Is there any way to restore this SSD to original capacity?

Discussion in 'SSDs & Data Storage' started by mnewxcv, Jun 6, 2018.

  1. mnewxcv

    mnewxcv [H]ardness Supreme

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    So I bought this SSD:

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Micron-M60...e=STRK:MEBIDX:IT&_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649

    As the listing says, this is a 512GB m600 that has been resized to 412GB. The seller sold 8 like this and I bought 1. Not sure what software was used to shrink the drive, but the micron software does not allow capacity changing on m600 ssds. Is there some software (preferably win10 compatible) that I can restore the drive to 512gb? If all else fails, I will just use it as a 412GB drive. Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Tiberian

    Tiberian DILLIGAFuck

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    I can't imagine a single logical or rational reason for doing whatever that reseller did unless the drive has some bad cells on it in the area they have effectively "roped off" from being used. I suppose if you attach the drive to a controller and then check the storage capacity is it being reported as 512GB or 412GB? You might try attaching it and then using a tool like Parted Magic (a Linux-based bootable drive partitioning tool, but it's not free) or perhaps a regular Linux distro like Ubuntu or whatever on a USB stick and give Gparted a shot at the drive. Remove all the partition data from it and initialize it with a clean partition table and see what happens.

    Seems like a decent price even if it has been neutered to 412GB for whatever the reason was. You might consider contacting Micron and asking them if such a practice is possible too. I know you can do HPA (Host Protected Access) areas on a hard drive but I cannot say with any certainty that such a practice is doable or even viable on an SSD. HPA sections are "off limits" to any OS use, and traditional drive partitioning tools can't mess with that stuff either. Tools like MHDD can access, modify, and even remove HPA sections so it's possible - I'm simply saying that it IS possible to section off portions of a drive so they're inaccessible for whatever the reason(s) might be. This has nothing to do with partitioning, however, as HPA is down to the hardware level, not file system

    MHDD is a DOS-based application so it can be tricky to use with modern hardware, and it can't use true SATA mode drives meaning the SATA controller needs to be set for fallback ATA compatibility for the app to even "see" the drive as attached. You can find more info about MHDD here:

    https://hddguru.com/software/2005.10.02-MHDD/

    It's an older tool but I use it regularly to do drive maintenance on some hardware when needed - this is one reason I love keeping older laptops like my trusty Dell Latitude E6400 around: the SATA controller it has can be set for true SATA or ATA fallback compatibility and it has an eSATA port on it too.

    Anyway, another wall of text that might or might not help. The only way that I personally know of that sections off the raw physical hardware on hard drives removing any OS-level access is a tool that can modify the HPA on modern drives, but again I cannot say if such tools will work with SSDs, that's something you'd have to discover on your own.

    Good luck.
     
  3. mnewxcv

    mnewxcv [H]ardness Supreme

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    thanks, I will try some of the software you mentioned. The drive shows up as a 412gb drive in bios (with the 512gb model number). I assume the drives would perform better with the smaller capacity, but not sure why they cut the drive back instead of just making the partition that size. But, I was seeing 250gb drives for that price, so I can't complain too much. By the way, my drive has 200 hours, 12 power cycles.
     
  4. Tiberian

    Tiberian DILLIGAFuck

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    SSDs don't work like hard drives: less space on an SSD is actually not good because it limits the amount of wear cycles on the drive overall. Having a lot of free space means the drive's internal controller and circuitry "has room to breathe" basically in terms of wear leveling - having big huge static files on SSDs is not good for them either since those cells end up not getting much wear on them (since the data is static and not changing over time) compared to the other ones that might get used and refreshed far more regularly.

    200 hours and 12 cycles, I wouldn't trust that info because that too can be reset using the right software and hardware tools that professional hard drive and SSD refurbishing companies have access to (including Micron itself).

    Have you tried to contact Micron about this yet? I still say it's worth a shot, they might even be able to tell you some info about the drive itself - how old it really is, whether or not someone had sent it back to them for a refurb or defect and then Micron did whatever to it then dumped it on the refurb/used market. I'll bet the reseller that you bought it from barely paid $10 for it if even that much so they made a pretty profit off you and many others. :)
     
  5. Blue Fox

    Blue Fox [H]ardForum Junkie

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    You have it completely backwards. Over-provisioning the drive actually will help extend the lifespan. SSDs normally already come over-provisioned from the factory. A 500GB one will have at least 512GB of NAND.

    Presumably the previous owner of the OP's drive did the same. Write heavy workloads can benefit from it.
     
  6. NoOther

    NoOther [H]ardness Supreme

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    My first thought was someone sold you a counterfeit drive. Not sure why anyone would go through the process of limiting the space on the drive, unless it is a simple partition that can be removed.
     
    drescherjm likes this.
  7. deaedius

    deaedius Gawd

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    Weird stuff I've never heard of a 412gig SSD unless it has a hidden partition taking up some space.
     
  8. NoOther

    NoOther [H]ardness Supreme

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    Just to piggyback on my ealier comment. There are a number of fakes coming out of China especially. What they do is remove the internal components and replace them with cheaper flash components. Often this is first detected by a mismatch of size, then by a mismatch in the reported speed of the drive.
     
  9. Blue Fox

    Blue Fox [H]ardForum Junkie

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    It's unlikely they have a counterfeit drive. When you over-provision a drive, you can specify any value you want, which in this case is a convenient 100GB.
     
  10. mnewxcv

    mnewxcv [H]ardness Supreme

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    yeah, I just don't know how to get it back. I'm ready to say screw it and just run it at 412. Not going to be a problem either way.
     
  11. Blue Fox

    Blue Fox [H]ardForum Junkie

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  12. mnewxcv

    mnewxcv [H]ardness Supreme

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    I will give it a shot. The storage executive GUI software did not work, hopefully command line does!
     
  13. viper_0307

    viper_0307 Limp Gawd

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    Download Micron Storage Executive, which can enable overprovisioning. The last owner likely set aside some space for this.
     
  14. mnewxcv

    mnewxcv [H]ardness Supreme

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  15. Formula.350

    Formula.350 Gawd

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    FYI I had actually just bought a drive from that same seller last week, but a 6TB HGST HDD. I too noticed the SSDs and was tempted by a couple. It's not a flaky seller, they just sell pulled drives from their servers that were ultimately, in all likelihood, pulled to be upgraded.

    So just to throw my 2cents worth in on the already-concluded reason: it's to provide further over-provisioning to extended the drive's lifecycle. It's simply quarantining a section of drive that takes it out of the user/OS's ability to partition. That way it's not being actively swapped ever, UNLESS the SSD's controller deems there is a true need for it and will adjust the data accordingly.

    I sorta did this on my Samsung 850 EVO by partitioning it with 100GB instead of the full 120 (111GB usable), but in the end figured this 3D V-NAND lasts forever anyways, and the drive will already have 8GB of provisioning (hence not being 128GB drive), so it's excessive.

    Good seller though. Made it from Cali to my door in East Tennessee (in the sticks) in 2 DAYS via USPS :D
    MORE importantly, the drive I bought is legitimately "Low Hours" just as advertised, and while I haven't confirmed a still active/valid warranty on it, I anticipate that to be true. But yes it's a low hours drive and I checked it with gsSMARTcontrol software. There were NO resets to the SMART data.
    I bought a drive like 2 months back from some other seller and it was sold as "NEW (Refurbished)" and when I got it, it was not "Refurbished" it was just "Certified Good" by some third party company that takes old server drives, runs them through some surface tests, deems no bad sectors, and ships them out. The SMART data in CrystalDiskInfo shows 0 hours; however, with gsSMARTcontrol I was able to see the SMART Logs and it showed that there was an "Extended Test" ran at some 23,000+ hours, and then another ran more recently that was somehow at "0" hours ;) Needless to say I sent that drive back. But again this seller, their drives are legitimate (y)