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 Post subject: SM961 firmware request
PostPosted: October 14th, 2019, 15:44 
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Joined: October 7th, 2019, 23:00
Posts: 11
Location: New York
If you have it, please post firmware for Samsung NVME SSD MZVKW1T0HMLH-00000, (this is a SM961 1TB MLC SSD). Version should number should follow pattern CXA7****. Unfortunately I bricked mine putting Lenovo 7L6QCXA7 on it. I am able to get it into safe mode but it appears I need a valid firmware file to get it going again. Many thanks in advance.


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 Post subject: Re: SM961 firmware request
PostPosted: May 1st, 2020, 1:02 
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Joined: May 1st, 2020, 0:58
Posts: 8
Location: United Kingdom
Hi guho,

You managed to get your SM961 into safe mode? I was wondering how you managed this, I have recently had the unfortunate experience of thinking all was well while trying to update the firmware on the SSD only to end up in the same situation as you myself.
Thankfully I have updated the firmware onto the 2nd slot so the correct firmware for the device is on slot 1, so I am hoping that if you might be feeling like a hero and wouldn't mind letting me know what to do to get it into safe mode I can then use nvme-cli to re-activate slot one instead.

Anything you can do to help would be massively appreciated as I am sat here feeling rather sweaty due to the situation I am now in unexpectedly since everything appeared to be working perfectly until I turned the PC off!

I would have sent a PM but I am newly registered so can't unfortunately!

Cheers
James


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 Post subject: Re: SM961 firmware request
PostPosted: May 1st, 2020, 14:18 
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Joined: October 7th, 2019, 23:00
Posts: 11
Location: New York
jaddie wrote:
Hi guho,

You managed to get your SM961 into safe mode? I was wondering how you managed this, I have recently had the unfortunate experience of thinking all was well while trying to update the firmware on the SSD only to end up in the same situation as you myself.
Thankfully I have updated the firmware onto the 2nd slot so the correct firmware for the device is on slot 1, so I am hoping that if you might be feeling like a hero and wouldn't mind letting me know what to do to get it into safe mode I can then use nvme-cli to re-activate slot one instead.

James, I was able to get it in safe mode by grounding a pad in the middle of the 2x3 grid of pads very close to the half circle used to screw the nvme to the board. I believe one of those two pins is ground and the other is safe mode so it does not matter if you get the wrong pin first.

Unfortunately safe mode did not help me. It does not show 8 firmware slots in safe mode and you cannot change the active slot to be used in non-safe mode while in safe mode. I am in the same situation where the bad fw is in the second slot and I just need to tell the darn drive to load its fw from the first slot. But I cannot do it in safe mode. I would love for you to try safe mode to see what you can do. The drive presents itself as a one gigabyte drive and runs rom from an actual eprom not firmware loaded to the flash array.

The next step would be to use jtag debugging where you can probably write data to any memory location on the array and figure out which memory location tells the drive which one is the active firmware slot to load.


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 Post subject: Re: SM961 firmware request
PostPosted: May 1st, 2020, 14:23 
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Joined: October 7th, 2019, 23:00
Posts: 11
Location: New York
Here you can see the 2x3 pads prominently:

https://c1.neweggimages.com/ProductImag ... y7eDgu.jpg

looks like the top middle pad ground so it has to be the bottom middle pad to which needs to be grounded to start this sm961 SSD in safe mode.


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 Post subject: Re: SM961 firmware request
PostPosted: May 1st, 2020, 14:27 
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Joined: May 1st, 2020, 0:58
Posts: 8
Location: United Kingdom
Interesting, how do you trigger the safe mode, do you have to touch these pads together when the PC is on I assume, or does it need to be powered but switched off & then turned on so it boots into safe mode?

Appreciate your reply! I have seen that someone actually managed to make a simple jtag solution by using a raspberry pi, you might want to look into it as its cheap as doing it that way!

Unfortunately I will need to learn about this to know what on earth I'm doing with it first (I'm not daft btw, I'm a software & web developer) just haven't had exposure to something as low level as this yet!

First problem would be working out what to connect to, if you look at the samsung 970 evo plus I believe it was I was looking at, or the 970 pro -- its very similar looking to the SM961 so may provide hints.

The main grief is the lack of documentation... need someone on the inside of an OEM to pull a spec sheet or so...

https://pastebin.com/mBFzwWJf
https://www.pentestpartners.com/securit ... ng-an-ssd/

Have a look at those it may give you inspiration perhaps?

Do stay in contact btw, I did find you on twitter & tweet at you as well just to cover all bases!

Cheers
James


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 Post subject: Re: SM961 firmware request
PostPosted: May 1st, 2020, 14:44 
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Joined: May 1st, 2020, 0:58
Posts: 8
Location: United Kingdom
I have responded to you,but apparently my post needs to be approved, likely because I put a pair of links in to articles describing the process that I was saying you should read, I have tweeted at you on twitter btw as well.

Should the pins be shorted with the PC running?


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 Post subject: Re: SM961 firmware request
PostPosted: May 1st, 2020, 14:56 
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Joined: October 7th, 2019, 23:00
Posts: 11
Location: New York
jaddie wrote:
I have responded to you,but apparently my post needs to be approved, likely because I put a pair of links in to articles describing the process that I was saying you should read, I have tweeted at you on twitter btw as well.

Should the pins be shorted with the PC running?

I also have a post which needs to be approved because it has a picture of the sm961 and the 6 pads near the screw half circle.

but you don't really need a picture. If you think of the pads as a matrix of size (2,3), 2 rows 3 columns then you want to ground the pad at coordinates (2,2). No confusion possible, as pin(1,2) is already ground.

Yes the grounding needs to be in place before powering on the PC. I just soldered a little wire to the pad so I can hold it to ground when booting the PC if I want the SM961 to be in safe mode.

PLEASE make some strain relief if you follow my suggestion of wire as I do not want to be associated with accidentally lifting the vulnerable little pad off the sm961 PCB!!!!!!

It goes without saying that you need to boot your PC from another drive while troubleshooting your SM961 in safe mode.


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 Post subject: Re: SM961 firmware request
PostPosted: May 1st, 2020, 15:38 
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Joined: May 1st, 2020, 0:58
Posts: 8
Location: United Kingdom
Appreciate that, I might wait for them to approve the posts in that case, unless you want to move to twitter DMs instead?

Yeah I have linux installed on another drive as the SSD is dead to the point of being gone even from the bios!

Yeah as for the soldering I assume that is just a trip for the SSD starting up, so I'll probably look to short them with tweezers or a screwdriver when starting the machine up instead as presumably when the system is running the short doesn't need to be kept in place anymore?

So by 2,2 you mean when looking at the SSD face on looking at the label etc, port to the right side, out of the set of pads its the bottom middle pad that I want to touch to the top middle pad then the one above it :D


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 Post subject: Re: SM961 firmware request
PostPosted: May 1st, 2020, 15:39 
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Joined: May 1st, 2020, 0:58
Posts: 8
Location: United Kingdom
Appreciate that, I might wait for them to approve the posts in that case, unless you want to move to twi __ tter instead?
Yeah I have linux installed on another drive as the SSD is dead to the point of being gone even from the bios!
Yeah as for the soldering I assume that is just a trip for the SSD starting up, so I'll probably look to short them with tweezers or a screwdriver when starting the machine up instead as presumably when the system is running the short doesn't need to be kept in place anymore? So by 2,2 you mean when looking at the SSD face on looking at the label etc, port to the right side, out of the set of pads its the bottom middle pad that I want to touch to the top middle pad then the one above it :D


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