BSOD with new PC and old SSD – Now better

I bought a new PC.
Before boot I plugged in the SSD from my old PC and just wanted to boot on that.

Not so lucky! Arg!

There has been lots of issues and still is.

PC is Toshiba Satellite P50-A-11J
SSD is KINGSTON V DRIVE NOTEBOOK 128GB SSD SATA/300 MLC (SNV125-S2/128GB) from 2010.

1. Remember: The laptop comes with an unpluggable battery. This means that you in Bios (press F2 to enter) needs to turn off the battery for maintenance work – It was done in Bios in the Exit menu: “Disable Built-in battery and exit”.

2. The old SSD was apparently using an old protocol or something. In Bios I had to change “Boot Mode” from “UEFI Boot” to “CSM Boot” (found under Advanced – System Config). Before that the Bios couldn’t boot on the 3 year old SSD.

3. After boot on my old SSD (which was earlier running in a Dell) a lot of drivers were missing. I figured the easy thing would be to re-install Windows from scratch – so I did and all came up working.

4. Even then I keep getting Blue Screen Of Death (BSOD). Windows don’t survive neither hibernate nor sleep. Also the audio give a terrible noise, when starting the hibernate – even though speakers are muted. It continues the noise until the power is off.

When digging into it I have come across:

List of Kingston SSD drives to download firmware for: http://www.kingston.com/en/support/technical/search?productline=ssd

Example of HowTo update SSD firmware: http://media.kingston.com/support/downloads/SV100S2_120504_FwUpdateProcedure.pdf.

The procedure explains that in Bios the SATA mode must be changed from AHCI or Raid to IDE, Compability or Legacy, if you want to boot from a CD on where you have burned the Firmware….

Unfortunately there were no firmware for my drive. So I tried to boot with the “SATA controller mode” changed from “AHCI” to “Compability”. I got BSOD each time, so I had to revert to AHCI.

The Bios has been very unstable – meaning when I press F2 to open Bios config, then sometimes I can try for 20 minutes before I get in – with plenty of tapping and lots of boots. But also meaning that sometimes it will show the SSD when it opens and other times it can’t see it – and this again means that it won’t always boot, but just come out with the message:
Intel UND, PXE-2.0 (Build 083)
Check Cable Connection

PXE-M0F: Exiting Intel PXE Rom //PXE means network boot and that is one of the last options in my boot sequence.

Following that it asks for some other boot device.

So clearly – sometimes the Bios don’t see the SSD – other times it does. Can I find a Bios update or what is it I need?

Update 2013-08-26

Maybe the disk should be formatted as GPT opposed to MBR:

Quote from JackShack:

Try removing your current partitions (the disk needs to be blank to start), changing your System Setup option to UEFI mode, and using the F12 one time boot menu.  Your computer should have an option on that menu to boot your DVD/CD drive in UEFI mode.  Once you reach that point be sure to select the option to format the disk as a GPT disk.  UEFI mode can handle both MBR and GPT data drives, but if you want to boot in UEFI I’m pretty sure the system drive needs to be a GPT formatted drive so that it has the UEFI boot blocks.

Before formatting the disk Thomas Krenn has some SSD tips: Secure Erase the disk.

When the disk is being formatted then leave some GB’s unallocated. This increases the Spare Area – also called overprovisioning.

Instead of formatting – you might be able to convert MBR to GPT using GPT fdisk. I think I will try that first. While booting on an USB flash with GPT fdisk on it, then I would be able to convert the SSD.

More tips on GPT fdisk and mbrwizard.

Update 2013-09-08

I chose to put back original disk in PC and setup the PC on that disk. I set back Boot Mode to UEFI Boot, booted the PC and all came up working on the slow 5400 rpm disk.

Then the plan was to make a clone to the SSD disk.

Via Computer Manager – Disk Manager I deleted all partitions on the SSD and converted the SSD to GPT.

Then the plan was to use the SSD disk utility (that came with the SSD disk Acronis Drive something…) to clone the platter disk to the SSD disk. But the utility did not recognize GPT disks… so now chasing another GPT disk cloner…

I think I will try CloneZilla live. It can clone small disks to larger – so I’ll have to shrink the source disk to fit the smaller SSD…

Update 2013-09-14

Shrinking

  • Download TuxBoot
  • Download CloneZilla iso file – x64 version
  • Download GParted – choose iso file
  • Burn GParted to USB using TuxBoot
  • Execute TuxBoot – select iso file as source and your USB flash as target.
  • ShutDown PC by going to PC Settings – General – Advanced Start-up – Restart – Boot on USB. If you don’t do it this way BIOS menu will be disabled.
  • Start BIOS menu via F2 or F12. Set Boot Mode to CSM Boot and SATA controller mode to Compability.
  • Boot on USB
  • Shrink the C drive (3rd partition)
  • Move the 4th partition to end of 3rd partion

Note: The Windows Disk Manager would not shrink as much as GParted due to some unmovable sectors.

ToshibaPartitions

The original GPT drive had 4 partitions. Drive C: was the one that was shrunk – I then inserted one partition (E:) for my own personal preference. Lastly the 5the partition (Recovery) was moved to the tail of E:. Remaining is 10,94 GB for SSD Spare Area. As you can see the image above is from after cloning to SSD and inserting the SSD into Toshiba.

Cloning

  • Burn CloneZilla USB using TuxBoot
  • Execute TuxBoot – select iso file as source and your USB flash as target.
  • ShutDown PC by going to PC Settings – General – Advanced Start-up – Restart – Boot on USB. If you don’t do it this way BIOS menu will be disabled.
    This step also assures that Windows is properly shut down – if not, then you cannot clone the Windows partition.
  • Start BIOS menu via F2 or F12. Set Boot Mode to CSM Boot and SATA controller mode to Compability.
  • Connect your SSD via a USB Box. One came together with “Kingston SSDNow” kit.
  • Boot on USB
  • CloneZilla
    • Choose Device to Device
    • Choose Expert – to get more needed options
    • Choose Disk to Local Disk
    • Source: SDA 750 GB
    • Target: SDB 128 GB
    • Now a list of options becomes available. Choose only these:
      • e1
      • e2
      • j2
      • ius
      • icds
    • Start the cloning
  • ShutDown PC
  • In BIOS menu: Disable built-in battery
  • Replace HDD with SSD
  • Start BIOS menu. Set Boot Mode to UEFI Boot
  • Try Boot on SSD. It did not work on first try for me. Then I connected the platter disk via USB. Now it could boot.
  • Successive tries went well.

Update 2013-10-18

The PC continued with BSOD and disk went to 100% every 10 minutes or so, whenever I had only a few programs running.

I turned off some Disk intensive windows services according to Why Is It Causing Disk Activity. I disabled Indexing (Windows Search) and System Restore. I also disabled “Toshiba HDD Protection” and “Toshiba HDD SSD Alert Service”. It did not solve all.

Test 1

So how does the PC work now? Well it still happens that the PC does not see the SSD disk while booting in first try, but then on second try it comes up. It is not a big nuisance as before.

I have also seen a BSOD – even with all original drivers in place.

I did not see those problems with the platter disk running.

I haven’t heard the speaker giving loud noise when hibernating and neither has hibernation crashed while storing to disk. But I think it was awakening from either sleep or hibernate that i crashed once.

Anyhow – The PC is working much better than with the first try with SSD. And it is much faster than the platter disk, so I can live with the remaining problems.

Increasing Page File

Next my attension went back to one of the top links, which led to BSOD – Posting Instructions. Before creating a Dump File I had to increase Page File to amount of RAM + 1 MB = 8193 MB. Page File was set to 8192 MB. I changed it to be 8194 MB initially with max size of 8300 MB.

After that Windows wants to restart.

Test 2

I tried to put PC to sleep – wakeup, hibernate – wakeup – several times. It did not crash anymore.

I haven’t hit the 100% disk activity either.

Only problem remaining is that the PC has hard to find the drive, when turning on power. It seems like it helps taking out power cord, when turning on power. If you see the orange wifi lamp turn on, then chance is good that it will also find the disk and start the PC.

I think it now is at an acceptable working level.

Maybe I should turn on Windows Search once again? Or just store a link to the start menu: “C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs”

Drivers and programs

I might need to know (at a later stage, when re-installing is needed) which drivers and programs are currently installed. They are:

TohibaDevices1

TohibaDevices2

ToshibaPrograms

One of the programs – Toshiba Desktop Assist – includes possibility to change settings in the BIOS. System Settings reflects settings you can change in the BIOS.

ToshibaBiosTool

You will notice that HDD protection options now are all disabled (and none-changeable). It must be using the System Device “Toshiba HDD Protection”.

Links

SideBar

  • If I need to boot on CD, then I need to Boot Mode to CSM Boot in BIOS. And also to press F12 to select CD drive as boot device.
  • F2 and F12 might be disabled if started from UEFI Boot. From Windows do: PC Settings – General – Advanced Start-up – Restart – Boot on USB
  • If a PC (such as tablets) supports Connected Standby then CSM boot is not allowed.

The End

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