Some third-party storage drivers may cause hardware misbehavior

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We occasionally receive reports of strange behavior from USB devices, e.g. slow performance, disks dropping offline in the middle of the backup task. In some of those cases we've discovered that third-party storage drivers are causing the problem. In particular, the SAT-SMART drivers and some ancient BlackBerry USB drivers can lead to problems. We have also received a handful of reports indicating that the Samsung SSD storage drivers cause problems booting from their devices.

If you're troubleshooting a USB device behavior or performance problem, we recommend that you consider uninstalling these drivers.

Removing BlackBerry drivers

Assuming you're not actively using any USB BlackBerry devices with your Mac, we recommend uninstalling that old software. BlackBerry doesn't offer an uninstallation guide, but this helpful forum post makes a recommendation. Simplifying those instructions a bit:

Choose "Computer" from the Finder's Go menu, then navigate to these locations to find extension and agent components (you may not have all of these locations on your version of macOS):

Macintosh HD > Library > LaunchAgents
Macintosh HD > Library > LaunchDaemons
Macintosh HD > Library > Extensions
Macintosh HD > System > Library > Extensions
Macintosh HD > Library > StagedExtensions > Library > Extensions

If you find the BlackBerry components in those folders, just drag them to the Trash, authenticating when prompted. When you're done, reboot. Here's a complete list of components that the website recommended that you remove (you may not find all of these components, but hopefully you can at least find and remove the extensions):

/Library/Application Support/BlackBerry
/Library/Application Support/BlackBerryDesktop
/Library/Frameworks/RimBlackBerryUSB.framework
/Library/LaunchAgents/com.rim.BBLaunchAgent.plist
/Library/LaunchDaemons/com.rim.BBDaemon.plist

/System/Library/Extensions/BlackBerryUSBDriverInt.kext
/System/Library/Extensions/RIMBBUSB.kext
/System/Library/Extensions/RIMBBVSP.kext

Removing SAT-SMART drivers

The SAT-SMART drivers aim to offer SMART support for USB devices. These drivers have not been actively maintained since late 2016, so their compatibility with newer macOS releases is dubious. Their uninstallation instructions may also be out of date for newer macOS releases, so we offer the following suggestion.

Choose "Computer" from the Finder's Go menu, then navigate to these locations to find extension components (you may not have all of these locations on your version of macOS):

Macintosh HD > Library > Extensions
Macintosh HD > System > Library > Extensions
Macintosh HD > Library > StagedExtensions > Library > Extensions

If you find the SAT-SMART components in those folders, just drag them to the Trash, authenticating when prompted. When you're done, reboot. Here's a list of components that may be installed by the SAT-SMART installer (you may not find all of these components, remove as many as you find):

Library/Extensions/SATSMARTDriver.kext
Library/Extensions/SATSMARTLib.plugin
Library/Extensions/SATSMARTDriver.kext
Library/Extensions/SATSMARTLib.plugin

Removing staged extensions

System Integrity Protection will prevent the removal of staged extensions, but you can paste this command into the Terminal application to ask the system to clear all staged extensions:

sudo kmutil clear-staging

Removing Samsung drivers

The Samsung FAQ for its Portable SSD products provides the following instructions for removing their drivers:

On a Mac PC, remove the Portable SSD from the Thunderbolt port and use the CleanupAll.scpt from the directory where the software is installed (e.g., Home/Library/Application Support/PortableSSD) with osascript to uninstall it (osascript CleanupAll.scpt). For more information, please refer to the User Manual.

A CCC user discovered that this does not remove the entries from the KextPolicy database. We can't recommend that you manually modify the KextPolicy database, however, in the interest of documenting a potential solution, that user indicated that the Samsung kext driver policy could be removed by booting into Recovery Mode, then running the following command in the Terminal application:

/Volumes/Macintosh\ HD/usr/bin/sqlite3 /Volumes/Macintosh\ HD\ -\ Data/private/var/db/SystemPolicyConfiguration/KextPolicy 'delete from kext_policy where team_id = "8S33FS7Q5Q"'

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