Booting Windows from the 250Gb Extension Card

I‘m currently running Fedora on my Framework 13 and unfortunately I need Windows for school. So my idea was, that i could use the 250Gb Expansion Card as a Windows instance. Is that possible so that I can just plug it in, reboot and therefore launch windows?

Windows does not officially support running on external storage, so if you go down that route, you should expect performance issues and/or crashes. Framework does not recommend attempting Windows installs on external storage (SD card or Storage Expansion Card).

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Hi Johannes

I installed Win11 on a 128Gb partition on NVMe, leaving the rest for access via Win or Ubuntu 22.10 which I installed on my 256 Expansion card

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True. However it is still possible to do this.

While this is true again, it is sad that Framework officially suggests running Operating Systems from it and many Windows users are not aware of the lacking support from Microsoft.

So @Johannes_Hollwerth while this is possible be adviced that this is not going to be too smooth, both in installation, maintainance and debugging shall any issues arise.

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That page is not specific, but Framework has said that running Linux distributions from expansion cards is generally fine (mileage may vary depending on distro and how often you’re removing it).


I can’t help thinking that it would be better to get a larger SSD, put Linux and Windows partitions on it, and set it up for dual boot. The result would be a system that could run either OS at full speed. At current SSD pricing it might even be cheaper than the expansion card.

I just copied my emulator disk on my 1 TB extension card and bought a new license to top it off. Works okay, even played some games with my eGPU (since it doesn’t work nearly as fast in Linux). Keep in mind that too many disk writes are a bottleneck and you need to wait a lot if you trigger it. Also there is some strange problem with the shutdown - it goes in a state where it does nothing and FW draws around 18W, but doesn’t switch completely off. When in that state, I just switch it off with a long press, no harm up to now.

Update: I‘ve been using this thing for the past month, and for my application which is only running Solidworks, it works like a charm.