A list of successful iMac 27" (2012-2019) SSD upgrades

MBehr2

macrumors member
Dec 29, 2018
31
9
Canada
Did you also install the new security update?

Has anyone without sleep issues reported having the same versions on the same iMac models of others that are having sleep issues?

Someone reported on the other thread that they analyzed the last security update and that it contained a NVME driver but am not sure what iMac model they had.
I reinstalled last OSX High Sierra 10.13.6 and OSX Mojave 10.14.4 to test - no change to the EFI or SMC, and Boot Rom was updated from the upgrade from OSX Mojave 10.14.3 to 10.14.4

Still have one more test - install a used/spare Apple PCIe 3.0x4 NVMe SSD/Flash Drive and reinstall High Sierra/Mojave - as soon as I find a non AHCI/PCIe x2 SSD blade - as I already have 512Gb one of those.
 

macgeek01

macrumors 6502a
Apr 2, 2013
841
77
I reinstalled last OSX High Sierra 10.13.6 and OSX Mojave 10.14.4 to test - no change to the EFI or SMC, and Boot Rom was updated from the upgrade from OSX Mojave 10.14.3 to 10.14.4

Still have one more test - install a used/spare Apple PCIe 3.0x4 NVMe SSD/Flash Drive and reinstall High Sierra/Mojave - as soon as I find a non AHCI/PCIe x2 SSD blade - as I already have 512Gb one of those.
Make sure to install the new security update too. Try that first, maybe you won’t have to install an Apple OEM SSD that way.
 

MBehr2

macrumors member
Dec 29, 2018
31
9
Canada
Make sure to install the new security update too. Try that first, maybe you won’t have to install an Apple OEM SSD that way.
They are rolled into, and included in Mojave 10.14.4 (18E226); and nothing further was picked after running SoftWare Update. :-(

[Security content of macOS Mojave 10.14.4, Security Update 2019-002 High Sierra, Security Update 2019-002 Sierra https://support.apple.com/en-ca/HT209600]
 

macgeek01

macrumors 6502a
Apr 2, 2013
841
77
Yeah, I just realized the security update is part of 10.14.4 and is a separate download for Sierra and High Sierra.
[doublepost=1553710701][/doublepost]So must be true that you need OEM Apple SSD to get the updates which is a pain with an iMac opposed to a MacBook Pro. If it doesn’t provide the NVME driver then suppose you may be missing out on some lower level security patching.
 

MBehr2

macrumors member
Dec 29, 2018
31
9
Canada
Yeah, I just realized the security update is part of 10.14.4 and is a separate download for Sierra and High Sierra.
[doublepost=1553710701][/doublepost]So must be true that you need OEM Apple SSD to get the updates which is a pain with an iMac opposed to a MacBook Pro. If it doesn’t provide the NVME driver then suppose you may be missing out on some lower level security patching.
And just to be sure - I downloaded macOSUpdCombo10.14.4.dmg and ran it again, no change, still EFI version IM171.88Z.F000.B00.1902141953. So one last test left, and then we'll see.
I especially like how ominous the EFI version is - Fooo An Boo - is in nope, won't work, so disappointed LOL.
 
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macgeek01

macrumors 6502a
Apr 2, 2013
841
77
And just to be sure - I downloaded macOSUpdCombo10.14.4.dmg and ran it again, no change, still EFI version IM171.88Z.F000.B00.1902141953. So one last test left, and then we'll see.
I especially like how ominous the EFI version is - Fooo An Boo - is in nope, won't work, so disappointed LOL.
Don’t believe the update affects the SMC with this update. What about the BootROM? Did it change?
 

dieselm

macrumors member
Jun 9, 2009
35
4
I noticed what appeared to be an SSD firmware update in one of the packages I looked at.
I don't know if we've accounted for the fact that the Apple SSD itself is special.

While NVME is a standard, Apple has little reason not to add something special to the mix.
Especially if it is to account for potential problems in shipped hardware on early platforms.

I haven't looked carefully into the reported success/failures of the late-2015 SSD upgrades by
board ID, etc.
Are the different board IDs distributed equally among different configurations?
Could the HDD-only boards have some hardware issue where they can't handle SSDs?
It is possible the HDD-only boards have components which can only handle so much I/o?​

I also noticed that the 3rd party SSDs by Fledging which are resold by hatssd on eBay
have a Read/Write limit of 2800MB/1600MB per sec, which is still far higher than the Apple
OEM SSD parts, but lower than the 3rd-party SSDs that we are typically installing.
Is that a hardware limit or something capped in the firmware to account for problems like this?
I haven't asked them.

I've been booting of a SATA disk in the meanwhile. My iMac functions well enough with that
so I've punted on the SSD upgrade for now. The 970 EVO which I put in my late-2015 iMac
has panic issues associated with the NVME driver with sleep and otherwise.

We should know more when MBehr2 tries the official apple SSDs and compares them with 3rd-party ones if he has a machine that was originally HDD or 24GB fusion drive only.
[doublepost=1553730589][/doublepost]From the package, it appears the latest OS release rolls in all the previous firmware updates for all aspects of the system, though I haven't verified that empirically. The manifest has checks for all the boardIDs and appears to have a payload for all other firmware in the system.
 

macgeek01

macrumors 6502a
Apr 2, 2013
841
77
Yup - posted earlier in this thread, Boot ROM Version updated to: 164.0.0.0.0 from 161.0.0.0.0
Interesting, I didn’t think one would update without the other. Wonder what the BootROM adds vs the EFI?
[doublepost=1553733808][/doublepost]
I noticed what appeared to be an SSD firmware update in one of the packages I looked at.
I don't know if we've accounted for the fact that the Apple SSD itself is special.

While NVME is a standard, Apple has little reason not to add something special to the mix.
Especially if it is to account for potential problems in shipped hardware on early platforms.

I haven't looked carefully into the reported success/failures of the late-2015 SSD upgrades by
board ID, etc.
Are the different board IDs distributed equally among different configurations?
Could the HDD-only boards have some hardware issue where they can't handle SSDs?
It is possible the HDD-only boards have components which can only handle so much I/o?​

I also noticed that the 3rd party SSDs by Fledging which are resold by hatssd on eBay
have a Read/Write limit of 2800MB/1600MB per sec, which is still far higher than the Apple
OEM SSD parts, but lower than the 3rd-party SSDs that we are typically installing.
Is that a hardware limit or something capped in the firmware to account for problems like this?
I haven't asked them.

I've been booting of a SATA disk in the meanwhile. My iMac functions well enough with that
so I've punted on the SSD upgrade for now. The 970 EVO which I put in my late-2015 iMac
has panic issues associated with the NVME driver with sleep and otherwise.

We should know more when MBehr2 tries the official apple SSDs and compares them with 3rd-party ones if he has a machine that was originally HDD or 24GB fusion drive only.
[doublepost=1553730589][/doublepost]From the package, it appears the latest OS release rolls in all the previous firmware updates for all aspects of the system, though I haven't verified that empirically. The manifest has checks for all the boardIDs and appears to have a payload for all other firmware in the system.
The strange thing is that I believe people have reported issues even with iMacs that came with NVME OEM SSDs.
 

macgeek01

macrumors 6502a
Apr 2, 2013
841
77
Yup - posted earlier in this thread, Boot ROM Version updated to: 164.0.0.0.0 from 161.0.0.0.0
Others are also reporting a February date stamp that have the latest BootROM so either the EFI version didn’t change or the date stamps are probably older based on when Apple started testing them.

See this article and comments near the bottom:

https://eclecticlight.co/2018/10/31/which-efi-firmware-should-your-mac-be-using-version-3/

Doing more reasearch I now see that EFI Check and EFI versions are an extra security measure for Apple to report modified firmware that was first introduced with High Sierra. If your BootROM updated then I think you got the full update and aren’t missing anything.
[doublepost=1553752995][/doublepost]
I noticed what appeared to be an SSD firmware update in one of the packages I looked at.
I don't know if we've accounted for the fact that the Apple SSD itself is special.

While NVME is a standard, Apple has little reason not to add something special to the mix.
Especially if it is to account for potential problems in shipped hardware on early platforms.

I haven't looked carefully into the reported success/failures of the late-2015 SSD upgrades by
board ID, etc.
Are the different board IDs distributed equally among different configurations?
Could the HDD-only boards have some hardware issue where they can't handle SSDs?
It is possible the HDD-only boards have components which can only handle so much I/o?​

I also noticed that the 3rd party SSDs by Fledging which are resold by hatssd on eBay
have a Read/Write limit of 2800MB/1600MB per sec, which is still far higher than the Apple
OEM SSD parts, but lower than the 3rd-party SSDs that we are typically installing.
Is that a hardware limit or something capped in the firmware to account for problems like this?
I haven't asked them.

I've been booting of a SATA disk in the meanwhile. My iMac functions well enough with that
so I've punted on the SSD upgrade for now. The 970 EVO which I put in my late-2015 iMac
has panic issues associated with the NVME driver with sleep and otherwise.

We should know more when MBehr2 tries the official apple SSDs and compares them with 3rd-party ones if he has a machine that was originally HDD or 24GB fusion drive only.
[doublepost=1553730589][/doublepost]From the package, it appears the latest OS release rolls in all the previous firmware updates for all aspects of the system, though I haven't verified that empirically. The manifest has checks for all the boardIDs and appears to have a payload for all other firmware in the system.
Definitely hard to find a rhyme and reason for everything but don’t think it’s any type of speed limitation causing anything. It’s standard PCIe and it can be as fast as the version and lanes it has. If you put in a faster device it is backwards compatible and will work at the speed it supports.
 

MBehr2

macrumors member
Dec 29, 2018
31
9
Canada
We should know more when MBehr2 tries the official apple SSDs and compares them with 3rd-party ones if he has a machine that was originally HDD or 24GB fusion drive only.
I actually had an Apple 500Gb flash drive in it originally (showed up under SATA Express as AHCI x2) - when I posted my speed results etc. Since opening my Late 2015 iMac, I've installed the 1Tb WD NVMe (the newest one just released in 2019), hard drive 3.5"--> 2.5" adapter, SATA cable, and a 1Tb WD SATA drive. One more test, some housekeeping updates, and I can finally seal the machine for good.
 
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ssdaytona

macrumors regular
Apr 20, 2011
113
17
I really doubt it has something to do with the the board id and the EFI firmware not getting loaded.

I had a 2015 with the fusion drive standard and had latest High Sierra updates before I started on this path of installing a Samsung nvme drive. I think it's the particular nvme drive that does not allow for sleep.
 

dobrink

macrumors member
Original poster
Feb 4, 2013
98
41
Helsinki, Finland
I really doubt it has something to do with the the board id and the EFI firmware not getting loaded.

I had a 2015 with the fusion drive standard and had latest High Sierra updates before I started on this path of installing a Samsung nvme drive. I think it's the particular nvme drive that does not allow for sleep.
One improvement what Apple has made is that now the bootrom updates even with the 3rd party blade installed. However, even if the bootrom is up-to-date the NVMe dXE driver is still compressed and thus inoperational. We cannot verify this because dosdude1's RomTool crashes in 2015 iMacs, thus we cannot dump the rom and explore it with UEFI Tool. Perhaps there is another way if someone can think of how to explore the contents of a Mac's EFI Payloads.

Desoldering the SPI rom and reprogramming it will for sure work to flash the rom with the NVMe dXE driver, however we are looking for a solution that would avoid this. CMIzapper suggested his Medusa-2 tool that latches on the motherboard's SPI rom and reprograms it.

dosdude1 commented that the Firmware Updates are protected and thus cannot be tampered with. We are, however, still trying to find workarounds. For example, there is this post that suggests a possibility for a software-based solution.
 

MBehr2

macrumors member
Dec 29, 2018
31
9
Canada
do we even have confirmed installs of working Samsung nvme drives?
Thats the whole premise behind doing a iMac Late 2015 NVMe test - using a genuine Apple PCIe 3.0x4 NVMe flash drive (blade) and observing the results. After that test, we'll have a pretty definitive answer moving forward, that will answer: How to update the EFI and Boot ROM - since it appears the NVMe driver is updated in the EFI to support sleep mode in concert with the Boot ROM.
 
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macgeek01

macrumors 6502a
Apr 2, 2013
841
77
Just got finished installing a 2TB Sabrent PCIe 3x4 in my Late 2015 iMac which is also PCIe 3x4. I’m getting 2600 MBps read and writes benchmarking with Black Magic.

Unable to sleep without shutting down so I set to hibernate instead and resumes very quickly. Faster then I’ve ever seen a Mac come out of hibernate so no sleep doesn’t bother me at all and use less energy.
 

macgeek01

macrumors 6502a
Apr 2, 2013
841
77
I should mention that my iMac was a custom SSD only model that shipped with Apple blade module and no SATA drive.

I’m thinking firmware may have nothing do with supporting sleep with 3rd party NVME on iMacs specially because people with iMacs that shipped with OEM NVME drives still have had issues. I’m thinking it may just come down to some 3rd party NVME drives don’t have sleep issues with iMacs

Does anyone with no issues have the same exact 3rd party NVME and iMac model that someone with issues has?

I suppose we could analyze firmwares and compare. I’m thinking iMacs may not take the DXE driver from a MBP and if they do may not resolve the issue since different sleep issue with iMacs.
 
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MBehr2

macrumors member
Dec 29, 2018
31
9
Canada
I should mention that my iMac was a custom SSD only model that shipped with Apple blade module and no SATA drive.
Or mention what model year your iMac is.

Mine was a Late 2015 blade only version - but the blade/flash drive was a Hardware:SATA/SATA Express AHCI PCIe 3.0x2 - but it definitely DID NOT show up under Hardware:NVMExpress - hence the problems for sleep with a non OEM NVMe blade.
 

macgeek01

macrumors 6502a
Apr 2, 2013
841
77
Or mention what model year your iMac is.

Mine was a Late 2015 blade only version - but the blade/flash drive was a Hardware:SATA/SATA Express AHCI PCIe 3.0x2 - but it definitely DID NOT show up under Hardware:NVMExpress - hence the problems for sleep with a non OEM NVMe blade.
Mine is also a Late 2015 which I noted in my original post so mine also shipped with AHCI like all late 2015 except the 1TB fusion which came with a 24GB NVME.

Does AHCI ever show up under NVME? Seems strange since not NVME. Later Macs also ship with NVME but people still reports issues with 3rd party.
 
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MBehr2

macrumors member
Dec 29, 2018
31
9
Canada
Mine is also a Late 2015 which I noted in my original post so mine also shipped with AHCI like all late 2015 except the 2TB fusion which came with a 24GB NVME.
I was under the impression that only the 1Tb fusion drives came with the 24Gb(32Gb spared) NVMe, and that the 2Tb+3Tb fusion drives came with 128Gb NVMe. And I'm not sure those were NVMe - as I have yet to see anyone with a Late 2015 fusion drive post their results for Hardware:SATA/SATA Express or Hardware:NVMExpress, along with their EFI & Boot Rom versions. So until we get those values AND run the tests, we're still in unconfirmed territory.

Also in an earlier post:

The 1TB Fusion Drive in the 2019 iMacs uses the same 32GB of flash storage as in the 2017 iMacs. (As stingy as that is, it’s an improvement over the 1TB Fusion Drive in the 2015 iMacs, which had only 24GB of flash storage!)
Does AHCI ever show up under NVME? Seems strange since not NVME.
No, as AHCI isn't an NVMe standard - that belongs to SATA, hence the reason it shows up under Hardware:SATA/SATA Express

Later Macs also ship with NVME but people still reports issues with 3rd party.
I don't think anyone with an original OEM NVMe blade has any sleep issues, especially if they have updated their EFI & Boot ROM AND then added the adapter and non OEM NVMe blade - that's why I want to try testing to verify this.
 

Colonel Blimp

macrumors 6502
Dec 1, 2016
262
293
I was under the impression that only the 1Tb fusion drives came with the 24Gb(32Gb spared) NVMe, and that the 2Tb+3Tb fusion drives came with 128Gb NVMe. And I'm not sure those were NVMe - as I have yet to see anyone with a Late 2015 fusion drive post their results for Hardware:SATA/SATA Express or Hardware:NVMExpress, along with their EFI & Boot Rom versions. So until we get those values AND run the tests, we're still in unconfirmed territory.
I dropped on by since I saw that you’d quoted my post. Here are the Hardware:NVMExpress and the Hardware:SATA/SATA Express results for the 3 TB Fusion Drive in my Late 2015 iMac:

Boot ROM Version: 164.0.0.0.0

Hardware:NVMExpress

This computer doesn’t contain any NVMExpress devices. If you installed NVMExpress devices, make sure they are connected properly and powered on.​

Hardware:SATA/SATA Express

Apple SSD Controller:

Vendor: Apple
Product: SSD Controller
Physical Interconnect: PCI
Link Width: x4
Link Speed: 8.0 GT/s
Description: AHCI Version 1.30 Supported

APPLE SSD SM0128G:

Capacity: 121.33 GB (121,332,826,112 bytes)
Model: APPLE SSD SM0128G
Revision: BXW5TA0Q
Serial Number: [Redacted]
Native Command Queuing: Yes
Queue Depth: 32
Removable Media: No
Detachable Drive: No
BSD Name: disk1
Medium Type: Solid State
TRIM Support: Yes
Bay Name: SSD
Partition Map Type: GPT (GUID Partition Table)
S.M.A.R.T. status: Verified
Volumes:
EFI:
Capacity: 209.7 MB (209,715,200 bytes)
File System: MS-DOS FAT32
BSD Name: disk1s1
Content: EFI
Volume UUID: [Redacted]​
disk1s2:
Capacity: 121.12 GB (121,123,069,952 bytes)
BSD Name: disk1s2
Content: Apple_APFS​
 

macgeek01

macrumors 6502a
Apr 2, 2013
841
77
I was under the impression that only the 1Tb fusion drives came with the 24Gb(32Gb spared) NVMe, and that the 2Tb+3Tb fusion drives came with 128Gb NVMe. And I'm not sure those were NVMe - as I have yet to see anyone with a Late 2015 fusion drive post their results for Hardware:SATA/SATA Express or Hardware:NVMExpress, along with their EFI & Boot Rom versions. So until we get those values AND run the tests, we're still in unconfirmed territory.

Also in an earlier post:





No, as AHCI isn't an NVMe standard - that belongs to SATA, hence the reason it shows up under Hardware:SATA/SATA Express



I don't think anyone with an original OEM NVMe blade has any sleep issues, especially if they have updated their EFI & Boot ROM AND then added the adapter and non OEM NVMe blade - that's why I want to try testing to verify this.
You are correct, 2TB was a typo.

I misunderstood your post and though you were saying you expected AHCI to appear hinder NVME.

I believe I read a post about someone that upgraded from OEM NVME having sleep issues with 3rd party NVME on this thread or another one. I’ll check.
 

MBehr2

macrumors member
Dec 29, 2018
31
9
Canada
Boot ROM Version: 164.0.0.0.0
Hardware:NVMExpress
This computer doesn’t contain any NVMExpress devices. If you installed NVMExpress devices, make sure they are connected properly and powered on.​
Hardware:SATA/SATA Express
Apple SSD Controller:
Vendor: Apple
Product: SSD Controller
Physical Interconnect: PCI
Link Width: x4
Link Speed: 8.0 GT/s
Description: AHCI Version 1.30 Supported​
Thank you! It would appear then, that ALL blades for Late 2015 iMacs are of the PCIx4 SATA Express, and not NVME, as my 500Gb (512Gb spared) also appears under SATA as x4 AHCI.

Perhaps it will never support NVMe natively - the hunt for a small true Apple OEM NVMe blade continues for testing - and then we'll know definitively.
 

macgeek01

macrumors 6502a
Apr 2, 2013
841
77
I was under the impression that only the 1Tb fusion drives came with the 24Gb(32Gb spared) NVMe, and that the 2Tb+3Tb fusion drives came with 128Gb NVMe. And I'm not sure those were NVMe - as I have yet to see anyone with a Late 2015 fusion drive post their results for Hardware:SATA/SATA Express or Hardware:NVMExpress, along with their EFI & Boot Rom versions. So until we get those values AND run the tests, we're still in unconfirmed territory.

Also in an earlier post:





No, as AHCI isn't an NVMe standard - that belongs to SATA, hence the reason it shows up under Hardware:SATA/SATA Express



I don't think anyone with an original OEM NVMe blade has any sleep issues, especially if they have updated their EFI & Boot ROM AND then added the adapter and non OEM NVMe blade - that's why I want to try testing to verify this.
I just ordered a 24GB Apple OEM NVME to test with (Actually 32GB due to over provisioning)

Has anyone reported no sleep issues with 3rd party NVME? If so what iMac model/models?
 

MBehr2

macrumors member
Dec 29, 2018
31
9
Canada
I just ordered a 24GB Apple OEM NVME to test with (Actually 32GB due to over provisioning)
Where does one actually order an Apple OEM NVMe blade? And are you sure the 24Gb (32Gb spared) is truly NVMe? I was only able to ascertain from research, that the 256Gb is NVMe (options for 2017 iMacs), but sifting through all the SSUAX, SSUBX, and SSPOLARIS blades is time consuming.

I'm excitedly looking forward to seeing your results.
 
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