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 Post subject: Unlocking ATA Password of PM863a SSD possible?
PostPosted: February 7th, 2020, 17:35 
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Joined: February 7th, 2020, 17:30
Posts: 5
Location: Sweden
I see that most of the tools and discussions here are related to regular spinning hard drives, not SSDs. With that said, are there any tools out there that can unlock Samsung SSDs that were locked with an ATA password?

Based on output from hdparm (see below), I can see that the drive is locked with an unknown user password, that the master password hasn't been changed and that the security level has been set to maximum which prevents me from just setting a new master password and then using that to secure erase or unlock it.

Code:
Security:
   Master password revision code = 65534
      supported
      enabled
      locked
   not   frozen
   not   expired: security count
      supported: enhanced erase
   Security level maximum


I have tried the common master passwords I could find (32 t:s, 32 spaces, space, NULL, empty string) as well as common words and hardcoded passwords used by some tools and guides like "password", "pass", "xxxx", "p", "Eins", "synology", etc. without success (both as master and user passwords). I also searched for the datasheet of the drive and managed to find a "Samsung Confidential"-marked copy but unlike the datasheet for some of the consumer drivers, it did not mention the master password used.

Are there any tools available to unlock these drives or are there any unlocking services available? I'm not interested in the data so wiping the drive would be fine.

The drive identifies itself as SAMSUNG MZ7LM3T8HMLP-00005 and has a production date of December 2016 running firmware GXT5204Q, if that is any help.


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 Post subject: Re: Unlocking ATA Password of PM863a SSD possible?
PostPosted: February 9th, 2020, 2:16 
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Joined: February 9th, 2020, 2:09
Posts: 3
Hi,

Did you manage to find a way to unlock this drive? I contacted Samsung, but their consumer division they do not handle this product, as this is an enterprise drive. I've filed a support query with their enterprise division but haven't heard back.

I tried it on different PC's. On the more recent ones, it displays a code and request the password. If I don't put the correct password or press ESC, the PC boots (from the main disk) normally but doesn't even see the locked HD in the BIOS. So, Samsung Magician (for enterprise SSD) doesn't see the drive.

I've seen some people had success unlocking SATA drives using ZU with Ultimate Boot CD with the BIOS set in compatible (not AHCI) mode and will be trying this shortly.


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 Post subject: Re: Unlocking ATA Password of PM863a SSD possible?
PostPosted: February 9th, 2020, 18:20 
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Joined: February 7th, 2020, 17:30
Posts: 5
Location: Sweden
conxentra wrote:
Hi,

Did you manage to find a way to unlock this drive? I contacted Samsung, but their consumer division they do not handle this product, as this is an enterprise drive. I've filed a support query with their enterprise division but haven't heard back.

I tried it on different PC's. On the more recent ones, it displays a code and request the password. If I don't put the correct password or press ESC, the PC boots (from the main disk) normally but doesn't even see the locked HD in the BIOS. So, Samsung Magician (for enterprise SSD) doesn't see the drive.

I've seen some people had success unlocking SATA drives using ZU with Ultimate Boot CD with the BIOS set in compatible (not AHCI) mode and will be trying this shortly.
No, I have not been able to unlock it yet and I have a feeling that I probably won't until we get new tools or I find someone with contacts at Samsung that can unlock it for me off the books or something. They could easily do it if they wanted to since Samsung obviously knows the master password.

Do you also have one of these drive locked in the same way (security level maximum)? If your drive is locked with Security level high, you can supposedly just set a new master password without knowing the existing one and then use that to secure erase the drive. That's not possible with security level maximum though.

As far as I'm aware, ZU doesn't work with modern SSDs since it uses vendor-specific commands that don't exist on their modern SSDs. Feel free to try it and let me know though, I would happily be proven wrong. :D


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 Post subject: Re: Unlocking ATA Password of PM863a SSD possible?
PostPosted: February 20th, 2020, 2:30 
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Joined: February 9th, 2020, 2:09
Posts: 3
I contacted Samsung, who initially agreed to RMA so that they can factory erase it.

However, upon sending the photos of the unit, they said these SSD are OEM units and as such, they do not have the software to factory erase it.

Do these OEM units have different firmware?


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 Post subject: Re: Unlocking ATA Password of PM863a SSD possible?
PostPosted: February 24th, 2020, 18:24 
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Joined: February 7th, 2020, 17:30
Posts: 5
Location: Sweden
conxentra wrote:
I contacted Samsung, who initially agreed to RMA so that they can factory erase it.

However, upon sending the photos of the unit, they said these SSD are OEM units and as such, they do not have the software to factory erase it.

Do these OEM units have different firmware?
They might have slight differences I suppose but in the case of the PM863 it would presumably be very similar as that is also sold as a retail drive in the US. I suppose they might have different master passwords though.

There also seem to be different definitions of OEM here, one which is branded by a company like Dell etc. (you can find images of those on eBay) and these which are sold in bulk but no visible branding besides Samsung's.

Could you ask them if these drives have different master passwords or if there is something else that is different?


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 Post subject: Re: Unlocking ATA Password of PM863a SSD possible?
PostPosted: September 16th, 2020, 11:24 
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Joined: February 7th, 2020, 17:30
Posts: 5
Location: Sweden
conxentra wrote:
I contacted Samsung, who initially agreed to RMA so that they can factory erase it.

However, upon sending the photos of the unit, they said these SSD are OEM units and as such, they do not have the software to factory erase it.

Do these OEM units have different firmware?
It seems like the company behind the PC3000 toolset has a new SSD add-on that seems to be able to read or reset the existing password.

https://www.acelaboratory.com/pc3000-SSD.php

Specifically the following feature:

- View the password and reset the password that was earlier set on an SSD (bypass the ATA security)

Now I just need to find a company with such a tool that is willing to help for a reasonable price.

Have you had any luck yet?


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 Post subject: Re: Unlocking ATA Password of PM863a SSD possible?
PostPosted: September 17th, 2020, 2:29 
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Joined: February 9th, 2020, 2:09
Posts: 3
blunden wrote:
conxentra wrote:
I contacted Samsung, who initially agreed to RMA so that they can factory erase it.

However, upon sending the photos of the unit, they said these SSD are OEM units and as such, they do not have the software to factory erase it.

Do these OEM units have different firmware?
It seems like the company behind the PC3000 toolset has a new SSD add-on that seems to be able to read or reset the existing password.

https://www.acelaboratory.com/pc3000-SSD.php

Specifically the following feature:

- View the password and reset the password that was earlier set on an SSD (bypass the ATA security)

Now I just need to find a company with such a tool that is willing to help for a reasonable price.

Have you had any luck yet?


When inserted in a PC, the SSD requests a password so it can be accessed. Using the master password which is specific for the BIOS, I managed to get one step further which allowed me to erase the SSD. After erasing the SSD though, it still asks me for user password upon boot though.

Since the OEM version of the SSD does not have the PSID printed on the drive itself, one of the ways to get the user password would be using brute force. However, the drive allows gives 3 attempts before locking up. Re-powering the drive after the lock allows another 3 attempts. Someone wrote a script and used a small board to re-power the drive after 3 failed attempts, while storing the passwords tried. He managed to get the password after the computer ran for 2 days.


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 Post subject: Re: Unlocking ATA Password of PM863a SSD possible?
PostPosted: September 17th, 2020, 5:26 
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Joined: February 7th, 2020, 17:30
Posts: 5
Location: Sweden
Nevermind. It seems like the PM863a is probably to new for the current PC3000 version.

https://blog.acelaboratory.com/pc-3000- ... dated.html

I guess I'll just have to wait and see if they ever add support for it. At least I found a local company with that product that might be able to help if the support status changes.


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