What are USB Storage Devices?

What are USB Storage Devices?

USB storage devices are forms of portable memory that can be used for transferring data from one computer system to another. In this Buzzle article, we will find out what they are, how they are used, and also look at some of their popular applications.
What are USB storage Devices?
USB stands for Universal Serial Bus. It is a protocol standard developed for establishing communication between computers and peripheral devices. USB storage devices, also known as USB flash drives or pen drives, are a type of removable storage media, that work on the USB standard protocol. They are designed to be small and light enough to be carried around in your pocket. These devices today, have created a revolution as far as data storage and portable data transfer is concerned.

How to Transfer Data to Them?
For transferring data, all you need to do is simply plug a USB flash drive into the USB port of your computer. Note that it does not need any external battery or power source and gets switched on automatically.

You can then copy all the data that you need to transfer onto the flash drive, in pretty much the same way that you would normally copy data from one folder to another. Once you're done with the data transfer, you simply need to click on the respective taskbar icon which subsequently shuts off the flash drive.

What is their Application?
When USB flash drives first appeared in the market, their storage capacities were in the range of 128MB to 512MB. Today, their minimum storage capacity happens to be 2GB whereas the maximum can be anything between 8GB or even 16GB. Portable external USB hard drives have storage capacities ranging from 40GB to a whopping 2,000GB.

In addition to flash drives, today there exist numerous applications of these portable storage devices. Almost all of our modern-day gadgets make use of this technology in some way or another. For example the memory cards, iPods, MP3 players, PDA's, external hard drives, etc., are devices that act as USB storages, which can connect to the computer using this protocol standard.

What are their Advantages?
The following is a list of the advantages of USB.
  • Massive storage capacity
  • Space-saving pocket-sized devices
  • Platform independent (you can use the same device on different operating systems and computers)
  • Good option for data backup
  • Inexpensive and offering total value-for-money
What are their Drawbacks?
Despite creating a revolution in the field of data transfer and storage, these devices do have certain drawbacks.
  • They can be easily hidden or concealed. Therefore, they do pose a security threat in case of confidential data
  • They can act as virus carriers
Thus, even though USB storage devices suffer from a few drawbacks, their advantages and utility make them a necessity in today's world.
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