All SSD's running extremely slow on SATA

tom020788

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Hello, recently I noticed one of my SSD's seemed to be intermittently reading/not-reading, and generally acting like a dying drive.
I loaded it into linux and found the drive was running extremely slow, so I slowly backed everything up from that onto a USB external drive.
After backing up, I disconnected the SSD drive I assumed was dying (was connected via sata), and connected two brand new SSD's (via sata), and then formatted them together in windows as a software raid drive (striped).
I fired up crystal disk benchmark tool and found that the first reading showed the expected 1GBps speed, but each consecutive test after the first, the speed drops very low, until on the last test it shows an average of 35MBps.

I tried copying files from a USB-drive to this raid drive, and got an average of only 35MBps fluctuating between 35-135Mbps. Tried copying from another SSD to this drive and got the same average.
Copying between two USB drives shows normal expected transfer speeds.
When I look at the performance tab in task manager, I see that when the SSD's are having files transferred between them, the usage % is on average around 3-5% with a max of 25%. Transferring between the USB drives shows near 100% usage, with normal expected speeds. (see screenshots)

SMART info shows no problems except that it says one SSD is running quite hot when it should not be. (mounted outside case, and not under extreme loads) I can feel the SSD and it is no hotter than the other SSD, so it appears this reading is wrong.
I assume now that the SSD I originally thought was dying, wasn't dying and it was just a symptom of whatever this problem is, as that SSD was also fairly new (a few months old). I also assume it has to be hardware related, and not OS related, because It ran slow on linux OS as well.

Would anyone know what this would be?
Bad cable? bad power supply? Motherboard?
Thanks in advance for any advice.

p.s. The screenshot that shows Disk 5 at 93% usage is a USB drive transferring files to another USB drive.
The other screenshot shows file transfer between the SSD's.
 

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tom020788

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USB 2.0 max speed is 35 MBp/s (480 Mb/s)
Thanks, but the SSD's in question are plugged into the sata ports. not USB. (I have now added this detail to my OP).
And as I said, the speed isn't maxing out at 35MBps. Its averaging around there, but fluctuates between 30-130MBps
 
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1) What are the make and model numbers of all of the SSD's?

2) Where did you purchase them?

3) Which revision SATA ports are each SSD connected to?
 

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Allan
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As a test consider trying the 2 new SSDs as 2 separate drives instead of Raid.
 

tom020788

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As a test consider trying the 2 new SSDs as 2 separate drives instead of Raid.
Thanks for the reply :)
Currently, there are 3 drives attached to sata ports.
2 of them are in the raid configuration, and the other is a single one by itself.
Transferring between the single one to USB or to the other raid couple, results in the same file transfer speeds.
And as mentioned, the SSD I originally thought was dying also showed the same behavior (average 30MBps, sometimes fluctuaing up to 130MBps, and sometimes as low as 5MBps.
All devices so far (2 single drives tested separately and 2 in raid/striped configuration).
So basically I'm saying ive already tested this. The behaviour is the same on any device plugged into the sata ports.
 

tom020788

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1) What are the make and model numbers of all of the SSD's?

2) Where did you purchase them?

3) Which revision SATA ports are each SSD connected to?
Thanks for the reply :)
The ones in raid config currently:
Make/model - WD green WD Green SSD (Link)
Purchased from - A local computer store, brand new. I had set them up in raid previously and they were working as expected, as was every other hdd or ssd installed via Sata previously.
Revision of ports - motherboard specs say "6x SATA 6Gb/s port(s), gray". All drives were plugged into these ports.
Heres a link to the motherboard for reference: Prime B350M-A (Link)

The SSD that I assumed was dying was bought also locally from a different computer store.
All drives (hdd or ssd) that I have tested so far, if plugged into the Sata ports are showing the same behavior, so I assume it isnt the devices themselves, and that it has something to do with the ports, or the cables.
I will later test this further by plugging them into a different computer to see if they behave normally in a different computer.

Any Ideas?
 

tom020788

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After further testing, I've still not solved the problem, but here is what I've found:

1. All SSD's behave abnormally no matter which sata port it is plugged into. When transferring files from M.2 to these drives,
2. Tried using a different set of sata cables, no effect.
3. The WD SSD's ran separately still behave abnormally, but better than when they are in raid. They start off with transfer speeds of 550MBps, and drop down to very slow speeds (as low as 7MBps), then back up, and down.
4. If I plug the WD SSD's into an enclosure, and test transfer between them, the transfer speed appears to be stable.
5. The M.2 nvme storage I have installed is also behaving the same as the SSD's, starting at high expected speeds, then dropping to very slow speeds.
6. transferring files between two USB storage devices shows normal expected speeds, including between two of the SSD's if they are connected to usb via STATA-USB enclosure. This rules out the idea that the SSD's are all dying.

So basically, all SSD's (when plugged into Sata), including the m.2 card installed on the motherboard, are unstable and have fluctuating speeds. But if I plug the SSD's into USB via an enclosure, speeds are as expected and stable.

I attached a couple gif files to show an example of how they are behaving.
 

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As you have discovered, WD Green's are bottom of the barrel. Little or no cache whatsoever ... is both why they are so s-l-o-w and cheap. Grab some Samsung 1 to 2 TB Evo's (or Pro's).
 

tom020788

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As you have discovered, WD Green's are bottom of the barrel. Little or no cache whatsoever ... is both why they are so s-l-o-w and cheap. Grab some Samsung 1 to 2 TB Evo's (or Pro's).
Not sure you have read through, but I have a samsung 960 Evo (the m.2 nvme) and it is behaving the same way as all the other drives. If you read what I've found so far, you'd see that this obviously isn't about a couple of slow drives.
It doesn't matter which drives are being transferred between, I've tried all combinations transferring between different devices. They all have significant speed drops from how they used to perform, except for USB drives when transferring between two USB drives.
The WD's aren't the only ones behaving abnormally, and it isn't just slow, its erratic.
I have tested 2 USB portable drives, 2 WD SSD's, 1 SPCC SSD, and the samsung 960 Evo m.2 installed on the motherboard. All except the USB drives are behaving abnormally, transfer speeds drop to as low as 60MBps on all of these (even the Samsung Evo), and occasionally spike up to their expected speeds then drop back down again.
 
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1) Same problem when using the same drives on another computer? If so, then you would know the drives are the problem.

2) When a SSD cache fills up, things get a lot slower.

3) When testing drive speeds, you'll usually get better results when the drive is not the OS drive ... simply because the OS can be constantly be doing things in the background that can skew the results.
 

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Allan
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You can only use Sata ports 1 to 4 when you have an M2 installed, not sure if that is relevant or not.

(see 'Note...' at bottom of your motherboard link)
 

tom020788

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You can only use Sata ports 1 to 4 when you have an M2 installed, not sure if that is relevant or not.

(see 'Note...' at bottom of your motherboard link)
Yup, if I plug it into 5 or 6 the drive isn't recognized at all, so the above stuff is only regarding ports 1-4
 

tom020788

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Dec 30, 2010
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1) Same problem when using the same drives on another computer? If so, then you would know the drives are the problem.

2) When a SSD cache fills up, things get a lot slower.

3) When testing drive speeds, you'll usually get better results when the drive is not the OS drive ... simply because the OS can be constantly be doing things in the background that can skew the results.
A samsung 960 evo running windows is not expected to drop to 60MBps and jump up and down from there... I've been running these drives for a while now. if this was storage drive related, that would mean all of my drives failed at the same time... not likely. I will test them anyway on another computer, but what you are saying about the cache or windows running on the drive does not make sense given the test results I'm getting. They were all running much faster previously and now they are all running slow/erratic suddenly.
They are not behaving normally. Anything I plug into those sata ports is behaving like a drive that is going to die soon. But in this case, I know the drives are good.
 
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tom020788

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Joined
Dec 30, 2010
Messages
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1) Same problem when using the same drives on another computer? If so, then you would know the drives are the problem.

2) When a SSD cache fills up, things get a lot slower.

3) When testing drive speeds, you'll usually get better results when the drive is not the OS drive ... simply because the OS can be constantly be doing things in the background that can skew the results.
I already ruled out the possibility that the drives are the issue by plugging them into USB ports using Sata-USB enclosure. They run at normal expected speeds if they are plugged into a USB 3.1 gen2 port. Including the WD Greens. This is not a case of drives being slow. and given the same problem happens if loaded in linux, the only thing remaining is that It is something to do with the motherboard or another component attached to the motherboard.
 
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