Design Flaws Unveiled: The Root Cause of SanDisk Extreme Pro Failures
Over the past few months, there have been increasing reports from users experiencing malfunctions with their Western Digital and SanDisk portable SSDs, leading to a series of data loss incidents. In May of this year, Western Digital released a firmware update intended to prevent these portable SSDs from unexpectedly disconnecting from computers. However, the actual results were less than satisfactory, failing to resolve the issue and, in some cases, exacerbating the problem. Users reported not only data loss or read-only mode issues but also complete inaccessibility of the portable SSDs.
According to a report by Tom’s Hardware, Attingo, a company with over 25 years in the data recovery business, encounters at least one faulty Western Digital and SanDisk portable SSD per week. As stated by Markus Häfele, the company’s general manager, the components used in these portable SSDs are too large for their circuit boards. This mismatch leads to weak connections, high impedance, and elevated temperatures, making them prone to disconnection. Furthermore, the soldering materials used to connect these components tend to form bubbles, increasing the likelihood of breakage.
The exact cause of these failures remains unclear, whether due to inferior soldering materials, component issues, or a combination of both. However, Western Digital has started using additional epoxy resin in newer versions, suggesting awareness of hardware-related issues. Similar problems have been reported across multiple product lines, affecting a substantial number of users.
In handling this situation, Western Digital has not maintained clear communication with the public regarding the specific causes and remediation process. There has been a lack of proactive warnings about potential risks to users. Media inquiries to Western Digital for further information have gone unanswered. Previously, there were reports of affected users filing lawsuits against Western Digital.