SanDisk responds... well, kind of.


    A few months ago I wrote about the countless reports of failures of SanDisk 4TB Extreme SSD failures. This issue has been on going for months and SanDisk (owned by Western Digital) has been tight lipped about it.
    I sent my previous post as well as some additional information to Ars Technica and some other outlets in hopes of getting more coverage and to goad a response from the company. As of today, Ars has covered this issue and gotten a response from the company. You can read their coverage HERE.

Western Digital's response to Ars Technica:

Western Digital is aware of reports indicating some customers have experienced an issue with 4TB SanDisk Extreme and/or Extreme Pro portable SSDs (SDSSDE61-4T00 and SDSSDE81-4T00 respectively). We have resolved the issue and will publish a firmware update to our website soon. Customers with questions or who are experiencing issues should contact our Customer Support team for assistance.

    In my opinion, SanDisk has lost credibility and damaged their reputation. I feel this response isn't adequate. Professionals can't sit around waiting for a firmware fix hoping it relieves data storage issue. They need to buy storage they can trust. It doesn't matter how many copies of the data you have if they are all on the same model of drive from a faulty batch.
    I have long been an advocate for SanDisk SSDs and because of this I took personal interest in getting attention to this issue. I hope that SanDisk/WD can provide a better public statement about this issue, that includes more information about the cause and specifics the units affected. Additionally, until they do so and offer some reassurance that all issues causing these failures is solved I can fully state that you shouldn't be using any Extreme Pro SSDs (purchased in the past 6-7months) on set or with data that isn't already backed up elsewhere on another type of media. I also suggest that you refrain from purchasing any new 2TB or 4TB Extreme and Extreme Pros for foreseeable future.

    If you are reading this you are aware of how crucial the reliability your storage media is. While SSDs have offered a great quality of life improvements with their speed and ability to be subjected to rough handling on set this is all nullified when an entire batch of media is faulty. As I mentioned earlier, what does it matter if you have 2-3 copies of data on the same media, from the same company, made in the same batch if they are prone to failure?

    This has gotten me thinking that a good strategy moving forward would be to source drives of the same model/brand from multiple vendors and mix them up a bit more. This can help eliminate the variable of getting multiple drives from a faulty batch. At the very least, use SSD models from multiple OEMs for each job. (This is made harder due to the consolidation of the market but can still be done.) As always, the best advice is always the 3-2-1 method.

    As mentioned in my previous post about this issue, for the time being, I can only suggest the use of Samsung T7 Shield and for greater performance D.I.Y. with Thunderbolt m.2 enclosures using Sabrent or Samsung, SkHynix NVMe SSDs

TLDR: SanDisk Extreme SSDs reliability has tanked, they claim it's just a small batch. Their response isn't ideal. You shouldn't buy or use them for the time being.

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