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TOPIC: TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures

TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 13 Dec 2016 15:18 #7921

TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures on both my iMac running Sierra and my MacBookPro running El Capitan. No other disk utility I run finds any S.M.A.R.T. problems. Is this a glitch with TTP9 or is it just far better than all the other disk utilities. Need to know so I can order new Hard drives if necessary. I clone each Hard Drive weekly, so I'm prepared- but do not what to go through the expense and trouble if all the other utilities are correct and TTP9 just has a glitch that needs correcting.
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 13 Dec 2016 15:37 #7923

For future reference, please do not post the same question in two of our forums.

You can get a second opinion about the S.M.A.R.T. failures by downloading and installing the free demo of SMART Utility:

www.volitans-software.com/apps/smart-utility/

So far, I have not seen any discrepancies between what the two utilities report.

It is prudent to check with the maker of the drive mechanism to make sure that there is no firmware update that needs to be installed. That can cause false reports of S.M.A.R.T. failures, even though the utility is reading the data from the drive's firmware correctly.
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 13 Dec 2016 20:48 #7924

I have a similar but more specific question. Both Tech Tool Pro 9 and Smart Utility are reporting a "Failing" drive on my MacBook Air (13", mid 2011). The drive is a factory 256 GB SSD.

I am a little unsure about this diagnosis, TTP shows "Reallocated Sectors Count" of 5; and Smart Utility shows "Raw Value" of 2.
Neither of these seems high enough to be a problem, but that's only my speculation, since I am not familiar with how many reallocated sectors are tolerable.

Are 5 (or2) reallocated sectors actually a problem on a 256GB SSD?

Bill Halberstadt
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 13 Dec 2016 21:03 #7925

The numeral 5 is not a count of the number of reallocated sectors. 5 is the ID number of the reallocated sectors S.M.A.R.T. attribute. They all have numbers as well as names; neither is the value of the data itself. Please see the chart at:

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S.M.A.R.T.

In the chart, you see that the ID of the "reallocated sectors" attribute is 5.

If the graph in TechTool Pro for reallocated sectors is all the way to the right, the drive is running out spare sectors because it has already reallocated too many. As explained earlier in this thread, make sure there is no firmware update that needs to be installed on the drive.

I do not know how to interpret the raw value, but I can assure you that it is not referring to 2 sectors if SMART Utility also shows the drive as failing.
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 14 Dec 2016 00:16 #7926

Good point about the "5" on the reallocated sectors line. I should have known that. It seems odd, though, that Tech Tool Pro doesn't reveal the number of occurrences for the SMART categories. It does appear that SMART Utility is reporting only 2 reallocated sectors, but I'll post that question with them. Thanks.
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 14 Dec 2016 00:21 #7927

TechTool Pro is using a graphical approach to displaying the S.M.A.R.T. results. I think it is a valid approach, as is a more technical one, perhaps aimed at a different audience.

Please let us know what you learn about the reallocated sectors. Thank you.
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 18 Dec 2016 19:34 #7945

Here's what I could find. Tech support from SMART Utility said it might or might not be important, but "In the next version this will be considered a warning not a failing".

The application "Drive DX" shows the same raw value of "2", and says "The raw value of this health indicator represents the number of blocks that have been moved as a result of a read error, a write error or a verification error." They also say this "...indicator is not as critical for SSDs as for HDDs." This app also shows the current value of 2 as "OK".

So we have one vote for the raw value indicating that I have 2 sectors (blocks?) detected as bad and reallocated. If true, it does not seem to really be a indicator or a failing drive after 3 years of use.

Bill Halberstadt
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 18 Dec 2016 20:30 #7946

Thanks for a clear and detailed update.

If the number of reallocated sectors is in fact 2, then that is certainly acceptable. I am surprised but pleased to learn that the raw value in this case is a plain 2 in base 10.

I suggest that you keep an eye on both the reallocated sectors and pending sectors, to see if there is any sudden increase.
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 19 Dec 2016 11:23 #7947

It would also be prudent to make sure you always have a current backup for the drive. All it takes is the sudden loss of a sector in the right place in the partition map or the disk directory to make the data unreadable.
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 21 Dec 2016 19:54 #7951

Have updated to the new Techtool Pro 9 and have a concern.

I have an SSD boot-up HD in my 2012 Mac Pro (running Sierra) along with 3 other SATA HDs.

Running SMART Check on this drive consistently warns of a failing HD



But, on checking the SMART Status with Disk Utility, this SSD registers a “Verified” status.



I checked with OWC and they advised me to ignore Tech Tool Pros finding.

Would appreciate your advice.

Many thanks!

…John
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 21 Dec 2016 20:20 #7952

Unless you see from Disk Utility the names of the specific S.M.A.R.T. attributes it is reading, you cannot be sure that it is reading numbers 5 and 196. Disk Utility may not be reporting all of the S.M.A.R.T. attributes that TechTool Pro and other third-party utilities report.

You can get a third diagnosis by using the free demo of SMART Utiilty:

www.volitans-software.com/apps/smart-utility/

The diagnosis from TechTool Pro means that the drive is running out of spare blocks (Reallocated Sectors Count, attribute 5) because too many bad blocks have already been remapped to spare blocks (Reallocation Event Count, attribute # 196).
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 21 Dec 2016 20:44 #7953

I assume you are using TechTool Pro 9.0.2.

Please send a message to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , including a link to this thread. Thank you.
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 31 Dec 2016 02:39 #7974

Dear Tech Support:

In April 2016, I installed a 960GB OWC Mercury Electra 6G SSD. The 960GB drive is therefore not that old, and has only been subjected to regular use. I recently upgraded from TTP8 to TTP 9.0.2. Soon after, I began getting SMART Check reports that my internal drive is "Failing". I did not get these warnings with TTP8. The problem relates to Reallocated Sectors Count (5) and Reallocation Event Count (196).

I questioned whether it was even valid to run a SMART Check on an SSD, since they are inherently different from normal HDDs. I began to research this online. I was surprised to see the exact problem being reported by other users of TTP9, regardless of the make and size of their SSD. To me, this indicated that perhaps the problem was TTP9, not the drives themselves. But in checking the Micromat online forums, I see that Micromat strongly maintains that the TTP9 report is valid, and therefore something must be wrong with the drives, and to contact the drive manufacturer. Micromat even suggested using SMART Utility, which I have done. It confirmed the TTP9 result, and found another "Failing" of Uncorrectable Sector Count (198).

I contacted OWC Tech Support, who told me "Most often we see third party apps complain that our drives reallocate sectors, although this is a normal part of the WearLeveling process." He asked if Apple Disk Utility was reporting a problem. It was not. Micromat maintains that TTP9 reports individual attributes, whereas Disk Utility is more general. OWC told me that they've had no "false positives" with their SSDs when people used SoftRAID. I checked the SoftRAID Support Forum, to learn more about their software. Basically, they advise to "ignore other software that tests for SMART. SSD's are completely unlike hard drives and SMART reallocation data is irrelevant. If SoftRAID saw them as SSD's, then there would not be a reallocation count."

In summary, I accept the TTP9 result as valid, but also irrelevant for SSDs that normally reallocate sectors as part of the WearLeveling process. Micromat should be informing its users that the TTP9 result should be interpreted with this in mind. Micromat programmers should be emulating SoftRAID in disabling reallocation counts for diagnosis of SSDs. If this is the only reason SMART Check reports that an SSD is "Failing", then TTP9 should not be constantly bombarding users with these warnings. I lost sleep last night, worried that my SSD was about to fail, and what steps I must take besides making bootable backups.

I have used Tech Tool for years, since its very earliest versions, and have upgraded with every new release. Please fix this problem soon, and advise other worried users about what this means
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 31 Dec 2016 02:49 #7975

Thanks for your clear and detailed report, which I have forwarded to the beta administrator for TechTool Pro. I suspect that we will have to contact OWC about this.
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 31 Dec 2016 13:45 #7976

Dear Tech Report,

I too get SMART Check reports from TTP9 that my internal drive is falling (Reallocated Sectors Count (5) and Reallocation Event Count (196). As I did not receive this error message with TP 8 I was curious to see if version 8 would report the same error. When I performed the SMART Check with TTP8 I did not receive any error.
So, TTP8 and TTP9 differ in their results. See also the attached screenshot.
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 31 Dec 2016 14:32 #7977

You should trust the data from TechTool Pro 9. The interpretation of the data, as you can see from the posting directly above yours, can be a problem, especially with SSD drives. I suggest you contact Hitachi, the maker of the drive mechanism, Google the drive mechanism description and the names and numbers of the SMART attributes that are reported to be failing, and see if there is a firmware update available for the drive.

The Hitachi Hitachi HTS543232L9SA02 is a rotational hard drive, not an SSD. Hitachi is at www.hitachigst.com.

In the meantime, I suggest you make sure you have a current backup of the drive.
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 01 Jan 2017 14:53 #7978

I am also having these same issues, on multiple machines TTP 9.0.2 is saying my SSD is failing with a red bar at wear leveling count. I have checked the drive with SMART Utility and it says the same thing. However, Disk Warrior and Disk Utility both say it's OK. I can't find anything on Apple's support pages about a firmware update. It's an original Apple SSD SD0128F in a 27" iMac running El Capitan. I have a current Time Machine backup.

It's on AppleCare, but they're closed for the holiday. Anything I can do?

For some reason, all the .png screenshots I've tried to attach have failed to attach.
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 01 Jan 2017 17:40 #7979

i have the same issue with TTP 9 reporting a failing drive. It didn't show up until the 9.0.2 update. So v. 9.0.1 didn't report the problem.
The question then becomes did the update contain something to detect something the older version didn't?
The other thing that conerns me is that a number of users are reporting the same issue after this specific update and Micromats insistence that the software is correct and WE are the ones with the problem is short sighted on your part. All of our hard drives are failing at the same time? Really?
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 01 Jan 2017 17:42 #7980

The only suggestion I can make is to contact the maker of the drive mechanism, when they reopen after the holiday. You can see the description of the drive mechanism in Disk Utility. If you Google that, you will learn who makes the mechanism. Only they can give you a definitive interpretation of the S.M.A.R.T. results. In the meantime, make sure you have a current backup of the drive.

If you want a second opinion about the S.M.A.R.T. data itself (rather than its proper interpretation), download the free demo of SMART Utility:

www.volitans-software.com/apps/smart-utility/
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 01 Jan 2017 17:50 #7981

@mreed4@nyc.rr.com,

If you read carefully what I have written in these forums, you will see that I have repeatedly and constantly stressed that the proper interpretation of the S.M.A.R.T. data that TechTool Pro is reading from the firmware of the drive can, with regard to some S.M.A.R.T. attributes, only be done by the maker of the drive mechanism.

All S.M.A.R.T. utilities are written to report a "failure" when the current value of a particular S.M.A.R.T. attribute falls below a threshold value for that particular attribute that is stored in the drive's firmware. The utility is simply comparing the current value to the threshold value. For some S.M.A.R.T. attributes, such as Reallocated Sectors Count (5) and Reallocation Event Count (196), the interpretation of these results is problematic on SSD drives because of the way they perform wear leveling. That is why I have suggested contacting the maker of the drive mechanism. It is clear that the industry has some work to do to improve S.M.A.R.T. reporting on SSD drives.
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
Last Edit: 01 Jan 2017 17:51 by micromattech3.
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 03 Jan 2017 21:50 #7988

I am running Mac OS X Sierra on an iMac 5K with an integral 3TB Fusion Drive
I have recently updated to TechTools Pro 9 version 9.0.2 and then I started getting SMART warnings
Running TTP9 then said the HD was FAILING (as in the attachment)
But running Apple's Disk Utility shows absolutely no problem (see below) and Apple considers that no action need be taken

I am running Time Machine which is fully archiving my HDD but if the degradation is gradual, I may end up with a corrupted backup!!

So my question is "Need I be concerned that my data is at risk"?

DISK UTILITY REPORTS
Verifying storage system
Checking volume
disk0s2: Scan for Volume Headers
disk1s2: Scan for Volume Headers
disk0s2: Scan for Disk Labels
disk1s2: Scan for Disk Labels
Logical Volume Group 9468AE76-24F2-4FF2-8C24-F67B0861E361 spans 2 devices
disk0s2+disk1s2: Scan for Metadata Volume
Logical Volume Group has a 138 MB Metadata Volume with double redundancy
Start scanning metadata for a valid checkpoint
Load and verify Segment Headers
Load and verify Checkpoint Payload
Load and verify Transaction Segment
Load and verify Transaction Segment
Load and verify Transaction Segment
Load and verify Transaction Segment
Load and verify Transaction Segment
Load and verify Transaction Segment
Load and verify Transaction Segment
Load and verify Transaction Segment
Load and verify Transaction Segment
Load and verify Transaction Segment
Load and verify Transaction Segment
Incorporate 10 newer non-checkpoint transactions
Load and verify Virtual Address Table
Load and verify Segment Usage Table
Load and verify Metadata Superblock
Load and verify Logical Volumes B-Trees
Logical Volume Group contains 1 Logical Volume
Load and verify D12239A0-3ED7-452F-A27E-60AA4D03B32F
Load and verify 992ED474-BDB9-405B-83DD-835D831DF2A6
Load and verify Freespace Summary
Load and verify Block Accounting
Load and verify Live Virtual Addresses
Newest transaction commit checkpoint is valid
Load and verify Segment Cleaning
The volume 9468AE76-24F2-4FF2-8C24-F67B0861E361 appears to be OK
Storage system check exit code is 0.
Verifying file system.
Using live mode.
Performing live verification.
Checking Journaled HFS Plus volume.
Checking extents overflow file.
Checking catalog file.
Checking multi-linked files.
Checking catalog hierarchy.
Checking extended attributes file.
Checking volume bitmap.
Checking volume information.
The volume Macintosh HD appears to be OK.
File system check exit code is 0.
Operation successful.
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 03 Jan 2017 22:49 #7989

Your screen capture came through, but no matter what size I make it, the compression apparently done by the forum makes the text impossible to read.

Please send your posting and your screen capture to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . You will receive a reply by email. The Fusion drive should show up in the S.M.A.R.T. test as two separate drives. We need to see the S.M.A.R.T. test results for both of them. As you know from reading this thread, there are some inherent problems with interpreting the data from SSD drives. Thank you.
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 04 Jan 2017 01:02 #7990

Many thanks for he quick reply - I have sent the data to the mail account as requested
Whilst as an engineer, I can accept that there is a lot of subjectivity in predicting hardware reliability, I am puzzled as to why this has coincided with the update to 9.0.2 and also why the TTP9 and Apple diagnostics should be so wildly different. Is Apple being over-optimistic to avoid having to prematurely replace drives? Is TTP9 being over-pessimistic in order to show the value of their offering?
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 04 Jan 2017 01:09 #7991

[quote=" The Fusion drive should show up in the S.M.A.R.T. test as two separate drives. We need to see the S.M.A.R.T. test results for both of them. [/quote

I have now understood what the second patition was when I ran the SMART test

I have uploaded the screen dump below - the test passed
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 04 Jan 2017 01:54 #7992

You are welcome, and thanks for your cooperation.

Disk Utility usually shows only some overall result for the drive, and does not report as many S.M.A.R.T. attributes as TechTool Pro does. If you doubt the results from TechTool Pro, you can get a second opinion by using the free demo of SMART Utility, from Volitans Software.
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 04 Jan 2017 02:03 #7993

For the internal rotational hard drive that came with my iMac (mid 2010), Disk Utility displayed fourteen S.M.A.R.T. attributes, and TechTool Pro displayed eighteen. Disk Utility reported that the drive was "verified" even though Disk Utility itself showed that there were too many "pending" sectors. On other occasions, Disk Utility would show the S.M.A.R.T. attributes, and then claim that the same drive was "unsupported".
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 05 Jan 2017 00:03 #7996

I previously posted that I was having the same error message in TTP 9.0.2 saying that the SSD portion of my internal fusion drive was failing the SMART tests. My error message came up constantly and more frequently since the update to 9.0.2. I downloaded and installed the SMART utility which also showed a failing SSD. However, Disk utility showed no problems, everything OK.

So, based on the moderator's response, I took the 27" iMac to my local Apple Store since it's under AppleCare. They kept the computer for 3 days and tested it every way they possibly could, at least according to them. They reported that they could find no problem with the factory-installed SSD or fusion drive, that all of their extensive hardware tests showed the drive was functioning properly.

They advised me to uninstall Tech Tool Pro.

Any comment from Micromat about this errant error message? I look forward to your reply.
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 05 Jan 2017 00:33 #7997

We do not know what tools Apple uses to perform S.M.A.R.T. tests, but if they are using only Disk Utility, they are not looking at all of the S.M.A.R.T. attributes. On my rotational hard drive in my iMac (mid-2010), Disk Utility reports fourteen S.M.A.R.T. attributes, while TechTool Pro and SMART Utility report eighteen attributes.

If the Apple staff knew anything about the proper use of TechTool Pro, they would have suggested that you use the TechTool Protection system preferences pane to turn off the S.M.A.R.T. test for the SSD portion of your Fusion drive.

As I have tried to make clear, there is an inherent problem with the reporting of reallocated sectors and reallocation events on SSD drives. It is possible that normal remapping of worn blocks (wear leveling) is not being distinguished from remapping bad blocks to spare blocks.
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
Last Edit: 30 Nov 2017 19:46 by micromattech3.
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The following user(s) said Thank You: jdbddsmd

TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 05 Jan 2017 00:42 #7998

Dear moderator:

Thank you for your prompt reply. I know that the Apple Store gurus used many tools other than Disk Utility to check my fusion drive, but I do not know what they were specifically.

I will disable the SMART test for the SSD portion of the fusion drive.

You have made it infinitely clear that there are inherent problems, etc. I appreciate your feedback, but there must be something going on with the 9.0.2 TTP update to have all these people reporting the same problem, i.e., an error message stating that the drive is failing, when, in fact, the drive is not failing. I hope you will report this and others to your engineers for correction.

Warm regards,

Jim Bates
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 05 Jan 2017 00:50 #7999

You are welcome.

Part of the problem is the fact that all any utility maker can do is to read the current values of the various S.M.A.R.T. attributes, compare them to the "threshold" values for those attributes, and make an assessment if the current value is below the threshold value.

We may be able to change the assessment to something less alarming, but then people with older SSD drives may fail to be alarmed when they should be.

You can be sure that this issue has our attention, but until the drive industry makes changes to the way S.M.A.R.T. testing is implemented on SSD drives, there may continue to be inherent problems.
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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TechToolPro9 reporting Hard Drive S.M.A.R.T. Failures 05 Jan 2017 20:34 #8000

jdbddsmd,

If you have not already done so, please send a message to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , including a link to this thread. We would also like to see the results of the S.M.A.R.T. test. Thank you.
MicroMat Inc
Makers of TechTool
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