Resolved Problem Formatting Samsung 970 EVO Plus NVMe SSD

Discussion in 'macOS Mojave (10.14)' started by F-Train, Feb 19, 2019.

  1. F-Train, Feb 19, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2019

    F-Train macrumors 65816

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    NYC & Newfoundland
    #1
    [Edit: see post #4 for how I was able to fix the problem.]

    I have a 2018 Mac mini and I have this SSD as an external drive in a third party enclosure (TEKQ), which I successfully formatted Extended (Journaled).

    I decided to reformat it APFS and I'm running into significant problems.

    I got as far as what you see in the photo (note "Container Disk3", no name), but can't go further.

    Disk Utility and Terminal both hang indefinitely when I try to create an APFS Volume or erase/reformat to another format, regardless of what format I choose, including efforts to return to Extended (Journaled). I've even tried Paragon Software's NTFS for Mac to see if I could format NTFS, but with the same result.

    Running Disk Utility First Aid initially said that there is a corruption problem. At that point, I ran Recovery First Aid, which said that the problem was fixed. Now Disk Utility First Aid also hangs.

    Looking at old threads, a couple of people have fixed this kind of problem, or similar, by formatting on a Windows or Linux machine, and then reformatting on a Mac. To try that, I need a computer with a TB3 port, but calls today to friends with Windows computers came up blank. On the upside, it looks like I inspired one friend to buy himself a new laptop :)

    Any ideas, brilliant or otherwise?

    Thanks.


    Screenshot 2019-02-19 at 18.21.08.png
     
  2. F-Train, Feb 20, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2019

    F-Train thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #2
    After further explorations with Recovery Mode First Aid and Terminal/diskutil, I'm pretty sure that the SSD and the enclosure are healthy.

    Diskutil identifies the disk as APFS and says that there is an APFS container, but also says that there isn't a file system in place. Everything that I've tried to correct that results in the process hanging.

    I guess the next step is to plug the drive into a Windows computer, once I've managed to locate one that has a Thunderbolt 3 port, and try to format the drive NTFS or exFAT; if that works, then plug the drive back into my Mac mini and try to format it Extended (Journaled).

    I just returned a WD My Passport SSD on the ground that it was defective. I had formatted it APFS and it was acting strangely. With this new issue, I'm beginning to wonder whether the problem was the WD drive or APFS.
     
  3. velocityg4 macrumors 601

    velocityg4

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    Georgia
    #3
    As for a Linux machine. You can boot Linux off a USB Flash Drive. I'd say use Ubuntu. As you'll more readily find instructions for it. Don't forget to disable Secure Boot.

    Are you just erasing the disk or changing the partition map? I'd say convert it to MBR + ExFAT then return it to GUID + APFS.
     
  4. F-Train, Feb 20, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2019

    F-Train thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #4
    [Edit: Since writing this, I have run into further problems. Will update.]

    First, thanks @velocityg4 for your post.

    I've solved the problem and want to explain how in case others run into the same issue.

    I booted into Boot Camp Windows. I'm new to Boot Camp and didn't realise that all of Windows's disk management tools are available via Boot Camp.

    Windows Disk Management showed that there were two partitions, one a Mac EFI partition, the other unallocated. It was also clear that the drive is healthy.

    I ran Windows Command using the command DISKPART with the command "clean". This did what it says on the tin. It erased everything, including the two partitions.

    Next, I formatted the disk exFAT, downloaded a game from Steam, and ran the game to make sure that the drive is working properly.

    Finally, I booted into macOS, where I was able to reformat the drive Extended (Journaled).

    I don't know what's going on with AFPS. If I decide to try to format it AFPS again, I'll do it via Disk Utility > Edit > Convert to AFPS rather than via Disk Utility's Graphical User Interface. I believe that that should work, but for the moment I'm going to leave well enough alone :)

    As part of this exercise, I discovered that WD has a page on converting its external drives to AFPS. I was unaware of this page when I was trying to get a WD My Passport SSD to work properly with AFPS (post #2), and it calls for more than a simple Disk Utility Erase/Convert. This may explain the odd behaviour that I was getting from the WD drive. Interestingly, it looks like WD may not be the only external drive manufacturer that has a somewhat unusual process for formatting drives as AFPS.

    I hope that this thread is helpful to someone in the future.

    Cheers
     
  5. Dr. Stealth macrumors 6502a

    Dr. Stealth

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    Sep 14, 2004
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    SoCal-Surf City USA
    #5
    Not sure if this is of any use to you but I saw this recent review on Amazon...

    Of course it's just one review on Amazon. Take with a grain of salt... =)

    Screen Shot 2019-02-23 at 4.12.43 PM.png


    Screen Shot 2019-02-23 at 4.12.10 PM.png
     
  6. F-Train thread starter macrumors 65816

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    NYC & Newfoundland
    #6

    Thanks very much.

    I'm not seeing this behaviour using the SSD as an external drive, but I'm having serious formatting problems and this is helpful to know.
     
  7. skizzo macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2018
    #7
    hackintosh users are having a difficult time with the 970 EVO+ also. I know a hackintosh isn't a "real" Mac but gives some sort of indication there could be some incompatibility between macOS and the 970 EVO+ but also sounds like most issues pop up using it as the boot drive. using it as a data drive sound like it's working as expected. check out tonymacx86 forums if you want to see more details
     
  8. macguru9999, Mar 5, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2019

    macguru9999 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2006
    #8
    I tried an EVO+ today in 2 5,1 mac pros with 140.0.0.0 firmware and got formatting issues and panics followed by restarts, it did not work in high sierra or mojave

    Then I sent it back and got a 970 pro. Works perfectly...
     
  9. freqrider macrumors member

    freqrider

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2019
    #9
    Same here. 970 EVO has been flawless booting HS in my 3,1 with patched bootrom.
     
  10. star-affinity macrumors 6502a

    star-affinity

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    Nov 14, 2007
    #10
    Just FYI I have sent a bug report to Apple about the Kernel Panic the 970 EVO Plus gives when using it with MacOS (High Sierra 10.13.6 in my case).

    Samsung 970 EVO Plus drive causes Kernel Panic (com.apple.iokit.IONVMeFamily)

    Let's hope it might help getting the problem fixed. Maybe it's also something Samsung could address with a firmware update. In the meantime it seems we have to stick with the older 970 EVO.
     
  11. naerct macrumors member

    naerct

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    Southern NH
    #11
    Confirmed, SAMSUNG 970 EVO+ is NOT compatible with cMPs. Personally and on the cMP Update guide blog. I believe I was on 14.2 or.3 at the time. Replaced with the older EVO, and never looked back. I have a 960 EVO as well in the SYBA switch card, getting 2.7GB/s reads. The 960 is somewhat slower, as are the write speeds. I had cheap PCI cards without the highly recommended heat sync. ($50 each with heat sync), so I sprung for the switch card which holds two M.2 NVMe blades and needs to be used in slot2 above the vid card X16. That gives me the 2.7GB/s, Normal speeds max around 1.5GB/s for cMP. I mostly did it to get both a heat sink and a small fan and save the extra PCI slot for other hardware. I'm running 14.5 with bootROM 144.0.0.0, and everything is copacetic. A friend with a monster 5,1was running High Sierra until Cap-1 got a version for Mojave. He upgraded yesterday from 13.6 with his original bootROM to Mojave 14.5 bR 144. Wish I'd done it that way. But he's not using NVMe blades yet. He has so many SATA SSDs and one pair on his SATA3 card that's in RAID0, or about 1GB/s for his boot drive. That last bR update was mostly bug fixes, and as a result, Mojave runns much smoother than earlier point updates. It looks like we are all going to be staring at those dunes til the end of time... Not looking for a new MP. I have a 12-core 3.33 with 48GB RAM, and a RX 580 with 8GB VRAM. I have five 4TB spindle in RAID5 (SoftRaid) that give me around 400MB/s which is faster than any SATA SSD in the cMPs SATA2 ports. I also have a SATA3 Sonnet card that get's just below 1GB/s. I have backup clones for both 13 and 14 just as backup, and it also gives me 800GB of fast storage. I also have a 4-core which has been updated, but with the original 2.66GHz CPU.
     
  12. star-affinity macrumors 6502a

    star-affinity

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    Nov 14, 2007
    #12
    That should no longer be the case since Samsung released a firmware update that takes away the Kernel Panics. Typically enough I bought a 970 EVO two months ago (a little cheaper than a Plus at the time, but not much) and now I regret that I didn't hold out a little longer. :(
     
  13. naerct macrumors member

    naerct

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    #13
    I'm curious why you think an update from Samsung will change how it will work in a MacPro? No link?
     
  14. star-affinity macrumors 6502a

    star-affinity

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    #14

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13 February 19, 2019