Experts warn of potential AirPort failures that could affect Mac users who still rely on Apple’s “Time Capsules” routers for backup. Although Apple discontinued Time Capsule in 2018, many Mac users still use the product, and a failure of the internal Seagate drive could put data at risk.
AirPort failures could affect your data backups
The news was first reported by the German data recovery company Datenrettung Berlin (via Golem). At the Airports, Apple used Seagate Grenada hard drives. These units now suffer from an apparent design flaw that is leading to abnormally high failure reports, according to Datenrettung:
We must assume that it is a design error1 of the Seagate Grenada hard drive installed in the AirPort failures (ST3000DM001 / ST2000DM001 2014-2018). The parking ramp for this hard drive consists of two different materials. Sooner or later the parking ramp will break down on this hard drive model, installed in a rather poorly ventilated Time Capsule.
Damage to the parking ramp causes the read / write drive to be destroyed and severely deformed the next time the read / write drive is stopped. When the Time Capsule is now turned on again or wakes up after hibernation, the Seagate hard drive data discs are destroyed because the warped read / write drive is dragging on it.
Datenrettung says this Seagate drive design flaw is the cause behind almost every AirPort flaw that has been seen. While data recovery is sometimes possible, it requires “very high effort” and in some cases the data cannot be fully recovered.