SSD Stability problems

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SSD Stability problems

Postposted on Tue Oct 16, 2012 4:58 pm

Hi team,

I have just bought an OCZ Agility 3 120GB to go with my machine (see signature). I'm all of a sudden having issues - processes crashing, STOP 0xF4s, hard freezes, etc.

Here's what I've tried:

  • Try installing Windows again - no fix
  • Reinstall Windows onto an HDD instead - all OK, obv this isn't really OK
  • RMA the SSD - no fix (the first one actually stopped being recognised by the BIOS at all)
  • Overnight Prime95 and FurMark - survived this
  • Change SATA port - no fix
  • Change SATA cable - no fix
  • Change PSU - no fix
  • Remove all unnecessary expansion cards - no fix
  • Reseat all connectors - no fix
  • Go back to stock speeds - no fix
All temperatures are low.

Do you think the replacement SSD is faulty as well? Maybe it just doesn't get on well with my motherboard? What else can I try?

Thanks,

James
i5-4670 @stock | Asus H87M-E| Asus HD6850 840/1100 | 8GB DDR3 @800 | Caviar Black 640GB | Agility 3 120GB | Unicomp Customiser 105 | Logitech MX518 | CM Hyper 212 Evo
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Re: SSD Stability problems

Postposted on Tue Oct 16, 2012 5:02 pm

Sorry if this is obvious, but have you looked in OCZ's site for any available firmware updates for your SSD and applied them? That's the #1 issue with OCZ drives.
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Re: SSD Stability problems

Postposted on Tue Oct 16, 2012 5:13 pm

Potentially foolishly of me I have assumed that a brand new drive from OCZ's stock will have the latest firmware. I will check on that. Is it likely that the firmware is THAT bad?!
i5-4670 @stock | Asus H87M-E| Asus HD6850 840/1100 | 8GB DDR3 @800 | Caviar Black 640GB | Agility 3 120GB | Unicomp Customiser 105 | Logitech MX518 | CM Hyper 212 Evo
I was going to tell a Chemistry joke, but all the good ones argon.
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Re: SSD Stability problems

Postposted on Tue Oct 16, 2012 5:17 pm

excession wrote:Potentially foolishly of me I have assumed that a brand new drive from OCZ's stock will have the latest firmware. I will check on that. Is it likely that the firmware is THAT bad?!

I'm afraid so, yes. OCZ had a nice run of stability issues with their SSD line, which would probably account for a lot of the discounts going around on their hardware.
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Re: SSD Stability problems

Postposted on Tue Oct 16, 2012 5:18 pm

Check your motherboard BIOS and make sure it has the latest one. Didn't see that on your checklist.
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Re: SSD Stability problems

Postposted on Tue Oct 16, 2012 5:29 pm

I don't recommend it until you've resolved any obvious compatibility issues and updated the firmware but Sandforce drives seem to have a lot of problem Windows power management, you could try disabling Link Power Management.
Go into the registry-
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\\SYSTEM\\CurrentControlSet\\services\\iaStor\\Parameters
Create a key for whatever SATA port the SSD is attached to (ie Port0/Port1/Port2 etc.)

Create 3 new DWord values
LPM=dword:00000000
LPMDSTATE=dword:00000000
DIPM=dword:00000000

That'll disable all power management for the drive, no guarantees it'll be the solution obviously but it's worked for Sandforce drives often in the past and disabling power management won't harm the drive at all... though it will obviously use more power. Probably benchmark slightly higher too as Windows tends to err on the side on cutting power consumption vs performance with SSD's, but that's not a big deal.
Sandforce drives don't have the best reputation though, and OCZ is... not especially well regarded so cover and troubleshooting steps listed on their site/forum first and update the firmware. There is a good chance your drive was manufactured months before you got it, and I know the Agility 3 has seen quite a few firmware updates so it may well be outdated.
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Re: SSD Stability problems

Postposted on Tue Oct 16, 2012 5:33 pm

One other thing: are you "sleeping" the computer between usage sessions? Some SSDs, with some combinations of hardware, don't seem to like that very much. I upgraded an older Acer laptop to a Samsung 830 and so far it works fine in normal use and in hibernation, but if I sleep the unit, it seems to wake up with the same positive outlook and sunny disposition as I do. Which is to say, none at all.
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Re: SSD Stability problems

Postposted on Wed Oct 17, 2012 5:15 pm

Thanks guys. Currently I have updated both the SSD's firmware and the motherboard BIOS and am crossing my fingers!

If that doesn't work I'm loath to mess with the power management TBH, might be time to return it full stop...

Your advice has been hugely appreciated. Thanks again!
i5-4670 @stock | Asus H87M-E| Asus HD6850 840/1100 | 8GB DDR3 @800 | Caviar Black 640GB | Agility 3 120GB | Unicomp Customiser 105 | Logitech MX518 | CM Hyper 212 Evo
I was going to tell a Chemistry joke, but all the good ones argon.
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Re: SSD Stability problems

Postposted on Wed Oct 17, 2012 6:54 pm

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Re: SSD Stability problems

Postposted on Thu Oct 18, 2012 3:27 am

Thanks for your help, indeego...

Looks like the problem is now solved!

I think the reason updating the firmware didn't really come to the front of my mind was that an identical drive has been running perfectly in my laptop for months on end... Silly me.

Cheers guys,

James
i5-4670 @stock | Asus H87M-E| Asus HD6850 840/1100 | 8GB DDR3 @800 | Caviar Black 640GB | Agility 3 120GB | Unicomp Customiser 105 | Logitech MX518 | CM Hyper 212 Evo
I was going to tell a Chemistry joke, but all the good ones argon.
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