You could try replacing the SATA cable assembly or go straight to the replacement of the NUC's base unit. Either way, you need to contact Intel Customer Support directly.
Here's contact information, by geography:
Hope this helps,
Thanks for your reply - I made a support request for this NUC.
If replaced, Its a bit of disappointing to find a NUC straight out of box with hard to diagnose problems like this.
I rather prefer to have a NUC that doesn't do anything or crashes allover the place.
Took a lot of time than expected to come to this point.
If replaced I hope the next NUC does 100% reliable boots.
The replacement NUC5CPYH has arrived in 6 days through DHL.
It functions properly so far - a significant different with the first one.
No erratic boot failures in the past 12 hours - so far so good.
The production date of the replacement NUC5CPYH is April 2016
The production date of the original NUC5CPYH is July 2017
The BIOS of the replacement NUC5CPYH was already updated.
The original purchased NUC had an older BIOS, although with a much newer production date.
It might well be possible there are other faulty NUC's on stock.
Without detailed knowledge, its hard to diagnose erratic boot failures to a Hardware cause.
if you see a similar pattern like this with your NUC, consider contacting INTEL.
A side note:
I received the replacement NUC - without - the 19 Volt DC adapter, bracket and screws.
Beware to those sending in other faulty NUC's - Read the warranty replacement email carefully.
The information to send only the NUC was stated at the END of the Warranty replacement email from Intel.
This AFTER a mention that only COMPLETE return shipments are accepted and eligible for a replacement.
This may set you on the wrong foot and endup with a replacement NUC without the adapter.
The 19 Volt Adpater is just 15 US$ at Intel, but shipment costs are almost double.
After 5 days of use I can confirm the replacement works properly,
My intent was to buy a 2nd NUC5CPYH for backup / redundancy purposes.
Knowing the effort it took to get the first one working im not sure.....
Mainly because there's no info in the root cause.
Anyone who has a clue what could have been the problem?
The 2nd NUC was a straight and flawless install with windows 7.
Not a single problem, everything works with a USB stick with Win 7+ USB3.0 drivers.
Its been running 24 hrs a day since delivery.
UBUNTU has been installed as 2nd boot parition with GRUB as boot manager.
Compliments to Intel for the very fast warranty replacement of the 1-st NUC unit.