Blitzwolf BW-PSSD1 256GB USB3 SSD

Blitzwolf BW-PSSD1

A very exciting start to my week… my new (first ever in my case) portable Solid State Drive just arrived for my Raspberry Pi 4 – BlitzWolf® BW-PSSD1 SSD 256GB USB 3.1 Gen 1 High Speed Hard Drive with Type-C

According to Royal Mail the unit came from Online Retailer SWTL – but to the rest of us, from BANGGOOD.

I was expecting some unassuming package – instead a spiffy trademark-style Blitzwolf box and inside… a beautiful drive complete with USBC to USB3 adaptor – and a normal USBC lead as well.

Blitzwolf  SSD BW-PSSD1 from Banggood

And here it is…

Blitzwolf SSD

If you are wondering since when did the Raspberry Pi 4 get USB boot capability – check out this blog entry – this SSD works with all variations of RPi4 from 2GB to 8GB. And no, it is probably not worth the cost or bother on the Raspberry Pi 3 (USB 2 only hence a lot slower) unless you are really looking for any performance boost you can get.

I have NO idea why the adaptor is USB3 FEMALE so that’s out – I guess I’m using the lead on my 2GB Raspberry Pi 4.. and here is a screen-copy of my first clean CLONE using RPI-CLONE, already tested on USB sticks and SD-in-a-USB-adaptor arrangements in preparation for my SSD arriving. Read elsewhere and you’ll see the challenges I had getting USB boot on the Pi4, resolved JUST in time for this Blitzwolf 256GB SSD drive to arrive.

Starting the clone:

sudo rpi-clone -f -U sda

Personally I have that down to a bash function – one word “cclone” with a normal clone having only one “c”.

That CLEAN clone (including partitioning) took a STUNNINGLY short 8 minutes. Until now it has ALWAYS taken a long time for a clean clone – like half an hour normally with an SD in a USB3 adaptor – but not with this new SSD.

Did it work? Wheeeeeee. That’s the fastest start of a Raspberry Pi EVER. Just a few seconds and it’s UP. I’m excited. Remember when I say clean clone I mean including partitioning the destination. This is NOT a fresh RPI source installation, it’s the one we’ve been experimenting with using HASS, Node-Red and the Zigbee2MQTT dongle – and it all just WORKS on the new SSD.

The next challenge… given an SSD in SDA running the show and an SD-in-USB sitting there as a potential clone in the OTHER USB3 socket, how do I ensure the Pi boots off the right one.

Meanwhile – a test – a normal clone from my spiffy new SSD to an SD (can’t leave the latter in the socket). No surprises there as the SD is the limiting factor – but it works. Beware this is not one of your £25 cheapo SSD drives – £55 so depending on your budget and requirements, it might do well or be overkill.

For my main home control I need a good brand name but I have several RPIs of less importance so I’ll keep checking now I know SSD will work on the Pi4.

Comments more than welcome!

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5 thoughts on “Blitzwolf BW-PSSD1 256GB USB3 SSD

  1. Hello Pete

    my old ssd drive was 120Gb works well using rpiclone the time taken only 5min 19secs to clone.

    You could try changing the boot order.
    Here a snip from

    BOOT_ORDER

    The BOOT_ORDER setting allows flexible configuration for the priority of different bootmodes. It is represented as 32bit unsigned integer where each nibble represents a bootmode. The bootmodes are attempted in lowest significant nibble to highest significant nibble order.

    E.g. 0x41 means try SD first followed by usb boot then stop. Whereas 0x4 would mean try usb boot and then stop without trying to boot from the SD card.

    The retry counters are reset when switching to the next boot mode.

    BOOT_ORDER fields
    The BOOT_ORDER property defines the sequence for the different boot modes. It is read right to left and up to 8 digits may be defined.

    0x0 – NONE (stop with error pattern)
    0x1 – SD CARD
    0x2 – NETWORK
    0x3 – USB device boot usbboot – Compute Module only.
    0x4 – USB mass storage boot
    0xf – RESTART (loop) – start again with the first boot order field.

    Default: 0x1
    Version: pieeprom-2020-04-16.bin

    pieeprom-2020-05-15.bin – BETA

    Boot mode 0x0 will retry the SD boot if the SD card detect pin indicates that the card has been inserted or replaced.
    The default boot mode is now 0xf41 which means continuously try SD then USB mass storage.
    You could change this to 0x14 then would try cycling msd(usb) pause then SD pause usb etc upto max set tries.

    lots more information to change the settings in EEPROM here
    https://www.raspberrypi.org/documentation/hardware/raspberrypi/bcm2711_bootloader_config.md

    regards Brian

  2. Hello Pete

    you could just put a blank sd in the 2nd usb then at boot the default
    would be sd(nothing there!!) usbssd. Works I just tried it.

    pi@raspberrypi:~ $ sudo rpi-clone sda -f -U

    Booted disk: sdb 120.0GB Destination disk: sda 32.0GB
    —————————————————————————
    Part Size FS Label Part Size FS Label
    1 /boot 256.0M fat32 — 1 256.0M fat32 —
    2 root 111.5G ext4 — 2 29.6G ext4 —
    —————————————————————————
    == Initialize: IMAGE partition table – forced by option ==
    1 /boot (51.0M used) : MKFS SYNC to sda1
    2 root (3.5G used) : RESIZE MKFS SYNC to sda2
    —————————————————————————
    Run setup script : no.
    Verbose mode : no.
    ———————–:
    ** WARNING ** : All destination disk sda data will be overwritten!
    ———————–:

    Initializing
    Imaging past partition 1 start.
    => dd if=/dev/sdb of=/dev/sda bs=1M count=8 …
    Resizing destination disk last partition …
    Resize success.
    Changing destination Disk ID …
    => mkfs -t vfat -F 32 /dev/sda1 …
    => mkfs -t ext4 /dev/sda2 …

    Syncing file systems (can take a long time)
    Syncing mounted partitions:
    Mounting /dev/sda2 on /mnt/clone
    => rsync // /mnt/clone with-root-excludes …
    Mounting /dev/sda1 on /mnt/clone/boot
    => rsync /boot/ /mnt/clone/boot …

    Editing /mnt/clone/boot/cmdline.txt PARTUUID to use eb0bcb76
    Editing /mnt/clone/etc/fstab PARTUUID to use eb0bcb76
    ===============================
    Done with clone to /dev/sda
    Start – 17:08:51 End – 17:21:00 Elapsed Time – 12:09
    unmounting /mnt/clone/boot
    unmounting /mnt/clone
    ===============================

    You could boot on ssd insert sdin usb when the system is booted
    all ensure boot by ssdusb
    regards brian

  3. Hello Pete

    changeing boot order to 0x14 does NOT work, whether you put
    sd card in the raspi holder or in the usb, in the end it boots
    from the sd card. There is a message hub1 a pause then boots from SD.
    It could be timeing, but as its a work in progress I will leave
    it to the boys in the higher paygrade.
    The blank sd worked in both cases.

    regards Brian

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