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ahdfox
Dec 1, 2010, 10:36 PM
Renice 128GB SSD Serious Problems in MBA rev A

I just posted this over in Scottsdale's thread reviewing the Renice SSD... but since I'm kind of at wit's end here I figured it's worth putting into it's own thread.


Got my Renice 128GB SSD from MDD last week-- got it installed, seemed OK. Really, really, fast and the extra space over the stock 80GB HDD was desperately needed. It's a 1.6GHz Rev A, running a fresh install of 10.6.5 (just in case!) on a brand-new Renice from MyDigitalDiscount.

After using it a few hours it started to have intermittent wake-from-sleep problems, freezing after waking up for no apparent reason. This machine was rock-solid (if slow) for two years, but changed completely as soon as I put in the Renice.

Trying to fix the problem, I turned off Drive Spin Down, the SMS, Secure VM, and even used Terminal to set Hibernate mode to "0" instead of the default mode "3". Zapped the PRAM, reset the SMC. I even checked to make sure the SSD was formatted as "GUID", which it would have to be to start up, but I checked anyway.

The sleep issues seemed to go away, except one false wake. After another day of using the machine, however, it simply refused to startup at all, showing a flashing folder icon. After a week of booting fine but with strange sleep issues, it stopped booting. I didn't do anything to it, either. And nothing fixed the problem: I tried restarting, zapping PRAM, resetting SMC: no go.

I pulled the SSD and put the stock HDD back in, and the machine works fine with the HDD in 10.6.5. Then I put the SSD in it's external enclosure and booted the machine that way, and it seemed to work, starting up, running Safari, sleeping, etc. Hopeful, I swapped the SSD back into the MBA, but no dice: it still wouldn't start up.

Pulling out all the stops, I put the SSD into the USB enclosure, used Disk Utility to format the SSD as a GUID disk, and installed 10.5.2 from the MBA's recovery disks onto the SSD. That done, I put the SSD with a fresh 10.5.2 back into the Air... but no luck, still the flashing folder icon.

So:
1. The MBA works.
2. The SSD doesn't work properly inside the MBA with a fresh install of 10.6.5
3. The SSD doesn't work properly inside the MBA with a fresh install of 10.5.2
4. Intermittent sleep issues with the SSD installed until setting hibernate to "0"
5. after a week of intermittent sleep issues but no problem booting, it stopped booting
6. The HDD works when inside the MBA and when in the Renice USB enclosure
7. The SSD works (runs and boots the MBA) when in the Renice USB enclosure- can sleep and wake but I didn't test "deep sleep"
8. It's not a bad connector or install of the SSD in the Mac, at least not on visual inspection... and since I got it working once and put it in and out a few times, I'm pretty sure it was in the MBA in right.

Long story short, I'm back the stock HDD, and miss my Renice SSD, but can't use a computer that won't start up.

Any ideas, anyone? I'm calling MyDigitalDiscount tomorrow to see if they'll swap the SSD for a new one, but I'm doubtful it's a bad drive because it works in the USB enclosure!

It's driving me nuts, hopefully someone has some idea how to fix it...



ahdfox
Dec 2, 2010, 10:12 AM
Talked to MDD just now- they said no other reports of problems with the Renice SSD. In fact, the 128GB is the most popular one they sell.

Giving it another shot with a replacement drive, will update with results of the new drive in the MBA in a week or so...

tele
Dec 21, 2010, 08:42 PM
Hi Mate I too had the exactly the same problem with my 128 gb Renice drive that I installed about 5 weeks ago.
I would have to do a hard boot to unfreeze it.
funny enough it only ever happens main at home. I have an airport extreme and express extending the network.
At work I don't see this problem as much.
Any way it was getting annoying having to hard boot after putting the book to sleep almost every time at home. so i decided to double check the connection ribbon on the drive to ensure that it was properly in place.
At that point i noticed that the Gold female connector to the ribbon in the SDD drive was missing most of if gold coating!!!
I took several photos and have sent it away to Renice to see what they think. I am still awaiting their technical department to revert to me ( the initial inquiry has been replied to and informed me that it has been sent to the technical dept)

But as for now reinserting the ribbon looks to have fixed my freezing issues for now ( been almost a week and no freezes)
here are some pics of the pins....

tele
Dec 31, 2010, 09:07 PM
reinstalling the ribbon looks to have fixed my problem. no more freezing on wake issues face now fore about 2 weeks. Give it a try.

tele

bnorthro
Jan 7, 2011, 08:08 PM
ahdfox - Have you been able to fix your problem? I put a Renice K3VLAR SSD in my wifes MBA rev A a few months ago and just experienced the same flashing folder problem you did. I pulled the drive & hooked it up to my MB via an external enclosure and it was fine, tried disk repair and it said the disk was fine. Reinstalled and double checked the cables, reset PRAM & SMC, still no luck. When booted via a Super Drive, the HDD doesn't even show up in the system profiler or startup disk options. Her original HDD crapped out, so I can't put that in to check if it works...

CCD
Jan 8, 2011, 12:21 AM
I'm having the same problem. Installed late November and was fine at first and now the flashing folder generally on cold starts. I have reinitialized and reinstalled the cable as suggested but still no luck. I also seem to have bad coating on the drive pins as per the above photo's. I suspect that there may be a systemic problem with the drive given the number of us with the same problem.

I hope people are having more luck with MDD as disappointingly, they have yet to answer any of my emails and given that I live on the other side of the planet, lengthy telephone conversations are not a realistic option.

djenss
Jan 9, 2011, 09:00 AM
I'm having the same problem. Installed late November and was fine at first and now the flashing folder generally on cold starts. I have reinitialized and reinstalled the cable as suggested but still no luck. I also seem to have bad coating on the drive pins as per the above photo's. I suspect that there may be a systemic problem with the drive given the number of us with the same problem.

I hope people are having more luck with MDD as disappointingly, they have yet to answer any of my emails and given that I live on the other side of the planet, lengthy telephone conversations are not a realistic option.

Okey I just installed my 64GB renice in my MBA rev A and after one day I experienced the same problem... I now unchecked the "put HD to sleep when possible" in the sys prefs... hopefully this workes. Let you guys know.

Tecbloke
Apr 20, 2011, 02:11 AM
Hi,

Nube here. Saw your posts. I have a Rev.A to which I added the Renice 120Gb K3VLAR.

Its fast and I left it plugged in but closed (sleep) for a couple of days and when I opened it, it was frozen an a couple icons (including airport) were missing leaving gaps on the menu bar.

I presume this is the same crash you are experiencing?

So I hard reboot and got in touch with Renice themselves.

They sent back the following fixes:

1. Change*the MacOS X system hibernation mode to 0 (refer to power management manual page for command line utility 'pmset') -- the default
value under 10.6.6 on a Macbook Air is 3.* A zero setting does not back up the entire system memory to disk on sleep; a setting of three does
back up to disk.**

2. Use pmset to set the sudden motion sensor to zero (no parking of disk heads on sudden changes in G force).* The default is 1 (park disk heads)


You can google both methodologies.

I have not had a problem since either sleep while charging or battery only sleep.

Can anyone comment on the changes made? Are they sacrificing anything, or are really a lot of nothing.

Hope it helps

The Bloke