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What is External USB Storage?

Updated on July 13, 2013
What is USB Storage?
What is USB Storage?

We all generate large amounts of data using our computers, laptops, digital cameras, iPads, Tablets and Smartphones that data needs to be stored somewhere. Usually the device manufacturer may provide some storage facility in the form of a Hard Disk or similar. However very soon that that storage is exhausted and we need to look at alternatives. This is where external USB storage plays a major part.

USB storage provides you with the ability to very quickly and easily increase the storage capacity on you device without having to do any kind of intrusive technical tasks. In most cases you can buy a USB mass storage device and insert it into a socket on the device. Press a few keys and the device is ready to be used. Thankfully gone are the days when every time you wanted to increase memory you’d have to find your screw drivers and open up you PC.

A USB drive also referred to as a flash drive or USB stick is a plug-and-play portable storage device that uses a type of memory called ‘flash memory’ and is lightweight. If you plug the device into the USB port, the computer's operating system or the device recognizes the USB device as a removable drive and assigns it a drive letter. With USB storage, data can be retained for long periods even if the device is unplugged from the host system. This makes the external USB storage convenient for transferring data between different technology devices, or for personal backup uses.

There are various types of USB storage devices, some have a large storage capacity most commonly referred to as ‘xGB’ or ‘xTB’ the ‘x’ stands for the size which could be any number, the standard these days is 4GB as the basic for USB stick. The ‘GB’ and ‘TB’ stands for ‘Giga-Byte’ or ‘Tera-Byte’. The Tera-Byte size most common in larger devices rather than pocket sized USB sticks.

USB Flash Drive Component Parts Explained

Using External USB Storage for Backup

Like most people I do allot of work on my computer, I also use a digital camera to take many pictures resulting in so much data that the standard internal storage on my HP desktop or IBM ThinkPad laptop just isn't enough so I purchased a Western Digital Portable Drive. It is ideal for storing regular usage data and also for backup of all my devices. The WD Storage (WESTERN DIGITAL) My Book Live Network Hard Drive, I purchased comes with a massive 2TB’s.

It allows me to put all my digital media, files and software backups in one place. This nice black box of 2TB hard drive allowed me to create a single storage space for whole family and anyone can access it I my house as long as they belong to the same home wireless network.

The WD Storage is compatible with both Mac and PC operating systems, and has an Ethernet interface. Performance is rally impressive for data read and writes it comes with a high-performing Ethernet chip technology, this drive boasts read speeds of up to 100 MB/s.

What will you do with all this storage space?

It was easy to set up, and can also be hooked up to various other devices in your wired or wireless network, as I mentioned above, I can view video or image files using my LG Smart TV which is connected to the wireless network . I can also backup data or files with WD SmartWare which automatically backs up every time I save.

The best bit is that using mobile apps it allows me easy access from my laptop, tablet or smartphone. Images, music, movies, home videos, data, backup files and more can now be grouped together on one device. Another good thing is that the Western Digital Storage My Book can stream data to any DLNA certified multimedia device (keep this in mind as many new devices use this protocol now).


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    • Zubair Ahmed profile imageAUTHOR

      Zubair Ahmed 

      5 years ago

      Hi jabelufiroz,

      Thank you for reading and the comment.

    • jabelufiroz profile image


      5 years ago from India

      Impressive hub on external storage. Voted up.


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