How long do USB Flash Drive’s last for?
USB flash drives are great to use for storing digital files and are replacing CD's & DVDs as the preferred storage media of choice.
The advantages of flash drives, is that they are portable, durable, and have incredible storage capacity (ranges from 64MB to 256GB as of 2010). Furthermore, they are able to retain the memory even after the power is turned off. But does the memory last forever though? Should you use them to store important documents and files? How long do they last?
If you simply write data to a USB flash drive and put it away in a safe place for 10 years, it will work again and all the data will still be there.
But if you continue to use it over and over again, it will definitely wear out eventually.
USB Flash Drives Have Finite Number of Write/Erase Cycles
The life expectancy of a USB Flash Drive can be measured by the number of write or erase cycles. USB flash drives can withstand between 10,000 to 100,000 write/erase cycles, depending on the memory technology used.
When the limit is reached, some portions of the memory may not function properly, leading to loss of data and corruption.
Of course, the flash drive’s life can also end prematurely if you abuse it or subject it to extreme environmental conditions. Additionally, if low quality memory components are used, the flash drives can fail at a much earlier time.
Beware of unknown brands, as they may use low quality components and cut corners in the manufacturing processes in order to keep cost low. If you are looking for high quality usb flash drives, Media Alliance uses only grade A chipsets.
Caring for Your Flash Drive
To prolong the life of your flash drive and ensure that it operates properly for years to come, here are some precautions to follow:
When not using the flash drive, be sure to cover it with a cap to prevent the accumulation of dusts and contaminants on the contacts.
Do not expose your flash drive to harsh conditions, such as extreme temperatures and humidity.
Never yank the flash drive out of the USB port while it is still in operation. Also, you should “Eject” the drive before removing it from your computer.
Do not leave it plugged to the computer for prolonged period of time. If you do not use it, just unplug it from your computer.
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