SSD Falling Off - Can't Transfer Large Files

mjperk

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Jan 18, 2014
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I recently discovered a problem when trying to transfer large files on my PC. I have been running this rig for over a year now without issue, however I'm not sure how long the problem has been there since I don't frequently transfer large amounts of data. My primary/boot drive is a Samsung 950 Pro M.2 512GB SSD. My secondary and only other internal "A:" drive is a Samsung 850 EVO SATA III 500GB, and appears to be the one causing the issue. Before I got my M.2 SSD, this 850 EVO was my primary drive. I run several external drives via USB as well.

I first discovered the problem when I tried to transfer about 80GB of photos from a USB stick onto my A: drive. I've found that the problem extends further than that, and in short, whenever I try to move more than about 10GB to or from the A: drive it will transfer for a short while and then completely stop. It doesn't matter if I am transferring to/from the C: drive, to/from another external drive, or anywhere else. It will transfer at about 60-130mbps for about 20 seconds before the rate drops to 0mbps and it completely stops transferring data. It is not a gradual stop either--it is full speed until it just hits the wall and drops to zero. At one point the drive even became uninitialized. I turned the PC off and went through a boot cycle without the A: drive connected, and when I rebooted a final time with the drive plugged back in, it would show up again and appear to function normally. Once the drive "falls off" it remains in this state until I unplug it and cycle the power. I can click the "X" to stop the transfer, but the drive still hangs and won't transfer any data at all at that point. I suspected that the drive was starting to go, so I got all of the data backed up finally and tried troubleshooting from there.

Things I have tried, in no particular order:
1.) Updated all drivers
I made sure my drivers were the latest according to the ASRock website, though not many had changed since my mobo has been out for some time. I also updated my NVidia drivers, the Samsung NVMe drivers, and any others I could think of. It had no effect whatsoever.

2.) Changed SATA ports
I thought that maybe the port I was using was starting to go bad or that the ASMedia controller was on the fritz. So I tried at least 3 ports on both the Intel and ASMedia controllers and it didn't seem to matter. I should also say that I did this using different SATA cables so as to rule a bad cable out too.

3.) Changed power connectors
I've read that faulty power connectors can cause a low power state where the drive runs, but not well. I changed out which connector I was using, but it didn't seem to matter.

4.) Formatted SSD
Once I got all my data off the drive, I formatted it. I even deleted the partition and essentially tried to start from scratch. This one was a little odd because I can do a quick format to the drive, but it refuses to let Windows do a full format. Even if I perform a quick format and then go back and try to do a full format, it refuses to work. When I try, it hangs at 1% and never gets any further.

5.) Ran DISM and Chkdsk
One of the first things I did was to run these two. When I performed the check disk, I forced the drive to dismount and gave the commands to find and fix errors. Both of these came back with passing results and didn't indicate issues.

6.) Ran storage utilities
I've checked the SMART information using Samsung Magician. I've also run CrystalDiskInfo and EaseUS Partition Master. All of them say the drive is fine and found no errors.


I am at a complete loss of what the issue is, but it is pretty frustrating. It doesn't appear to have any affect on functionality if the files are small. If they are word docs, music, or anything that I access regularly on the mb scale, they are fine and the drive appears to perform normally. It's only when I have to do a huge file transfer that I notice issues. Do you have any idea what my problems might be?

System Specs:
ASRock Z97 OC Formula
Intel I7 4790k
2x MSI GTX 970 4G Gold Edition in SLI
G.Skill 32GB
Samsung Pro 950 NVME
Samsung Evo 850
Corsair AX1200i
Windows 10 Pro
 

mjperk

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Jan 18, 2014
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In a word, excellent. I have active temperature monitoring/cooling control on it too. There's no way this is the problem.
 

Sohom

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Mar 6, 2017
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Ok, do two things:
1) First download HDDSentinel (https://www.hdsentinel.com/download.php) and check the health and SMART attributes of the drive. If the drive is failing it will show up there.
2) Download Samsung Magician software. As you have already backed up your data, do a Secure Erase.

I think the above steps will determine and solve your problem.
 

josmararruda

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Aug 15, 2017
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Hi Sohom!

My SSD is installed on a Mac, so I can´t use HDSentinel at this moment. But I did some tests using Mac software: the CRC Error Count indicator raw value is at 3,783 and the software suggests checking the data cable. However, I can copy large files (more than 2Gbytes) without problems if I use, for example, an FTP client to download the large file at a limited speed (about 20000 KBps). Reading anything from the SSD is OK (it is the boot drive in my system).
 

mjperk

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Jan 18, 2014
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I did find a solution. It was to call up Samsung and have them replace the drive--it was dying and finally just gave up. Hopefully you are covered by warranty!
 

Sohom

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Mar 6, 2017
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There you go, problem solved. CRC error count shows issues with sata cables or a bad sata port. Just change the sata cable and shift it to a different sata slot and you will be fine. And believe me thats a huge amount of CRC errors, you should change the cables soon as data may get effected.
 

josmararruda

Prominent
Aug 15, 2017
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A defective cable wouldn't cause read errors too? Or errors when writing at slow speed? Sorry to insist, but to disassemble a MacMini is a fairly complex task. I would like to have as much sure of what to do before start this "surgery" :)
 

Sohom

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Mar 6, 2017
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Yes, a bad cable will cause read errors as well as write errors; Sry, but there seems no other way, but i will suggest you to take it to apple customer care and if under warranty, get if fixed. If not still the apple store or customer care would be good, or if you can find someone local who services apple goods; Or do it yourself if you are okay with it.
 

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