[SOLVED] Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

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Lert
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[SOLVED] Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by Lert »

Hi all
My plan was to install Mint 20 on an external usb SSD to use with my windows laptop. I already was doing this with an older SSD but wanted to start over. Somehow during the installation an error occurred. I tried to start over to no avail.

The SSD works fine when formatted to NTFS but when fromatted to Ext4 shows errors such as 'Superblock checksum does not match superblock while trying to open dev... etc'

My guess is that I have destroyed some part of the file system on the SSD but don't understand why it works ok when in NTFS..

Any ideas?
Last edited by Lert on Thu Aug 13, 2020 5:18 am, edited 2 times in total.
ThaCrip
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Re: Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by ThaCrip »

Once you boot from the Mint installation media, have you tried running GParted and wiping the SSD and then try the Mint installation with EXT4?
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AZgl1500
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Re: Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by AZgl1500 »

ThaCrip wrote:
Wed Aug 12, 2020 1:34 am
Once you boot from the Mint installation media, have you tried running GParted and wiping the SSD and then try the Mint installation with EXT4?
that is what I always do, you do NOT want any trace of a former OS left on the SSD.

I really think, the boot partition is still on your SSD and bollixing up the works.
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Lert
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Re: Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by Lert »

Thanks for the tips. I have deleted partitions, written zeros, redone partition tables etc.

Last try I started with all good and a single NTFS Partition. I get to the part of the installation where you go 'Something else' , Change, Select Ext4 and mount point (\) then OK and Install. Stuff happens for about 30 seconds then everything crashes. Mouse and trackpad unresponsive. Have to do a hard reset.

Anyway, have had enough for today. Will try again in the morning..
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Kadaitcha Man
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Re: Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by Kadaitcha Man »

Lert wrote:
Wed Aug 12, 2020 6:13 am
Thanks for the tips. I have deleted partitions, written zeros, redone partition tables etc.
That's a great way to quickly destroy an SSD.
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Re: Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by AZgl1500 »

Kadaitcha Man wrote:
Wed Aug 12, 2020 6:47 am
Lert wrote:
Wed Aug 12, 2020 6:13 am
Thanks for the tips. I have deleted partitions, written zeros, redone partition tables etc.
That's a great way to quickly destroy an SSD.
what you just did, was to destroy that SSD.
get a new one....

you never, ever, write out Zeros to an SSD, only do a quick Format of a blank partition.
it is NOT a spinning disk anymore, SSDs do not react well to be over-written like you just did.
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deepakdeshp
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Re: Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by deepakdeshp »

Is there a quick format for ext4 file system or just the usual way with gparted or parted?
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ralplpcr
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Re: Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by ralplpcr »

You could use fdisk /dev/sda to make the partitions, and mkfs.ext4 /dev/sda1 to quickly format as ext4? (assuming your drive is /dev/sda... replace the letter with your actual drive)

Either way, you'll need to boot into a live session before formatting/repartitioning your main drive. If it's *NOT* your main drive and not mounted, you can do it with elevated permissions - using sudo su

Gparted is probably the easiest way to do it, though. :)
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MartyMint
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Re: Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by MartyMint »

I would recommend just going with the default suggestions of the installation media, aside from choosing a location for a boot partition. You might even want to skip a Linux boot loader installed on any of the drives and go with a dedicated boot-USB.

I would temper my expectations on the speed and performance of a system running through USB...even an SSD drive...even using a USB 3.1 port...
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Re: Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by Petermint »

you never, ever, write out Zeros to an SSD, only do a quick Format of a blank partition.
Modern SSDs survive that treatment better than disks. It will be slow due to the SSD heating up, which switches on thermal limiting.

Given that the device and all the data is your own, all you need is a quick format. Using the Disks (or Gparted) program, you format the disk first then create the partition. Formatting the disk will rewrite the start of the disk as MBR or GPT. Formatting the partition will write for a while, creating file system blocks. In the background, Linux might write for a while after Disks finishes. You have to wait until the disk light stops blinking then perform a safe remove.

Unplugging a USB storage device early can cause the type of problem you describe in Linux because Linux caches writes then performs the actual write to disk later. The Safely Remove part tells Linux to finish the writes.
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Re: Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by Petermint »

USB 3 is as fast as most magnetic disks and the write speed of cheap SATA SSDs. USB 3 can slow down good NVMe SSDs. If you have one of the faster SSDs, you need USB 3.1 Gen 2 to get the device's maximum speed.

If you have enough memory, you can move temporary files into RAM. Heaps of unused memory can help you tune for speed in several other ways.

If you have spare space on the internal disk, you could create a small boot partition there, say 20 GB, and have your home directory on the external SSD.

When you upgrade all your applications to the free open cross platform versions, your data files can be on a separate NTFS partition in the laptop and access them from both Linux and Windows.

There are lots of ways to configure your system. My preference is a Linux boot partition on the built in SSD. Buy a bigger internal SSD if needed.
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Kadaitcha Man
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Re: Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by Kadaitcha Man »

MartyMint wrote:
Wed Aug 12, 2020 6:30 pm
I would temper my expectations on the speed and performance of a system running through USB...even an SSD drive...even using a USB 3.1 port...
Why would you do that? A SATA SSD is fully capable of running at maximum speed over USB 3.0 and above.
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Kadaitcha Man
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Re: Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by Kadaitcha Man »

Petermint wrote:
Wed Aug 12, 2020 10:36 pm
USB 3 is as fast as most magnetic disks ...
No. USB 3 is far faster than any magnetic disk. The best that can be expected out of spinning rust these days is around 175MB/s whereas USB 3.0 supports 500MB/s.

Goodness, there's some skew whiff technical talk in this thread.
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Re: Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by ThaCrip »

Lert wrote:
Wed Aug 12, 2020 6:13 am
Thanks for the tips. I have deleted partitions, written zeros, redone partition tables etc.
To properly and completely delete all data on a SSD a 'secure erase' can be preformed (which only takes a handful of seconds to do basically once it starts). once you issue a secure erase, all data that was previously on the SSD will not be recoverable. NOTE: this is mainly something a person would do if they where going to donate or give/sell the SSD to another person as then you can be sure they can't recover any data that was on it previously.

it only takes maybe a handful of seconds as I did it on my Samsung 850 EVO SSD not all that long ago. from what I can tell it seems like the drive itself just resets some sort of encryption key to something else so whatever was previously on the SSD can't be read since it resets to a new key etc. it seems like the drive does this internally so even though your using the drive normally (without any encryption to your data) it still functions that way from what I understand and explains why it erases a SSD so fast.

NOTE: I think Crucial refers to 'secure erase' as 'sanitize'. I don't have a Crucial SSD but the software they give you likely has some sort of 'sanitize' option in it.

p.s. 'secure erase' works on regular hard drives to but it takes much longer to complete since the drive itself overwrites everything on the drive. I used the free 'ultimate boot cd' to do it on mine occasionally. seems to be around 1.5hrs to complete on some hard drives I used (it does not give a progress bar either, just tells you when it's finished). https://partedmagic.com/secure-erase/ ; that's the gist of it. but I loaded Parted Magic (which the last free version of that was apparently from the year 2013) through the Ultimate Boot CD (i.e. https://www.majorgeeks.com/files/detail ... ubcd).html ) to issue 'secure erase' on my hard drive/SSD.
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Re: Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by Petermint »

SSDs have to erase then write to change data. There is a small index indicating which segments can be erased and written. Secure erase only has to change the index, not all the segments. The segments can be erased later in the background. It is equivalent to a global TRIM.
Lert
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Re: [SOLVED] Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by Lert »

Thanks all for the many good suggestions. I have learned a lot during this exercise.
I'm rather embarrassed to relate that after trying just about everything over two days that the problem was a faulty SATA to USB cable! The reason I'm embarrassed is that after a full working life in the technical game I neglected to look at the first thing I should have, the guzzinta and the guzzouta bit.. :oops:

Thanks again..
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Re: [SOLVED] Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by senjoz »

Speed of SSD disks over USB connection was mentioned in earlier messages. I can contribute some benchmarks for a cheap M2 sata SSD disk in USB 3.1 gen1 M2 external enclosure and the same disk mounted in the internal pcie card with M2 sata and nvme slots.

SSD in USB
ssd_in_usb.png

SSD in internal pcie card
ssd_in_pcie_card_.png

It can be seen that connection over USB 3.1 gen1 does not limit sata SSD disk speed very much. But, the problem with SSD disks in external USB enclosures can be trim support. Many controllers in external USB enclosures do not support trim. I cannot trim the tested disk if it is connected over USB connection, othervise it runs LM 19.3 xfce hybrid uefi/bios installation very well.

I would say:
USB keys have low program/erase endurance. They are appropriate only for installation, rescue or file transfer operations. SSD disks in external USB enclosures with USB 3.1 gen1 or better connection are appropriate also for running operating systems, but support for trim should be checked before.

Regards,
Jože
Last edited by senjoz on Fri Aug 14, 2020 10:27 am, edited 2 times in total.
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AndyMH
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Re: [SOLVED] Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by AndyMH »

the problem was a faulty SATA to USB cable
which is why I have two, they're cheap enough - just in case!
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Rocky Bennett
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Re: Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by Rocky Bennett »

AZgl1500 wrote:
Wed Aug 12, 2020 1:27 pm
Kadaitcha Man wrote:
Wed Aug 12, 2020 6:47 am
Lert wrote:
Wed Aug 12, 2020 6:13 am
Thanks for the tips. I have deleted partitions, written zeros, redone partition tables etc.
That's a great way to quickly destroy an SSD.
what you just did, was to destroy that SSD.
get a new one....

you never, ever, write out Zeros to an SSD, only do a quick Format of a blank partition.
it is NOT a spinning disk anymore, SSDs do not react well to be over-written like you just did.


Although I have written zeroes to my SSD a couple of dozen times, I did not know any better. Right now I am using that SSD that has been completely written over with zeroes many ,many times, but I will try to remember to throw that particular SSD away someday.
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Re: [SOLVED] Repair a Crucial 250GB SSD

Post by senjoz »

My understanding of secure erase of SSD disks (or overwriting whole disk with whatever numbers) is that it uses one program/erase count. Program/erase endurance of SSD disks depends on flash type. Years ago it was said that SLC flash can endure 10000 program/erase operations, MLC 3000 and TLC 1000. Nowadays mainstream SSDs use 3D TLC and QLC flash chips and things may be different.

Regards,
Jože
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