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Optimize Removable Disk for Performance in Windows XP - Write Cache - Optimize for Performance - Removalble Drive Policy

Updated on October 4, 2010

Write Caching

By default, windows optimizes removable drives for quick removal. This means that windows will cache while it writes to the drive just in case the drive is removed while windows was in the middle of writing to it.

If you are in the habit of safely removing and unmounting your removable drives before unplugging them and you would like these drives to operate faster, you may want to consider turning off write caching and optimizing the drives for performance. You will notice increased performance especially if you run applications from the removable drive or you regularly access the files on that drive.

Steps to Optimize a Drive for Performance

  1. Go to My Computer.
  2. Right-Click on the Removable Drive and select Properties.
  3. Click on the Hardware tab.
  4. Select the drive and press the Properties button.
  5. Click on the Policies tab.
  6. Select Optimize for performance. 
  7. Press OK.
  8. Press Apply.


By setting your removable drive to optimize for performance you will be turning off write caching. You do risk corrupting the drive or files if you remove the drive improperly.


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    • Brett.Tesol profile image

      Brett Caulton 6 years ago from Thailand

      Voted up and useful!

      Anything to speed up USB Hdds and flash drives.