loaded onto the M.2 drive"

To which Asus replied:

"In order to boot Windows 7 from NVMe SSD, your system must support loading UEFI drivers when the Compatibility Support Module is enabled. My recommendation in order to get your M.2 device as a boot drive is to use Windows 8.1 or 10"

Has anyone in the HardForum community successfully built a mini-ITX computer that - uses Windows 7 - and boots from a Samsung 950 Pro M.2 512 GB SSD (MZ-V5P512BW)?
1) If you install Windows 7 from a USB drive you will need to inject your motherboards USB 3.0 drivers into your Windows 7 installation image files, otherwise the Windows preinstallation environment can't detect the USB it needs to install from
2) You will need to slipstream SP1 into your Windows 7 installation for part 3) and 4) below.
3) You will need to inject the Microsoft KB update for NVME drives into your Windows 7 installation, as Windows 7 does not have native NVME support
4) You will need to inject the KB update FIX for NVME drives into your Windows 7 installation, to fix any crashing upon booting into Windows
5) You may need Windows 7 drivers for the Samsung 950, in which case you will need to inject those into the Windows 7 installation.
Thank you Vittra!
Can you reference a video or other step-by-step set of instructions for this process?
Do a search for "windows 7 create usb install disk slipstream" and you'll find results which can walk you through the process. Note that it won't tell you which exact KB updates. Just use the information on what updates you need - or integrate them all.

Here's one I wrote up in a previous life: Advanced Windows 7 installation from USB flash (UEFI, USB 3.0 info included)

Here's one that has specifics on downloading and slipstreaming updates: Create An Integrated Up To Date Windows 7 Install Disc • Raymond.CC
You definitely need to slipstream in usb3.0 drivers for your motherboard as skylake is native usb 3.0 and win7 is not. Create the usb stick media as GPT/UEFI. And then save the samsung nvme driver somewhere on the usb stick.

I'll see if I can dig up the guide i created for work, if I can't find it I know it was adapted from this guide.

UEFI Bootable USB Flash Drive - Create in Windows

I know gigabyte has a tool to automate the slipstreaming of usb3.0 drivers into the usb stick for win7.

Either way, good luck.
Hmm i have a Asus VII impact and installed tre Samsung 950 Pro in the combo module,
I had some trouble get it to work but my main drive (boot drive) with win 7 is my M.2 and i have no issue at all :)