Alexandar Tzanov's Personal Blog

So long Surface 3 … for now

Last week my Surface 3 LTE stopped working. It stings because I really liked this tablet. It is small and easy to carry everywhere with its full keyboard cover. When paired with a data SIM from Google Fi it just made sense to have one.

The problem appears to be the storage chip. A storage check produces I/O error 1117. Not the first time I have had a device stop working on me because a storage related component died. For example, I have a MacBook Pro on which the controller on the logic board is “unstable” – it does not aways detect storage. I had to pull the inter drive and boot the laptop from it through an external drive enclosure. Unfortunately, this time around I will not be able to fix the problem. Unlike some of its other components, which can easily be swapped, the storage module on the Surface 3 is soldered directly onto the motherboard. It will not be like the two batteries I recently replaced. One – I do not have the proper soldering tools for this problem; and two – I have not been able to find anything about the storage used in this tablet, except that it is a Toshiba brand. I really do not want to take it apart just to look at the chip id. Particularly because I do not think I can find a replacement chip due to the age of this tablet model.

I have several accessories for this table. I am going to try to sell it as parts or repair. Maybe someone can give it a second life. After all, the tablet can boot from an external source.

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