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Samsung Magician 5.0 Released – Is Less More?

SSD toolboxes are quite useful for monitoring your SSD’s health, updating its firmware, and more often than not, have some other features built into them to optimize the operating system and/or boost the SSD’s performance. Almost every company has one, but one company is more well known for theirs over anyone else. Whether it is because of the sheer number of SSDs they sell in relation to the rest of the market or it is the fact that it has been known as one of the best toolboxes out, we cannot say for sure, but we can say that this software has just been revamped. The SSD toolbox we are talking about today is Samsung Magician.

samsung-magician-pcie

If you have been up to date with Samsung Magician, you may already know they have released version 5.0, but if you’re not, now you do. The latest version features a refined GUI and a few changes to the features list. It also adds support for the latest Samsung 960 EVO and PRO SSDs and is compatible with Windows 7, 8, and 10.

samsung-magician-secure-erase

At first glance, we can see that the layout has changed quite a bit and more surprisingly, rather than additional features, Magician 5.0 is more streamlined with fewer features than the previous versions. The OS Optimization, Over Provisioning, and Data Security tabs/features have been taken out. Additionally, the Performance Optimization section as well, unless you have a Samsung 840 or 840 EVO series SSD. If you do, then the Performance Optimization feature will be available to you, but may require you to update your SSD’s firmware first.

samsung-magician-compatibility

The Performance Benchmark is still included and so is Secure Erase capability. There is even a system compatibility tab to show if there are or are not compatibility issues with your drive and system and if so, how to remedy them.

samsung-magician-sata

On the main window when you open up the program you will see all the important information presented before you in an easily comprehensible layout. The drive’s condition is at the top left along with how much it was written to, if the firmware is up to date, and what firmware the drive is using. If you need even more info about the drive all you need to do is just hit the SMART button and it will show you more.

samsung-magician-smart

Below all this, Magician even presents to you the interface speed your drive is connected at, which SATA mode you have set in the BIOS/UEFI for SATA drives or what driver you are using for NVMe SSDs, and if TRIM is enabled. If RAPID mode, or Samsung’s RAM caching feature, is available for your SSD, then you will see a toggle switch to enable the feature as well.

samsung-960-evo-main-2

So, it seems that for now, while the latest version of Samsung Magician was designed to be more intuitive and tidy, it was at the cost of losing functionality. This is quite an interesting move on their part seeing how other companies have taken big steps in developing their software to be feature packed. Maybe they thought so many options took away from what they felt an SSD toolbox was for and wanted to bring it back to its core, or maybe they think the extra features are no longer truly needed considering how long their SSDs last and with the latest version of Windows being released.

Samsung states that this new Magician platform “allows major features to be updated continuously and it enables Samsung to make new, valuable features available for enhanced user benefits.” Later this year or early next year, Samsung will be rolling out updates that include Secure File Erase as well as Magic Vault. It will be interesting to see those features in action and what else there is to come, but until then, we will just have to wait and see.

Tell us in the comments below, how do you feel about this new and drastic change to their Magician software. To download the latest version of Samsung Magician, click here.

  • It still says 4.7, downloaded the new 5 from Samsung’s website; thanks!

  • Alexandros

    Hello!! I have the 850 EVO 250gb (SATA3) drive. I installed Magician 5 some days ago and RAPID mode was missing and the OS optimization. I rolled back at 4.9.7…

    • Oleg Sobakin

      I’m also thinking about it myself.

  • Robbli

    I’m missing the Performance optimization option on my PC with an 850 EVO 500gb installed but it appears on my laptop which has an EVO 840 250gb. I guess the 850 EVO doesn’t need performance optimization?

    • reginald

      correct

  • dravo1

    Keep in mind that if your SSD/nVME is in a hardware RAID set it won’t be seen by the Magician.

  • TripleRLtd

    Very disappointed w/the new Magician due to lack of features as compared to the last 4x version, as you have stated above, and how I responded on the WindowsTen forum.
    Truly wanted Rapid to be added for 950 Pro, and was hoping Tom’s or Anand would find out why not (or YOU ;).
    I reverted back to 4x but will remove until or IF RM comes 950 Pro’s way…

    • reginald

      rapid is even more useless on NVMe drives.

  • digitaldumdum

    Why in the world doesn’t Samsung make this software work with Macintosh?

    • That seem pretty self explanatory considering Apple SSDs are proprietary.

      • digitaldumdum

        It might be “self-explanatory” for people who have Macs with “Apple” SSDs, but I have three Macs with Samsung SSDs in them, including two iMacs and a Macbook Pro. One is an 830, and the others are 850 EVOs. By the way, most of “Apple’s” SSDs are made by… Samsung.

      • If you understand the relationship at all, you would no that Apple has been reliant on Samsung flash, SSDs, processors, etc for several years. They were at kne time Samsungs best client, and most fierce competitor. Samsung would not want to make their software compatible with Apple as it promotes their competitor.

      • digitaldumdum

        While I understand your carefully word-smithed point, it completely ignores mine, which is quite simple: Apple allows us to put any type of hard disk or SSD in our computers. One of those brands is Samsung, and I would like to be able to use the Samsung software on my Samsung SSD. Samsung could easily make their magician software compatible with Apple. It has nothing to do with what Apple wants or doesn’t want.

    • reginald

      most apple user are unable to even install a SSD.. i guess that´s why .. ROTFL.

      • digitaldumdum

        Sorry, your conclusion that “most apple user[sic] are unable to even install a SSD” is simply incorrect. On the contrary, using simple, easy-to-follow short videos on, say OWC’s site or youtube, nearly every Mac user with a modern Mac can install an SSD made by most any manufacturer. These include 2.5″ form-factor and SSD “daughter” boards in pre 2014 Macbook Air and Macbook Pros, most Mac Minis, and a large number of desktop Macs. The modern Macs that •cannot• be upgraded with an SSD are ones with only soldered-in flash storage, but they do not presently comprise the majority of Macs.

  • compatibility

    I purchased a 960 EVO M.2 Drive to use for data cache of huge platter drives,
    and it wasn’t compatable with drive caching software, and not supported by RAPID – so I couldn’t use it for speeding up the OS Drive either…
    I am very glad they continue to develop their software to support all formats of hardware

  • fusionneur

    With the new update, i cannot enable rapid mode anymore. What is wrong with AMD Chipset controller anyway?

    RAPID Mode Not supported Samsung SSD 850 EVO

    “Under the current system environment, some functions in Magician CANNOT be run:
    RAPID mode CANNOT be enabled. (AMD Chipset controller)”

    • Analbumcover

      I get the same message with my Intel x99 board, and when I try to install the “strongly recommended” driver Samsung Magician tells me to get, it won’t install, saying “This platform is not supported.” I liked the previous version of Magician, this new one is garbage.

      • campdude

        You can still download 4.9.7… but as soon as I get the chance I will sell the Samsung and try crucial and thier Momentum Cache. These things don’t give huge performance gains but they in theory extend the life of the drive.

      • reginald

        crucial doesn´t last a second longer.

    • reginald

      why would you need RAPID mode?

      it does nothing but making low level benchmarks look better.

      i have done my own extensive tests with and without rapid mode and my experience is that it makes no sense on SATA 3 ports.
      now when you have your SATA 3 samsung SSD on an SATA 2 port and an old CPU (like nehalem or similiar AMD software) then rapid mode can have some benefits under very specific circumstances.
      overall rapid mode is a nice PR weapon for samsung but beside low level benmarks and subjective placebo effects it has no real world advantage when you use your SSD on a fast SAT3 port.

      i dare anyone to prove me wrong with showing me application benchmarks that show a performance increase bigger than 1-2% (measurement uncertainty). 🙂
      i have tested with bapco, SPEC and a few others.

  • Red Pill News

    I understand that my previous Over-Provisioning setup is preserved, but with Samsung removing the Over-Provisioning option altogether, is that their way of saying that end user OP is not needed?

    I have 1TB Samsung 840 EVO. My reading online had led me to OP 10% in an effort to enhance performance and longevity. If additional OP on top of the factory OP isn’t worth it then I’ll stop doing it as of my next reformat.

    • Hottspitta jR

      Over-Provisioning isn’t anything new. You are setting aside that 10% so your SSD has room to work with and can write data efficiently extending the life of your drive. If you just didn’t use 10% of your drive in the first place it would do the exact same thing as using OP set to 10%.

      SSD’s get fragmented. They can read data fine regardless of space left. But when it comes to writing data when its 99% full, it struggles to make free room and does more work to perform the same task.

      • reginald

        did you read what he wrote clown?
        he knows what OP does…. you don´t have to repeat what he already said.

        he asked if he has to manually set OP or if this makes no sense anymore with the newer drives.
        as samsung has removed this option from magician, it seems to make no sense anymore… or why would samsung remove that option?

        or maybe, like the other features, it will be included into the software later. like magic vault, secure file erase.

      • Salad Fingers

        He very much answered the question, the clown here is you.

        Over-Provisioning is not magic. He explained what it does. He explained that no, newer drives aren’t magical either.

        He further explained that *all* SSD drives need some free space at all times to operate at the maximum. Setting OP is just a convenient way of making sure that 10% portion of the drive is never touched.

        He also explained that even without OP, making sure you have around 10% free space is *exactly* the same thing.

        So he answered the question. “OP” itself was never needed. The 7-10% free space is what’s needed. OP is just a way to simplify the process and prevent user error (filling up the disk unintentionally) because that un-allocated space will always be there.

        Next time instead of calling people clowns because you don’t understand them or lack the knowledge to do so, just thank them for spending the time to answer questions of random people on the internet and research to learn a thing or two.

        Clown.

      • Alfredo Putamadre

        Someone should try to fill the ssd and see if magician alerts you about it. That would be a decent replacement of over provisioning.

      • Salad Fingers

        Well, Windows kinda does this itself at 10% capacity.

        The replacement for Over provisioning would be to simply make the main partition smaller and leave around 7-10% of the drive’s space as “Unallocated”.

        Again, OP is just a fancy name. All it does is take away a portion of the disk. Which you can do yourself. Or not, and just keep an eye on it. Either way works

      • Alfredo Putamadre

        Yeah, if you set up the computer to someone that doesn’t know a lot make sure to leave unallocated space because they will fill that SSD to 100% while leaving the HDD completely untouched, and then complain about lack of space and slow computer.

        If it’s for you or someone who won’t keep filling the drive after the bar turns red then make one partition and done.

      • Salad Fingers

        To be fair, though, one should really get a basic level of understanding of how to fill the drives up when opting for a hybrid setup like that.

        When I configure it for others I make sure to re-locate all user files to the HDD and tell them to never put any files on the SSD other than installing their programs. If they fail after that it’s their fault 😛

  • Aguirre

    I prefer the old version. The new is too bad. I don’t know why Samsung has made such a useless version!

  • reginald

    the one question most people have is: why was over provisioning removed.
    i would wish that bloggers are more like real journalist and try to answer such a question.
    but all websites do is reporting that it is missing.. yet no blogger contacted samsung and explains to it´s readers why.
    well i wrote samsung and waiting for an answer…..

    • fusionneur

      Got any news?

    • Alfredo Putamadre

      I suspect because over provisioning is not really necessary, the ssd will last long enough without it.

  • MARC

    Version 5 is trash. They removed useful information and features including Total bytes written, OS optimization, Over Provisioning and more.

  • John Monks

    When the 950 was launched it promised eDrive support for better bitlocker compatibility in a FW update. Around the time the 960 was launched they quietly dropped that promise (what a surprise, the 960 had it promised as an update though).
    By removing the option from magician they are further walking back on their promise of better encryption support.

  • pocketdrummer

    I wish I would have known this before I “upgraded” Maybe I’ll look into downgrading back to the superior version they had before ruining their software…

  • Captain Pants

    How the @#$% am I supposed to set over provisioning now?

    • Alfredo Putamadre

      If you had over provisioning before it is still enabled, open the partition manager on windows and you will see

      • Captain Pants

        Thanks I see it is still there. However, what if I need to set it on a new drive? Do I just leave some space unallocated? Will the drive know that’s what it is for?

      • Alfredo Putamadre

        If an unexperienced user will be using the computer then just leave about a 10% of the SDD space unallocated to avoid slow performance if they fill it up. If it’s your computer you don’t need unallocated space, just make sure to never fill it to the point that windows shows a red bar.

  • Zac Pater

    Just installed it and will be promptly rolling back. One of the things I liked the most was the ability to view S.M.A.R.T counters for all dirves, not just Samsung ones. They’ve taken that out for some reason.

  • Ruslan Burkaev

    The Samsung idiots work? Why remove the tabs such as OS Optimization and Over Provisioning ?!

    • Kamil Kami?ski

      samsung you are going wrong way bastards 🙂

    • Alfredo Putamadre

      Over Provisioning is not really necessary, just don’t fill the SSD to the top when windows shows the red bar. OS Optimization was garbage, it did not disable defragmentation but it disabled windows search cache and other useful stuff. After thinking about it I prefer the new software, all those options didn’t affect performance at all.

      • zanmaru

        “Over Provisioning is not really necessary, just don’t fill the SSD to the top when windows”

        Over provisioning made it harder to accidentally do that. It served a purpose.

      • cozza bamozza

        LIES. SORRY TO SAY IT, BUT AFTER REFORMAT OF SYSTEM, NEW DRIVERS ETC ETC ETC, AND NO OVERPROVISIONING, i HAVE GONE FROM 100% DRIVE HEALTH(WAS USED FOR 1 YEAR WITH OP) TO NOW 88% IN 2 MONTHS.YOU MY FRIEND DO NOT DO ENOUGH DATA TRANSFERS TO GET THE ERRORS.

      • zanmaru

        I was quoting the guy above me. And you’re misunderstanding HIS argument, which is that you don’t need to overprovision if you monitor you’re disk usage and keep what you would overprovision available as free space.

        He’s right, but my counter-argument was that overprovisioning is still useful because it eliminates that guesswork. And hey, you’re right too. If you don’t overprivision, AND keep the SSD nearly full all the time, you’ll burn through drive health in a hurry.

        But don’t call people liars or post in all caps if you want to be taken seriously.

      • Motassem MK

        you’re a big guy 🙂

  • ?? ????? ???????

    wtf ? where Over-Provisioning ? (((

    • Alfredo Putamadre

      It was removed probably because the life of the ssd is long enough as is. But I upgraded and my drive still has the over provisioning partition…
      RAPID mode was available with the old software, now it says “not available”. But it’s pretty useless too, I may not downgrade and just leave it as it is.

      • Yazz

        I had the same problems after upgrading to 5 with my 840 EVO 1TB; reinstalling (or maybe it was “repair” install?) made the Rapid option become available.
        – Over-provisioning is still missing although the drive is still set to 20% unpartitioned like I had it with 4.97 – but after reinstalling 5 a performance optimization option appeared on the bottom of the window as well.
        – I don’t think it works as well as the old optimize drive did however; takes longer too so I’m going back to the old version.

  • Michael Owen

    Doesn’t see my Samsung SM951 any more! Fair enough, this isn’t a consumer drive. But in previous versions of Magician, at least you could see basic info about this drive and run the speed test. Now it’s not even visible at all. Think I’ll revert back to the previous version.

  • How am I supposed to change the SSD encryption password now?
    There is no option for it!

  • Yazz

    Rapid works for me on my 840 Evo 1TB, [using on a Intel i5 Ivy Bridge on a QM77 Dell 6430], I just had to run a reinstall or repair after upgrading. over-provisioning is still missing (or unchangeable?) but the repair made drive/os performance optimization reappear, though it takes longer to run and doesn’t seem as effective as it did with 4.97 (IMO).

    –(PS/off-topic the extra DRAM cache of the latest diskeeper makes buffered and precached performance kinda awesome piled on top of all the other ram buffers – if you got an extra 10GB+ Free RAM to use).

  • Robert Knapp

    How about the glaring omission of encryption features??? I’ve noticed they’ve scaled back on their advertising on it too on their website.

    This isn’t a good sign for privacy advocates. SEDs were pivotal to self-protection.

  • George Daws

    I have the latest version 5.0 and I find it to be okay. Any changes I want to make, I use the Regedit. 🙂

  • Olaf Koenders

    I first downloaded Magician 4x for the 850 pro 512 I got a few days ago. It then wanted me to upgrade to Magician 5. I did that and all seemed well until I updated the drive’s firmware. Then Magician 5 says the drive isn’t supported.

    WTF??

    Rolled back to magician 4x and all is well again. Samsung broke something in version 5. Oh – I have Win 7 SP1 64 in case anyone wants to know.

    I found Rapid mode very useful on my SATA2 setup and have heard that SATA3 doesn’t benefit much at all which makes sense. It mostly comes down to the extra caching of RAM for the drive, how much you have available for Rapid mode and how large the files are you’re moving around AND if they’re still in the cache. Best for small concurrent read/writes on the one drive, the speed is phenomenal in that regard.

    Would be great to have control of the Rapid cache size, rather then let it use its own default. Even better if Rapid’s cache could be maintained at a set amount of RAM.

    I use Nero DVD burning software often and it chews through my 8 gig of RAM in seconds flat when I pack video. Using a swap file is pointless because Nero would fill that too. Rapid mode isn’t used for the 200 gig files I put through Nero, since Nero used all the free RAM that Rapid mode gave back for it anyway, and the files are too big to fit in any cache.

    All up it’s a great drive and Magician 4x tools helped a lot. I think some people have the wrong idea regarding SSD’s and the benefit of caching tools. If your work/software is able to stick within the limited capabilities of the caching, it rocks. But beyond that, the drive handles pretty much like any other SSD which is largely limited to the SATA connection.

  • Joe Green

    Bring back the features Samsung. I noticed slower load times viewing downloaded files on the drive, and fix it for all drives, not just the 850 EVO..

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