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[Geek] TRIM support coming to OS X Lion

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 


Quote:
Apple has done a good job of pushing SSDs out to consumers, including making them standard on the new MacBook Air models, but a fundamental problem still exists: OS X lacks support for TRIM. This isn’t the time to get into a full explanation, but the TRIM command is an important SSD function that helps with SSD maintenance and, eventually, in keeping one operating at the highest possible speeds. Windows 7 has support for this built in, but Snow Leopard does not. The good news is that it’s looking like Lion will.

French Apple site Macgeneration must have been digging around in OS X 10.7 (Lion) developer release because they noticed that the new version of the OS is packing support for TRIM. See the image below for their proof–it clearly states “Prise en charge de TRIM: Oui†or roughly, “Support for TRIM: Yesâ€. Above that line the system confirms that is running an SSD, which is in keeping with the computer description–it’s a MacBook Air.
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The Rock
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post #2 of 11
Thread Starter 
Nobody doing a happy dance on this one then?
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post #3 of 11
... took them long enough? It is only 1.5 years since the issue has been known.
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post #4 of 11
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Yeah, I guess they were too busy plotting their next cash cow, makes sense....
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post #5 of 11
Ah, I can't wait until this is released. I'm even thinking of signing up to be a Mac developer just so I can dual boot Lion ...
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post #6 of 11
Now they just need to get SSDs to securely erase.
post #7 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by PoopaScoopa View Post
Now they just need to get SSDs to securely erase.
Securely erasing SSDs is primarily the responsibility of the SSD manufacturers (or maybe just the controller manufacturers), not Apple. Basically, there's no tool that can overcome the way SSDs are currently designed. I think the last article I read on the issue said something like "some drives were almost able to be securely erased, but the best left 4% of the original data intact."

Anyways, it's pretty sad that it took Apple this long to offer TRIM support.
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post #8 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrjminer View Post
Securely erasing SSDs is primarily the responsibility of the SSD manufacturers (or maybe just the controller manufacturers), not Apple. Basically, there's no tool that can overcome the way SSDs are currently designed. I think the last article I read on the issue said something like "some drives were almost able to be securely erased, but the best left 4% of the original data intact."
http://www.zdnet.com/blog/storage/ma...-security/1293
Quote:
SSDs, Mac OS X and data security don’t mix. Not only does the standard file delete not delete files - which savvy readers already know, but even the Mac’s “Secure Erase Trash” function leaves 2/3rds of a file recoverable.

“Fake Erase” perhaps?

The SSD problem
Vendors have struggled to make flash SSDs look like disk drives even though the underlying media are very different. Hard drives associate a physical location with each logical block address (LBA). SSDs don’t.

And that’s the security problem.

Our secure file deletion tools assume that the data is stored in a set physical location. If the LBA is written to, the existing data at that LBA can be presumed to have been overwritten. (Bad block replacement is the big exception to that general rule.)

But on flash-based SSDs, the firmware that makes flash look like a disk - the flash translation layer (FTL) - is constantly changing the physical address of the data. When the OS issues an overwrite, the FTL overwrites only the most recent location the data - leaving older locations untouched.


Note that Apple’s other major OS - iOS - wasn’t tested. But who can have a warm feeling about the iOS remote delete facility now?
Obviously certain software does a better job at attempting to securely erase data from an SSD than OSX's built in settings. Not sure how the Disc Utility's secure erase feature works though as that doesn't seem to be tested in the paper.

The only solution is full drive encryption/FileVault/Bitlocker/Truecrypt but that slows down SSDs tremendously but still faster than HDDs.
Edited by PoopaScoopa - 2/26/11 at 4:09am
post #9 of 11
Brilliant!
Been waiting for this for well over a year!
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post #10 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by PoopaScoopa View Post
http://www.zdnet.com/blog/storage/ma...-security/1293


Obviously certain software does a better job at attempting to securely erase data from an SSD than OSX's built in settings. Not sure how the Disc Utility's secure erase feature works though as that doesn't seem to be tested in the paper.

The only solution is full drive encryption/FileVault/Bitlocker/Truecrypt but that slows down SSDs tremendously but still faster than HDDs.
From that chart, it seems as though manufacturers have resolved the issues on their end or I misunderstood the problem from the article I read on the issue, so my bad.

I shouldn't have given Apple the benefit of the doubt for the first time and presumed they had comptently written their tool. Those figures truly are inexcusable for something that advertises itself as securely deleting data. I guess this just further proves how bad Macs are.
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