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Severe Stuttering on Samsung 960 EVO NVMe SSD


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#1 Miasmata

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Posted 11 May 2017 - 11:29 PM

Hi, I'm going to preface this post with the post I've already made on another forum, but am not receiving much help on, but have additional information to add below such as specs, steps I've taken since making this quoted post, and other such information.

 

 

Hello, 
Just over the last weekend I've been performing the laborious task of reinstalling Windows onto a new storage device - giddy with anticipation, I finished installing Windows 10 on my brand new Samsung 960EVO, excited to see just how fast it was, but when I loaded into Windows, all I had happening was stuttering, and a lot of it. Voice communications over Discord were laggy, Chrome took forever to start, and just browsing Explorer was a difficulty.

I've attempted numerous fixes that I've found around the place, such as turning off CSM in the BIOS, installing, and reinstalling, the Samsung NVMe drivers, and checking the performance monitor to see if there was a culprit, but nothing has worked - AS SSD showed a normal 2500MB/s and 1700MB/s sequential read/write, but with shockingly slow random 4k/4k 64 thread read/write times.

Am I just stuck with a not-great drive, or would I have some other problem such as compatibility?

I understand this is quite open ended, so any questions you could provide that I have answers to would help you to help me. Also, I'm new to the forum so please let me know if I have done something incorrectly, or not conforming to rules and such.
 

 

PC SPECS: 

 

Motherboard: GIGABYTE AORUS z270x Gaming-K5

CPU: Intel i7 7700k

GPU: Nvidia GeForce Titan

RAM: 2x8gb Corsair Vengeance DDR4 3000MHz

PSU: Thermaltake Tough Power Gold 850W 80+

Storage:

    Samsung 960 EVO NVMe SSD 250gb

    Intel 520 Series SSD 120gb

    Seagate 2TB 7200RPM HDD (unknown model)

    Western Digital 320GB 10000RPM HDD (unknown model)

Monitors:

    Acer K272HL 27" LED, 1920x1080 - 60Hz, IPS

    BenQ G2400W 27"  LCD, 1920x1200 - 60Hz, TFT

    HP L2208w 22" LCD, 1680x1050 - 59Hz, TFT

OS: Windows 10 Pro x64, build 14393.1198

 

 

Since creating the original post, I've attempted rolling back from Samsung's NVMe driver v2.2 and tried v2.1, with a slight increase in performance, but upon request of another user on the other forum, I tried using Snappy Driver Installer, with which I've accidentally installed a different NVMe Controller entirely (which I can't, for the life of me, figure out how to remove) which has brought my 960's speeds VERY low (sequential 400/300 MB/s as opposed to 2500/1700 MB/s) and still did not fix the original problem.

 

To reiterate, my new Samsung 960 Evo NVM Express SSD, which should in theory be blitzing fast, with a completely fresh installation of Windows 10 Pro x64, is performing (much) slower than my older Intel 520 Series SATA III SSD, and with any load causes short-but-constant (0.05-0.1s, up to three times a second) hangs, which I'm referring to as stuttering for simplicity's sake.

 

Any help would be very appreciated, especially from people with experience with NVM Express drives. I usually consider myself quite well versed with computers but this new tech has me stumped, having never even heard of NVMe drives up until about two months ago.



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#2 jonuk76

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Posted 11 May 2017 - 11:34 PM

Have you by any chance tried it without all those extra storage drives connected?  What can you remove and still have a workable system?


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#3 Miasmata

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Posted 11 May 2017 - 11:36 PM

I can effectively, and with no negative consequences, remove all drives but the 960 EVO, all monitors but my primary, the GPU itself, and one of two RAM sticks. Would all be necessary, or just drives?



#4 jonuk76

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Posted 12 May 2017 - 12:44 AM

Just a theory, but I think removing the additional drives would be worth trying, to start with. You can just unplug the SATA cables, no reason to do anything else.

 

I'm just thinking to an issue that affected me once where a possibly faulty/incompatible SATA DVD drive caused severe performance and stability issues on a machine I built once (the same drive worked on another computer, it just seemed to be interacting with the one I built badly).  Bearing in mind NVMe drives share bandwidth with SATA (indeed, using an NVMe drive normally renders some of the SATA ports inoperable), it might be worth a try.


Edited by jonuk76, 12 May 2017 - 12:45 AM.

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#5 RolandJS

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Posted 12 May 2017 - 01:10 AM

"...Bearing in mind NVMe drives share bandwidth with SATA (indeed, using an NVMe drive normally renders some of the SATA ports inoperable..."  Jonuk76.  Would you mind sharing more about this?  If the thread starter doesn't mind, I'd like to listen in and learn more about this device and the potential, possible, side effects.


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#6 Miasmata

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Posted 12 May 2017 - 01:36 AM

Certainly Roland, go ahead. Although my case may be an outlier - I'm inexperienced with NVMe technology in general.

 

jonuk, I've disconnected all of my SATA connections leaving only my M.2 NVMe SSD and have run a benchmark again, but I see no performance change whatsoever. It might be worth noting that my current 4k write speed is a mere 2MB/s, along with a 3.3ms access time. Atrociously slow. 

 

OK I'm going to try and re-explain the problems I have as I don't believe I've worded it well enough - initially my problem was that I was getting very poor 4K random read AND write speeds, but now after accidentally installing another NVMe controller (Surface NVM Express Controller) I cannot figure out how to remove it, and since installing it I'm getting astronomically low write speeds overall - from 40MB/s 4k random write to 2MB/s, 0.7ms access time to 3.3ms, 560MB/s 4k-64thread to 115MB/s, and 1700MB/s sequential to 380MB/s. These are both similar problems but one has a clear culprit, but I need both fixed - I can however, if necessary, fix having the wrong NVMe controller with a fresh Windows install once again.



#7 jonuk76

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Posted 12 May 2017 - 02:16 AM

Roland, the situation can be quite complicated, but basically M.2. devices share bandwidth with other parts of the system.  This is because the CPU and chipset only have so many PCIe lanes available.  This is an extract from a Gigabyte manual (Z270X-Gaming 5 model) for Intel Kaby Lake/Skylake processors.  This model includes two M.2. ports, one of which is shared with the SATA bus, the other shared with one of the PCIe slots.  This is one of the newer motherboards, some older ones were less flexible.

 

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This is the section of the manual for the Z270X-Gaming K5, which has a slightly different setup (again, shares bandwidth with SATA)

 

Va40bhM.png

 

 

Miasmata, OK well that is one line of thought out of the way anyway.  I'm really not familiar with NVMe in terms of first hand experience. From looking through benchmarks, it seems like the performance you're getting is well under what should be expected anyway. Hopefully someone with more experience of them will be able to provide some ideas.


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#8 Miasmata

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Posted 12 May 2017 - 02:45 AM

Thank you, regardless, for your assistance.

 

I've managed to at least get my write speeds back to pre-Surface-NVMe-Controller and have reverted to the Samsung Controller, but the stuttering remains regardless. Consider the problem to now just be the poor 4k read/write speeds.






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