No matter what you call it, a flash drive can help manage your data

Flash drives, thumb drives, pen drives, jump drives, memory sticks…you’ve probably heard of at least one of these, or maybe all of them. A common misconception is that different names must mean these devices do different things. In fact, they all do the same thing. So, what do they do and why are there so many names for one device? And even more importantly, how can this device help you manage your data?

 All of these terms refer to a small-sized, portable data storage device. The official name of this device is a USB flash drive, so named because it plugs into a USB port and because it uses “flash” memory, which is a type of computer chip.

 It’s referred to as a thumb drive because its size is no bigger than a typical thumb. The nicknames memory stick and pen drives also refer to the size of the device; used to distinguish it from what were previously-used square floppy discs or circular optical discs (CDs). Jump drive is yet another nickname but is actually also part of a brand name flash drive (Lexar JumpDrive).

 Now that you know what a flash drive is, and its various names, let’s look at how to put it to work. You insert a flash drive into the USB port on your laptop and computer. Generally, File Explorer comes up on your computer screen to allow you to move or copy files from your computer into the flash drive’s storage. That flash memory technology means there are no moving parts in the drive itself. Instead, an electronic signal is sent to a memory circuit after the files are saved. The electronic signal tells the memory circuit to store that file information on the flash drive. The flash drive can then be inserted into another computer, and the files can be moved from the flash drive onto that second computer.

 Depending on what you plan to save to the flash drive, a 2GB to 4GB flash drive should service you quite well. If you need to transfer a lot of photos or video, you may want to think about something larger. The largest flash drive out there is 1TB, which is above and beyond what regular personal users will probably ever need.

 When it comes to transferring and storing very large amounts of data for your business, you want a reliable and professional method. At Stevens & Stevens, we understand that each organization has unique backup needs and information technology resources. We provide businesses with data storage and protection solutions that allow them to properly protect, preserve, and access their critical data. Learn more here:

Print Friendly, PDF & Email