Intel 320 Series 160GB Solid State Drive

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Intel 320 Series 160GB Solid State Drive
Price: $37.99
Shipping Options:: $5 Standard
Shipping Estimates: Ships in 3-5 Business Days. (Tuesday, May 31 to Friday, Jun 03) + transit
Condition: Factory Reconditioned

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Most reliable SSD’s ever made.

They are, but I would be a bit wary of buying a used SSD. Are these consumer returns? Any chance they ever spent time in server use?

Ideally for used drives they should state a max usage guarantee. I understand they can’t state the exact amount for each drive, but if it said “no more than 10TB written” I might consider buying one.

Without knowing if the “reconditioning” included swapping out the internal memory, I’d be reluctant to pay this for a pretty small drive at a price that makes this deal marginal. Everything I own boots to SSD, and it’s my top recommendation to those looking for the best performance increase for the spend, but not if it’s going to fail.

Without a guarantee regarding how much has already been written to the drive, I wouldn’t buy. Not when faster, brand new 240GB SSDs are selling for $55 on Newegg. Also, SATA2? No, not unless it’s going into a 5-8 y/o PC. Sorry.

Does anyone know if these drives have the latest firmware to avoid the 8 MB bug that has plagued the 320 series?

For those who are unfamiliar, after a power failure or system crash the Intel 320 series SSD will reduce its storage capacity to 8 MB requiring a complete erasure of the drive using a utility such as gparted followed by a full re-installation of the OS. Any files stored on the drive would be lost.

http://www.techspot.com/news/44694-intel-confirms-8mb-bug-in-320-series-ssds-fix-available.html

Ouch! Thanks for that informative post. No deal! The 320 series may have been the most reliable SSDs in their day, but not this batch.
Factory refurbed for a reason. I guess OK for a reseller doing refurbed laptops. But given the latest cost of SSDs and updated specs, plus the unknown mileage on these chips…a new one is a few bucks more. Intel is going down the toilet, and they are circling the bowl. 12000+ lay offs.
I have no love for this big bully corporation. All monopolies deserve no mercy from consumers.

That article is 5 years old. Says right in it that Intel resolved the issue with a firmware update. Not saying those affected did not lose data, but unless there are reports of the problem continuing after the firmware update, this issue is no longer relevant.

That’s why I was asking if these drives have the latest firmware update. Just because it has been five years since the patch was released that doesn’t necessarily mean that it has been applied to these drives.

I bought a Micron SSD from Woot a few months ago and it was still operating on an older firmware that had a known issue. An updated firmware patch had been available for several years yet it had never been applied. I had to flash the firmware myself when I received the drive.

As a Certified PC Technician for sixteen years I’ve learned that this is actually quite a common occurrence. And not just for SSD drives. Most computer components whether new or manufacturer refurbished tend to ship with an older firmware and it is left to the end user to upgrade to the latest patch, even if said patch is several years old. It is just too much trouble and too costly for a company to go back and update thousands of individual components.

(Incidentally, in the forums that follow that article I posted, one person did report that they had updated the firmware and the drive still suffered from the same problem.)

Sadly, that is the current state for SSD drives these days. Prices have dropped so much recently that new drives with larger capacities linger in or near the same price range as refurbished or used drives with smaller capacities. If this item was, say, five or ten dollars cheaper (or if Woot were to waive its shipping cost) this drive might be worth it

This is what I was thinking. These were good drives when new, but technology has improved and there are better, NIB drives for the same price. These work out to be about $42 after tax & shipping, and that’s per-drive if you buy 3. For comparison, I’ve had good results from the newer PNY TLC drives (CS1311) which cost almost exactly the same as these 320s; the PNYs are only 120 GB, but have up to double the performance and of course have not been used & abused by anyone else previously. Considering that either of these drives would most likely be used for the exact same purpose, as boot-HDD-to-SDD upgrades, the 320s would have to be dropped by at least $10 for it to make sense to buy these over any entry level 120 GB SSD. The extra 40 GB on a potentially heavily-used drive just isn’t worth it.

That’s what I came in to say too. Always interested in computer parts, especially SSD’s but too much unknown, and too old of a technology model vs current models and pricing out there to even consider this a second glance. The sellers need to know these types of items have a very very short shelf life with the quick advancement in tech and price drops. Gotta price to sell. $30 for this particular drive? Sure. Anymore? No thanks.

LOL as I get to the bottom, I realized that (I’m sure nobody else read everyone else’s posts) that we all had the exact same thing to say. I hope the seller of the item takes note for not only this but other inventory they have to dump off on Woot.

Oh come on now. As a “Cerified computer technician” are you really asking what firmware version a hard drive is running? Implying that you would actually USE a hard drive running 5 year old firmware with known issues instead of just updating it? As if the first step in a new harddrive installation ISN’T checking and updating the firmware?

I’m not looking to start a fight here, but if you’re going to wag your weiner in the “I’m the god of computer certified technician land” then you should probably not be asking a question of this nature. It’s like claiming to be an certified mechanic and then asking where the oil pan is. Yeesh.

The good: It’s nice to see woot offering an SSD

The bad: It’s a bit dated, it’s been refurbed (which could have been anything from simple firmware update to who knows what),you don’t know what mileage is on the chips, it’s only 160GB and you can’t fill and SSD to capacity because of performance hits. So in reality 160GB ssd will show up in the computer as about 149GB (because the computer calculates it in binary), of the 149GB, you’ll need to keep about 25%-30% free. Suddenly you are down to about 110GB of useful space.

I don’t see a real good bang for the buck here. Pass.

DONT DO IT - The firmware on these SSDs will screw up and make your 160GB hdd into a 8mb HDD and when you go through warranty (if able to) it will take them two months to get it back to you!

Been There done that…got the T-shit…

You are right on with this. I use the PNY CS1311 as a good economy drive. To put things into perspective you can get a 240GB PNY CS1311 new, with w 3 year warranty, for $60 on Amazon (prime-free ship). The PNY CS1311 has a passmark avg drive rating of 4248, whereas todays refurbed woot Intel 320 has an avg drive rating of 1612- higher is better.

This drive (Intel 320 refurb) would have to be like $20 for me even to consider it, and even then- I don’t know if I would trust it. Pretty much any component in a computer can go bad, but as long as the HD is intact, your information is safe. There’s no guarantee that even a new HD won’t fail, but I like my odds a lot better.

Wow, it doesn’t take much to get your dander up . . . he didn’t proclaim to be the god of PC tech’s, he was just stating his credentials. I wouldn’t have thought about firmware on a harddrive needing updating on a refurb, so his post had value. And it’s not like he asked “Where do you plug it in?” which would be an analogue to your statement about a mechanic. The similar question would be “Has recall 17289312 been done on this vehicle?” if he were a certified mechanic. Yes, he’d need to check to see if it was done, but it wouldn’t hurt to ask the seller . . .

Those are some slow sequential read/write speeds.