Upgrade the SSD in your Lenovo ThinkBook 14s Yoga with this guide

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Upgrading the SSD in Lenovo’s ThinkBook 14s Yoga is relatively easy thanks to an intuitive internal layout and dual M.2 slots. Each slot can fit either a full-size 2280 drive or a half-size 2242 drive, with the PC coming from the factory with the latter, smaller drive. Here’s everything you need and need to know if you’re looking to add or upgrade the storage in your ThinkBook 14s Yoga.

How to upgrade storage in the Lenovo ThinkBook 14s Yoga

Despite its thin convertible body, Lenovo’s ThinkBook 14s Yoga has some generous options for DIY upgrades. The laptop has 8GB of RAM soldered in every model, but there’s a secondary SODIMM slot that you can add to after purchase. And like the RAM, storage also has a couple of options for upgrades.

Models come from the factory with two M.2 slots that can take a full-size 2280 solid-state drive (SSD). However, Lenovo uses a half-size 2242 M.2 SSD from the factory, extended with a metal brace to fit the slot. No problem there, and you can swap out the included SSD with a full-size 2280 drive or go with a smaller drive and use the brace. For the sake of this guide, we will be upgrading with a 2280 M.2 SSD. Both M.2 slots use PCIe 3.0 x4.

If you’re replacing the boot drive included from the factory, you might want to clone any data (including OS) over to the new drive before swapping them. Thanks to the dual M.2 slots, this can be achieved without the need for an external SSD enclosure. Add the new drive to the free slot, clone the existing drive, and you’re good to go. Our guide on how to clone your PC hard drive with Macrium Reflect can help you through the cloning process.

If you want to replace the boot drive and don’t care for the data so far saved on the drive, you can also do a fresh OS install. Our guide on how to do a clean installation of Windows 10 can help you through the process.

Thanks to Lenovo including a rather speedy SSD right from the factory, most people will no doubt just add a second M.2 SSD for bulk storage without worrying about the boot drive. In this case, there’s no need for cloning as you’ll simply be adding a second drive to the free M.2 slot. However, it’s still recommended that you back up your PC’s data in the off chance something goes wrong.

In the following steps, I will demonstrate how to remove and replace the existing M.2 2242 drive (with metal bracket) and how to add a new M.2 2280 drive to the free slot. Once you’ve completed any necessary cloning and have backed up any important data, clear a well-lit workspace and power down your ThinkBook 14s Yoga before proceeding with the steps below.

  1. Unscrew the 10 fasteners on the bottom panel of the ThinkBook 14s Yoga. This requires a T6 driver. Note that the screws may feel captive but are not; they will back all the way out so be careful not to lose any.

    Unscrew the 10 fasteners

    Source: Windows Central

  2. Pry up the bottom panel using a pry tool. I found best results by starting along the front edge and working my way back toward the hinges.

    Pry up the bottom panel

    Source: Windows Central

  3. Unscrew the single fastener holding the existing M.2 2242 SSD in place.

    Unscrew the single fastener

    Source: Windows Central

  4. Pull the factory M.2 2242 SSD away from the slot. Do not lift straight up or it will damage the hardware.

    Remove the old SSD

    Source: Windows Central

  5. Insert the new M.2 SSD into the slot at about a 30-degree angle. The drive and slot are both keyed and should fit together only one way.

    Insert the new SSD

    Source: Windows Central

  6. Screw in the single fastener that holds the M.2 SSD in place.

    Screw in the single fastener

    Source: Windows Central

  7. Insert the new M.2 SSD into the secondary slot at about a 30-degree angle. The drive and slot are both keyed and should fit together only one way.

    Insert the M.2 SSD

    Source: Windows Central

  8. Screw in the single fastener that holds the M.2 SSD in place.

    Screw in the single fastener

    Source: Windows Central

  9. Replace the bottom panel of the PC. Apply pressure along the outside edges and work your way around the laptop until it’s fully secured.

    Replace the bottom panel

    Source: Windows Central

  10. Screw in the 10 fasteners using a T6 driver.

    Screw in the 10 fasteners

    Source: Windows Central

If you’re just looking to add an M.2 SSD to the laptop and don’t want to touch the existing M.2 2242 drive, please skip steps 3 to 6.

You’re now free to go ahead with a clean install of Windows 10 if that’s what you decided to do before the upgrade. If you simply added a second M.2 SSD to the laptop, be sure to run through the initialization process in Windows 10. Our guide on how to format a new hard drive will get you through the process.

Our top hardware and software picks

One of the best SSDs on the market today is the SK hynix Gold P31. It’s an M.2 2280 drive available with up to 1TB of storage, perfect for the ThinkBook 14s Yoga either as an extra drive or as a replacement boot drive.

The Lenovo ThinkBook 14s Yoga we upgraded here is a cost-effective alternative to the ThinkPad lineup. It’s durable, it has long battery life, and it comes with a bunch of great features (including a built-in active pen for inking). Upgrade RAM and storage to keep it relevant longer into the future.

Additional Equipment

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