SanDisk Extreme Portable SSD Review: Compact, Rugged USB-C External Storage

SanDisk Extreme Portable SSD: Software, Setup, And SANDRA

SanDisk SecureAccess: SanDisk SecureAccess is included with the Extreme Portable SSD. It creates an AES128-encrypted file on your SSD that acts as a vault for personal data. It's easy to setup, the program is pre-loaded on the drive, so all you need to do is run it in place should you want to take advantage of the encryption.


The program defaults to reasonably stringent guidelines, including 6+ character passwords, forcing upper and lower case characters, and requiring numeric characters, though you can turn these rules off. However, if you do, please refrain from using common passwords '1234' or 'password', otherwise you shouldn't use encryption to begin with.


The SecureAccess software interface is a simple file browser.  Simply drag files into this window, and your data is protected. SecureAccess travels with the drive, so it's always available.


You can manually log out of the program, but every time you remove the drive or shut down, the vault is locked. Reading files from the storage took only a few seconds and dropping new files in was just as fast.

Automatic file sync with folders on your boot drive is available as well, for a price. SanDisk and Ensecurity offer an upgrade to a Pro version of EncryptStick, including up to 1,024-bit encryption, automated encrypted backup, and the ability to share encrypted data with others. The EncryptStick Software 6.0 is currently available for about $15.


Our Test Methodologies
: Under each test condition, the Solid State Drives tested here were installed as external or secondary volumes in our testbed, with a separate drive used for the OS and benchmark installations. Out testbed's motherboard was updated with the latest BIOS available as of press time and AHCI (or RAID) mode was enabled, if present. The SSDs were secure erased prior to testing, and left blank without partitions for some tests, while others required them to be partitioned and formatted, as is the case with our ATTO benchmark tests. Windows firewall, automatic updates and screen savers were all disabled before testing. In all test runs, we rebooted the system, ensured all temp and prefetch data was purged and waited several minutes for drive activity to settle and for the system to reach an idle state before invoking a test.

HotHardware Test System
Intel Core i5 and SSD Powered

Processor -

Motherboard -

Video Card -

Memory -

Audio -

Storage -


Hardware Used:
Intel Core i5-6300U

Microsoft Surface Book
(Skylake-U Chipset)

Intel HD Graphics 520


Realtek High Definition Audio

Toshiba 256GB (OS Drive)
SanDisk Extreme Portable (1TB)

OS -
Chipset Drivers -
DirectX -

Video Drivers

Relevant Software:
Windows 10 Pro x64
DirectX 12

Intel HD

Benchmarks Used:
ATTO v.05
SiSoftware Sandra 2017

SiSoft SANDRA 2017
Synthetic Disk Benchmarking
First up, we have some numbers with SiSoft SANDRA, the System ANalyzer, Diagnostic and Reporting Assistant. Here, we used the Physical Disk test suite and provide the results from our comparison drives, which includes an array of SATA and USB-attached offerings. The benchmarks were run on unformatted drives and read and write performance metrics are detailed below.


SANDRA results were very good, besting the Extreme 510 drive by over 100MB/s on the read test. Overall speed was slower than internal drives, but far superior to basic USB thumb drives like the Corsair Voyager GT. If you have a backup lot of files from your laptop, you'll enjoy the performance afforded by the Extreme Portable SSD.

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