In our review of the Samsung 960 Pro and 960 EVO we discovered a couple of abnormalities with the NVMe 2.0 driver. One of the more critical issues revolved around the use in a notebook. Simply put, with the driver installed, the storage system drank power in large gulps. Over the last couple of days, Samsung has updated the NVMe driver to version 2.1.
We don't have a lot of information about the new 2.1 NVMe driver release. The revision date shows December 2016, but this didn't hit the web until after January 1. The supporting notes claim to fix two issues, one being excessive power consumption and the other a shutdown bug that we didn't experience during testing.
This chart comes from our Samsung 960 EVO review and shows two Samsung 960 series products with both the Microsoft and Samsung NVMe (2.0) drivers installed. With Samsung's driver, we experienced a 71-minute loss in system availability on battery power. This is a significant loss on a gaming notebook with just over 5 hours of on-battery time. The 960 EVO was hit nearly as hard, with the difference being slightly over an hour.
We reported our findings to Samsung and were told the company would look into the issue. It seems the fix is ready, well kind of. The world's largest SSD manufacturer seems to have a bandwidth issue. This isn't the first time we've been stopped from downloading software on www.samsung.com/samsungssd before. I'll use my magical reviewer powers to gain access to NVMe 2.1, but you'll have to keep trying and hope for a dose of luck.