A flash drive is a small portable storage device, no bigger than a thumb, which is used to store or transfer files from one computer to another. Flash drives are also called flash disks, pen drives, data sticks, memory units, thumb drives, keychain drives or jump drives. Before flash drives were popular as storage devices, many files were stored on CDs or DVDs.
Apart from being small, flash drives are also lightweight, consuming little or very little power when used. Flash drives are actually integrated circuit memory chips that are wrapped in a casing made of plastic or aluminum so that the data stored on them is kept safe from scratches, dust, shocks and magnetic fields so they have a much less risk of damage than CDs or DVDs.
1. Using the correct flash drive.
Every computer has a USB port. If your computer is new, most likely the USB port is a USB 3.0 port with a blue color on the inside. When you have created the document and want to save it on a flash drive, you can plug in or connect the flash drive to a USB port on the computer. Generally, for desktop computers, the USB port is on the front and for laptops on the side of the case.
Each computer is set to display a notification when a new device or device is plugged into the computer. It is highly recommended that when using the flash drive for the first time you will need to format the flash drive. There are benefits to formatting a flash drive before use, namely ensuring compatibility with the operating system being used and also preparing the flash drive for proper use by the computer.
2. Properly removing the flash drive.
Flash drives are electronic devices that need to be treated and used properly to avoid damaging flash drives and data. Generally, flash drives have an indicator light that can indicate whether an operation on the flash drive is in progress or has been completed. If operations on the flash drive are still in progress, such as saving documents, watching movies or listening to music, you should not remove the flash drive from the USB port.
When there are no operations on the flash drive and the flash drive is no longer in use, you can remove the flash drive. However, you shouldn’t just remove or unplug from the USB port. Microsoft Windows provides a way to safely remove the flash drive from the USB port. Alternatively, by setting it up first, you can remove the flash drive without “Safe to Remove Hardware” at any time if you are in a rush.
3. Drive letter on a flash drive
In Microsoft Windows operating systems, when you plug the flash drive into a USB port on the computer, you may find the flash drive appearing as an additional drive letter. For example, your hard drive (hard disk) is using drive letter C, your disk drive (CD or DVD) is using letter D drive, chances are your flash drive is using drive letter E. These rules can be different if you have, for example, two hard drives.
To be sure, you can open or run File Explorer in Microsoft Windows. File Explorer, formerly Windows Explorer, is a built-in Windows application for managing files and folders. File Explorer has a graphical display so it’s quite easy to use. In this File Explorer, you can see the new drive letter that appears after plugging the flash drive into the USB port.
4. Why is it necessary to choose a flash drive
Why choose a flash drive, not something else like a CD, DVD, external hard drive or something else? Flash drives are small, lightweight, portable and have large storage capacities ranging from 8 GB to 2 TB for now. The largest size is enough to store any important files you have. You don’t have to bother carrying lots of CDs or DVDs as well as external hard drives which are heavier and prone to damage.
Carrying a flash drive with a lot of important files on it will not feel or inconvenience you. You can keep it together with a key chain, around the neck or you can attach it in a book bag. You can carry it everywhere carefree. When needed, all you have to do is plug it into the USB port on the library computer to edit unfinished files, on a friend’s computer for a shared assignment or on a rental computer to print the created documents.
5. Famous brand or manufacturer of flash drive
Flash drives are sold in the market with different capacities and brands. Flash drives that have the same capacity, but are made or issued by different manufacturers, can have different prices, although not far off. Apart from capacity, sometimes buyers also consider the brand. There are quite a number of flash drive brands or manufacturers, 7 of which are well-known are SanDisk, Kingston Technology, Sony Corporation, Transcend Information, Toshiba, Hewlett Packard (HP) and Corsair Components.
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