M.2 SSD — a mistake

18 December 2022
In recent months I have been getting in a lot of computer hardware and sending some of it back since it looked suspect, and in the process ended up with enough almost enough components to build three new servers. Having the parts and with inflation of 11% it made sense building these out into complete systems, and in the process I decided to give an M.2 SSD drive a try. These devices are nice in themselves as modern motherboards all have M.2 slots, which my understanding of is them being a miniturised form of 4-lane PCI-Express, but in practice they turned out to be a pain.

The pixellation is deliberate..

Unlike pretty much everything else out there this device came up as /dev/nvme0 and the partitions themselves as /dev/nvme0n1px, but even after taking account of Slackware assuming /dev/sda and paying close attention to the Lilo configuration the system would not boot. The kernel itself was found but then there was a kernel panic due to being unable to recognise the root filesystem, which is a bad show after doing a clean install — no doubt it is a driver issue but Slackware 15.0 is pretty brand spanking new and after a clean install should support stuff like this out of the box.

For me trying out M.2 SSDs was a failure because it is not worth my time farting about working out why they simply did not just work — I have a stock of SATA SSDs so in this case I will use one of those since they are predictable. The Slackware installation DVD recognised the M.2 SSD fine so I see no obvious reason why it should fail with Slackware installed on the device itself. I have my suspicions and might try again when I need to build my next system, but for now I am sticking with what I know works.

(May 2023 update: I have since got this device working)