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Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2016-09-23, 13:06 PM

On my old T420, I was able to set a HD password on my SSD in the BIOS so that if anyone ever stole my laptop and pulled the drive, they wouldn't be able to access the data without the password.

 

I'd like to do the same with my X1 Carbon Gen 4 with 512GB Samsung 950pro NVMe HD.  However, in the BIOS, I see no option to set a HD password.  I can set a power on password, but I don't think this means the HD is encrypted.  I assume anyone can pull the HD and read all the data.

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Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2016-09-23, 23:04 PM

I couldn't get that drive to deal with a PW in my P70 or Yoga 260.  I tried a different NVME drive and it did work.  I think there are just BIOS problems associated with that sort of drive and the problems are still being looked at.


Rich


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Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2016-10-29, 4:21 AM

Has anyone had any luck with this issue?

 

X1 Carbon Gen4 with a Samsung 950 nvme.

 

I want the storage to be encrypted so one can't break into my system by removing the nvme and reading it externally.

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Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2016-10-29, 22:22 PM

I gave up and am using one of the models that Lenovo sells on new systems.


Rich


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0 person found this solution to be helpful.

This helped me too

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Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2017-01-31, 21:19 PM
Which one are you using? If I'm going to spend the extra time and money, I'd like to make sure I get one that works
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Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2017-01-31, 21:33 PM

SM951a

 

I have MZVKV512HAJH-000L1  512GB  FRU 00JT074

 

 


Rich


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Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2017-01-31, 22:00 PM

IMHO also consider using Bitlocker or a different crypto engine as well - as it is unclear whether SSD password is necessarily 'secure' and not bypass-able/back-doored, how the crypto keys are secured with the password, etc. - I have not seen Samsung publishing much information. Not that TPM is immune to attacks.

 

Also note that Lenovo uses a hash of password+model+serial to set actual SSD password so don't expect to unlock the SSD on a different brand/model laptop - this may be a positive - but may prevent data access upon laptop failure/decomission/etc.

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Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2017-01-31, 22:06 PM
Well, I prefer the SSD password because i it has no performance impact where bitlocker, etc have to use some amount of CPU. Your SSD is always "encrpyted" anyways and the controller essentially acts as an "unencryptor" whenever you read data. Setting a password just adds one extra step before turning on the "unecrpytor". There are certainly vulnerabilities. For example, if the password is entered, one can simply unplug the data cable and plug it into another computer and read off all the data. One reason why hibernate or off is preferred to sleep.
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  • Message 9 of 25

Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2017-01-31, 22:10 PM
I just ordered a "used" one on ebay for $150. hope it hasnt been used too much. I might actually beable to break even selling my 950 pro. I am assuming the 951a is similar to the 950 pro
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  • Message 10 of 25

Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2017-02-01, 0:25 AM

951a is similar to 950 Pro.  When I tried doing performance testing (on a different model) results were mixed and consistent.  I couldn't draw conclusions.  Both were fast.  For me, speed differences were more theoretical than actual.  Boot times were about the same.  The ATA security in the BIOS made me choose the 951a.


Rich


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  • Message 11 of 25

Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2017-02-03, 6:35 AM

I did not had any problem to set up the HD passwprd on the X1 Yoga which is similar to your X1 carbon. I have the bios 1.21 and I guess you may have to enable the supervisor password. YEs i agree the password is an efficient way t save your data.

Yes I have a 512 MB SSD. It is a NVMe SAMSUNG MZVKV512B.

 

 

 

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  • Message 12 of 25

Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2017-02-03, 13:36 PM
Yes, apparently it does not work with the Samsung 950 pro eventhough it should be supported. It only works with the versions that Lenovo supplies.
Will it allow you to use your fingerprint instead of the password? In lieu of the HD password, I set a power on password so I had something and I have to admit that I've gotten use to using my fingerprint eventhough it is less secure
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Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2017-02-16, 11:59 AM

Bitlocker with a SED uses no additional CPU time and has no performance impact. All it does is take ownership of the keys the SED is using anyway as it is always encrypted.

 

Check out the AnandTech results or similar - there is no delta. With AHCI SSDs we've used it for years and there is no delta you can benchmark anything you like.

 

Even software Bitlocker uses AES acceleration instructions and you're pretty much limited by memory bandwidth so unless you're doing heavy I/O the security may be worth it. IMHO.

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  • Message 14 of 25

Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2017-02-22, 1:41 AM

Finally got my SM951a cloned the data over and got the password setup.

It's nice to be encrypted finally.

 

Now once I booted up the new drive, it picked up the microsoft driver.  I could not find a driver on the samsung site.  Also Magician could not find the drive.  Do you know where I can get the samsung driver and get it to work with magician?  I'd like to know how much data has been written to the drive since I bought it used.

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Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2017-02-23, 16:16 PM

Samsung Magician is only for their retail drives.  As far as I know, it doesn't work with OEM drives like SM951a.  However the info you are looking for is stored in the NVMe device firmware.  I have a tool which can read it:

 

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/62276273/eDrive/check_NVMe/check_NVMe.zip

 

Extract and then run "check_NMVe.exe 0 02" from an administrator command prompt.  (This assumes that your NVMe disk is the only disk in the system).

 

It will display the NVMe log 0x02 data.  You are interested in the "data unit written" field with is displayed in hexadecimal units of 512,000 bytes (thousands of 512-byte sectors) so you will want to convert to TB written to get an idea of how used your drive is.  If you need help with that conversion, just post the output here.

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  • Message 16 of 25

Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2017-02-23, 23:00 PM

hmm, it says "DeviceIoControl failed, get LastError() = 1" "Are you sure this is an NVMe SSD?"

Which driver are you using?

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  • Message 17 of 25

Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2017-02-23, 23:50 PM

wrote:

hmm, it says "DeviceIoControl failed, get LastError() = 1" "Are you sure this is an NVMe SSD?"

Which driver are you using?


I'm using the Win10 built-in driver.  What are you using?

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  • Message 18 of 25

Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2017-02-24, 0:18 AM

oh I'm on win7 and its using a microsoft driver

I couldnt find one on the samsung site

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Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2017-02-24, 0:31 AM

wrote:

oh I'm on win7 and its using a microsoft driver

I couldnt find one on the samsung site


Oh.  The Microsoft Win7 NVMe driver is half-baked and doesn't support the interfaces that my tool uses.  Honestly you are wasting the capability of the NVMe drive by running Win7 on it.  I have never tested my tool on Win7 + samsung driver, but if you want to give it a try, you can find the driver here:   http://www.win-raid.com/t29f25-Recommended-AHCI-RAID-and-NVMe-Drivers.html

 

 

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  • Message 20 of 25

Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2017-02-24, 0:33 AM

Another idea is to boot to a Win10 ISO, press shift-F10 to get to a command prompt, and then run my tool from there.  Though you may have to play around with the 1st parameter to find the drive number that corresponds to the NVMe SSD.

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  • Message 21 of 25

Re: Setting BIOS HD password for NVMe on X1 Carbon Gen4

2017-02-24, 0:44 AM

Sorry, I have that driver for the storage controller.  I meant the drive rfor the "disk drive"  that's a microsoft driver.

 

The boot disk is an interesting idea.  I already have a linux boot disk, I wonder if there are any linux tools that can give me the info.

 

Speifically, what "capabilities" am I wasting using win7?  I beleive I am accessing all the capacity.  The speed looks good.  The Hd password is working.  Win7 is supposed to have native trim support but I don't know if its really working.  Other than that, I'm not sure what other capabilities I'm missing.  Other than being able to see the total data transfered.

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