I am experiencing 0x0000F4 random BSOD's with an Intel 520 240GB.
The disk is connected to the Sata 3 port of a Gigabyte P67 UD4-B3.
I've tried this:
1)Secure Erase via Intel Toolbox,
3)v10.8 & v11 Intel RST Drivers,
4)Modded BIOS with updated Intel ROM,
5)C3/C6 State Disabled,
6)Different SATA/Power cables,
7)The install of Windows 7 is fresh (AHCI),
Any other Ideas??
The Drive performs normally, but It seems to me that it suffers from the SandForce Bug too.
Looks like I'm not the only Intel 520 SSD (120gb) owner suffering with the dreaded 'F4 BSOD'.
The main reason I bought this drive was that Intel's firmware had supposedly fixed this (once common) Sandforce bug, according to anandtech's review. So I was somewhat disturbed to get the F4 crash the first time I left the PC to idle overnight. It has only happened twice since, but I rarely use the PC for more than an hour or two before switching it off.
I'm 99.99% certain it's caused by the SSD, as restarting after the BSOD 'loses' the drive (in BIOS), which returns after a power off/power on cycle - the 'classic' Sandforce symptoms. Plus I've never had any BSOD's before (in over a year of use), except when trying overambitious CPU overclocks (the SSD problems have occurred since I set the CPU back to stock).
I'm running Windows7 x64 Ultimate, a clean install with AHCI enabled. The SSD is connected to the Intel 6gbps (Port0), and is the OS drive, ie not used for cacheing. Intel SSD Toolbox > System Tuner is happy with everything.
My system is :
i5-2500K @ 3.3MHz (stock)
Gigabyte Z68X-UD3H B3 (Rev. 1.0) - F11 BIOS
16gb (4x4) Samsung Green 30nm @ 1866MHz/9-9-9-27-1T
120gb Intel 520 - 400i Firmware, Toolbox 3.0.2, IRST 10.8.0.1003
+WD HDD's, Corsair HX650, MSI 6870 Hawk etc.
Any ideas?? I haven't tried the 'LPM fix', as
1) it's suggested for a SSD with a Marvell controller,
2) I'm wary of touching the registry, and
3) I don't like disabling power management features.
P.S. I get the same Power Cycle Count = Unexpected Power Loss = Unsafe Shutdown Count 'niggle' that has been raised by others. Any news?
P.P.S. @skiman re: poor write speeds in ATTO - If you're using the Foxconn SATA cable supplied with the SSD, try a new cable. The flat cable is folded far too tightly, and caused me a headache until I replaced it with a decent one (that came with the mobo). It gave a very similar ATTO report, where the write speed peaks around QD32/64 and then drops off, never reaching 500MB/s. Intel should know better!
Not sure guys, I have had no bsods with these drives that I am aware of. They have actually been much more resilient than I thought they would be. It seems from your posts that you have done what can be done. I might try to toss the irst drivers and just go with the achi drivers to see if that helps.
"I might try to toss the irst drivers and just go with the achi drivers to see if that helps."
I would have hoped that when getting an Intel SSD to talk to an Intel chipset, the Intel drivers would be good-to-go, rather than generic M$ ones. But then I'm an optimist.
Maybe some of these 'fixes' will help somewhat (AHCI vs IDE, msahci vs IRST, LPM/sleep/hibernate states etc.) but I'd like a definitive answer or firmware fix. OK so I'm not running a multi-national company on this PC, but I regard any stability issues with my primary OS drive as very serious, however occasional and recoverable. That's why I paid 50% more for an Intel product, believing these issues had been resolved (according to anandtech at least) :
"...although Cherryville performs very similarly to other SF-2281 drives, it should be more reliable."
"The BSOD is Back, but Not on Intel"
"Switching to Cherryville caused Brian's BSODs to go away."
"Whatever Intel has done with the 520's firmware seems to have fixed problems that still remain in the general SF-2281 firmware."
Other sites/reviewers were equally impressed, but this one went into detail of how Intel's validation testing (over 10-12 months) had finally eliminated the Sandforce BSOD. And while the Intel 520 is probably one of the best of the Sandforce drives, there are plenty of unaffected SSD's generally using the Marvell controller (which I won't list on this forum, but include a Motorway joining London and South Wales ).
Overall, my disappointment with this SSD has cancelled out the awe for my i5-2500K, which any SandyBridge owner will tell you is quite considerable.
The BSOD is not related to any particular chipset, AFAIK it can affect Intel/AMD/Mac systems, and Windows/Linux/OSX etc. It relates to the Sandforce (specifically SF-2281) SSD controller, which is used in the majority of SATA-3 (6gbps) SSDs on the market.
NB - Don't confuse SandyBridge with Sandforce.
SandyBridge is a great platform with varied chipsets (H61,H67,P67,Z68) and some truly awesome CPUs (eg. i5-2500K and i7-2600K) which offer unrivalled price/performance, massive overclockability and adequate integrated graphics.
Sandforce make the fastest SSD controllers (thanks to on-the-fly compression which increases transfer speeds while reducing NAND wear) but which still suffer from compatibility/stability issues. This is the controller used in the Intel 520 series.
Personally I'd avoid all SF-2281 drives for now. You might be lucky and have no issues or... you could play it safe and get a non-Sandforce SSD. (I'm not even sure if your HP laptop will support SATA-3, in which case a SATA-2 drive would be fine.)
Wasn't confusing the two. I just noticed that some of the issues are with those who have P67 chipset...so I asked. I had no intention of any Sandforce controlled SSD, until the 520 series was released. Supposedly, Intel figured out the issue and fixed it...guess not.
My Envy is SATA III on Port 0 and SATA II on Port 1. SATA III drives work full speed.
So the last 3 days I used the M$ Drivers.Νο BSOD's occurred.
I will try the new intel Drivers 18.104.22.1686 and the new updated bios for my mobo (http://forums.tweaktown.com/gigabyte/28441-gigabyte-latest-beta-bios-586.html - P67-UD4 F8 and the modded one http://www.jzelectronic.de/jz2/index.php?lid=dGlkPTIwMSZ0aGVtYV9pZD0zNjk3JmFjdD1BbnplaWdl) i will post again.
Also the ssd optimizer leaves files behind..
Intel must update these Drives asap..
I had the same problem. Random BSOD's and random poor performance.
I purchased two of the Intel 520 SSDs. One worked perfectly in one of my
computers with Gigabyte motherboard. The other had these problems.
That computer is a Dell Optiplex 755 with Dell/Intel motherboard and an
Intel ICH9R SATA support.
I set BIOS to AHCI/RAID mode. I installed Windows 7 Home Premium.
Installed Intel Solid State Drive Toolbox version 3.0.2.
I took most of the published steps to fix this problem. I did secure erase.
I upgraded BIOS from A19 to A21 version. I reinstalled Windows two times.
I set power management to high performance. I could not get a good
windows 7 dump because the SSD interface was what was failing.
I finally got the main problem fixed and I am now getting good performance
and BSODs about once every 2 days. I found and applied the Intel LPM fix.
The Link power management (LPM) fix is to disable the LPM from
setting the SATA interface to reduced power.
I still get BSODs once about every 2 days, but performance is much
better. Intel still needs to fix the 520 SSD firmware to work with their
own SATA controllers.
Message was edited by: Kenneth Denbow. Now getting BSODs about once a day. Tried a different SATA port and a different SATA cable, but still the same problems, I reinstalled my old backup WD 500GB drive in AHCI mode and no problems with it.
Message was edited by: Kenneth Denbow for the 2nd time. I cloned the Windows 7 on Intel 520 SSD to an old Samsung 1TB non-SSD SATA drive model HD103SJ. Then booted computer with this drive. After windows 7 loaded MSAHCI driver and re-booted I ran the Windows Experience Index assesment again. My hard disk subscore dropped from 7.8 to 5.9 but my computer runs without any BSODs. I guess I have lost $200 on the Intel 520 and over 20 hours of work trying to get it to work.
Message was edited by: Kenneth Denbow for the 3rd time. I still get BDODs, mostly overnight while computer sits idle. I noticed that I gave some wrong information earlier. My motherboard chipset has an Intel ICH9D0 SATA controller and not ICH9R. The motherboard is made by Intel, model GM819, in a Dell optiplex 755 computer. I installed a new 450 watt power supply just to make sure that power was not the problem. Still fails.
Message was edited by: Kenneth Denbow for the 4th time. I changed power settings in BIOS from S3 to S1. No BSODs in last week since that change. I backed off some of the other attempted fixes and still no BSODs. It seems that Intel S3 support on the Dell Optiplex systems causes this problem.
I am running an ASRock X79 board and a 3930k with 2 Intel 180 GB 520 SSDs in raid 0. I was getting random BSODs and freezes with both drives. I tried single drives in non raid as well, and took the system apart trying to isolate the crash. It made no sense because I upgraded from 2 160 gb Intel 320 ssd's and had no issues with 32 gb ram. Also Intel had supposedly fixed the bsod issue. Then stumbled upon this thread.
I completely disabled Link power management, and went into the bios and disabled all the power saving C states. Rebooted and have not had a crash/freeze or BSOD in a week. I almost RMA-ed the drives!
Thanks to those who posted the LPM and bios power state changes!