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I'm using various SSDs on a 15-inch mid-2014 MacBook Pro Retina having changed the original SSD for a larger size using an adapter board: all are working fine with TRIM enabled.

I use external SSDs on both USB 3 enclosures and in Thunderbolt 2 enclosures. The Thunderbolt LaCie Rugged and LBD enclosures show that I have enabled TRIM Force and are working but is it possible that TRIM can be enabled on USB in any workaround?

With modern SSDs i.e. Crucial BX MX and NVMe do they have their own built-in garbage collection/TRIM that works in the background?

I'm trying to find an adapter for NVMe (I believe to SATA) so that I can put them in one of the Thunderbolt external enclosures I have. I find the complication of type confusing..

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Even without Trim support, a SSD Modern SDD maximum write time is still faster than transfer time through the USB 3 interface. Therefore, there would be no advantage to having Trim support. Here the limiting factor is the 5 Gb/s USB 3.0 ports.

If you find an adapter for NVMe to SATA so that you can put a NVMe SDD drive in one of the Thunderbolt external enclosures, then the limiting factor would be the 6 Gb/s SATA 3 interface.

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Regular USB 3.0 enclosure won't do it. What you need is enclosure with UASP support or factory-made external SSD with UASP support (like Samsung T5 & T7). Unfortunately as far as my experience goes not every UASP USB 3.0 enclosure is processed correctly by the OS (i.e. my Age Star USB 3.0 3UBCP3 is UASP-capable according to documentation but TRIM by macOS or Windows doesn't work out of the box). However if OS won't provide necessary TRIM automation you can use third-party tool to force send TRIM command to external SSD, i.e. in Windows you can use O&O Defrag 15+ CLI command /TRIM for NTFS, exFAT, FAT32 file systems on external SSDs (IIRC even non-UASP-ready!), that's what I do with my external SSDs formatted to exFAT. Another specific moment is file system of your external SSD, i.e. it looks like for APFS the minimum requirement is macOS Monterey.

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  • Thank you so much for your help - I'm using Mac and I do have some UASP Enclosures but have not been able to see the Trim in System Report. All my old ex Lacie Rugged Enclosures and my LittleBigDisk works so frustrating as the NVMe USB Enclosures do not. I've used Macs now since mid 1980s but as time progresses it does, in my case, get more confusing especially that Mac are not Backward Compatible only with time-related latest OS giving Financial Redundancy aka Logic Pro using 1990s data - but thank you everyone so much for help
    – OAK77
    Sep 6, 2022 at 6:56
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To answer your question:

…but is it possible that Trim can be enabled on USB in any workaround? With modern SSDs i.e. Crucial BX MX and NVMe do they have their own built-in garbage collection/Trim that works in the background?

TRIM is part of the SATA specification and is a function of the controller. The drive merely responds to the TRIM command. macOS can only send the command; if the USB to SATA controller doesn’t implement it, you can’t work around it.

I'm trying to find an adapter for NVMe (I believe to SATA) so that I can put them in one of the Thunderbolt external enclosures I have.

This limitation applies here, too. The hardware controller (NVME to SATA) must support TRIM. If not, just as in the USB adapters, you won’t be able to work around it. Given that most Thunderbolt adapters are in the higher end of the spectrum (versus inexpensive USB enclosures), you should have no trouble finding one with TRIM support.

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