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zterm

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 1, 2018
72
8
Still running Mojave on my 128GB 12 core 3,46 cmp and will re-install Mojave.
I was about to order a Samsung 870 Evo but read that it would not work for startup disk...
What other current options are currently recommended? 860s seem to be out of stock here in Spain. What about Crucial MX500?

I have an available PCI slot, but wonder if adding a NVME card and a 2TB blade just for the startup drive would be a good idea.

Any help or suggestion will be appreciated.
 

sfalatko

macrumors 6502a
Sep 24, 2016
594
329
If you have updated your bootrom to 144.0,0,0.0 you can use a NVME for startup - recommended.

For advice on drive choices read this thread -

 
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zterm

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 1, 2018
72
8
Thanks. Already read that thread and ordered a 970 Evo Plus and an OWC Accelsior adapter that I will use for scratch. Just wanted to order an additional SATA 2TB drive for startup, as I read that NVME could not bring much improvement as startup disk.
 

sfalatko

macrumors 6502a
Sep 24, 2016
594
329
Frankly I am not sure if there is a difference between an PCIe SSD or NVME in terms of performance though it seems that most of the development is in the NVME space.
 

pdxplm

macrumors regular
Sep 29, 2006
117
101
Portland, OR
I've got the OWC adapter and a WD 2TB NVME, speed is about 1500, the SSD that I have in is a Crucial and it runs about 250. Definitely a huge speed difference is seen in booting.
 

h9826790

macrumors P6
Apr 3, 2014
16,615
8,548
Hong Kong
I use the 2TB MX500 as my boot drive since Mojave (now Monterey), very solid, nothing to complain.
Screenshot 2023-03-21 at 1.21.47.png
 
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Kimmo

macrumors 6502
Jul 30, 2011
266
318
I've been using an OWC Mercury Accelsior PCIe SSD as my boot disk in a 5,1 running Mojave. It's been great.
 
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zterm

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 1, 2018
72
8
I use the 2TB MX500 as my boot drive since Mojave (now Monterey), very solid, nothing to complain.
I have had a 1TB MX500 in this MacPro running High Sierra for years (still installed in a drive bay and running fine). Now running Mojave from an 860 EVO with no noticeable problems. MX500 are available at a reasonable price but have not seen them recommended lately.

Recent made MX500s 2TB and 4TB become QLC drives, like the 💩BX500, and are failing with Mac Pros, I had two RMAs and then started to search what is going on:
Thanks for the input.
 

zterm

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 1, 2018
72
8
Will use the NVME for startup, but would not like to erase the previous install of Mojave until I have everything working fine.

Just keep wondering what would be the current recommended plain vanilla 2TB SATA drive that runs fine in a drive bay of a CMP 5,1.
 

tsialex

Contributor
Jun 13, 2016
13,094
13,297
Will use the NVME for startup, but would not like to erase the previous install of Mojave until I have everything working fine.

Just keep wondering what would be the current recommended plain vanilla 2TB SATA drive that runs fine in a drive bay of a CMP 5,1.

If still you could find one, Samsung 860 EVO 2TB is very reliable, works very well with Mac Pros and didn't had any TLC to QLC shenanigans. The current generation 870 EVO are known to not work well with Mac Pros.

SATA drives now are extremely risky to buy, every manufacturer moved to M.2 and SATA is now relegated to archival QLC drives that do not work with Mac Pros - or when work, fail in weeks time when used as main drives.

This year I've already had RMAs (for different reasons) for these drives:
  • Kingston A400 960GB SATA become a 2MB drive,
  • Kingston NV1 NVMe, completely died after less than 90 days of installed,
  • Crucial BX500 and MX500 SATA, both locked as read only and BX500 had a firmware update error previously,
  • Samsung 980 PRO 2TB NVMe, SMART errors with less than 1TB written to the drive (lot's of people reporting the same on dedicated forums, seems a firmware issue that is still not completely solved even with the last month firmware update).
Another thing to add, if your drive is not FV2 and have confidential data or something like iCloud data saved, think about the risks of sending a drive for RMA. You never know if the drive will be repaired and your data is on the hands of someone in China. Several corporations are destroying drives instead of doing RMA when drives fail to avoid issues with that.
 
Last edited:

zterm

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 1, 2018
72
8
If still you could find one, Samsung 860 EVO 2TB is very reliable, works very well with Mac Pros and didn't had any TLC to QLC shenanigans. The current generation 870 EVO are known to not work well with Mac Pros.

SATA drives now are extremely risky to buy, every manufacturer moved to M.2 and SATA is now relegated to archival QLC drives that do not work with Mac Pros - or when work, fail in weeks time when used as main drives.
Thanks tsialex.

Eventually, as a last resort, I could erase and re-format the 860 EVO I'm using now, but have keep all my main drives since Snow Leopard untouched, just in case I need to use an old piece of software (I've recently had to open a QuarkXpress document of an old music-cd album artwork) and had to start-up from SL.

Is there any list of MacPro compatible drives? I might be lucky with brands other than Samsung and Crucial...
 

tsialex

Contributor
Jun 13, 2016
13,094
13,297
Thanks tsialex.

Eventually, as a last resort, I could erase and re-format the 860 EVO I'm using now, but have keep all my main drives since Snow Leopard untouched, just in case I need to use an old piece of software (I've recently had to open a QuarkXpress document of an old music-cd album artwork) and had to start-up from SL.

Is there any list of MacPro compatible drives? I might be lucky with brands other than Samsung and Crucial...

AFAIK, only for PCIe drives and even if there was a list for the SATA drives, it's not reliable over time since most manufacturers are now doing what Kingston and others have been doing for a long time, completely changing the controllers/NAND utilized on the drives while keeping the exact same name/model and just changing a letter with the part number to cover the legal a$$ and most people would continue to buy the drives that have good reviews thinking that nothing changed. What was unthinkable ten years ago is now almost industry standard.

A drive with excellent reviews today is not the same drive that you gonna buy one year from now, recommendations are now practically useless without searching for recent reports on dedicated forums. Crucial MX500 was once considered one of the best SATA drives and with excellent compatibility with Mac Pro…

My advice is to clone your Samsung 860 EVO to another disk, even a hard drive, and repurpose it. You won't find another drive as reliable as a main drive easily today.
 

tsialex

Contributor
Jun 13, 2016
13,094
13,297
Btw, with one PCIe slot available, a Samsung 970 EVO Plus 2TB + a card with heatsink like Aqua Computer Kryo M.2 will keep you happy and trouble free for years.

970 EVO Plus 2TB have the best compatibility of all 2TB Samsung blades with a Mac Pro and even works fine with late-2013 Mac Pro that is even pickier than MacPro5,1. Easy to find, sometimes even on sale.

Samsung 980/980 Pro/990 Pro should be avoided unless you will gonna buy a PCIe switched adapter.
 
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sfalatko

macrumors 6502a
Sep 24, 2016
594
329
Btw, with one PCIe slot available, a Samsung 970 EVO Plus 2TB + a card with heatsink like Aqua Computer Kryo M.2 will keep you happy and trouble free for years.

970 EVO Plus 2TB have the best compatibility of all 2TB Samsung blades with a Mac Pro and even works fine with late-2013 Mac Pro that is even pickier than MacPro5,1. Easy to find, sometimes even on sale.

Samsung 980/980 Pro/990 Pro should be avoided unless you will gonna buy a PCIe switched adapter.
And in the US the prices have dropped substantially. Just today (3/20/23) on Amazon (shipped from and sold by Amazon) the Samsung 970 EVO Plus 2TB NVME M.2 is $129.99
 
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zterm

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 1, 2018
72
8
Btw, with one PCIe slot available, a Samsung 970 EVO Plus 2TB + a card with heatsink like Aqua Computer Kryo M.2 will keep you happy and trouble free for years.
This morning ordered a 970 EVO Plus 2GB + OWC Accelsior 1M2.

Amazon here has the Kryo M.2 Evo. It looks way more sturdy and better built than the OWC, but being vertical don't know if it will be covering a larger area of one of the fans of the video card compared to the OWC.

Will order it. I can return the Accelsior anyway.

Thanks again.
 

WayneStewart

macrumors member
Oct 7, 2008
52
9
Vancouver, BC, Canada
I took a different route. I had some water damaged 2013 Macbook airs. I pulled the drives and bought a $10 PCIe adapter off eBay. Seller said it was not bootable but I took a chance and it was.
 

AlexMaximus

macrumors 65816
Aug 15, 2006
1,200
553
A400M Base
This morning ordered a 970 EVO Plus 2GB + OWC Accelsior 1M2.

Amazon here has the Kryo M.2 Evo. It looks way more sturdy and better built than the OWC, but being vertical don't know if it will be covering a larger area of one of the fans of the video card compared to the OWC.

Will order it. I can return the Accelsior anyway.

Thanks again.
The OWC adapter is totally fine. I have got the Kryo for slot #2 only because of a better non-gpu-fan obstruction on the 6800xt. I also run a Sabrent Rocket NVMe in there that has 2TB as a start volume. It’s totally flawless After two years.
 
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zterm

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 1, 2018
72
8
A European seller is selling used 2TB Samsung 860EVo on ebay for 129 euros. I would never buy a used ssd, but given the situation, I think I'll take a chance. The seller ensures that they are fine and shows this screenshot. What is your opinion?

860evo.png
 

tsialex

Contributor
Jun 13, 2016
13,094
13,297
A European seller is selling used 2TB Samsung 860EVo on ebay for 129 euros. I would never buy a used ssd, but given the situation, I think I'll take a chance. The seller ensures that they are fine and shows this screenshot. What is your opinion?

View attachment 2176740

I'd only buy a used SSD if really no other alternative is possible.

The SMART values are reasonable, nothing failed, but it's a lot of LBAs written already [(((((15984726322 *512) /1024) /1024) /1024) /1024) = 7,4434 TB].

Not a direct comparison, but this is the smartctl -a for my 6-years old 850 EVO 1TB with ~29TB written to it:

Code:
SMART Attributes Data Structure revision number: 1
Vendor Specific SMART Attributes with Thresholds:
ID# ATTRIBUTE_NAME          FLAG     VALUE WORST THRESH TYPE      UPDATED  WHEN_FAILED RAW_VALUE
  5 Reallocated_Sector_Ct   0x0033   100   100   010    Pre-fail  Always       -       0
  9 Power_On_Hours          0x0032   096   096   000    Old_age   Always       -       15937
 12 Power_Cycle_Count       0x0032   096   096   000    Old_age   Always       -       3552
177 Wear_Leveling_Count     0x0013   098   098   000    Pre-fail  Always       -       36
179 Used_Rsvd_Blk_Cnt_Tot   0x0013   100   100   010    Pre-fail  Always       -       0
181 Program_Fail_Cnt_Total  0x0032   100   100   010    Old_age   Always       -       0
182 Erase_Fail_Count_Total  0x0032   100   100   010    Old_age   Always       -       0
183 Runtime_Bad_Block       0x0013   100   100   010    Pre-fail  Always       -       0
187 Uncorrectable_Error_Cnt 0x0032   100   100   000    Old_age   Always       -       0
190 Airflow_Temperature_Cel 0x0032   061   049   000    Old_age   Always       -       39
195 ECC_Error_Rate          0x001a   200   200   000    Old_age   Always       -       0
199 CRC_Error_Count         0x003e   099   099   000    Old_age   Always       -       206
235 POR_Recovery_Count      0x0012   099   099   000    Old_age   Always       -       1085
241 Total_LBAs_Written      0x0032   099   099   000    Old_age   Always       -       62157601494
 

zterm

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 1, 2018
72
8
I'd only buy a used SSD if really no other alternative is possible.
Thanks tsialex.
I already installed the 970 EVO Plus and reinstalled Mojave from the recovery partition.
Everything is working fine but, to be honest, I was expecting a bit more speed at startup. The usual pause at the middle of the start-up progress bar is still there and the occasional rainbow wheel shows up with no reason while opening folders or copying files...
Maybe I got a lemon or it could be due to spotlight working in the background. Time will tell.
Again, thanks.
 

MacNB2

macrumors 6502
Jul 21, 2021
299
219
I'd only buy a used SSD if really no other alternative is possible.

The SMART values are reasonable, nothing failed, but it's a lot of LBAs written already [(((((15984726322 *512) /1024) /1024) /1024) /1024) = 7,4434 TB].

Not a direct comparison, but this is the smartctl -a for my 6-years old 850 EVO 1TB with ~29TB written to it:

Code:
SMART Attributes Data Structure revision number: 1
Vendor Specific SMART Attributes with Thresholds:
ID# ATTRIBUTE_NAME          FLAG     VALUE WORST THRESH TYPE      UPDATED  WHEN_FAILED RAW_VALUE
  5 Reallocated_Sector_Ct   0x0033   100   100   010    Pre-fail  Always       -       0
  9 Power_On_Hours          0x0032   096   096   000    Old_age   Always       -       15937
 12 Power_Cycle_Count       0x0032   096   096   000    Old_age   Always       -       3552
177 Wear_Leveling_Count     0x0013   098   098   000    Pre-fail  Always       -       36
179 Used_Rsvd_Blk_Cnt_Tot   0x0013   100   100   010    Pre-fail  Always       -       0
181 Program_Fail_Cnt_Total  0x0032   100   100   010    Old_age   Always       -       0
182 Erase_Fail_Count_Total  0x0032   100   100   010    Old_age   Always       -       0
183 Runtime_Bad_Block       0x0013   100   100   010    Pre-fail  Always       -       0
187 Uncorrectable_Error_Cnt 0x0032   100   100   000    Old_age   Always       -       0
190 Airflow_Temperature_Cel 0x0032   061   049   000    Old_age   Always       -       39
195 ECC_Error_Rate          0x001a   200   200   000    Old_age   Always       -       0
199 CRC_Error_Count         0x003e   099   099   000    Old_age   Always       -       206
235 POR_Recovery_Count      0x0012   099   099   000    Old_age   Always       -       1085
241 Total_LBAs_Written      0x0032   099   099   000    Old_age   Always       -       62157601494

Hi Alex,
Which version of smartctl are you using ?

I got a Sammy 980 Pro 2TB recently and attached to the Lycom DT-130 card. It seems to be working OK 🤞

I got smartctl 7.3 from sourceforge and it shows:

Code:
Last login: Thu Mar 23 16:02:12 on ttys000
MacNB@Mac-Pro-01 ~ %  /usr/local/sbin/smartctl -a disk1
smartctl 7.3 2022-02-28 r5338 [Darwin 21.6.0 x86_64] (sf-7.3-1)
Copyright (C) 2002-22, Bruce Allen, Christian Franke, www.smartmontools.org

=== START OF INFORMATION SECTION ===
Model Number:                       Samsung SSD 980 PRO 2TB
Serial Number:                      ** Redacted **
Firmware Version:                   5B2QGXA7
PCI Vendor/Subsystem ID:            0x144d
IEEE OUI Identifier:                0x002538
Total NVM Capacity:                 2,000,398,934,016 [2.00 TB]
Unallocated NVM Capacity:           0
Controller ID:                      6
NVMe Version:                       1.3
Number of Namespaces:               1
Local Time is:                      Thu Mar 23 16:04:54 2023 GMT
Firmware Updates (0x16):            3 Slots, no Reset required
Optional Admin Commands (0x0017):   Security Format Frmw_DL Self_Test
Optional NVM Commands (0x0057):     Comp Wr_Unc DS_Mngmt Sav/Sel_Feat Timestmp
Log Page Attributes (0x0f):         S/H_per_NS Cmd_Eff_Lg Ext_Get_Lg Telmtry_Lg
Maximum Data Transfer Size:         128 Pages
Warning  Comp. Temp. Threshold:     82 Celsius
Critical Comp. Temp. Threshold:     85 Celsius

Supported Power States
St Op     Max   Active     Idle   RL RT WL WT  Ent_Lat  Ex_Lat
 0 +     8.49W       -        -    0  0  0  0        0       0
 1 +     4.48W       -        -    1  1  1  1        0     200
 2 +     3.18W       -        -    2  2  2  2        0    1000
 3 -   0.0400W       -        -    3  3  3  3     2000    1200
 4 -   0.0050W       -        -    4  4  4  4      500    9500

=== START OF SMART DATA SECTION ===
SMART overall-health self-assessment test result: PASSED

SMART/Health Information (NVMe Log 0x02)
Critical Warning:                   0x00
Temperature:                        35 Celsius
Available Spare:                    100%
Available Spare Threshold:          10%
Percentage Used:                    0%
Data Units Read:                    2,085,535 [1.06 TB]
Data Units Written:                 1,356,091 [694 GB]
Host Read Commands:                 76,098,695
Host Write Commands:                6,830,346
Controller Busy Time:               401
Power Cycles:                       127
Power On Hours:                     126
Unsafe Shutdowns:                   8
Media and Data Integrity Errors:    0
Error Information Log Entries:      0
Warning  Comp. Temperature Time:    0
Critical Comp. Temperature Time:    0
Temperature Sensor 1:               35 Celsius
Temperature Sensor 2:               41 Celsius

Error Information (NVMe Log 0x01, 16 of 64 entries)
No Errors Logged

MacNB@Mac-Pro-01 ~ %

This version shows Data Units Written (I guess so far) and not LBAs
 

tsialex

Contributor
Jun 13, 2016
13,094
13,297
Hi Alex,
Which version of smartctl are you using ?

I got a Sammy 980 Pro 2TB recently and attached to the Lycom DT-130 card. It seems to be working OK 🤞

I got smartctl 7.3 from sourceforge and it shows:

Code:
Last login: Thu Mar 23 16:02:12 on ttys000
MacNB@Mac-Pro-01 ~ %  /usr/local/sbin/smartctl -a disk1
smartctl 7.3 2022-02-28 r5338 [Darwin 21.6.0 x86_64] (sf-7.3-1)
Copyright (C) 2002-22, Bruce Allen, Christian Franke, www.smartmontools.org

=== START OF INFORMATION SECTION ===
Model Number:                       Samsung SSD 980 PRO 2TB
Serial Number:                      ** Redacted **
Firmware Version:                   5B2QGXA7
PCI Vendor/Subsystem ID:            0x144d
IEEE OUI Identifier:                0x002538
Total NVM Capacity:                 2,000,398,934,016 [2.00 TB]
Unallocated NVM Capacity:           0
Controller ID:                      6
NVMe Version:                       1.3
Number of Namespaces:               1
Local Time is:                      Thu Mar 23 16:04:54 2023 GMT
Firmware Updates (0x16):            3 Slots, no Reset required
Optional Admin Commands (0x0017):   Security Format Frmw_DL Self_Test
Optional NVM Commands (0x0057):     Comp Wr_Unc DS_Mngmt Sav/Sel_Feat Timestmp
Log Page Attributes (0x0f):         S/H_per_NS Cmd_Eff_Lg Ext_Get_Lg Telmtry_Lg
Maximum Data Transfer Size:         128 Pages
Warning  Comp. Temp. Threshold:     82 Celsius
Critical Comp. Temp. Threshold:     85 Celsius

Supported Power States
St Op     Max   Active     Idle   RL RT WL WT  Ent_Lat  Ex_Lat
 0 +     8.49W       -        -    0  0  0  0        0       0
 1 +     4.48W       -        -    1  1  1  1        0     200
 2 +     3.18W       -        -    2  2  2  2        0    1000
 3 -   0.0400W       -        -    3  3  3  3     2000    1200
 4 -   0.0050W       -        -    4  4  4  4      500    9500

=== START OF SMART DATA SECTION ===
SMART overall-health self-assessment test result: PASSED

SMART/Health Information (NVMe Log 0x02)
Critical Warning:                   0x00
Temperature:                        35 Celsius
Available Spare:                    100%
Available Spare Threshold:          10%
Percentage Used:                    0%
Data Units Read:                    2,085,535 [1.06 TB]
Data Units Written:                 1,356,091 [694 GB]
Host Read Commands:                 76,098,695
Host Write Commands:                6,830,346
Controller Busy Time:               401
Power Cycles:                       127
Power On Hours:                     126
Unsafe Shutdowns:                   8
Media and Data Integrity Errors:    0
Error Information Log Entries:      0
Warning  Comp. Temperature Time:    0
Critical Comp. Temperature Time:    0
Temperature Sensor 1:               35 Celsius
Temperature Sensor 2:               41 Celsius

Error Information (NVMe Log 0x01, 16 of 64 entries)
No Errors Logged

MacNB@Mac-Pro-01 ~ %

This version shows Data Units Written (I guess so far) and not LBAs

Code:
smartctl 7.3 2022-02-28 r5338 [Darwin 19.6.0 x86_64] (local build)

Did you loaded the smartd daemon before anything?

I prefer to have DriveDx running instead of smartd/smartctl combo, I've only installed smartmontools to have a more straight way to compare with @zterm screenshot.

Screen Shot 2023-03-23 at 14.39.11.png


Same info, with a nice interface.
 

MacNB2

macrumors 6502
Jul 21, 2021
299
219
Code:
smartctl 7.3 2022-02-28 r5338 [Darwin 19.6.0 x86_64] (local build)

Did you loaded the smartd daemon before anything?

no I did not configure or load the daemon but just the ran the smartctl command as a one-off.

I prefer to have DriveDx running instead of smartd/smartctl combo, I've only installed smartmontools to have a more straight way to compare with @zterm screenshot.

Yeh me too.
Interesting that the amount SMART data given by 980 Pro is lot less compared to your 850 EVO.
Wonder why the 980 Pro is so lean on info.

DriveDX and smartctl give exactly the same results

Screenshot 2023-03-23 at 18.15.32.png
 

tsialex

Contributor
Jun 13, 2016
13,094
13,297
no I did not configure or load the daemon but just the ran the smartctl command as a one-off.



Yeh me too.
Interesting that the amount SMART data given by 980 Pro is lot less compared to your 850 EVO.
Wonder why the 980 Pro is so lean on info.

DriveDX and smartctl give exactly the same results

View attachment 2177734

Just a different, probably better way to present the info, SMART attribute 7 is a way better/useful way to know how much data was written than SMART attribute 241 for the end user, no need to know the sector size and make loads of divisions.
 
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