I have plugged in a PNY XLR8 500GB M.2 NvMe drive in a Delock PCIe card and stuck it in Riser 3 on my Poweredge r630 - Although the drive doesn't show up anywhere in BIOS, I could boot the Ubuntu installer from a USB thumb drive and the installation saw the drive just fine. It installed successfully and after a reboot I get a new option in my UEFI boot menu "ubuntu" - but it is greyed out!

If I go to system settings -> Boot settings I can see the system recongizes the drive/os but it is listed as "Unavailable: ubuntu"

If I try to tell the system to boot from this drive regardless, it will say something like "Booting from ubuntu - boot failed"

How come UEFI can see the installed OS / drive just fine (it seems) but fails to boot from it? Is there something I can toggle somewhere to make this work?

I found a post on Reddit where a user had the same problem but he offered no solution except some vague suggestion that one could try to boot from a USB stick first and then hand over boot to the NvMe drive - but how that would work exactly I am not sure.

Any suggestions are most welcome!

3 Answers 3


After much trial and error the answer is simply: A Poweredge r630 server will not boot from any consumer-grade SSD you stick in it, whether it's M.2, PCIE or Sata - so don't waste your time doing it. It is however possible to bootstrap such a setup by booting from SAS/Sata drive and then handing things over to the OS. I have posted some information on this and what else I found, at the Dell forums:



I ran into this exact issue, also with an R630, also booting from an M.2 drive, also installing Ubuntu. Nice.

Arni J's answer is exactly what I ended up doing since my R630 came with two spare HDDs, but I also found an alternative option that may work too for anyone searching for other ways. (I have not verified that this actually works, but conceptually it should be just fine)

Clover Bootloader is the utility: https://github.com/CloverHackyColor/CloverBootloader

Guide written by Paul Murana on TachyTelic.net: https://www.tachytelic.net/2020/10/dell-poweredge-install-boot-pci-nvme/

Quick overview:

  • Install your desired OS to the NVMe drive like you would originally want to install it (Rufus seems to be most reliable in my experience, both with Windows and Debian OSes).
  • Install Clover Bootloader to a separate drive that can be booted to, probably best with a drive attached to the SAS backplane, but an internal USB stick probably works too.
    • Note: Paul's guide does NOT use Rufus (or similar) to load Clover, but a generically-named program called "Boot Disk Utility". I can't answer why, and Clover also doesn't have documentation that I can find either. You might need to experiment with different methods if the utility's site ever goes dark.
  • Configure Clover Bootloader to always redirect (once it's booted) to boot your desired OS.

One work around for this is to install Clover Bootloader. It would allow you to install a separate bootloader to a thumb drive for example. After this you could configure it to boot from the NVMe drive.

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