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My Samsung SSD 860 EVO 250GB failed out of the blue after only 14 months. It was the system drive of a Win10 PC which was only rarely used. I am reasonably certain that it is toast, but because it contains several thousand pictures which I'd really like to keep, I wanted to see if there's anything I can still do.

After the PC didn't boot up any more ("No boot media present") I took it out and tried connecting it to my other PC via powered SATA/USB adapters (both an older one and a new one from Inateck with USB 3.0). While it does not appear under "My PC", it recognised that there is something and the disk briefly shows up in Device Manager and in Disk Management as an uninitialized disk. But trying to initialize it fails with an IO error and the disk sort of flickers in and out of existence. with the older SATA adapter I tried using different SATA cables but the results were the same. Now I tried it on my xubuntu box. Here is what I have so far and I would like to know if more can be done.

  • Testdisk either doesn't list the drive or hangs at "Please Wait...." for a long time
  • Gparted hangs
  • Gsmartcontrol hangs

Then I tried a few commandline utilities. The disk is sdc

USER@BOX:~$ lsblk
NAME   MAJ:MIN RM   SIZE RO TYPE MOUNTPOINT
sda      8:0    0 149,1G  0 disk 
└─sda1   8:1    0 149,1G  0 part /
sdb      8:16   0 111,8G  0 disk 
└─sdb1   8:17   0 111,8G  0 part 
sdc      8:32   0 232,9G  0 disk 

USER@BOX:~$ lsscsi
[0:0:0:0]    disk    ATA      SAMSUNG HM160HC  0-10  /dev/sda 
[1:0:0:0]    disk    ATA      SAMSUNG HM121HC  0-10  /dev/sdb 
[2:0:0:0]    disk    ASMedia  ASM105x          0     /dev/sdc 


USER@BOX:~$ sudo smartctl --all /dev/sdc
[sudo] password for USER: 
smartctl 6.6 2016-05-31 r4324 [i686-linux-5.4.0-66-generic] (local build)
Copyright (C) 2002-16, Bruce Allen, Christian Franke, www.smartmontools.org

=== START OF INFORMATION SECTION ===
Device Model:     Samsung SSD 860 EVO 250GB
Serial Number:    S3YJNX0M525844H
LU WWN Device Id: 5 002538 e40fc29fc
Firmware Version: RVT02B6Q
User Capacity:    250.059.350.016 bytes [250 GB]
Sector Size:      512 bytes logical/physical
Rotation Rate:    Solid State Device
Form Factor:      2.5 inches
Device is:        Not in smartctl database [for details use: -P showall]
ATA Version is:   Unknown(0x09fc), ACS-4 T13/BSR INCITS 529 revision 5
SATA Version is:  SATA 3.1, 6.0 Gb/s (current: 6.0 Gb/s)
Local Time is:    Mon Mar  8 15:54:52 2021 CET
SMART support is: Available - device has SMART capability.
SMART support is: Enabled

On a later try, smartctl hung for a long time and finished with Read SMART Data failed: Connection timed out.

Then I checked dmesg which ends on blk_update_request: I/O error, dev sdc, sector 0

[  996.856691] blk_update_request: I/O error, dev sdc, sector 0 op 0x0:(READ) flags 0x0 phys_seg 1 prio class 0
[  996.856704] Buffer I/O error on dev sdc, logical block 0, async page read
[ 1027.282503] sd 2:0:0:0: [sdc] tag#13 uas_eh_abort_handler 0 uas-tag 1 inflight: CMD IN 
[ 1027.282518] sd 2:0:0:0: [sdc] tag#13 CDB: Read(10) 28 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 08 00
[ 1027.296850] scsi host2: uas_eh_device_reset_handler start
[ 1027.424850] usb 1-6: reset high-speed USB device number 4 using ehci-pci
[ 1027.582666] scsi host2: uas_eh_device_reset_handler success
[ 1058.000845] scsi host2: uas_eh_device_reset_handler start
[ 1058.007434] sd 2:0:0:0: [sdc] tag#14 uas_zap_pending 0 uas-tag 1 inflight: CMD 
[ 1058.007449] sd 2:0:0:0: [sdc] tag#14 CDB: Read(10) 28 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 08 00
[ 1058.132851] usb 1-6: reset high-speed USB device number 4 using ehci-pci
[ 1058.291082] scsi host2: uas_eh_device_reset_handler success
[ 1088.708928] INFO: task blkid:1363 blocked for more than 724 seconds.
[ 1088.708942]       Not tainted 5.4.0-66-generic #74~18.04.2-Ubuntu
[ 1088.708946] "echo 0 > /proc/sys/kernel/hung_task_timeout_secs" disables this message.
[ 1088.708951] blkid           D    0  1363   1361 0x00000000
[ 1088.708959] Call Trace:
[ 1088.708978]  __schedule+0x292/0x7d0
[ 1088.708987]  schedule+0x2e/0xa0
[ 1088.708994]  schedule_preempt_disabled+0xd/0x10
[ 1088.709001]  __mutex_lock.isra.9+0x207/0x490
[ 1088.709008]  ? _cond_resched+0x17/0x40
[ 1088.709015]  __mutex_lock_slowpath+0x12/0x20
[ 1088.709021]  mutex_lock+0x2f/0x40
[ 1088.709027]  __blkdev_get+0x70/0x4c0
[ 1088.709034]  ? I_BDEV+0x10/0x10
[ 1088.709042]  ? iget5_locked+0x1c/0x70
[ 1088.709047]  blkdev_get+0xc6/0x110
[ 1088.709052]  ? bd_acquire+0xa0/0xc0
[ 1088.709056]  blkdev_open+0x7d/0x90
[ 1088.709062]  do_dentry_open+0x1ca/0x3b0
[ 1088.709067]  ? blkdev_get_by_dev+0x40/0x40
[ 1088.709072]  vfs_open+0x25/0x30
[ 1088.709078]  path_openat+0x29c/0x1290
[ 1088.709088]  do_filp_open+0x6a/0xd0
[ 1088.709097]  ? __alloc_fd+0x36/0x170
[ 1088.709103]  do_sys_open+0x1ad/0x2c0
[ 1088.709109]  sys_openat+0x1b/0x20
[ 1088.709115]  do_fast_syscall_32+0x7f/0x240
[ 1088.709123]  entry_SYSENTER_32+0xac/0xff
[ 1088.709127] EIP: 0xb7f86bb5
[ 1088.709134] Code: 00 3d 39 67 00 00 0f 84 6f 13 00 00 3d 29 67 00 00 0f 85 86 eb ff ff c7 86 dc 00 00 00 15 00 00 00 e9 ff e9 ff ff 8d b4 26 00 <00> 00 00 3d 98 68 00 00 0f 84 b4 0b 00 00 0f 86 00 07 00 00 3d 9b
[ 1088.709138] EAX: ffffffda EBX: ffffff9c ECX: 00ceb4d0 EDX: 00088000
[ 1088.709142] ESI: 00000000 EDI: e0462da8 EBP: 00cef5e0 ESP: bf875a90
[ 1088.709146] DS: 007b ES: 007b FS: 0000 GS: 0033 SS: 007b EFLAGS: 00000246
[ 1088.724836] scsi host2: uas_eh_device_reset_handler start
[ 1088.731428] sd 2:0:0:0: [sdc] tag#15 uas_zap_pending 0 uas-tag 1 inflight: CMD 
[ 1088.731436] sd 2:0:0:0: [sdc] tag#15 CDB: Read(10) 28 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 08 00
[ 1088.856846] usb 1-6: reset high-speed USB device number 4 using ehci-pci
[ 1089.014814] scsi host2: uas_eh_device_reset_handler success
[ 1119.440840] scsi host2: uas_eh_device_reset_handler start
[ 1119.449026] sd 2:0:0:0: [sdc] tag#12 uas_zap_pending 0 uas-tag 1 inflight: CMD 
[ 1119.449040] sd 2:0:0:0: [sdc] tag#12 CDB: Read(10) 28 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 08 00
[ 1119.576842] usb 1-6: reset high-speed USB device number 4 using ehci-pci
[ 1119.734805] scsi host2: uas_eh_device_reset_handler success
[ 1150.160844] scsi host2: uas_eh_device_reset_handler start
[ 1150.167386] sd 2:0:0:0: [sdc] tag#13 uas_zap_pending 0 uas-tag 1 inflight: CMD 
[ 1150.167399] sd 2:0:0:0: [sdc] tag#13 CDB: Read(10) 28 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 08 00
[ 1150.292831] usb 1-6: reset high-speed USB device number 4 using ehci-pci
[ 1150.451026] scsi host2: uas_eh_device_reset_handler success
[ 1180.872921] scsi host2: uas_eh_device_reset_handler start
[ 1180.880479] sd 2:0:0:0: [sdc] tag#14 uas_zap_pending 0 uas-tag 1 inflight: CMD 
[ 1180.880507] sd 2:0:0:0: [sdc] tag#14 CDB: Read(10) 28 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 08 00
[ 1181.004890] usb 1-6: reset high-speed USB device number 4 using ehci-pci
[ 1181.162973] scsi host2: uas_eh_device_reset_handler success
[ 1181.163214] sd 2:0:0:0: [sdc] tag#14 FAILED Result: hostbyte=DID_RESET driverbyte=DRIVER_OK
[ 1181.163224] sd 2:0:0:0: [sdc] tag#14 CDB: Read(10) 28 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 08 00
[ 1181.163233] blk_update_request: I/O error, dev sdc, sector 0 op 0x0:(READ) flags 0x0 phys_seg 1 prio class 0
[ 1181.163245] Buffer I/O error on dev sdc, logical block 0, async page read

So in summary, the disk itself is being recognised in a way for example in the BIOS and occasionally by smartctl, but attempts to access it or to even see the partitions on it time out or fail. (There should be the three partitions of a regular Win10 setup.)

Can you help me?

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  • Have you tried copying the block device? E.g. cp /dev/sdc /path/to/rescue.img or better to ignore errors with dd if=/dev/sdc of=/path/to/rescue.img conv=noerror,sync bs=1M – FelixJN Mar 8 at 16:59
  • No, I haven't yet. I think I would need to copy it as a sparse file though, as I don't currently have more than 110GB of contiguous disk space on my xubuntu machine. How can I do this and might ddrescue not be the better choice here? This thread seems interesting: unix.stackexchange.com/questions/17087/… ddrescue --sparse --block-size 8M /dev/sda1 /mount/external/backup/sda1.raw – cupholder Mar 8 at 17:41
  • Yes, ddrescue is a good alternative. But having storage space at least the size of the disk is a must in all cases. – FelixJN Mar 8 at 22:40
  • Why would that be the case? The SSD isn't encrypted so I assume that empty space is all zeroes and can thus be compressed away by using the sparse-file mode. (The SSD was maybe only half-filled.) – cupholder Mar 8 at 23:15
  • (Or am I misunderstanding what sparse file means? Am non-native speaker) – cupholder Mar 9 at 9:03
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Maybe give a try to Samsung Magician, also if you can get the value of TBW and you didn't go past the values of the warranty I think you should get a replacement. Check out the warranty here: https://www.samsung.com/semiconductor/minisite/ssd/support/warranty/

For the 860 EVO 250GB it states

5 years or 150 TB TBW

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  • I did try Samsung Magician actually. It didn't recognise the disk I think. About the warranty thing, I might try it later. But currently the data on the thing is my priority. Thank you for the link! – cupholder Mar 8 at 17:44

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