1 2 Previous Next 19 Replies Latest reply: Mar 10, 2013 9:33 AM by Stephen Schulte1
Stephen Schulte1 Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

My crucial M4 512 Gb SSD drive arrived today.  I had my mid 2010 MacBook Pro 13 inch running Mountain lion 10.8.2 completely backed up with several other LaCie hard drive backups.  I put the 512 Gb SSD into a transcend SATA USB housing.  I plug this into the MacBook Pro using one USB as well as two USB plugs. Since it seemed to work fine with just one USB plug that's how I first formatted it using Disk Utility and then I ran a SuperDuper! backup. It took about seven hours to fully backup and make a bootable copy with about 335 Gb loaded.  After this was completed I was able to copy files onto it and then still connected with USB booted my MacBook from this. Even connected with USB it was notably faster in opening programs like Word and Excel.

 

I then shut down my MacBook and plugged the Transcend housing with the Crucial SSD into my eight-year-old PowerBook G4 12 inch. I changed the name so that it would be identical to the hard drive I had on my MacBook. (I had originally called it a slightly different name then the main internal 5400 RPM hard drive on my MacBook Pro. But now I wanted to change it and make it the exact same name because I was going to put it inside the MacBook Pro). I ejected this but then decided to plug it back in just to check to see if it was faster on the PowerBook as well even though of course I wouldn't be able to boot from it.  At this time it was not recognized by the PowerBook. I took it over to the MacBook Pro and it was also not recognized with either one or two USB plugs for power.  Disk utility did not see this SSD– it was like it was not there.

 

Nonetheless I said let me try to put it inside the MacBook Pro because it's perhaps something to do with the transcend housing circuitry. I did that it was very easy to do but nothing.  It was not seen by the MacBook Pro and even though I tried three times to start it I never even saw the Apple sign nothing it just sat there up to 10 minutes.

 

I took it out and put the original 500 Gb 5400 RPM Seagate internal drive and everything works perfectly. But of course not the SSD drive that seems to be dead even though I have 335 Gb a very personal data on this drive.

 

So what happened? Did the PowerBook somehow "burnout" the SSD drive?? I purchased this through Amazon in France, I live in Belgium but I think this has a three-year warranty I guess I just have to figure out who to send it back to. And also how to erase this drive because I have passwords and many other things on this drive. 

 

I am willing to try anything to try to get this drive to be recognized. I appreciate any and all comments, including, if I have to send it back, how I can erase the data which I believe is on there. And is this just a fluke? Why did it work for seven hours and then suddenly fail to be recognized?

 

Thanks for any comments I am just shaking my head in disbelief.  A week ago my friend and I took an exact similar Crucial M4 512 SSD and put it in his six-year-old iMac. It worked perfectly and has worked perfectly for him all week and that encouraged me to order one and it was fine the first seven hours. What happened??

 

I feel completely lost and sick to the stomach.

 

Best regards,

 

Steve

9 March 2013


MacBook Pro, OS X Mountain Lion, Also a Mac SE running 6.0.4 - not upgrading that!
  • 1. Re: SSD drive stopped working after 7 hours
    Mini-Mac Level 3 Level 3 (785 points)

    WOW.....what a fiasco.

     

    First thing you could do is a PRAM and Power reset on your MBP.  Then plug in your USB SSD drive and maybe it will recognize.

     

    What I would have done is simple format the drive with a USB enclosure then install in you MBP.  I would NOT recommend cloning at all....simply reinstall your OS then use TM or drag your files onto the SSD drive from the drive you replaced it with.

  • 2. Re: SSD drive stopped working after 7 hours
    Stephen Schulte1 Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    The people at Crucial talk about power cycling it taking about one hour to do it but I'm not really sure how to do that on a laptop.

     

    This is not being recognized on the power G4 nor on the MacBook Pro so I really don't know what resetting pram is going to do.

     

    Anyone that has had this issue on the Macintosh especially the MacBook Pro I really look forward to a step-by-step procedure on how to do power recycling or any other suggestions.

     

    And here I thought I solid-state drive would be 10 to 100 times more reliable than a hard drive… In 25 years of computing I only had three hard drives fail on me and my very first hours with an SSD drive it goes unrecognized.

     

    A bit incredible.

     

    Steve

  • 3. Re: SSD drive stopped working after 7 hours
    OGELTHORPE Level 7 Level 7 (25,790 points)

    Have you tried to attach the SSD in an enclosure to your MBP and see if it is recognized in Disk Utility?  If so I suggest erasing and reformatting it and start the process again.

     

    Ciao.

  • 4. Re: SSD drive stopped working after 7 hours
    Grant Bennet-Alder Level 8 Level 8 (49,275 points)

    You have a very small sample size. Anything could happen.

     

    You have a very long warranty. Send it back and let it be their problem. Don't anguish over it. Stuff happens.

  • 5. Re: SSD drive stopped working after 7 hours
    Stephen Schulte1 Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    I cannot get the drive in an external SATA – USB enclosure to be recognized by Disk Utility or anything.  Worked fine for seven hours as superduper cloned the drive. Then it worked for about 10 minutes including a boot from the external enclosure. Then as I said above stopped working totally invisible.

     

    Has anyone done a power cycling of an SSD drive from a MacBook Pro? If so let me know how to do it the instructions on the crucial website seem oriented towards a Windows machine.

     

    Thanks!  Certainly I can (and probably will) return this drive but sure would like to see if it can be fixed.

     

    Steve

  • 6. Re: SSD drive stopped working after 7 hours
    SwankPeRFection Level 4 Level 4 (1,435 points)

    Well, you've tried everything else.  Try the firmware update utility.  If it doesn't see it, it's definitely dead.

     

    http://www.crucial.com/support/firmware.aspx

  • 7. Re: SSD drive stopped working after 7 hours
    FatMac>MacPro Level 4 Level 4 (2,390 points)

    Stephen Schulte1 wrote:


    ...Has anyone done a power cycling of an SSD drive from a MacBook Pro? If so let me know how to do it the instructions on the crucial website seem oriented towards a Windows machine...

    I've never had to power cycle an SSD, let alone on a laptop (mine's in a Mac Pro), but the Crucial instructions here http://forum.crucial.com/t5/Solid-State-Drives-SSD-Knowledge/Why-did-my-SSD-quot -disappear-quot-from-my-system/ta-p/65215 seem to deal with a Mac as well as PC's. Note the comment about not using a USB bus powered enclosure which sounds like what you've got and may defeat the purpose. Indeed, if I read the instructions correctly, Crucial would really prefer that you install the SSD directly in the laptop.

     

    A better solution might be something like this: http://eshop.macsales.com/item/NewerTech/U3NVSPATA/ since your SSD can have power applied to it without the data connector actually being connected to anything at all (i.e., no computer necessary, which is pretty cool if it works). Looking at the instructions in the link for using desktop computers for power cycling, the emphasis seems to be on allowing "you to only connect the SATA power connection, which improves the odds of the power cycle being successful" and that's the advantage of the Startup Manager "in that it gives the drive power without any data throughput."

     

    At the same time my suggestion of using the Universal Drive Adapter is based on my understanding of how the power cycling process is supposed to work and how the Universal Drive Adapter does work (I have two and they're very handy) and either or both understandings may be faulty, so caveat emptor.

  • 8. Re: SSD drive stopped working after 7 hours
    SwankPeRFection Level 4 Level 4 (1,435 points)

    I read through all that and it seems stupid and non-logical to do all of that to get the drive working again.  No HD behaves this way and no SSD should either.  Who has time to do all of that every time something like this happens.  A hard drive never cares how it's powered on and even if you connect data without power there's still no issues, it simply won't show up.  Once power is connected, a reboot or data disconnect/reconnect allows it to be detected again, some don't even require this (depends on BIOS/EFI of the system it's on).

     

    If Crucial won't admit this is a firmware issue or just a high failure rate of their SSDs due to the controller on them, then they have a problem.  SSDs have been known to fail a lot and most of the failures are due to the controllers being used on them as opposed to the actual flash memory on them.  For the longest time Sandforce controllers sucked big time and there are still plenty of people out there who refuse to trust Sandforce when it comes to SSDs because of the high failure rate you see with them.  For me personally, I go by two things reported failure rate vs firmware update frequency.  If I see a ton of firmware updates for a particular product, I will wait until the next generation comes out or go buy something else.  Don't get me wrong, Crucial m4 drives certainly are a bang for the buck kind of things, but when it comes to your system being as reliable with an SSD as it was with a mechanical drive, I just can't trust them.  I honestly don't trust any SSD drives right now.  Over the summer I'm hoping to pick up a Samsung 840 Pro, but only if the reviews stay high and the failure rates stay low.  We'll see what happens.

  • 9. Re: SSD drive stopped working after 7 hours
    FatMac>MacPro Level 4 Level 4 (2,390 points)

    SwankPeRFection wrote:

     

    I read through all that and it seems stupid and non-logical to do all of that to get the drive working again.  No HD behaves this way and no SSD should either.  Who has time to do all of that every time something like this happens...

    I couldn't agree more, with the additional thought that with something as potentially iffy as an SSD in such a critical role, I'd get it from a vendor I know is reliable and eager to make good on any problems.

     

    It took me a while to extract what I thought was the critical information needed to arrive at a perhaps novel solution and that shouldn't be necessary at all. But in this case, the OP has a legitimate concern about wanting "to erase this drive because I have passwords and many other things on this drive" and he can't do that until he gets access to it.

     

    While I'm really impressed by how much faster the SSD I've installed is than the HD it replaces, I've tightened up my backup cloning process in addition to TM just in case. And I've left some unused space to help out over-provisioning and give the SSD a break.

  • 10. Re: SSD drive stopped working after 7 hours
    Stephen Schulte1 Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    SOLVED--- at least for today!

     

    First thanks for everyone's comments and advise.  All was motivating and lots of good information--

     

    Within 18 hours Crucial responded not just once, but 3 times.  They worked evenings and a weekend to send not just standard copy-paste info, but direct, personal responses to my questions.  Bravo!

     

    In a nutshell, my 7 hours of cloning 335 gb of data via SuperDuper! just seemed to overwhelm the SSD.  Crucial even said that.  It needed rest!  Then when I went over to the underpowered USB only connectionto the PBG4 that was the final straw.  To bed and this morning (well it's already tomorrow here…) yesterday morning I attached the (now rested) drive to a POWERED USB enclosure and began a 30 minute power cycle with my MBP in the StartUp Manager stage.  (Start with option key held down and when the screen shows, just do nothing).  Less than 15 minutes into that cycle I looked over and voilà the SSD drive was sitting alongside my main internal HD icon!  I booted from it and did so for an hour and 10 (fast) boots before removing it from the case, putting it in the HD bay and voilà #2 - worked great.

     

    I then purchased and installed SmartSleep -- in order to make certain my Mac would always only just go into SLEEP (and not the deeper HIBERNATE) mode.  It seems if the Mac hibernates, the SSD Drive (any drive, not just this one) may not wake up until another power cycle is done.  Not good just before a presentation in front of a customer…

     

    Here I was thinking an SSD was going to be more reliable than a spinning HD.  Faster, oh, yeah-- but after this experience and reading the above and a lot more--- don't think so.  Even with the latest firmware (which was already on the SSD) - seems they can still "disappear" at times…

     

    I think my solution will be to upgrade my RAM to 16 gb (SugarSync, DropBox and general programs seem to eat up my 8gb fast)-- but also to remove the Optical/DVD Drive and using an OWC Data Double rack, put my just-removed Seagate 500 gb 2.5" HD into the MBP in the Optical Drive area.  (I know, it would be better back in the original housing for vibration, cooling and such-- but I want this to just be a duplicate and have the SSD as the MAIN DRIVE -- and I've read there are issues with that if the MAIN drive is in the optical bay.  Any comments appreciated).

     

    Then I'll backup my SSD to my internal HD each evening via PowerManager wakeup and SuperDuper! schedule.  If ever one of the drives stops working, I should be OK on-the-go with the other.  (Of course I generally carry an external iOMEGA GO drive with a full bootable backup if my trip is more than 2 days; plus I have SugarSync with my top 10 gb of info in the cloud; plus my daily and weekly backups at the home office and the quarterly BackUp in my safe deposit box at the bank downtown…  I have most key information from 1990 onwards on my Mac-- likely will travel more with my iPad only in the future because if someone ever takes my Mac, then their name is Stephen and I'm dead…)

     

    I'm having problems with a few programs like MS Office 2011, PowerManager and SugarSync but hope to solve them soon.  iTunes 11 lost 400 of my 500 album covers, but I re-installed a few files (from a backup) and all is 100% back to OK there.

     

    I have 1085 apps on my MBP for my iPad3.  Only have 600 in use on my iPad, but when doing the first sync with the SSD it tried to put all 1085 onto my iPad.  ONLY WAY to delete apps once showing on the iPad seems to be one-at-a-time in iTunes or on the iPad.  No way to cmd-click on 20 at once and say REMOVE???

     

    And how to manage those apps better-- if I delete an app in the finder on my Mac is it gone for good or is a copy always in the cloud…?   OK THAT's another post for later----- but the SSD issue has opened a lot of doors!

     

    Thanks again and any additional comments welcome.

     

    Best regards,

     

     

    Steve Schulte

    Sunday 10 March 2013

  • 11. Re: SSD drive stopped working after 7 hours
    SwankPeRFection Level 4 Level 4 (1,435 points)

    Steve, I wouldn't accept that "it's too much work and it overwhelmed the SSD" excuse from Crucial.  This seems like a really bad issue due to firmware issues or otherwise.  You can do whatever you want, but ask yourself if what Crucial told you is acceptable.  You can take a regular old hard drive and run it 24/7/365 and do nothing but copy/deletes over and over again and it won't have this issue unless the drive fails for some reason.  I wouldn't trust this type of behavior from an SSD who's technology is meant to replace that of a traditional hard drive but be faster.  Also, other USB based flash memory drives don't exhibit this same type issue, EVER.  There's either an issue with the controller on the Crucial or the flash memory Micron is putting in them.

     

    Anyway, I'm just trying to make sure you don't end up with a useless brick at the most inopportune time.

  • 12. Re: SSD drive stopped working after 7 hours
    Grant Bennet-Alder Level 8 Level 8 (49,275 points)

    Also, other USB based flash memory drives don't exhibit this same type issue, EVER

    Yes, they do. The first SSD I bought came in a package that advertised on the outside, "Cloning software included!" Once opened, there was no cloning software, and there was a tech note that said, "You clone onto this drive, we tear up your warranty."

     

    SSD drives can be overwhelmed by unrelenting data writes. They need time for garbage collection.

     

    And anyone running an SSD needs to do something about "deleted" data.  Mac OS X simply adds those blocks to the free pool, and does not clear them. This forces the SSD to continue to carry and replicate them as part of its much larger "superblocks", as if they were still valid.

     

    One can periodically consolidate free space and immediately Zero the free space, but TRIM Enabler from groths makes a simple patch to enable TRIM for non-Apple SSDs.

     

    Apple has not tested this with third-party SSDs, and does not endorse it. I have been running it trouble-free, but your mileage may vary. There are other TRIM solutions as well.

     

    If you enable TRIM and then run Disk Utility ( Repair Disk ) on an Iternal drive, an additional line appears in the ouput: "TRIM-ing unused blocks" (or similar). It is very satisfying.

  • 13. Re: SSD drive stopped working after 7 hours
    SwankPeRFection Level 4 Level 4 (1,435 points)

    I'm not talking about SSDs.  Did I say SSD?  No, I said "other USB based flash drives" (i.e. memory sticks, microSD cards installed in USB readers, etc.  Like it or not, those are just smaller version of the same thing an SSD is, some a bit slower, but the technology is the same.  There is absolutely no excuse for SSD manufacturers to expect their customers to abide by these asinine rules they decide to make up (like the ones you mentioned in your post).  That's ridiculous man...

  • 14. Re: SSD drive stopped working after 7 hours
    Shootist007 Level 6 Level 6 (16,640 points)

    I've had that same problem with the crucial M4 SSDs. Not on my computers but on a friends I was setting up for him.

     

    I use Intel SSDs and have never had to do that. I like the speed of the M4 but the first time my friend New PC wouldn't boot or see the SSD I thought I was Sunk, I Fried my friends SSD. But after several Reboots the drive showed up and started the PC. Then it happened again and then I started looking through the Crucial site and saw the problem.

     

     

    Good Luck & Best Wishes.

1 2 Previous Next