Articles in Category: USB drives

USB connected mass storage devices like external hard drives, an USB flash or “thumb” drives.

Thumbnail featuring a distressed-looking USB flash drive with an error message on a computer screen saying 'RAW'. The background includes faint symbols of a hard drive, a cloud, and a backup symbol, emphasizing the lesson on the necessity of backups and the risks of relying on a single storage device. The image conveys the urgency and importance of data recovery and backup, suitable for a video about recovering data from a failed flash drive and the importance of regular backups.

How Do I Recover Flash Drive Files?

Flash drives are popular, convenient, and extremely useful. But they can fail. Take preventative measures right away.

USB port under a magnifying glass.

How to Fix Windows Not Recognizing USB Device

A checklist to resolve Windows not recognizing USB devices.

Another questionable thumb drive.

Is It OK to Leave a Thumb Drive Inserted All the Time?

Leaving a flash drive or USB thumb drive plugged in all the time runs a small risk of prematurely wearing it out. We’ll look at why, and what to do.

An evil USB thumbdrive.

I Found a Thumb Drive. Should I Plug It In?

USB thumb drives or flash drives are a non-obvious but easy way to spread malware. Be careful when dealing with any unknown device.

USB Flash Drive

Can a USB Flash Drive Wear Out?

While the technology continues to improve, flash memory has a limited number of times it can be written to and can, in fact, wear out.

How Do I Force Windows to Reinstall a Driver?

How Do I Force Windows to Reinstall a Driver?

Sometimes fixing a pesky problem with a hardware device is as simple as forcing Windows to reinstall a driver. I’ll show you how.

How To Keep an External Hard Drive Useful and Healthy Longer

How To Keep an External Hard Drive Useful and Healthy Longer

My best practices for external hard drives concern software, hardware, and — you guessed it — backing up.

Padlocked Flash Drive

How Do I Password-protect a Flash Drive?

There are several approaches to password-protecting a flash drive, one of which might be designed for exactly the task at hand.


How Do I Create a Bootable USB Thumb Drive from an ISO?

If you don’t have a CD or DVD drive, you may be able to turn that ISO image into a bootable USB thumb drive.

Device Can't Be Stopped

Is it Safe to Just Turn Off an External USB Drive Without “Safely Removing” First?

“Device cannot be stopped” can be a frustrating error if there’s no obvious cause. Turning off device power or unplugging anyway isn’t really safe.

USB Connector

Are USB Ports Going Away?

All technology changes, and yes, USB ports will someday disappear. “How quickly?” is the real question. I’m not terribly concerned.

USB device using a micro-controller

Is USB Safe?

Recently a flaw given the name “BadUSB” has been found to potentially make many USB devices fundamentally not secure. I’ll look at what the flaw is, and what we know today about its implications.


How risky it is to run Ubuntu from a flash drive?

Having a bootable version of an operating system like Ubuntu on a USB flash drive can be very handy for a variety of reasons. Since flash memory can wear out, however, it’s important that you back up.

How Can I Tell If I Have USB 2.0?

USB (Universal Serial Bus) 2.0 is a significantly faster version of USB 1.1. Determining which you have is not at all obvious. But it is fairly easy.

Can I use a USB RAM stick to increase system memory?

Flash memory is not the same as the type of memory used as your system RAM. They have different characteristics and they’re accessed differently.