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I haven't lost any mission critical data or anything, but I have in my possession a large number of SSD 2.5" drives that were pulled for unreliability or being "dead". I am curious if there's any way to bring them back to life, but purely as an experiment and ignoring things like warranty and sending them to a professional.

This is almost certainly a big waste of time, but I thought I'd ask all the same.

The drives I have fall into two types: I have a stack of Kingston SSDNOW V100 drives that never got the important firmware update that is supposed to prevent data loss. I also have a stack of OCZ Vertex2 SSDs.

In both cases the drives are not recognized at all by the system. Not through an external enclosure, not by connecting the drive as primary SATA, and not by changing the BIOS to AHCI or IDE SATA mode.

That probably means that nothing can be done, but if I open the OCZ drives there is a connector featuring 4 holes labelled GND, TX, RX, and VCC. Is there any chance I can connect a ROM reader or something to this interface and possibly repair or gain more information about the drive?

Has anyone successfully attempted something like a reflow of the NAND chips, which I've seen mentioned online before?

Could there be any other avenue for refreshing these drives to the point where they are recognized somewhere?

I accept they're probably toast and worthless, but before I threw them away I was curious if there's any possible tinkering I could do.

Thanks for your time.

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I'd probably RMA anything I could, then look at hacking the rest, unless if there's a business reason for not doing so. forum.hddguru.com/data-recovery-ssd-ocz-vertex-80gb-t20843.html this indicates you can connect those connectors to a UART to get some info –  Journeyman Geek Nov 16 '12 at 5:40
    
RMA isn't an option for various reasons, hacking is all I can do. And thanks for that link, I'll have to track down something that can interface with that connector, I'm not sure what a UART is but I'll look it up! –  geodave Nov 16 '12 at 5:52
    
Sorry you are done. –  Grico Nov 16 '12 at 6:42
    
@geodave: Universal asynchronous receiver/transmitter (Use a serial cable and something like Putty) –  Hennes Nov 16 '12 at 7:33
    
Just dropping to say that this is a very good question. Things like replacing the mainboard of a HDD are all very well established, but there are no really good guides or questions on fixing them. I think the solid metal box is a little intimidating. –  WindowsEscapist Dec 7 '12 at 21:42

2 Answers 2

For Crucial SSDs there is a method to get dead looking drives back to normal.
By dead I mean: Not recognized by any OS/Controller and no physical damage

I already had this particular case and to my surprise the following procedure is working:

  1. Only connect the SATA power connection and not the data cable. A USB enclosure with an external power source will also work.

  2. Once you have the drive connected, simply power on the computer and wait. The computer will need to stay powered on for 20 min and it is recommended that you don't use the computer during this process.

  3. Power the computer down and disconnect the drive for 30 seconds.

  4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 one more time.

  5. Reconnect the drive normally, and boot the computer to your operating system.

  6. Update your firmware, if you are not already at the latest on your drive. Please visit the following link for our firmware updates

Source: Crucial employee

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The only way to recover data from SSD is to send it to data recovery laboratory. You should always make backups if you don't have at least RAID 1/5/6/10 etc.

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OP isn't asking how to recover data, but how to get drives working again. –  WindowsEscapist Dec 7 '12 at 21:40
    
It's a dead NAND. Nothing can be done. –  Spacedust Dec 9 '12 at 13:27
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But you don't know that it's a dead NAND, only that the drives don't work. –  WindowsEscapist Dec 9 '12 at 21:47

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