Question Incredibly annoying external SSD problem

Feb 27, 2021
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I have a new build PC (Win 10 Pro) and a new external USB SSD (Samsung).

Yesterday I plugged the SSD into my PC (the PC was already on) and it worked fine, with practical read speeds around 500Mb/s and write speeds similar.

Today I booted up and the SSD barely responded. Transfer rates were in the 10s of K and sometimes it hung completely, freezing Explorer. I verified this by restarting a few times.

What I've managed to gather is that if I boot up with the SSD connected, it basically won't work. Otherwise, it works roughly as I'd expect.

To complicate things, I have two other SSDs, a new SanDisk and an older ADATA. The SanDisk behaves exactly like the Samsung. The ADATA works OK. So to me this means it's not the SSD that's at fault, more how Windows is handling it. To complicate things even more, the SSD sometimes shows in Samsung Magician, sometimes does not.

Things I've tried:
  • Restarting
  • Enabling / disabling write caching
  • Disk check (various apps)
  • Different USB ports
  • Different cables
  • Updating the firmware
For the record, my two internal SSDs (C and Z) behave fine.

Anyone any ideas?

I HATE - that is HATE - technology.
 
Feb 27, 2021
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OS Name Microsoft Windows 10 Pro
Version 10.0.19042 Build 19042
Other OS Description Not Available
OS Manufacturer Microsoft Corporation
System Name DESKTOP-U3LM031
System Manufacturer ASUS
System Model System Product Name
System Type x64-based PC
System SKU SKU
Processor Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-10700K CPU @ 3.80GHz, 3792 Mhz, 8 Core(s), 16 Logical Processor(s)
BIOS Version/Date American Megatrends Inc. 1601, 27/11/2020
SMBIOS Version 3.2
Embedded Controller Version 255.255
BIOS Mode UEFI
BaseBoard Manufacturer ASUSTeK COMPUTER INC.
BaseBoard Product PRIME Z490-P
BaseBoard Version Rev 1.xx
Platform Role Desktop
Secure Boot State Off
PCR7 Configuration Binding Not Possible
Windows Directory C:\Windows
System Directory C:\Windows\system32
Boot Device \Device\HarddiskVolume3
Locale United Kingdom
Hardware Abstraction Layer Version = "10.0.19041.488"
Username DESKTOP-U3LM031\UKGC
Time Zone GMT Standard Time
Installed Physical Memory (RAM) 32.0 GB
Total Physical Memory 31.9 GB
Available Physical Memory 27.6 GB
Total Virtual Memory 36.7 GB
Available Virtual Memory 30.3 GB
Page File Space 4.75 GB
Page File C:\pagefile.sys
Kernel DMA Protection Off
Virtualisation-based security Not enabled
Device Encryption Support Reasons for failed automatic device encryption: TPM is not usable, PCR7 binding is not supported, Hardware Security Test Interface failed and the device is not Modern Standby, Un-allowed DMA-capable bus/device(s) detected, TPM is not usable
Hyper-V - VM Monitor Mode Extensions Yes
Hyper-V - Second Level Address Translation Extensions Yes
Hyper-V - Virtualisation Enabled in Firmware No
Hyper-V - Data Execution Protection Yes
 
Feb 27, 2021
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So to summarise, after a few more tests:

3 external SSDs - old ADATA, new SanDisk, new Samsung

ADATA works fine, solid transfer rate

Samsung and SanDisk barely work at all if connected when PC switch on. They are present in Device Manager, Hard Disk Sentinel, Samsung Magician, but are barely operable.

These two disks work better if connected after boot, but still not to proper capacity. The transfer rates are very variable. Also, they do not appear in HDS or SM.

Both internal SSDs (Samsung) are fine.
 

Bob.B

Prominent
Feb 8, 2021
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So to summarise, after a few more tests:

3 external SSDs - old ADATA, new SanDisk, new Samsung

ADATA works fine, solid transfer rate

Samsung and SanDisk barely work at all if connected when PC switch on. They are present in Device Manager, Hard Disk Sentinel, Samsung Magician, but are barely operable.

These two disks work better if connected after boot, but still not to proper capacity. The transfer rates are very variable. Also, they do not appear in HDS or SM.

Both internal SSDs (Samsung) are fine.
Start with the latest bios.....non-beta and the chipset driver.
Are these ssd's in their own enclosure?
 
Feb 27, 2021
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When I boot with my SanDisk and try to browse, it hangs and comes up with

The IO operation at logical block address 0x288a2000 for Disk 2 (PDO name: \Device\000000a8) failed due to a hardware error

This is certainly untrue in terms of the SDD, as it's impossible for a new SanDisk and a new Samsung to have the same issue.

Also, when the PC has been booted with one of these two SSDs connected, it sometimes warns me:

Reset to device, \Device\RaidPort2, was issued.

I have no clue what this means. I don't have raid.

Does anybody have any idea?

(I also formatted both SSDs, to no effect).
 
Feb 27, 2021
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Here is the difference in the speed readings. The top two are when the PC has been booted with the SSD connected. The lowest one is when the SSD was connected afterwards. As you can see, when it's running slow the IOPS drops to effectively nothing, along with the Sequential Read. The Write does drop but not by anywhere near as much.

I only got to try that latter test once, because now when I connect the SSD after the PC has booted, Samsung Magician doesn't recognise it.

 
Feb 27, 2021
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Ah, that could be why my ADATA works. The ADATA is SATA (I think) and the other two are NVMe.

Any idea how this might affect it and what to do about that?
 

USAFRet

Titan
Moderator
Mar 16, 2013
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Samsung SSD T7 500GB
SanDisk Extreme Portable SSD 500GB
ADATA SP550

T7 = NVMe (although on the very slow end of the NVMe class)

SanDisk Extreme Portable = SATA III
https://shop.westerndigital.com/products/portable-drives/sandisk-extreme-usb-3-1-ssd#SDSSDE60-500G-G25

SP550 = SATA III
https://www.adata.com/upload/downloadfile/Datasheet_SP550_EN_20160401.pdf


The Samsung T7 looks like it has serious write issues.
If that is what Samsung Magician is reporting, either the drive itself is bad, the cable is bad, or the port on the motherboard is bad.

Try a different cable, different port on the motherboard.
If neither of those work...get it replaced. Warranty.
 
Feb 27, 2021
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Tried different cables and different USB ports.

But it can't be drive itself because exactly the same thing happens with the SanDisk, which is also new.

Also, if I plug the Samsung in AFTER I've booted it works fine with 550Mb transfer speeds.
 
Feb 27, 2021
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And just to make a liar out of me I booted with the SanDIsk connected and it works fine. It didn't before, however.

I can't even follow this myself so I don't expect anyone else to. I remember the days when you plugged something in and it worked. Ah well.
 
The Samsung SSD is an NVMe model using ASMedia's ASM2362 USB-NVMe bridge. This chip is claimed to have stability issues.

https://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/samsung-t7-touch-portable-ssd

This thread describes stability issues being experienced with various chipsets and adaptors:
https://forums.anandtech.com/threads/stable-nvme-usb-adapter.2572973/

It would appear that the Realtek RTL9210PD bridge is the most stable, whereas JMicron's JMS583 bridge is the most problematic.

I haven't been able to determine the identity of the bridge inside the SanDisk SSD, but other SanDisk SSDs use ASMedia's ASM2364 and ASM2362 :

https://www.anandtech.com/show/16120/sandisk-extreme-portable-ssd-v2-and-wd-my-passport-ssd-2020-review
https://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/sandisk-extreme-pro-v2-portable-ssd-review
 
Last edited:
Feb 27, 2021
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The Samsung SSD is an NVMe model using ASMedia's ASM2362 USB-NVMe bridge. This chip is claimed to have stability issues.

https://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/samsung-t7-touch-portable-ssd

This thread describes stability issues being experienced with various chipsets and adaptors:
https://forums.anandtech.com/threads/stable-nvme-usb-adapter.2572973/

It would appear that the Realtek RTL9210PD bridge is the most stable, whereas JMicron's JMS583 bridge is the most problematic.
Thanks, that's interesting. I'll monitor my SanDisk and if that continues to work, meaning that it's likely an issue with the Samsung, I'll return the Samsung. I'll have to find a way to securely delete all my data off it, though.
 
Feb 27, 2021
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So I'll just leave this here in case the SanDIsk messes up again and I have to come back with new stats. These are the working stats for ADATA (top) and SanDisk.

D:\>winsat disk -drive d
Windows System Assessment Tool
Running: Feature Enumeration ''
Run Time 00:00:00.00
Running: Storage Assessment '-drive d -ran -read'
Run Time 00:00:00.34
Running: Storage Assessment '-drive d -seq -read'
Run Time 00:00:03.33
Running: Storage Assessment '-drive d -seq -write'
Run Time 00:00:02.72
Running: Storage Assessment '-drive d -flush -seq'
Run Time 00:00:00.64
Running: Storage Assessment '-drive d -flush -ran'
Run Time 00:00:00.64
Dshow Video Encode Time 0.00000 s
Dshow Video Decode Time 0.00000 s
Media Foundation Decode Time 0.00000 s
Disk Random 16.0 Read 73.47 MB/s 6.9
Disk Sequential 64.0 Read 208.59 MB/s 7.3
Disk Sequential 64.0 Write 296.66 MB/s 7.7

Average Read Time with Sequential Writes 0.263 ms 8.5
Latency: 95th Percentile 0.623 ms 8.6
Latency: Maximum 1.470 ms 8.9
Average Read Time with Random Writes 0.258 ms 8.8
Total Run Time 00:00:07.75
D:\>winsat disk -drive e
Windows System Assessment Tool
Running: Feature Enumeration ''
Run Time 00:00:00.00
Running: Storage Assessment '-drive e -ran -read'
Run Time 00:00:00.36
Running: Storage Assessment '-drive e -seq -read'
Run Time 00:00:02.61
Running: Storage Assessment '-drive e -seq -write'
Run Time 00:00:02.25
Running: Storage Assessment '-drive e -flush -seq'
Run Time 00:00:00.84
Running: Storage Assessment '-drive e -flush -ran'
Run Time 00:00:00.83
Dshow Video Encode Time 0.00000 s
Dshow Video Decode Time 0.00000 s
Media Foundation Decode Time 0.00000 s
Disk Random 16.0 Read 96.32 MB/s 7.1
Disk Sequential 64.0 Read 484.15 MB/s 8.1
Disk Sequential 64.0 Write 479.16 MB/s 8.1

Average Read Time with Sequential Writes 0.314 ms 8.4
Latency: 95th Percentile 0.668 ms 8.6
Latency: Maximum 3.103 ms 8.7
Average Read Time with Random Writes 0.318 ms 8.8
Total Run Time 00:00:06.98
 

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