SSD died after dropping laptop

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Dwedit
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SSD died after dropping laptop

Post by Dwedit » Sat Dec 01, 2012 9:43 pm

So my SSD just died after I dropped my laptop several inches. My last backup was 6 months ago.
The worst part was when I restored my system image (from the SSD to a different hard drive), my hard drive became G: and had the wrong drive letter, and Windows XP wouldn't boot anymore. Took a lot of work to get it to boot again.

What worked:
* Using Ultimate Boot CD For Windows:
* mount the C: drive using Microsoft DiskPart (Disk Management wouldn't mount it for some reason)
* Loading the System registry hive (C:\windows\system32\config\system), and copying registry keys from HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\MountedDevices to the real registry hive
* Using sfdisk on linux to make sure the partition ID was NOT set to 82 (linux default). Damn you gparted!

So BACKUP YOUR DAMN FILES. No excuses. Buy bigger hard drives if you don't have anywhere else to put them.
I use hard drive images as my form of backup.
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blargg
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Re: SSD died after dropping laptop

Post by blargg » Sat Dec 01, 2012 11:07 pm

Can you describe what observations you've made that lead you to conclude that the SSD died? Also, when you probe it from a working machine, what does it see? No device at all, one that doesn't allow any reading, etc.?

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Dwedit
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Re: SSD died after dropping laptop

Post by Dwedit » Sat Dec 01, 2012 11:13 pm

First, there was a BSOD about 20 seconds after the laptop hit the table, presumably it wasn't trying to access the disk before then. Then the ThinkPad BIOS said there was a hard drive read error.

I then tried plugging it into two low-end Intel motherboard machines (Atom machine and Celeron machine). They wouldn't even let me into BIOS setup with the drive plugged in. One just crashed, one gave a "No boot device" error message (different from the one you get when the BIOS finishes running and there's no boot device at that point).
I tried hotplugging it (probably a mistake). Then it became an 8MB drive that only reads zeroes, but then the BIOS setup ran without crashing or giving a "no boot device" error message.

It was an Intel X25-M 80GB SSD.
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koitsu
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Re: SSD died after dropping laptop

Post by koitsu » Sat Dec 01, 2012 11:17 pm

Can't explain earlier behaviour, but the 8MB capacity bug is known (search Google for "Intel 320 8MB") and was fixed with a firmware update. I'm aware you have an X25-M, but given that the 320 came out *after* the X25-M, I'm inclined to believe the earlier models could suffer from the same behaviour. The bug got tickled when you hotplugged it (users experiencing the 320-series 8MB bug often did not disclose the fact that they were shutting their systems down abruptly (yanking power, hard power-off, etc.)).

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Re: SSD died after dropping laptop

Post by thefox » Sun Dec 02, 2012 4:49 am

Dwedit wrote:So BACKUP YOUR DAMN FILES. No excuses. Buy bigger hard drives if you don't have anywhere else to put them.
I use hard drive images as my form of backup.
Thanks for the reminder, I've been putting off creating a personal backup system for the last... uhm... year or so. Maybe I'll finally get around to it. As it is I only have my most important projects under version control on a remote server (using Git).
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blargg
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Re: SSD died after dropping laptop

Post by blargg » Sun Dec 02, 2012 9:58 am

Part of a backup strategy is to separate the files that you can easily replace from those that you've created yourself. Generally the latter category takes up a fraction of the space as the former, unless you create music or videos. Only if you have a huge backup drive can you just blindly backup everything.

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Re: SSD died after dropping laptop

Post by infiniteneslives » Sun Dec 02, 2012 10:05 am

blargg wrote:Part of a backup strategy is to separate the files that you can easily replace from those that you've created yourself. Generally the latter category takes up a fraction of the space as the former, unless you create music or videos. Only if you have a huge backup drive can you just blindly backup everything.
I find Dropbox to be a great FREE solution for these file. Not only do I have nearly instant back ups online with some version control, but I've also got backups on every pc I've got Dropbox installed on. It's carefree and I don't have to do anything special to store/access the files.
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Re: SSD died after dropping laptop

Post by tepples » Sun Dec 02, 2012 10:15 am

blargg wrote:Part of a backup strategy is to separate the files that you can easily replace from those that you've created yourself. Generally the latter category takes up a fraction of the space as the former, unless you create music or videos.
I created the video of your flowing palette demo, and I've created several other NES-related videos as well. A 2 GB Dropbox might not be quite enough to hold my entire oeuvre. But now that the market has corrected itself a year after historic flooding in Thailand, I'd bet most people can fit what they have created into the terabyte of space in a $100 USB hard drive.

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Re: SSD died after dropping laptop

Post by 3gengames » Sun Dec 02, 2012 1:48 pm

I put my stuff to google drive every once in a while. That's about it. Plus I have 2 partitions on my HDD with the same info, and then my flash drive with backups too. :)

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Re: SSD died after dropping laptop

Post by WedNESday » Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:01 pm

And the lesson here?

1. Backup your stuff as often as possible.
2. Be careful when handling laptops as you can never 'drop' your PC unless during a relatively rare move.
3. SSDs (if that is what is at fault here) aren't as safe as people think.

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Re: SSD died after dropping laptop

Post by rainwarrior » Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:21 pm

Most of my personal projects I put on an free private subversion repository at http://assembla.com. Public projects are usually on Google Code or something. That takes care of my most important backup needs, day-to-day.

Stuff that doesn't fit these categories (e.g. long term storage, personal media collection, etc.) I manually copy to a pair of raid 0 hard drives that are in a relatively safe location. This comes up much less frequently. I'm considering hiring some sort of online storage service as a secondary backup for those things, but the cost and initial bandwidth required to do so has so far kept me from getting around to it.

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Re: SSD died after dropping laptop

Post by TmEE » Sun Dec 02, 2012 10:00 pm

Yesterday I made a full backup of my work drive, prior to doing a full reinstall. My last backup was from march... Got to do them more often !

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Re: SSD died after dropping laptop

Post by WedNESday » Mon Dec 03, 2012 3:04 am

TmEE wrote:Yesterday I made a full backup of my work drive, prior to doing a full reinstall. My last backup was from march... Got to do them more often !
At least something good is now coming from somone else's misfortune.

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Re: SSD died after dropping laptop

Post by TmEE » Tue Dec 04, 2012 7:11 am

I did not know about his problem, I moved my PC inners to a new chassis and I thought I'd do a reinstall while I was at it to get 30 second boot again instead of 2 mins...

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Re: SSD died after dropping laptop

Post by WedNESday » Tue Dec 04, 2012 9:44 am

TmEE wrote:I did not know about his problem, I moved my PC inners to a new chassis and I thought I'd do a reinstall while I was at it to get 30 second boot again instead of 2 mins...
Once you go SSD you never go back.

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