Asus replaces M.2 screws with new Q-Latch

Anyone who's built a modern computer using an M.2 drive knows they are typically held down using screws. The problem is that the screws are very easy to lose, and the M.2 SSD form factor must be screwed down. Asus has unveiled a new solution that means computer builders will never lose their SSD screw again.

The solution is called Q-Latch, and it's as basic as it is innovative. Essentially Q-Latch is a plastic retaining lever that's rotated into place with a single swipe of the thumb. The new latching mechanism is available on several of Asus's new mainboards, including new Z590 and B560 boards.

The new latching mechanism is definitely an improvement but is not available on some of the most expensive motherboards the company offers at this time. Asus can't be credited with coming up with the idea entirely on its own. Some business-focused laptop and desktop computers using the M.2 SSD used similar plastic retaining clips in the past. These components do mark the first time this type of clipping system has been used in DIY computing components.

The screws have been an annoyance for computer enthusiasts and computer builders for a while. If you buy a new SSD, they don't usually come with the retaining screws needed to install the menu chassis. That means if you've removed an old SSD to install the new one and lost the screw, you are out of luck.

Adding to the difficulty in using the traditional screw method is that the SSDs have spring tension that keeps them standing upright. Q-Latch is currently available on a handful of less expensive gaming motherboards built for gamers.