Question Can I revive an SSD that has been sitting for six months?

filthyPierre

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Apr 11, 2016
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Hi,

Six months or so ago I built a new PC, only reusing a few parts from the old one. The new mobo takes NVMe sticks, so I used one as the boot drive. I kept my old PC's boot drive, a Samsung Pro SSD but it has been sitting there for 6 months in a USB-3 case, but without being powered on in that time.

Recently I decided I would use it for something, so plugged it in to a port on the new machine. The machine can see it ok and even see files/directories in the root of the drive, but if I try to read anything, or delete anything, it produces errors. I thought maybe because it was previously a system drive maybe it was a permissions thing, so I tried to format it. Same problem, can't format it either.

So then I read that data on SSDs can decay over time if they don't have power to them. So I'm wondering if I've waited too long and it's past its without-power use-by date?
Can it be revived? Figured I would plug it in and leave it for a while and see if that works; anyone know how long for? Or am I wasting my time?

Cheers,

Pete
 
Six months is too short to die from just sitting around. Data retention for client devices should be 1 year in an unpowered state if the drive endurance has been reached. That figure should jump to several or over ten years in an unpowered state. Depending on the level of wear.

How old is the SSD? Depending on the model. Samsung Pro series have a five to ten year warranty.

Did you try it connected directly to SATA? Assuming you are using a third party enclosure. If this is a Samsung external. I would not void the warranty by opening their enclosure. To test it on an SATA port.
 
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filthyPierre

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Apr 11, 2016
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Thanks for the replies - I will see if I can find the original receipt (I will have it somewhere). It wouldn't be more than 5 years old I wouldn't think. IIRC it is an 840...

I haven't tried attaching it directly to a SATA port on the new motherboard, so will try that as well.

I did try the Samsung Magician to erase/initialise, as my new NVMe stick is a Samsung 970 so had it installed already. However, it said it didn't support the older drive. Perhaps because it is in the USB case..

Looks like my next step is to connect it directly to a SATA port.

Cheers,

Pete
 
The 840 had serious data retention problems. It was a scandalously bad drive with very bad NAND.

Samsung 840 EVO - how to easily lose your data forever:
https://forum.acelaboratory.com/viewtopic.php?t=8735#p30079

" I spoke with our ACE Lab developers and did you know what we found? Everything is very simple - NAND memory in Samsung 840 EVO is TLC based, and it is VERY VERY Bad. After some time when you write the data on memory, the charge inside NAND cells is flow away. The voltage inside cells become worse and worse, and finally - flow away forever. It means that if you will not use your 840 EVO drive for some time, you will find that your SSD is EMPTY.


You ask me - are the guys from Samsung didn't know about that issue? Why they did not find the way to fix this bug?!
And I will answer - they release new FW, which make very simple thing - in background, when you working with your laptop or with PC, it just rewrite customer data again and again, again and gain by cycle, every time with the only goal - to keep the data and charges inside cells "fresh". When drive is not connected to power source, charge from cells is flowing away.

Of course this bug fix is not solve the main problem - bad quality of NAND memory. That's why after 840 EVO, Samsung decided to release new generation - Samsung 850 EVO\PRO and Samsung 950 for laptops - in new generations they cancelled TLC memory, and decided to use new 3DNand memory chips with better quality."

https://blog.acelaboratory.com/tag/840-evo

"Starting from the version of PC-3000 SSD 2.0.3, it become possible to recover Samsung 840 EVO, Samsung PM 851 and Samsung 850 Pro drives. One of the main problem of this drives – is a very-very bad quality of NAND …"
 
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