I woke up Saturday morning back in the UK to find a damaged SSD drive that I'd been trying to RMA for over a year on the carpet next to my bed. There wasn't much I could do with it whilst I was staying in S.E.Asia, mainly because it would have cost me three times the price of the actual SSD itself just to actually RMA it back from Asia to Europe. The very sight of it just made me more physically fatigued, so I just rolled over thinking "I can't be arsed" and went back to sleep. 

A couple of hours later and I was awake with the borked SSD in one hand and a brew in the other. What was wrong with the SSD? Well, near the beginning of when I first bought the SSD near a year ago everything was going perfectly, the speed of it for regular stuff in initial testing was beyond anything that I had ever expected from it. As standard practice I usually set bios level password encryption to all my drives and the SSD was no exception. But after setting the actual bios encryption password on the SSD, something had happened on the SSD drive for the password to have changed, thus the password that I had set on it would not be accepted when trying to access it. Meaning that it was just completely locked and I couldn't use it at all. I'd tried everything to get the SSD functioning again, and I have too say that during the antics the online support people at OCZ were incredibly friendly and accommodating about it all. However even after using their SSD diagnostic and firmware update software at their recommendation I still couldn't get it unlocked. Eventually the folks over at OCZ just recommended that I RMA it back to them so they can send me out a new one, they even said they could hold the RMA till I got back from S.E. Asia. Basically the customer service at OCZ from what I had experienced of it was top notch to say the least. On the off chance I managed to get chance to send it back a little earlier with my sisters luggage a few months on, and since then I'd not heard anything of it despite a polite request from me to RMA it for me at the time.  

Now over a year on one Saturday morning back in the UK, and the expensive paper weight had now seemingly suddenly turned up out of thin air thanks to my sleeping through any antics that actually allowed it to be put there. After a further email trying to get the RMA process started up again the temptation to try and fix it again suddenly crept in and eventually slowly kicked in, especially with only just having tried to fix my DAW rig with a hybrid SSD and failed miserably. Maybe a full SSD would totally fix the issue causing my local machine to screw up all the time.

So off I went, the intention being to try and give fixing the SSD one more go by downloading the very latest bootable custom OCZ SSD diagnostic software to run test on it, and to install the latest 2.25 firmware for the Agility 3 SSD in order to maybe set it back to its blanked factory state. The last time I did this whilst in Cambodia with the 2.10 firmware nothing happened for it to still remain in its screwed up state.

More unforeseen screw ups…

Unfortunately for my Toshiba laptop (that I'd just recently custom refurbished and restored) it got the task of testing the SSD and trying to update its firmware that afternoon . This basically meant removing the laptops standard 2.5 inch 5400RPM hard drive (which didn't have any bios password encryption set on it at all) and using the 2.5 inch OCZ Agility 3 SSD in its place. After which the plan was to run the diagnostic and firmware update software for the SSD from a bootable OCZ CD I'd burnt that morning using an ISO download from the official OCZ website support pages. Seems simple and straight forward enough don't you think? Yeah, I thought so too. The only problem was that the Toshiba laptop wouldn't let me actually get past the SSD encryption password request screen in order to actually run the diagnostic and firmware update software for the SSD. This was even after setting the CD-drive as the first boot device on the Toshiba laptop. This basically meant there was no way I could do anything to even try to repair/restore the SSD on the Toshiba laptop, at which point I thought fair enough, I'll just take it out and put the machine back the way it was with its original hard drive so I could just use the Toshiba laptop like I did before.  However, for some strange reason when I put the original regular hard drive that belonged to the Toshiba back in, it now had an encryption password lock on it, this is despite my not having ever set a password or activated bios encryption for it to begin with! What was this? Had the encryption lock from the SSD now transferred over to the regular hard drive of the Toshiba machine for me to now be locked out of that hard drive too and thus a computer too?!  How did this happen?? Just f'n great.

My old desktop tower machine evades the SSD's stupidness…

So now with the screwed up OCZ SSD having just screwed up my laptop too I had to fire up an old AMD desktop tower system to try and trouble shoot and update the SSD from. The good thing was that with the tower machines bios being less stupid, the machine actually allowed me to boot from OCZ diagnostic and firmware update boot CD first. From there I was then able to run the diagnostic application on the SSD, install the 2.25 firmware and do a full security wipe on the SSD to restore it back to its factory state. I might also point out that doing this with the previous 2.10 firmware update whilst I was in Cambodia did nothing to fix the SSD or fully restore it back to its factory state.

Using the latest diagnostics, factory security/data wipe and 2.25 firmware update software actually fixes OCZ's Agility 3 SSD…

So after being locked out of different hard drive(thus a laptop) it looks like the once Agility 3 SSD turned expensive paper weight has now been turned back into a fully functioning SSD again. Now I just need to figure out a way of unlocking the original hard drive for my laptop again which so far from initial inquiries means having to buy 2 years extended warranty for the Toshiba laptop at the price of 179GBP just to get the Toshiba people to unlock the drive for me. The guy even offered to knock it down to 100GBP after a chat with his manager, still money I just don't have.