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Encyclopedia > USB stick

Jumpdrive redirects here; for the unrelated science fiction concept, see Jump drive Science fiction is a form of speculative fiction principally dealing with the impact of imagined science and technology, or both, upon society and persons as individuals. ... Jump drive is a name given to a method of traveling faster than light in science fiction. ...

A USB flash drive, shown with a 24 mm U.S. quarter coin for scale.
A USB flash drive, shown with a 24 mm U.S. quarter coin for scale.


USB flash drives are NAND-type flash memory data storage devices integrated with a USB (universal serial bus) interface. They are typically small, lightweight, removable and rewritable. As of November 2006, memory capacities for USB Flash Drives currently are sold from 32 megabytes up to 64 gigabytes [1]. Capacity is limited only by current flash memory densities, although cost per megabyte may increase rapidly at higher capacities due to the expensive components. (USB Memory card readers are also available, whereby rather than being built-in, the memory is a removable Flash memory card housed in what is otherwise a regular USB flash drive, as described below.) Image File history File links USB_flash_drive. ... Image File history File links USB_flash_drive. ... The quarter is 1/4th of a United States dollar or 25 cents. ... A USB flash drive. ... A USB flash drive. ... Many different consumer electronic devices can store data. ... Note: USB may also mean upper sideband in radio. ... A megabyte is a unit of information or computer storage equal to exactly one million bytes. ... A gigabyte (symbol GB) is a unit of measurement in computers of one thousand million bytes (the same as one billion bytes in the short scale usage). ... Four major types of memory cards (from left to right: CompactFlash, MemoryStick, Secure Digital, and xD. A memory card or flash memory card is a solid-state electronic flash memory data storage device used with digital cameras, handheld and laptop computers, telephones, music players, video game consoles, and other electronics. ... A card reader is a device used for communication with a smart card or a flash memory card. ...


USB flash drives offer potential advantages over other portable storage devices, particularly the floppy disk. They are more compact, generally faster, hold more data, and are more reliable (due to both their lack of moving parts, and their more durable design) than floppy disks. These types of drives use the USB mass storage standard, supported natively by modern operating systems such as Linux, Mac OS X, Unix, and Windows. A floppy disk is a data storage device that is composed of a disk of thin, flexible (floppy) magnetic storage medium encased in a square or rectangular plastic shell. ... ITS ALL BOUT LE2 BLOCK/HIGHFIELDS/BALLPARK WE WILL MERK U PUMS HAHAHAH SITE GOT HACKED FUKIN WANKA!! ILE CLAP U HAHAHAH REMEBER FUK LE5 ITS ALL BOUT BALL PARK I REP BP PEACE BITCH!! U DNT FUK BOUT WID ANY OFF US NAW MEAN GET MAY!!! The USB mass... Linux (IPA pronunciation: ) is a Unix-like computer operating system family that uses the Linux kernel. ... Mac OS X (official IPA pronunciation: ) is a line of proprietary, graphical operating systems developed, marketed, and sold by Apple Inc. ... Filiation of Unix and Unix-like systems Unix (officially trademarked as UNIX®) is a computer operating system originally developed in the 1960s and 1970s by a group of AT&T employees at Bell Labs including Ken Thompson, Dennis Ritchie and Douglas McIlroy. ... 1. ...


A flash drive consists of a small printed circuit board encased in a plastic or metal casing, making the drive sturdy enough to be carried about in a pocket, as a key fob, or on a lanyard. Only the USB connector protrudes from this protection, and is usually covered by a removable cap. Most flash drives use a standard type-A USB connection allowing them to be connected directly to a port on a personal computer. Close-up photo of one side of a motherboard PCB, showing conductive traces, vias and solder points for through-hole components on the opposite side. ... A key fob is a decorative item many people often carry with their keys, on a ring or a chain, to provide a better grip or to make a personal statement. ... A lanyard (sword knot) fixed to an infantry sword handle A lanyard, also spelled laniard, is a rope or cord often worn around the neck or wrist to carry something. ... Universal Serial Bus (USB) is a serial bus standard to interface devices, in other words an outlet you stick wires into. ...


To access the data stored in a flash drive, the drive must be connected to a computer, either by plugging it into a USB host controller built into the computer, or into a USB hub. Flash drives are active only when plugged into a USB connection and draw all necessary power from the supply provided by that connection. However, some flash drives, especially high-speed drives utilizing the USB 2.0 standard, may require more power than the limited amount provided by a bus-powered USB hub, such as those built into some computer keyboards or monitors. These drives will not work unless plugged directly into a host controller (i.e., the ports found on the computer itself) or a self-powered hub. A USB hub A USB hub is a hub device that allows many USB devices to be connected to a single USB port. ...

Contents

History

Flash drive with retractable USB Connector
Flash drive with retractable USB Connector

Several companies claim to be the first to have invented the USB Flash Drive in 1998 through 2000. Different companies claim to have been the first to have thought about it, to have written down a description, built, patented, or to have actually sold the first USB Flash drives. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1704x632, 154 KB) Summary Licensing File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): USB flash drive ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1704x632, 154 KB) Summary Licensing File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): USB flash drive ...


Trek was the first company to sell a USB Flash Drive (ThumbDrive) in early 2000. However, their patent does not really describe the USB Flash Drive, but a very broad family of storage devices, of which the USB Flash Drive is one.


M-Systems (now SanDisk) were working on developing the USB Flash Drive since 1998. The domain diskonkey.com was registered by them in October 1999 and clearly indicates that the USB Flash Drive was already in the workings [verification needed]. In 2000 Dan Harkabi joined the M-System team and led the development of DiskOnKey. The industrial design was done by Ziba and the product won the IDEA award in 2001. M-System's patent rigorously describes the USB Flash Drive and its implementation.


An IBM invention disclosure RPS8-1999-0201 (Sept. 99) by Shimon Shmueli et al is the earliest known document to accurately and completely describe the USB-FD, and only the USB-FD. M-Systems OEMed the DiskOnKey for IBM, who in late 2000 was the first to sell the product in North America. Shmueli later founded KeyNetica, the first company that patented and developed the concept that mobile and smart storage devices can be all we need for mobile computing. Current implementors of the concept are U3 (part of SanDisk that also own the original KeyNetica patent) and Ceedo. International Business Machines Corporation (known as IBM or Big Blue; NYSE: IBM) is a multinational computer technology corporation headquartered in Armonk, New York, USA. The company is one of the few information technology companies with a continuous history dating back to the 19th century. ...


Trek Technology claims it was first to conceive and create the ThumbDrive [1]. "When we first introduced the ThumbDrive in early 2000, we believed that this little device was set to change the way consumers across the world would store and transport information and data," Trek 2000 Chief Executive Officer Henn Tan was quoted as saying. [Its potential] "has made it essential for Trek to invest and protect its intellectual property ownership," Henn said. Trek holds patents for the ThumbDrive in Japan, Taiwan, South Korea, the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Singapore.


However, the ownership of the patent for this device has been widely disputed. According to The Straits Times's report, other companies started marketing similar devices. M-Systems, which is listed on Nasdaq, called its gadgets DiskOnKey and Diskey. Electec is M-Systems' importer, and FE Global is its sole distributor in Singapore. Lexar can also lay claim to a pioneering USB flash drive product. In 2000 they introduced a Compact Flash (CF) card having an internal USB function. Lexar offered a companion card reader and USB cable that eliminated the need for a USB hub. CompactFlash (CF) was originally a type of data storage device, used in portable electronic devices. ...


Trek sued the four companies for infringing its patent. They counterclaimed, asking that Trek's patent be revoked as it was invalid.


The Singapore Court of Appeals confirmed the validity of Trek Technology's patent for its ThumbDrive, calling it "novel and inventive" in the decision published in The Straits Times. The city-state's highest court also quashed the plea of four companies - Israeli firm M-Systems Flash Disk Pioneers, Electec, FE Global Electronics and Singapore-based Ritronics Components - and ordered them to stop selling similar devices. The decision is expected to have a ripple effect on other similar law suits which the Trek group has pending in Britain, Japan and Taiwan.


Modern flash drives have USB 2.0 connectivity. However, they do not currently use the full 480 Mbit/s the specification supports due to technical limitations inherent in NAND flash. The fastest drives currently available use a dual channel controller, though still fall considerably short of the transfer rate possible from a current generation hard disk, or the maximum high speed USB 2.0 throughput. Note: USB may also mean upper sideband in radio. ...


Typical overall file transfer speeds are about 3 Mbytes/s. The highest current overall file transfer speeds are about 10-25 Mbytes/s. Older, "full speed" 12 Mbit/s devices are limited to a maximum of about 1 Mbytes/s.


Flash drives have become iconic as a sort of "fashion statement" [2], much like the iPod's white ear bud headphones. The current iPod line. ...


Components


Internals of a typical flash drive
(Seitec brand USB1.1 pictured)
Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1000x959, 490 KB) §==The internal components of a typical keydrive== This photograph shows both sides of the printed circuit board inside a typical keydrive (circa 2004), in this case an inexpensive 64 Mbyte USB2. ...

1 USB connector
2 USB mass storage controller device
3 Test points
4 Flash memory chip
5 Crystal oscillator
6 LED
7 Write-protect switch
8 Space for second flash memory chip

One end of the device is fitted with a single male type-A USB connector. Inside the plastic casing is a small printed circuit board. Mounted on this board is some simple power circuitry and a small number of surface-mounted integrated circuits (ICs). Typically, one of these ICs provides an interface to the USB port, another drives the onboard memory, and the other is the flash memory. A crystal oscillator is an electronic circuit that uses the mechanical resonance of a vibrating crystal of piezoelectric material to create an electrical signal with a very precise frequency. ... External links LEd Category: TeX ... In electrical and mechanical trades and manufacturing, each of a pair of mating connectors or fasteners is conventionally assigned the designation male or female. ... Look up connector in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Surface-mount components on a keydrives circuit board Surface mount technology (SMT) is a method for constructing electronic circuits in which the components are mounted directly onto the surface of printed circuit boards (PCBs). ... Integrated circuit showing memory blocks, logic and input/output pads around the periphery Microchips with a transparent window showing the integrated circuit inside. ... A USB flash drive. ...


Essential components

There are typically three parts to a flash drive:

  • Male type-A USB connector — provides an interface to the host computer.
  • USB mass storage controller — implements the USB host controller and provides a linear interface to block-oriented serial flash devices while hiding the complexities of block-orientation, block erasure, and wear levelling, or wear balancing. The controller contains a small RISC microprocessor and a small amount of on-chip ROM and RAM.
  • NAND flash memory chip — stores data. NAND flash is typically also used in digital cameras.
  • Crystal oscillator — produces the device's main 12 MHz clock signal and controls the device's data output through a phase-locked loop.

Wear levelling (also written -levelling) is a technique for prolonging the service life of some kinds of eraseable computer storage media, e. ... Reduced Instruction Set Computer (RISC), is a microprocessor CPU design philosophy that favors a smaller and simpler set of instructions that all take about the same amount of time to execute. ... Read-only memory (ROM) is a class of storage media used in computers and other electronic devices. ... Random access memory (usually known by its acronym, RAM) is a type of data store used in computers. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... A crystal oscillator is an electronic circuit that uses the mechanical resonance of a vibrating crystal of piezoelectric material to create an electrical signal with a very precise frequency. ... In synchronous digital electronics, such as most computers, a clock signal is a signal used to coordinate the actions of two or more circuits. ... In electronics, a phase-locked loop (PLL) is a closed-loop feedback control system that generates and outputs a signal in relation to the frequency and phase of an input (reference) signal. ...

Additional components

The typical device may also include:

  • Jumpers and test pins — for testing during the flash drive's manufacturing or loading code into the microprocessor.
  • LEDs — indicate data transfers or data reads and writes.
  • Write-protect switches — indicate whether the device should be in "write-protection" mode.
  • Unpopulated space — provides space to include a second memory chip. Having this second space allows the manufacturer to develop only one printed circuit board that can be used for more than one storage size device, to meet the needs of the market.
  • USB connector cover or cap — reduces the risk of damage due to static electricity, and improves overall device appearance. Some flash drives do not feature a cap, but instead have retractable USB connectors. Other flash drives have a "swivel" cap that is permanently connected to the drive itself and eliminates the chance of losing the cap.
  • Transport aid — In some cases, the cap or the main body contains a hole suitable for connection to a key chain or lanyard or to otherwise aid transport and storage of the USB flash device.

Top: jumper block on IDE hard drive with shunt; bottom: assorted shunts In electronics and particularly computing, a jumper is two or more connecting points that can be conveniently shorted together to set up or adjust a printed circuit board, such as a computers motherboard. ... Led is also the past tense of the verb to lead Blue, green and red LEDs. ... Write protection, (also known as record protection) is a mechanism that prevents erasure of valuable data by the accidental recording or storing of new data. ... Static electricity is a class of phenomena involving the net charge present on an object; typically referring to charged object with voltages of sufficient magnitude to produce visible attraction, repulsion, and sparks. ... A key fob is a decorative item which many people carry with their keys, on a ring or a chain, often to provide a better grip or to simply make a personal statement. ... A lanyard (sword knot) fixed to an infantry sword handle A lanyard, also spelled laniard, is a rope or cord often worn around the neck or wrist to carry something. ...

Size and style of packaging

Flash drives come in various, sometimes bulky or novelty, shapes and sizes, in this case ikura sushi
Flash drives come in various, sometimes bulky or novelty, shapes and sizes, in this case ikura sushi

Some manufacturers differentiate their products by using unnecessarily elaborate housings. An example is some of Lexar's Jump Drives which are often bulky and difficult to connect to the USB port. Because the USB port connectors on a computer housing are often closely spaced, plugging a flash drive into a USB port may block an adjacent port. Such devices may only carry the USB logo if sold with a separate extension cable (See also USB connectors). Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1066x892, 422 KB) Summary A USB flash drive in the shape of a piece of ikura sushi. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1066x892, 422 KB) Summary A USB flash drive in the shape of a piece of ikura sushi. ... Salmon roe at the Shiogama seafood market in Japan Look up Roe in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Lexar is a manufacturer of various digital media and software. ... Note: USB may also mean upper sideband in radio. ...


Recently, USB flash drives have been integrated into other things such as a watch or a pen.


Overweight or ill-fitting flash drive packaging can cause disconnection from the host computer. This can be overcome by using a short USB to USB (male to female) extension cable to relieve tension on the port. Such cables are USB-compatible, but do not conform to the USB standard. [2] [3]


Common uses

Personal data transport
The most common use of flash drives is by individuals to transport and store personal files such as documents, pictures and video.
Computer repair
Flash drives enjoy notable success in the PC repair field as a means to transfer recovery and antivirus software to infected PCs, while allowing a portion of the host machine's data to be archived in case of emergency.
System administration
Flash drives are particularly popular among system and network administrators, who load them with configuration information and software used for system maintenance, troubleshooting, and recovery.
Application carriers
Flash drives are used to carry applications that run on the host computer without requiring installation. U3, backed by flash drive vendors, offers an API to flash drive-specific functions. A free and open-source software platform known as Portableapps has also been developed to allow U3-like functionality on non-U3 drives. airWRX is an application framework that runs from a flash drive and turns its PC host and other nearby PCs into a multi-screen, web-like work environment. The Mozilla Firefox browser has a configuration for flash drives, as does Opera.[3][4]
A Creative MuVo, a small solid-state digital audio player in a flash drive form
A Creative MuVo, a small solid-state digital audio player in a flash drive form
Audio players
Many companies make solid state digital audio players in a small form factor, essentially producing flash drives with sound output and a simple user interface. Probably the best-known of these has been Apple Computer's iPod shuffle, and the Creative Labs MuVo.
To boot operating systems
In a way similar to that used in LiveCD, one can launch any operating system from a bootable flash drive, known as a LiveUSB.
In arcades
In the arcade game In the Groove and more commonly In The Groove 2, flash drives are used to transfer high scores, screenshots, dance edits, and combos throughout sessions. While use of flash drives is common, the drive must be Linux compatible, causing problems for some players. Data used can then be uploaded to Groovestats.

U3 LLC is a joint venture that is backed by Sandisk and its subdsidiary, M-Systems. ... API may refer to: In computing, application programming interface In petroleum industry, American Petroleum Institute In education, Academic Performance Index This page concerning a three-letter acronym or abbreviation is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... Mozilla Firefox (abbreviated as Fx, fx (prescribed[2]), or FF) is a graphical web browser developed by the Mozilla Corporation. ... Opera is an Internet suite which handles common internet-related tasks, including visiting web sites, sending and receiving e-mail messages, managing contacts, and online chat. ... Download high resolution version (1600x1200, 300 KB)Image of a Creative MuVo digital audio player / keydrive A copy of nl:Afbeelding:Usb mp3. ... Download high resolution version (1600x1200, 300 KB)Image of a Creative MuVo digital audio player / keydrive A copy of nl:Afbeelding:Usb mp3. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Apple iPod, the most popular hard drive-based digital audio player An embedded hard drive-based player (Creative Zen Vision:M), one of the many alternatives for the iPod An MP3 CD player (Philips Expanium) Some mobile phones can be used as digital audio players, such as the Nokia 6233. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Solid state drive. ... Apple iPod, the most popular hard drive-based digital audio player An embedded hard drive-based player (Creative Zen Vision:M), one of the many alternatives for the iPod An MP3 CD player (Philips Expanium) Some mobile phones can be used as digital audio players, such as the Nokia 6233. ... Form factor refers to the linear dimensions and configuration of a device as distinguished from other measures of size (for example Gigabytes; a measure of storage size): in computing, form factor is used to describe the size and format of PC motherboards (see AT, ATX, BTX), but also of hard... Apple Inc. ... iPod shuffle is an iPod digital audio player designed and marketed by Apple Computer. ... Creative MuVo TX FM 512 MB. The smaller USB drive section of TX FM model. ... Gnoppix 0. ... In computing, booting is a bootstrapping process that starts operating systems when the user turns on a computer system. ... A live USB is a USB flash drive which can be booted from, often containing a Linux distribution. ... Centipede by Atari is a typical example of a 1980s era arcade game. ... In the Groove (abbreviated ITG) is a series of music video games that use a four-panel dance pad. ... In The Groove 2 is the sequel to Roxor Games 2004 arcade game In The Groove. ... A screenshot of the Wikipedia website, taken on Debian GNU/Linux running the X Window system A screenshot, screen dump, or screen capture is an image taken by the computer to record the visible items on the monitor or another visual output device, usually this is a digital image taken... Linux (IPA pronunciation: ) is a Unix-like computer operating system family that uses the Linux kernel. ...

Strengths and weaknesses

Flash drives are nearly impervious to the scratches and dust that were problematic for previous forms of portable storage, such as compact discs and floppy disks, and their durable solid-state design means they often survive casual abuse. This makes them ideal for transporting personal data or work files from one location to another, such as from home to school or office or for carrying around personal data that the user typically wants to access in a variety of places. The near-ubiquity of USB support on modern computers means that such a drive will work in most places. A drawback to the small size is that they are easy to misplace, leave behind, or otherwise lose. This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... A floppy disk is a data storage device that is composed of a disk of thin, flexible (floppy) magnetic storage medium encased in a square or rectangular plastic shell. ...


Flash drives are also a relatively dense form of storage, where even the cheapest will store dozens of floppy disks worth of data. Some can hold more data than a CD (700 MB). Top of the line flash drives can store more data than a DVD (4.7 GB). This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... A megabyte is a unit of information or computer storage equal to exactly one million bytes. ... DVD (commonly Digital Versatile Disc or Digital Video Disc) is an optical disc storage media format that can be used for data storage, including movies with high video and sound quality. ... A gigabyte (derived from the SI prefix giga-) is a unit of information or computer storage equal to one billion (short scale, meaning a thousand million) bytes. ...


Flash drives implement the USB mass storage device class, meaning that most modern operating systems can read and write to flash drives without any additional device drivers. The flash drives present a simple block-structured logical unit to the host operating system, hiding the individual complex implementation details of the various underlying flash memory devices. The operating system can use whatever type of filesystem or block addressing scheme it wants. Some computers have the ability to boot up from flash drives. An operating system (OS) is a computer program that manages the hardware and software resources of a computer. ... Windows XP loading drivers during a Safe Mode bootup A device driver, or a software driver is a specific type of computer software, typically developed to allow interaction with hardware devices. ... See Filing system for this term as it is used in libraries and offices In computing, a file system is a method for storing and organizing computer files and the data they contain to make it easy to find and access them. ... In computing, booting is a bootstrapping process that starts operating systems when the user turns on a computer system. ...


Like all flash memory devices, flash drives can sustain only a limited number of write and erase cycles before failure. Mid-range flash drives under normal conditions will support several hundred thousand cycles, although write operations will gradually slow as the device ages. This should be a consideration when using a flash drive to run application software or an operating system. To address this, as well as space limitations, some developers have produced special versions of operating systems (such as Linux) or commonplace applications (such as Mozilla Firefox) designed to run from flash drives. These are typically optimized for size and configured to place temporary or intermediate files in the computer's main RAM memory rather than store them temporarily on the flash drive. Linux (IPA pronunciation: ) is a Unix-like computer operating system family that uses the Linux kernel. ... Mozilla Firefox (abbreviated as Fx, fx (prescribed[2]), or FF) is a graphical web browser developed by the Mozilla Corporation. ...


Most USB flash drives do not include a write-protect mechanism. Such a switch on the housing of the drive itself would keep the host computer from writing or modifying data on the drive. Write-protection would make a device suitable for repairing virus-contaminated host computers without infecting the USB flash drive itself. A computer virus is a computer program that can copy itself without permission or knowledge of the user. ...


Flash drives are much more tolerant of abuse than mechanical drives, but can still be damaged or have data corrupted by severe physical impacts. Improperly wired USB ports can also destroy the circuitry of a flash drive, a danger in home-built desktop PCs.


Comparison to other portable memory forms

Flash storage devices are often compared to other common, portable, swappable data storage devices, such as floppy disks, Zip disks, miniCD / miniDVD, CD-R/CD-RW and DVD-RW discs. A floppy disk is a data storage device that comprises a circular piece of thin, flexible (hence floppy) magnetic storage medium encased in a square or rectangular plastic wallet. ... Later (USB, left) and earlier (parallel, right) Zip drives (media in foreground). ... // Description MiniCDs are compact discs with a smaller form factor. ... There are two types of MiniDVD cDVD, which are 80-mm versions of the 120-mm DVD mini-DVD, which are standard CDs filled with the DVD-video format // cDVD A Mini-DVD-RAM with DVD Round Holder. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Compact Disc ReWritable (CD-RW) is a rewritable optical disc format. ...


Floppy disks were the first popular method of file transport, but are rapidly falling out of favor due to their low capacity, low speed, and low durability. Virtually all new computers no longer include floppy drives, and do include USB ports, the Apple iMac being the first to ship this way. However, floppy disks are still in use because of their low cost; they are often the easiest or only way to share files with older systems; floppy drives can be added to new systems either internally or externally. The correct title of this article is . ...


Attempts to extend the floppy standard (such as the Imation SuperDisk) were not successful because of a reputation for unreliability and the lack of a single standard for PC vendors to adopt. The Iomega Zip drive enjoyed some popularity, but never reached the point of ubiquity in computers. Also, the larger sizes of Zip—now up to 750 MB—cannot be read on older drives. Unless one were to carry an external drive, their usefulness as a means of moving data was rather limited. The cost per megabyte was fairly high, with individual disks often costing US$10 or more. Because moving parts are involved and the material used for creating the storage medium in Zip disks is similar to that used in floppy disks, Zip disks have a higher risk of failure and data loss compared with flash drives. Larger removable storage media, like Iomega's Jaz drive, had even higher costs for both drives and media, and as such were not pervasively adopted as a floppy alternative. However, as with floppy drives, these technologies still are available and in use as of 2007. This article is about the American company, for the Russian company involved in a pyramid scheme, see MMM (pyramid) 3M Company (NYSE: MMM) (until 2002 formally Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Company) is an American corporation with a worldwide presence that produces over 55,000 products, including adhesives, abrasives, laminates, electronic... Also known as the LS-120 and the later variant LS-240, the SuperDisk was introduced by 3Ms storage products group (later known as Imation) circa 1997 as a high-speed, high-capacity alternative to the 90 mm (3. ... The Jaz drive was a removable disk storage system, introduced by the Iomega company. ... 2007 is a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


CD-R and CD-RW are swappable storage media alternatives. Unlike Zip and floppy drives, DVD and CD recorders are now common in personal computer systems. CD-Rs can be written to only once. But CD-RWs are rated at up to 1,000 erase/write cycles, and modern NAND-based flash drives often last for 500,000 or more erase/write cycles. Optical storage devices also usually are slower than their flash-based counterparts. And, compact discs with a 12 cm diameter can be inconveniently large and, unlike flash drives, cannot fit into a pocket or hang from a key chain. There are smaller CD-R media such as business card CD-Rs, which have the same dimensions as a credit card, and (slightly less convenient but have more storage) 8 cm CD-Rs. But these are harder to obtain and generally more expensive than the standard 12 cm version. There also is no standard file system for rewritable optical media. Packet-writing utilities like DirectCD and InCD exist but produce discs that are not universally readable, despite their claiming to be based on the UDF standard. The upcoming Mount Rainier standard addresses this shortcoming in CD-RW media, but it still is not supported by most DVD and CD recorders or major operating systems. As a result, CDs/DVDs are a good way to record a great deal of information cheaply but not good for making ongoing small changes to a large collection of information; flash drives' ability to do this is their major advantage. A CD-R (Compact Disc-Recordable) is a thin (1. ... DirectCD is packet writing software, originally from Adaptec and now supported by Roxio. ... InCD is packet writing software by Nero AG for Microsoft Windows. ... The Universal Disk Format (UDF) is a format specification of a file system for storing files on optical media. ... Mount Rainier is an expansion to the Universal Disk Format (UDF). ...


Security

Some flash drives feature encryption of the data stored on them, generally using full disk encryption below the filesystem. This prevents an unauthorized person from accessing the data stored on it. The disadvantage is that the drive is accessible only in the minority of computers which have compatible encryption software, for which no portable standard is widely deployed. It has been suggested that OTFE be merged into this article or section. ...


Some encryption applications allow running without installation. The executable files can be stored on the USB drive, together with the encrypted file image. The encrypted partition can be accessed on any computer running Microsoft Windows. Other flash drives allow the user to configure secure and public partitions of different sizes. Executable files for Windows, Macintosh, and Linux may be on the drive, depending on manufacturer support. Poorly written security software may require administrative rights on the host PC to access data. A USB drive, shown with a 24 mm US quarter coin for scale. ... Microsoft Windows is the name of several families of proprietary software operating systems by Microsoft. ...


Newer flash drives support biometric fingerprinting to confirm the user's identity. As of mid-2005, this was a relatively costly alternative to standard password protection offered on many new USB flash storage devices. Most fingerprint scanning drives rely upon the host operating system to validate the fingerprint via a software driver, restricting the drive to Microsoft Windows computers. At Disney World, biometric measurements are taken of the fingers of multi-day pass users to ensure that the pass is used by the same person from day to day. ... This article is about human fingerprints. ... 2005 is a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Microsoft Windows is the name of several families of proprietary software operating systems by Microsoft. ...


Some manufacturers deploy physical authentication tokens in the form of a flash drive. These are used to control access to a sensitive system by containing encryption keys or, more commonly, communicating with security software on the target machine. The system is designed so the target machine will not operate except when the flash drive device is plugged into it. Some of these "PC lock" devices also function as normal flash drives when plugged into other machines.


All such forms of data protection security involve an increased risk of loss of access to the data by the legitimate owner/user.


Flash drives present a significant security challenge for large organizations. Their small size and ease of use allows unsupervised visitors or unscrupulous employees to smuggle confidential data out with little chance of detection. Equally, corporate and public computers alike are vulnerable to attackers connecting a flash drive to a free USB port and using malicious software such as rootkits or packet sniffers. To prevent this, some organizations forbid the use of flash drives, and some computers are configured to disable the mounting of USB mass storage devices by ordinary users, a feature introduced in Windows XP Service Pack 2; others use third-party software to control USB usage. In a lower-tech security solution, some organizations disconnect USB ports inside the computer or fill the USB sockets with epoxy. A rootkit is a set of software tools intended to conceal running processes, files or system data from the operating system. ... Packet sniffers (also known as network or protocol analyzers or Ethernet sniffers) are computer software (usually) or computer hardware that can intercept and log traffic passing over a digital network or part of a network. ... Windows XP is a line of proprietary operating systems developed by Microsoft for use on general-purpose computer systems, including home and business desktops, notebook computers, and media centers. ... Epoxy or polyepoxide is a thermosetting epoxide polymer that cures (polymerizes and crosslinks) when mixed with a catalyzing agent or hardener. Most common epoxy resins are produced from a reaction between epichlorohydrin and bisphenol-A. The first commercial attempts to prepare resins from epichlorohydrin occurred in 1927 in the United...


Naming

Recently, "USB flash drive" or simply "UFD" has emerged as the de facto standard term for these devices. Many major manufacturers (SanDisk, Lexar, Kingston) and resellers use the term UFD to describe them. However, the myriad of different brand names and terminology used, in the past and currently, makes UFDs more difficult for manufacturers to market and for consumers to research. Some commonly used names are actually trademarks of particular companies e.g. 'disgo'. There are a number of alternative names used for USB Flash drives with no commonly recognized term emerging. ... Manufacturing is the transformation of raw materials into finished goods for sale, or intermediate processes involving the production or finishing of semi-manufactures. ... Wikibooks has more about this subject: Marketing Marketing is a social and managerial function that attempts to create, expand and maintain a collection of customers. ... In economics, consumers are individuals or households that consume goods and services generated within the economy. ...


Future developments

Semiconductor corporations have worked to reduce the cost of the components in a flash drive by integrating various flash drive functions in a single chip, thereby reducing the part-count and overall package cost.


Flash drive sizes on the market are continuously increasing. As of 2006, 64 MB and smaller capacity flash memory has been largely discontinued, and 128 MB capacity flash memory is being phased out. Kanguru has recently released a 64 GB flash memory drive that uses USB 2.0 and claims 10 years worth of information preservation. [4]


Lexar is attempting to introduce a USB flash card [5] [6], which would be a compact USB flash drive intended to replace various kinds of flash memory cards. Lexar is a manufacturer of various digital media and software. ... USB FlashCard is a new flash memory card format developed by Lexar, and announced on December 13, 2004[1]. There is a plethora of existing memory card formats such as SD, xD, and CompactFlash; the major advantage of USB FlashCard is that the cards are in fact standard USB USB...


SanDisk has introduced a new technology to allow controlled storage and usage of copyrighted materials on flash drives, primarily for use by students. This technology is termed FlashCP. SanDisk Corporation (NASDAQ: SNDK), formerly SunDisk, is an American multinational corporation which designs and markets flash memory card products. ... FlashCP FlashCP is a technology obtained by SanDisk in 2005 when they purcahsed the Israeli-based MDRM. FlashCP was originally developed under the trademarked name BootLocker. ...


Trivia

  • In 2004, the German punk band WIZO was the first musical group to release music in MP3 format on a USB drive, titled the WIZO Stick-EP. [5]
  • In the films The Recruit and Collateral, thumb drives play an important role in the plot.
  • Some flash drives can retain their memory after being submerged in water [6], even through a machine wash. Leaving the flash drive out to dry completely before allowing current to run through it has been known to result in a working drive with no future problems.
  • Isolinear optical chips, fictional devices similar to USB drives in design and function, were featured regularly in Star Trek: The Next Generation over 10 years before their real world counterparts were invented.
  • In The Running Man (film) (1987), Amber Mendez (Maria Conchita Alonso) searches for video of "The Bakersfield Massacre" within the studio where she works. The video is stored on small flash memory card media (similar to CompactFlash, but in a matte black casing). Due to the advances of audio/video codec technology it is possible to store high quality video on such media today.
  • On South Park a 1 GB flash drive was used to hold the Sword of a Thousand Truths which was previously removed from World of Warcraft in the episode Make Love, Not Warcraft.

Punk rock is an anti-establishment music movement beginning around 1976 (although precursors can be found several years earlier), exemplified and popularised by The Ramones, the Sex Pistols, The Clash and The Damned. ... WIZO (IPA pronunciation: ) is a Punk Rock band from Sindelfingen, Germany. ... The Recruit is a spy thriller movie starring Colin Farrell and Al Pacino. ... Collateral is a 2004 Academy Award-nominated Dreamworks SKG/Paramount Pictures American drama/thriller/crime film directed by Michael Mann and written by Stuart Beattie, with un-credited rewrites by Mann and Frank Darabont. ... Isolinear Chips In the Star Trek fictional universe, the isolinear optical chip is a common format for data storage among the more developed warp-capable cultures of the alpha and beta quadrants. ... The title as it appeared in most episodes opening credits. ... A film loosely based on the novel was released in 1987. ... 1987 (MCMLXXXVII) was a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Maria Conchita Alonso María Conchita Alonso (born June 29, 1957) is a Cuban-born Venezuelan singer and actress. ... A USB flash drive. ... A 64 MB CompactFlash Type I card A 32 MB High Speed CompactFlash Type I card CompactFlash (CF) was originally a type of data storage device, used in portable electronic devices. ... A Codec is a device or program capable of performing encoding and decoding on a digital data stream or signal. ... South Park is an American, Emmy Award-winning animated television comedy series about four fourth grade school boys who live in the small town of South Park, Colorado. ... World of Warcraft (commonly abbreviated as WoW) is a massive multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) developed by Blizzard Entertainment. ... Make Love, Not Warcraft is episode 1008 (#147) of Comedy Centrals animated series South Park and aired on October 4, 2006. ...

See also

Electronics Portal

Image File history File links Zenerdiod_symbol. ... It has been suggested that Disk enclosure, USB enclosure be merged into this article or section. ... File synchronization (or syncing) in computing is the process of making sure that two or more locations contain the same up-to-date files. ... This is a list of backup software, software which performs data backups, and providers of managed backup services. ... A USB drive, shown with a 24 mm US quarter coin for scale. ... Gnoppix 0. ... A live USB is a USB flash drive containing a full operating system which can be booted from. ... The pocket hard drive is a higher capacity variant of the flash drive. ... In a non-network environment, the floppy disk was once the primary means of transferring data between computers. ... The USB Flash Drive Alliance, founded in December 2003 by Samsung, Lexar Media, Kingston Technology and others, is promoting the use of USB flash drives (also called keydrives). ... USB Mass Storage Devices are devices that use generic USB standards to grant access to a filesystem stored therin, usually in FAT32 format. ... To protect confidentiality of the data stored on a computer disk a computer security technique called disk encryption is used. ... U3 LLC is a joint venture that is backed by Sandisk and its subdsidiary, M-Systems. ...

References

  1. ^ "Singapore firm wins patent on thumb drive", The Straits Times. Retrieved on 2006-08-01.
  2. ^ "From Storage, a New Fashion", The New York Times. Retrieved on 2006-08-01.
  3. ^ Opera@USB : Portable Opera for free. Retrieved on 2006-08-01.
  4. ^ Opera from a digital camera (or other removable devices). Retrieved on 2007-01-07.
  5. ^ "WIZO-STICK-EP"-USB-MEMORY-FLASH-STICK. Retrieved on 2006-08-01.
  6. ^ Kingmax Super Stick. Retrieved on 2006-08-01.

For the Manfred Mann album, see 2006 (album). ... August 1 is the 213th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (214th in leap years), with 152 days remaining. ... For the Manfred Mann album, see 2006 (album). ... August 1 is the 213th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (214th in leap years), with 152 days remaining. ... For the Manfred Mann album, see 2006 (album). ... August 1 is the 213th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (214th in leap years), with 152 days remaining. ... 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the Anno Domini (common) era. ... January 7 is the seventh day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... For the Manfred Mann album, see 2006 (album). ... August 1 is the 213th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (214th in leap years), with 152 days remaining. ... For the Manfred Mann album, see 2006 (album). ... August 1 is the 213th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (214th in leap years), with 152 days remaining. ...

External links


  Results from FactBites:
 
USB - 2.0, port, Hi-Speed, Wireless, OTG - Everything USB (1692 words)
On March 2005, the USB Promoter Group released a new Wireless USB logo that serves the same purpose; Wireless USB traveling on UWB will operate at top speed of 480Mbps.
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If you use your USB flash drive to carry most of your important data and files, backing the drive up to your PC should be something you do frequently.
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