Adding a second SSD to Librem 14

I recently bought an 80mm M.2 NVMe drive on sale, because it was so cheap, but didn’t have anywhere to put it other than my Librem 14. Seeing that on Purism’s website it said there are 2 M.2 slots available, I decided to buy it. However, when I opened my laptop, the 4-cell battery was in the way of where the SSD would go. But I didn’t let that stop me, here’s how I got the second SSD installed.

At first, looking at the battery, it had a small gap where the SSD fit inside of it halfway but didn’t fit all the way. Luckily there are M.2 extenders. I ended up buying this one off of Amazon.

Once it arrived, it was difficult to get it to fit. First, I had to cut down the part that plugged into the drive where it was perforated. However, it still wasn’t smaller enough, I ended up sanding the rest of the board down to the ends of the traces in order to make it fit in the case. The male board actually fits in by being angled upward above the battery in order to actually get it to fit in the case.

The board connects to the female board with a ribbon cable, which I ended up putting over the battery (as far up toward the middle and side as possible). I tried a few other places before ending up on that one. The first one was right in the middle of the battery, but that made it where I couldn’t click on the trackpad anymore. Then I tried right above the battery and between the RAM, but it turned out that when the back cover was placed on there was the pressure that made the SSD press down on a button that messed with the boot process. That caused no keyboards to work at boot and no SSDs whatsoever to be detected, making it unbootable. I think the button also messed with the HOTP codes too and I had to reset them. The last place that I tried but didn’t work was directly on top RAM. That didn’t really work because when I was using the computer it would slowly stop responding. For example, first, all the programs would stop working, and then the mouse would eventually die a little later.

Here is the final product:

As you can see, it is EXTREMELY jank. There is a lot of tape and the connection to the motherboard is just being held in by that. It also didn’t help that I didn’t have a screw for the SSD either, so that also had to be taped in. Both of the boards being on top of the battery probably isn’t the best idea either, especially with the one connected to the motherboard being connected at an angle. However, it works. I paid for both of the SSD slots, so I’m gonna use them.

The only real problem is that the trackpad is slightly less clicky, but it’s not that bad and I could probably move the drive just a little to make it better.

Has anyone else been able to add a second SSD to their Librem 14? Maybe this can help somebody, and also I just thought that it was funny, too.


If and when the 3-cell battery becomes available, maybe you want to get one.

Reading your post, I worry about your warranty. :rofl:

1 Like

Also keep in mind that nvme drives can get pretty dang hot.

1 Like

Yeah. I think the PCB that the SSD is on top of should be enough to stop the heat from getting to the battery, though.

I’m not so sure. I had an nvme drive in an external enclosure and I couldn’t hold it.

I will never experiment on expensive and dedicated computer, just to put a cheaper extra nvme or whimsically install it on dirty hack.
The Amazon link that u shared it has a M key, when L14 uses E key(not really sure on keys on second m.2 and nvme).
The battery of the librem 14 has problems supplying power to the PCB, and adding more energy demand it could cause the system to crash.
Also using one slot Ram may improvement energy demand for stability.

I would definitely strongly recommend against having the NVMe drive in direct contact with the battery; the PCB separating the two is not sufficient to isolate each from the other’s heat, and both get quite warm.

1 Like

I wonder if a 2242 M.2 SSD would fit instead.

Edit: I guess not looking at where that second M.2 slot is placed on the board:

Yeah, I ended up moving it a bit where it lies right next to the battery and the furthest side of it rests on top of the RAM slot’s plastics. That way it’s not directly on the battery cells. I also went ahead and added some electrical tape between the SSD and the PCB and on the back of the PCB as well. So now it has more thermal mass and has extra structural stability (before the SSD was kinda bending in with the tape holding it down). I tested the SSD with 100GB read and write, and it only got up to 57 degrees once the changes were made, so I think it’s all good now.