Folowup: Dell gets decrement for shipping computer with inoperable OS, kudos for 2 hours on phone to get computer running. Phone assist did not
know set up needed "RAID" and not "AHCI" in bios to work, also did not know OS would indeed install on SSD but insisted it would be on HD.
After puzzling my way through W8.1 confusion I have learned the OS and default install is to the SSD, not HD which is "data". Computer boots in
about <30 seconds, a big improvement over the 3 minutes the old one took. So overall working well, now dealing with 8.1 PITA.