Fujitsu admits 4.9 million (potentially) defective HDDs

Blames Cirrus in court filing


The papers lodged with the court in California, in the $50 million action between Cirrus Logic and Fujitsu (of Japan), confirm what observers had already guessed, that – contrary to the blasé denials of any notable problems - there is indeed an officially acknowledged problem with the MPG3xxx series of drives. And Fujitsu knew the massive scale and scope of the problem at least 18 months ago.

Cirrus Logic's case against Fujitsu for breach of contract was filed on 19th October 2001 – over a year ago, as was Fujitsu’s counterclaim for breach of contract & breach of warranty.

Fujitsu’s documents make it clear that it knew Cirrus Logic had supplied defective chips as long ago as July 2001, saying that it started to receive complaints about failures from May 2001. It promptly informed Cirrus Logic and requested information regarding the nature and extent of the problem and proposed remedies, but says that this information was not forthcoming.

The blame is being laid at the door of the supplier of the epoxy mould compound used in the manufacture of Cirrus' Himalaya 2.0 and Numbur chips. It is claimed that in the summer of 2000 the supplier of the epoxy, a Cirrus Logic sub-contractor - made the first of several changes to its product, and it was this that ultimately caused the chips to fail by short-circuiting. Fujitsu claims that Cirrus Logic should have known of these changes – which it says were "significant" – and that it should have warned Fujitsu.

At time of lodging the court papers Fujitsu estimated that approximately 4 million of the approximately twelve million Himalaya 2.0 chips it bought, and all of the approximately 900,000 Numbur chips are defective; that these defects have already caused a substantial number of these chips – and thereby the drives in which they are used - to fail; that the time before failure is variable and unpredictable, and that it is "highly likely" that a significant number of additional chips will short and cause the drives to fail. Based on field data, Fujitsu determined that the failure rate of the chips (and thereby, we suggest, the failure rate of their own drives) is "in excess of all reasonable industry standards".

Fujitsu says that Cirrus refused to deal fairly with it because it failed to take prompt and thorough action and didn’t provide it with full information, thereby harming Fujitsu’s customer relationships –a critical Fujitsu asset. This claim will no doubt bring an outraged response from Fujitsu’s trade customers and end-users, who have been trying to get an open response from the company for many months. Fujitsu's stance has been either an outright denial of any problem (stand up, Fujitsu Germany, Fujitsu Canada & Fujitsu in Australia) or a grudging statement that "some customers have reported problems".

That Fujitsu has consistently failed to take prompt and thorough action to remedy the problems being suffered by its customers, and indeed has denied any such problem, when there have been documents in the public domain (albeit well hidden in court filings) admitting the problem, is a shameful reflection upon the company and its claimed care for its customers.

By Fujitsu’s own statement potentially 4.9 million of their drives will fail outwith normal life expectation. This admission could provide valuable ammunition in world-wide legal actions against the company.

© PC Association 2002

Related Stories

Ouch! Fujitsu to replace 300,000 faulty HDDs
Crash! Dud Fujitsu HDDs all over UK
Bang! PC Association slams Fujitsu HDDs
Wallop! Fujitsu Europe fudges HDD recall
Great Fujitsu hard drive fiasco rumbles on
Fujitsu faces lawsuits over HDDs failures


Other stories you might like

  • DuckDuckGo tries to explain why its browsers won't block some Microsoft web trackers
    Meanwhile, Tails 5.0 users told to stop what they're doing over Firefox flaw

    DuckDuckGo promises privacy to users of its Android, iOS browsers, and macOS browsers – yet it allows certain data to flow from third-party websites to Microsoft-owned services.

    Security researcher Zach Edwards recently conducted an audit of DuckDuckGo's mobile browsers and found that, contrary to expectations, they do not block Meta's Workplace domain, for example, from sending information to Microsoft's Bing and LinkedIn domains.

    Specifically, DuckDuckGo's software didn't stop Microsoft's trackers on the Workplace page from blabbing information about the user to Bing and LinkedIn for tailored advertising purposes. Other trackers, such as Google's, are blocked.

    Continue reading
  • Despite 'key' partnership with AWS, Meta taps up Microsoft Azure for AI work
    Someone got Zuck'd

    Meta’s AI business unit set up shop in Microsoft Azure this week and announced a strategic partnership it says will advance PyTorch development on the public cloud.

    The deal [PDF] will see Mark Zuckerberg’s umbrella company deploy machine-learning workloads on thousands of Nvidia GPUs running in Azure. While a win for Microsoft, the partnership calls in to question just how strong Meta’s commitment to Amazon Web Services (AWS) really is.

    Back in those long-gone days of December, Meta named AWS as its “key long-term strategic cloud provider." As part of that, Meta promised that if it bought any companies that used AWS, it would continue to support their use of Amazon's cloud, rather than force them off into its own private datacenters. The pact also included a vow to expand Meta’s consumption of Amazon’s cloud-based compute, storage, database, and security services.

    Continue reading
  • Atos pushes out HPC cloud services based on Nimbix tech
    Moore's Law got you down? Throw everything at the problem! Quantum, AI, cloud...

    IT services biz Atos has introduced a suite of cloud-based high-performance computing (HPC) services, based around technology gained from its purchase of cloud provider Nimbix last year.

    The Nimbix Supercomputing Suite is described by Atos as a set of flexible and secure HPC solutions available as a service. It includes access to HPC, AI, and quantum computing resources, according to the services company.

    In addition to the existing Nimbix HPC products, the updated portfolio includes a new federated supercomputing-as-a-service platform and a dedicated bare-metal service based on Atos BullSequana supercomputer hardware.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022