how to use Boot It Bare Metal to correct bad SSD alignment?

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by beethoven, Mar 31, 2015.

  1. beethoven

    beethoven Registered Member

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    I used SSD Tool to trim my SSD but before even starting it shows up as Alignment Bad. Offset 31.5 kb - write cache enabled.

    I suppose my SSD has the default setting and should be corrected. I have Boot It Bare Metal and note that there is a setting for Global Geometry and MBR Options to Align Partitions on 1 MIB Boundaries. In principle my drive is working fine and I am hesitant messing around with it without understanding what I am doing. Can I use Boot It now on a fully operational SSD to correct this apparent error and if so, how would I go about it?
     
  2. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    beethoven,

    In BIBM, select your SSD, View MBR, what are the LBAs for each partition?

    On the Work with Partitions screen, what are the partition names and sizes?

    Which OS are you using?
     
  3. beethoven

    beethoven Registered Member

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    Brian,

    LBA is 63 and partition is C OS 238475 Mib HPFS/NTFS
     
  4. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    How much data do you have in that partition?

    Just to confirm. Only one partition on the SSD?

    Which OS?
     
  5. beethoven

    beethoven Registered Member

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    sorry, yes - only one active partition and using about 90 from 250gb - it's a Win 7, 64 bit plus one internal, one external drive attached for data and backups
     
  6. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Thanks. I would fix it as you don't have 1 MiB alignment. I assume you have an image backup so.....

    Boot BIBM
    Make sure you have these selections in BIBM Settings
    tick in Align on 1 MiB Boundaries
    no tick in Align on Cylinder

    In Partition Work, select the partition
    click Resize and make it 3 MiB smaller (this is fast)
    you should see 3 MiB of Free Space below the partition
    select the partition and click Slide. Accept Free Space Before= 0 (the slide will take longer than a few minutes as all the "sectors in use" in the partition have to be moved. 90 GB needs to be moved)
    select the partition and click Resize. Make it Max Size (this is fast)

    Click View MBR. The LBA should be 2048 or a multiple of 2048.
     
  7. beethoven

    beethoven Registered Member

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    I am running Boot It from the disk not from installation - not sure if this may cause any issues. Following your guidance,I got to the resizing part but when I deduct 3 from the size shown it does the work but only deducts 2 and I add up having only 2 MIB free space below. I repeated this thinking my math was off but the same effect. Did it both via manually entering the size and by using the arrow/dropdown box. :( Can I still continue at this stage?
     
  8. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    My instructions cover BIBM on the HD or from a disk. All OK.

    The 3 MiB can be anything. 1 MiB or 10000 MiB. It is just to create Free Space at the end of the drive because when you slide, the partition is moved towards the end of the drive. Often 3 MiB resizing will produce 2 or 4 MiB change. No problem. After you fix the start of the partition a 3 MiB resize will produce 3 MiB of Free Space. But you won't have to do this.
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2015
  9. beethoven

    beethoven Registered Member

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    Thank you Brian - all ok and SSD now shows proper alignment :thumb:
     
  10. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Excellent.

    Can you recall which app created that 63 sector offset partition?
     
  11. beethoven

    beethoven Registered Member

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    No, I am sorry but when I migrated my os to SSD I did use Boot It too for resizing but probably did not have the right tick in place for 1 Mib boundaries and Shadowprotect for applying an image . Other than that I would have no idea what has touched the partition before (unless this was already the same way on my previous drive?)
     
  12. trott3r

    trott3r Registered Member

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    Is SSD tool a stand alone utility?
    With the Generic name I am wondering if it is a manufacturers tool
     
  13. beethoven

    beethoven Registered Member

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  14. TheRollbackFrog

    TheRollbackFrog Registered Member

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    It was developed by a user, originally for subscribers of the Crucial SSD forum... that's where it first showed up.

    It's a very simple tool and works like such... the program pre-allocates (something Windows will let you do at the file level, especially if you have something BIG to do, rather than just allocate as you consume) the entire balance of the SSD as Windows sees it (all the space that's currently FREE). It pre-allocates all but about a few hundred mBs just in case something needs some space before it's done. Once Windows grants the pre-allocation, the program immediately deletes the requested space, at which time, if TRIM is active, Windows will de-allocate the pre-allocated file blocks and send appropriate TRIM requests to the SSD (this is what it normally does supporting ACTIVE TRIMming of SSDs)... a very simple cleanup following external disk block manipulation.

    Turns out this is exactly how Windows 8 decided to do its on-demand SSD optimization requests... hmmmm, I wonder where they got the idea from :isay:
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2015
  15. beethoven

    beethoven Registered Member

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    Froggie, do you actually know how long this operation takes? It's a bit like pushing a button and waiting for the magic to happen. The program tells you that you can now close it as your ssd is doing its job but I do wonder how long it may take? Do you need to wait for a certain time before you shut down your pc to avoid interfering? There is no completion or success response. Would that operation be finished after a few seconds, minutes or possibly take much longer? Do you use it once only or once every few weeks/months? Sorry to ask so many questions but you are the Frog after all :)
     
  16. TheRollbackFrog

    TheRollbackFrog Registered Member

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    "Sorry to ask so many questions but you are the Frog after all"... <jeeesh...> :blink:

    If you have a disk activity light on your machine, shortly after hitting the "Trim Freespace" button, that light should light up like a Christmas tree for about 7-10 seconds (I guess depending on FREE space being TRIMmed), then drops to 3/4 light for another few seconds then it's finished... that's on my machine with about 75gB of FREE space on that partition.

    If you're running W8 you can use the TaskMgr/Performance/Disk option and when the massive TRIM is in progress, you'll see the disk go to 100% BUSY with very little thruput in the way of mBs at that time.

    Ooooops... forgot you were running W7, that why your using this tool
    :confused:
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2015
  17. TheRollbackFrog

    TheRollbackFrog Registered Member

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    I only use it after an image restoration (when I remember)... that the only time the disk surface gets out of sync as far as the SSD and Windows are concerned. After that, the normal Windows TRIM mgmt function will keep that disk pretty clean.
     
  18. TheRollbackFrog

    TheRollbackFrog Registered Member

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    I'm sure it would be nice to wait it out but it shouldn't hurt anything if you kill the process in the middle. The only thing that will happen will be the clean-up will be incomplete but the file system will be in good shape.

    If you can wait the time it takes (pretty small), I'm sure that would be best.
     
  19. trott3r

    trott3r Registered Member

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    The program seems to run in xp just tried it as this is the os i have triple booted into at the moment.
    I assume it doesnt do anything in xp even though there is no error?

    I will try it with win7 next reboot.

    Thanks for the mention of the tool, it does look useful for us win7 users
     
  20. beethoven

    beethoven Registered Member

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    Thanks a lot for the explanations - The Frogs Rule :D
     
  21. TheRollbackFrog

    TheRollbackFrog Registered Member

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    It won't create any errors... it's doing all legitimate things. If the OD doesn't support TRIM, nothing will be TRIMmed by the OS.
    It should work just fine.
     
  22. TheRollbackFrog

    TheRollbackFrog Registered Member

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    A li'l history... the tool was originally developed for those stout pioneers who actually bought early TRIMmable SSDs for use with Winodws XP systems. It wouldn't help the XP users, but when they transitioned to W7, there needed to be a way to clean that SSD up.

    Hence... "SSDTool" (It will live on in infamy)
     
  23. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    beethoven,

    For your information, you can use BIBM to TRIM these partitions...

    DOS
    TBOS
    Linux
    WinPE
    IFL
    WinXP
    Win7 8 10
    Free Space
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2015
  24. beethoven

    beethoven Registered Member

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    Brian, thanks - I better have another look at the manual to see if I can find the relevant info in there on how I would do that.
    On the other hand, if I understand froggie correctly for now I don't need to do anything as the alignment is fine and Win 7 is doing the trim automatically. I am keeping my images for emergencies, not keen on actually using them so probably there is no urgency now.
     
  25. TheRollbackFrog

    TheRollbackFrog Registered Member

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    Beethoven, there's another important thing you need to do before running "SSDTool"... again :).

    That mis-aligned build you brought to the SSD may have come from an HDD where it was originally built. If so, that Windows build doesn't know you are running on an SSD yet (and therefore TRIM won't be active). Windows 7 only detected SSDs when the system was built, after that, no detection ever attempted.

    Best way to solve that potential problem is to go into the Windows PROPERTIES page and rerun the "Windows Experience Index." During that process your SSD will be detected (if it wasn't before) and all the appropriate Windows settings will be changed to deal with it. After that's done you should re-run the "SSDTool" once again.

    Windows 8 handles all this stuff automatically...
     
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