PS5 Crashing Issues Getting Out of Hand, Sony Needs to Address
Many PS5 users have been experiencing and reporting a staggering amount of PS5 crashes, both small issues that restart the application being used and bigger crashes that entirely shut down the system. While my experience with the PS5 has been largely positive so far, the crashes are starting to get out of hand, and Sony needs to get out ahead of these PS5 crashing issues.
Earlier today I woke my PS5 up to install the PS5 version of Destiny 2, but instead, I spent my morning dealing with repeated PS5 crashes, hard crashes that entirely shut down the system and required system repair. I couldn’t even use my console at all before it shut down again. This happened three times before someone on Twitter suggested these might be connected to my external hard drive. Disconnecting the drive (loaded up with over 3 TB of PS4 games) resolved the issue for the moment, eliminating the constant crashes and letting me finally install Destiny 2 PS5 on my SSD.
The issue is exacerbated by a black screen that comes up after repairing the external hard drive. To bypass this screen, I needed to manually push the power button on the console to put the PS5 into rest mode, and then wake it back up again. While I’ve had these problems come up a few times before, today’s issues sent my PS5 into a pattern of crashes, powering off the console entirely just a few seconds after booting it up each time. I was honestly panicked, thinking my console was bricked into a crash loop, before discovering that the external hard drive was apparently causing the problem.
I haven’t done enough testing since leaving the hard drive disconnected to ascertain if there are any additional crashing issues, though anecdotal reports seem to indicate that there are still issues with games crashing even without an external drive. I’ve also had previous unrelated software issues where PS5 games I’m playing will just close out with an error, though they don’t entirely power down my console.
Perhaps most frustrating is Sony’s relative silence on the matter, despite many people telling me that they are scared to even plug in an external drive until there’s a definitive fix from Sony. A few system software updates have been issued, but none have specific fixes outside of the usual “system software stability” jargon that means nothing to most users.
The other concern this presents is defeating the benefits of PS4 backwards compatibility on the PS5. To avoid crashing issues, I’m leaving my external drive unplugged for now, but this also leaves me in the predicament of my entire PS4 backlog being unavailable on my PS5. The tiny SSD storage is already full up with PS5 games (and I’ve even had to delete a few to make room for others, despite not being finished with them), so I’m left not being able to play things like today’s Marvel’s Avengers update, adding Kate Bishop, because it’s on my external hard drive.
PS5 Crashing Issues Need to Be Addressed
Sony needs to address two primary issues with the PS5 soon:
First, Sony needs to acknowledge the myriad crashing issues that people are having and provide at least a general timeline for a fix. One of the things I was most excited about on PS5 was the ability to just plug and play an external drive loaded with my old PS4 games. To have this capability be the cause of major crashing issues takes away a major feature of the PS5 that eased the transition from last generation.
Second, we need to hear about the timeline for enabling PS5 SSD storage expansion, as well as what SSDs are compatible. For now, Sony has simply said that compatibility will come in a future update, but we don’t know if that’s within the next few weeks or the next few months. That’s only 667.2 GB of usable internal storage right now, and when you add the issues presented by external hard drives for PS4 games, that tiny size really becomes a huge issue. While Jim Ryan says that Sony is apparently “not hearing” any of the complaints about limited SSD storage, even the creator of Super Smash Bros. says the SSD storage space is a problem.
There might be an interim solution that could help at least solve some of the issues, which is rebuilding the database. A database rebuild tends to be a default solution to many console issues, effectively remapping and reorganizing the files on the system. This fix doesn’t require a full factory reset of the console, but users have also reported still experiencing problems after rebuilding the database. I haven’t tried this yet, but honestly, I don’t know if I feel comfortable reconnecting the external drive to even try this fix.
While I’ve had frustrating crashes in the past, today was the first time I was truly sent into a panic thinking there might be something severely wrong with my PS5 as it went into a repeated hard crash loop. The fact that it won’t even stay powered on while connected to an external drive presents an enormous issue that I want Sony to address sooner rather than later. I’m fine with launch day woes. I can handle some of the road bumps of being an early adopter. But concerns about the console becoming unusable and an entire feature of the PS5 causing this issue are more than simple concerns, ones that I cannot weather without saying something.