Technology has changed the way we do a lot of things. Sending of mails for example is one good example. Before, it will take days before mail can reach recipients who are thousand of miles away. But things have changed with the advent of the Internet as emails can be send and will be received in just a matter of seconds.
The way we save and share files has changed too. Back in the days when computer was just a new technology, we use floppy disks that can save only kilobytes of files. Now, we can save thousands of Gigabyte of files in media as small as a thumb that can save up to 256 GB of data and more. This device is what we call USB flash drive.
A USB flash drive is one of the most portable devices used today. It became extremely popular due to the following reasons:
- Portability. Since the device is small, it can easily fit in a pocket or bag so these means, your files goes with you wherever you go.
- Large Capacity. USB devices come in many different sizes from 1 GB, 3 GB, 16 GB, and more which gives the users the freedom to select which USB size fits their needs.
- Robust. USB flash drive are durable and it can be use to rewrite data over a million times.
- Speed. USB flash drive has no moving parts, which makes it a very fast media to write data to.
- Easy to Use. Modern operating systems can readily detect flash drives when plugged into the PC and would not even require installation of drivers or a reboot to access data from the flash drive. It does not also require a separate power supply to operate.
But just like any other media, there is still a tendency for USB device to fail. Here are some of the causes that can lead to corruption of your USB drive:
- Improper disconnection of Flash Drive from the computer. When unplugging flash drive from the computer, it is important to always use the “Safely Remove Hardware” feature to make sure that no system is accessing the flash drive before unplugging it. Unsafely removing USB device from the computer can lead to logical damage of disks, which can corrupt the data stored in it.
- Power Outages. Surge in power while the USB device is being accessed can also cause damage to your flash drive.
- Exposure to extreme temperature. High temperature or high humidity can lead to condensation, which can cause short circuit of the boards.
- Physical damage to the disks. Dropping the flash drive, breaking of the USB connectors, etc can render the flash drive unusable.
Since majority of USB drives now come in large capacities, it can hold thousands of different data from documents, pictures, movies, eBooks and more. Losing this important data can be a big headache, that is why it is important that we take measures so we will be prepared in case of data corruption of our USB flash drive.
Here are a few tips to prevent data loss:
- Backup your files. Don’t just rely on your USB drive to save your data. Make sure that you backup critical files either to a DVD or a second flash drive. DVDs, external hard disks and USB drives are so affordable now so there is no reason not to get a second one for backup.
- Keep your computer up to date. Make sure that your computer has the latest antivirus program, patches and software like hp drivers, OS updates and more to make sure that it is protected from any virus, malware, spyware, etc that can corrupt and even erase data stored on your USB drive.
- Keep your USB device in a safe place. Because of its size, it is very easy to carry a USB device with you wherever you go. Although it is built to be mobile, it is still important that you put it in a safe place like inside a pocket in a bag.
- Use UPS or power protectors. One of the primary causes of data corruption is power outage so it will help to install UPS and surge protectors to protect your PC and your flash drive from sudden change in electric current.
- Always disconnect your USB flash drive safely. Never just unplug a USB device after using it. Always disconnect it by following the proper steps on how to safely remove hardware.
USB flash drives is the most preferred media for storage and sharing of data because of its speed, capacity and portability. But make sure that you take good care of your flash drive by following the tips mentioned above to avoid losing your valuable data.
Image courtesy of Sybren A. Stüvel.