HP ProBook 450G3 with SSD - "no boot device found" randomly but will still boot

HP ProBook 450 G3 with SSD - P/N 1LF93UT
client purchased 2 of these and both at the same time started randomly crashing and then displaying "boot device not found" Hard Disk (3F0).
Power cycling would allow the laptops to boot again.
Note these have SSD devices not traditional hard drives.
HP suggested running diagnostics which all came back clean.
They sent a tech to replace the system boards as they had noted issues with this.
One of the laptops has since been stable - the other continues to have random "boot device not found" errors, but after several power cycles it will boot.
HP now wants to replace the SSD, which will require OS install, app and data restore, hours of work.
Has anyone found a fix for this not requiring a new drive?  I don't think it's the drive as it happened on 2 identical machines and the first was fixed by the board replacement.
davebo4503Asked:
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
I would ask - why didn't HP Tech guy replace the SSDs as first step? If the system starts after powercycle then the tech could take a copy of installed system to another SSD drive. And check if the problem remains. And only then replace the motherboard.
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davebo4503Author Commented:
Good question - I think they had records of the board causing this issue.  It does appear to have fixed it on the other laptop.  They want to replace the drive now, and I asked if they would image the drive to a new SSD - they won't.  Drive passes diags so doesn't seem likely to be the drive.  I thought if this were an assembly issue or batch of bad drives, I'd find more comments online about it - doesn't seem to be.
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Then take a backup yourself. You said the laptop is booting ok sometimes. Let it boot - install backup tool such as Paragon Backup & Recovery and take full disk image onto external drive.
When the new SSD is installed and new OS is configured take another backup of new OS installation. After that you can restore from old image yourself and check if the machine works a stable way.
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Scott SilvaNetwork AdministratorCommented:
You could always image the drive with any one of the freeware cloning tools if you don't already have something...
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
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davebo4503Author Commented:
Was hoping someone had seen this issue and might have some insight.  I can do this if there is no further insight.  Thanks.
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Scott SilvaNetwork AdministratorCommented:
It could be that the laptop just doesn't like THAT SSD...  It happens
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
I had seen this issue but it was not SSD. It happened for me with WD 1000GB HDD. Sometimes the OS would boot sometimes the HDD was not found. The drive was failing. Replaced it and since then no problem.
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Juan GuzmanSystems AdministratorCommented:
I would check the BIOS, SATA configuration could be set incorrectly. Either ATA or ACHI
Also check the boot sequence, ensure HD is set first.
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nobusCommented:
did you update the drivers yet?
can you pin in event viewer  the problem to an event or date?
then system restore could help you
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davebo4503Author Commented:
HP 2nd level support said it was the SSD firmware - sent a firmware update, but it wouldn't apply - said there was no appropriate target drive - so it's back to them for right now.  I'm going to try to image the SSD and then when they replace whatever hardware is deemed to be bad, I will try to restore the image.  I tried using the Paragon tool referenced above, but it would not activate for me.  Does anyone know of a good imaging or cloning tool that will make an exact bootable replica of an SSD that can be used to boot in another computer?
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Did your install the Hard Disk Manager from this link: http://dl.paragon-software.com/demo/hdm16_basic_x64.exe
If yes then you need to create the account - go to your email - confirm the activation from the link you receive and then try to login in Hard Disk Manager screen. I just did the steps and it got activated.
Paragon-Hard-Disk-Manager--16-Basic.jpg
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davebo4503Author Commented:
Trying it again - does this software do a clone of SSD for free?  Can the account be used on any computer?
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
What you need to do is creating WinPE based Recovery CD. It does not do clone but it takes complete image of the entire SSD drive. Later you can restore from it. Concerning licensing - I don't know frankly speaking.
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davebo4503Author Commented:
Currently have open case with HP - sent them a log from a diagnostic they wanted run - assuming they are either going to replace the SSD or the computer - will update when I have an answer.  Going to use Acronis True Image to clone the SSD onto the expected new one.  Have used this product before when moving to a new SSD as an older version came with the SSD - hoping the newest version 2018 works as well
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
I prefer having a backup image because I can restore from it again and again. With cloning - once you clone and the source data is not there then you cannot repeat the clone.
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davebo4503Author Commented:
I have already taken an image backup with Acronis, but will use the clone option to copy it to whatever new drive HP provides and make it bootable without any rigamarole.  It worked flawlessly last time.  Good point about being able to restore in the future from an image, but once the clone is done, the image won't be of use in the future as it will have stale data.  The nice thing about Acronis is the license is perpetual at a very low price and it has all the options available to use whereas it seems Paragon charges for each feature beyond a simple backup.
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Suggestion to take backup was given.
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