Spotify says that a fix is on the way for a bug that results in the Mac, Windows and Linux apps writing massive amounts of data to SSDs even when the app is simply sitting idle.

ArsTechnica highlighted the problem that appears to have existed for at least five months.

For almost five months—possibly longer—the Spotify music streaming app has been assaulting users’ storage devices with enough data to potentially take years off their expected lifespans. Reports of tens or in some cases hundreds of gigabytes being written in an hour aren’t uncommon, and occasionally the recorded amounts are measured in terabytes. The overload happens even when Spotify is idle and isn’t storing any songs locally … 

While the issue affects both hard drives and SSDs, it’s of greater concern on solid state drives as these have a finite write capacity, meaning that Spotify could have been substantially shortening their lives.

Spotify told Ars that a fix was coming in an update currently being rolled out.

We’ve seen some questions in our community around the amount of written data using the Spotify client on desktop. These have been reviewed and any potential concerns have now been addressed in version 1.0.42, currently rolling out to all users.

The lifetime of SSDs depends on the amount of data written to them. Typical usage will see a life of 20-30 years, but extremely high write usage can see their life reduced to under a year. You can check the amount of data Spotify has written to your drive by opening Activity Manager and hitting the Disk tab.

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Ben Lovejoy

Ben Lovejoy is a British technology writer and EU Editor for 9to5Mac. He’s known for his op-eds and diary pieces, exploring his experience of Apple products over time, for a more rounded review. He also writes fiction, with two technothriller novels, a couple of SF shorts and a rom-com!

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