Flash drives have become a popular means of storing and transferring data between computers, especially as the amount of storage space on the drives have grown larger. However, flash drive failures are not uncommon and can be especially devastating if you rely on a drive to hold all of your important data. There are a number of things that you can do to take care of your flash drive, extend its life expectancy and keep your data safe.
Moisture, Heat and Cold
• Flash drives, like most mechanical devices, don't respond well if submerged in water or exposed to extreme temperatures. Don't leave the drive in a place where you could run the risk of spilling something on it. Also, don't leave it in location with great temperature fluctuations, such as inside a car during the winter or summer.
Flash Drive Storage
• If the flash drive has a cap to protect the USB connector, keep the drive capped when not plugged into the computer. Some drives also have the option to extend the USB connector into the drive itself. Keep the flash drive closed if it's not in use.
• Never defragment your flash drive. Unlike computer hard drives that should be defragmented as regular maintenance, defragmenting a flash drive does nothing to speed up performance and can actually lessen the life expectancy of the drive.
Limited Allowable Number of Writes
• A flash drive has a certain number of allowable writes in its lifetime. This differs depending on the type of drive, but is typically 10,000 or 100,000 writes. Because of this, you should make edits to documents on your computer, and then transfer the finished documents to your flash drive.
Proper Flash Drive Removal