USB Flash Drives – Expanding the Possibilities

USB flash drives have evolved from their initial use as marketing swag to devices capable of addressing corporate needs ranging from mobile computing platforms to files stores with encryption and biometrics protection. Over the past few years, the thumb drive has outpaced other hardware devices in terms of storage capacity growth. And USB drive capacity is outpacing Moore's Law by doubling every year instead of every 18 months. Capacity of those drives is expected to leap from 128mB for most manufactures to 128GB in 2008.

The biggest concern of IT managers related to USB memory sticks is the ability to walk away with proprietary corporate data. Vista addresses this concern with new system policies that control USB flash drive interactions with a computer. A policy can be set preventing flash memory from working with the USB ports on a computer, while still allowing the USB port to be used with other devices.

USB drives easily secure data. Biometric thumb drives store fingerprints, flash drives come with encryption programs such as Secret Zip, PCLock, and programs that synchronize data between devices. USB flash drives come in your choice of fun form factors with the capability to store your Windows desktop for mobile computing. The USB drive can store user preferences, profiles and settings. You can plug the thumb drive into another person's PC or laptop and use it as if it were your own. Your e-mail program and browser, for example, can run from the USB stick on any Windows PC with all your messages and bookmarks and settings intact. It will appear as if the programs were installed on the local PC, when they're actually on the USB drive. All cached data is stored on the USB drive, leaving no evidence of its use on the host computer.

Some USB drives have recently developed the capability to run sophisticated applications, replicate e-mail and transfer desktop and laptop settings, directly from the USB stick in conjunction with any Windows PC. Companies are developing “thin” applications, such as Open Office for office productivity, Skype for VoIP, Trillian for instant messaging and Mozilla's Firefox Internet browser that are developed specifically to run on a thumb drive.


Portable Storage - The lighter Side

The portable USB flash memory comes in handy when it’s time to have fun.
As the fastest growing replacement for the floppy disk, USB flash memory drives are one of the few areas of technology that have a pronounced sense of humor.

Thumb drives come dressed in the costume of rubber duckies, spaghetti, tiki idols, mahjong tiles, sushi, as well as more practical items such as pens, laser pointers, wrist watches and spy cameras.

Thumbs drives are a new tool added to the famous Swiss Army knife and others that come in damage resistant, waterproof, leather and aluminum cases. Thumb drives have been dressed up as accessories like key chains, charm bracelets, and necklaces.

Thumb drives are currently priced from low-end 1gB models selling for $9 all the way up to $4000 for an 128GB model. The favorites seem to be the 1GB and 2GB models, but at the rates prices are falling, it’s easy to buy 16gB or 32gB for less than $100.

When it comes to portable storage, the flash drive is king so why not make it fun?


USB Drives – Gifts Worth Giving

Promotional flash drives are an easy way for businesses to build recognition and goodwill among their customers. A free USB drive is a win-win situation for everyone. USB drives are small portable convenient and useful to almost anyone. USB drives are attractive and convey a positive message about your product or services. And a fortune doesn’t have to be spent on flash drives to provide your clients with a valuable gift. Don't give away swag that cheapens your brand. You don't want anything that's flimsy or fragile, that's not the image you want to show your clients.

Companies sink billions into branded freebies, but many businesses fail to creatively think and design their marketing efforts, with the result that most swag ends up in the dumpster. Don’t waste promotional dollars on a throwaway item that won’t be used or remembered. Your clients remember your name every time they plug in their USB flash drive.

USB flash drives make a great portable billboard. Your logo will fit onto almost any storage flash drive. But avoid the temptation of making it too big, if you want to catch someone's eye, go for a smaller logo set against a bright background.

Flash drives are functional. Steer clear of cute but useless toys or gizmos that beg the question "What is that?"

Thumb drives are small. Give clients freebies that can be easily slipped into luggage and won't set off airport metal detectors. Consider your typical customer and think about the benefits a thumb drive provides your end user. Don’t get hung up on purchasing promotional items that look good without considering how your client will use it.

Be environmentally and customer friendly about packaging. If you use a velvet box or a snakeskin case to present a cheap-looking pen, expect eye-rolling. And with todays focus on operating a green business, look for items packaged in recycled materials. USB flash drives are environmentally friendly products in two ways - having a small form factor, using very little plastic and USB flash requires very little or no packaging.

Even if people don't need a USB drive, they'll often pass it along to a colleague or family member. Either way, you name is out there.


Portable Storage – Flash Drives Replacing the CD

Portable Storage or USB flash drives are replacing floppy disks, CD’s and zip disks as the preferred method of small portable storage among computer professionals and casual users alike. Portable storage is a convenient and fast way to backup and transfer information. Flash drives allow documents, applications, music or videos to be conveniently stored and transported in a form factor that fits easily in the palm of your hand or in your pocket. A flash drive can be easily imprinted with a logo to become a portable bill board for your company.

Flash drives have a long but limited lifespan based on how many reads and writes are made to the flash drive. But by sticking with a trusted name you can be confident that the data in memory has 10 year data retention. Be wary of flash drives that are sold under unfamiliar names, the cheaper quality drives can become corrupt in months or days. Stick with a name that has lots of favorable reviews.

With a limited budget, many companies previously used CDs as the preferred method of distributing marketing materials or presentations to customers. Now with flash drives, companies realize that even if they don't distribute as many copies, the value of the logo flash drive out weights using CD’s since many won’t keep CDs. Flash drives however, people will keep, actually use, and it just happens to have your advertisement on it.

The portable storage USB flash drive is a great tool that will be constantly used by clients and employees, making logo flash drives a perfect platform for promotions and brand building.

Logo Flash Drives

Imprinting your business logo on a logo flash drive is a smart way to keep your name in front of your customers. USB custom logo flash drives are a convenient and practical gift for anyone who handles a great deal of data and needs a convenient way to transport it between computers, and today that means just about everyone. A flash drive is a technology gadget every man, woman, and kid uses and always needs one more of. Unlike logo pens, business cards, paperweights or cheap chip clips, a logo flash drive doesn’t get put in a drawer or thrown away. Clients and customers will daily use their corporate logo flash drive to back up files or move files between home and work and your logo will be right in front of them several times a day. A logo flash drive is lightweight and compact enough to fit in a shirt pocket or tiny purse.

When purchasing a quantity of logo flash drives for your business, be sure you understand the pricing options.

Some pricing is quoted per logo flash drive order or job and is based on:
Quantity, number of imprint colors, imprint locations, and delivery time.
Minimum flash drive order is the minimum quantity which can be imprinted.
Prices for flash drives typically include a one color / one location imprint.
Prices on custom logo flash drives are subject to change without notice.

Remember floppy disks, those days are long gone and many new pc’s don’t even have a floppy drive. And with the file sizes today, a floppy disk is virtually useless compared to a flash drive.

Keep up to date with technology logo gifts that will actually be used by your clients. Logos can be imprinted on almost anything, but how much money has been wasted on your logo gift if is tossed in a box or worse, thrown away. Give any client a custom logo flash drive and watch their eyes light up. Your clients are using usb flash drives every day, if they are using a corporate logo memory stick, shouldn't that flash drive have your business logo on it?

Made to order logo flash drives don’t have to drain your budget. Giving employees or customers a logo jump drive will make their day. Your customers win and you win – they get a gift that is practical and has value and your customers get a daily reminder of your business name. A flash drive has value to the user and anyone who forgets a custom flash drive is going to go back searching for it. Don’t waste your advertising budget on gimmicks that are dated and boring. Your very own corporate logo flash drive can be had at a ridiculously low price.

Flash Drives Replacing the CD


Flash Drives - How to Buy a Flash Drive

Flash Drives – How to Get the Most Thumb Drive for Your Dollar

Called thumb drives, USB drive, flash drives, memory sticks, external hard drives, flash USB, or flash memory, they are all common terms for a 2 ½ inch stick of memory that plugs into a USB port on a pc or laptop. Getting the most flash drive for your buck is easy by following these quick how to buy a flash drive tips.

Decide how you’re going to use the flash drive. You can buy a thumb drive or flash drive for smaller storage space or an external hard disk for larger space. Flash drive capacity start at 128Mb and are as large as 64Gb. 64Gb! That’s as large as some of the hard drives on pc’s! Note that flash drives are easier to carry as compared to external hard drives. Flash drives don’t require external power supplies.

Document, picture and video transport and storage are the most common use of flash drives. Network administrators and pc techs love flash drives as they can be loaded with configuration information and software used for system maintenance, troubleshooting, and recovery.

Flash drives are the Swiss army knife in the PC repair field as a means to transfer recovery and antivirus software to infected PCs, while allowing a portion of the host machine's data to be archived in case of emergency. Thumb drives have replaced the need to carry a number of CD ROMs and installers which were needed when reinstalling or updating a system.

Flash drives can run “portable” applications that run on the host computer without requiring installation. These portable standalone applications don’t leave “foot prints” in your pc that can be used to track web surfing and document changes.

Most current PC firmware permits booting from a USB drive, allowing the launch of an operating system from a bootable flash drive.

Digital audio files can be stored and transported from one computer to another like any other document, and played on a compatible media player (with exceptions for files with security encoding). Increasingly home DVD and car stereos have USB ports available allowing file playback directly off the flash drive.

The availability of inexpensive flash drives has enabled them to be used for promotional and marketing purposes, particularly within technical and computer-industry circles. These logo memory stick drives are given away for free, sold at below wholesale price, or as a bonus with purchase of another product. The logo memory sticks have the company's logo, as a form of advertising to increase mind share and brand awareness. Sometimes, the drive is simply an ordinary blank drive for the customer's use, and simple advertising is the only purpose. Alternatively, the logo memory stick's memory is preloaded with graphics, documentation, web links, flash animation or other multimedia, and even free or demonstration software.

Data backup is becoming a common use for USB flash drives. Data is transferred to the flash drive at the end of the day and take offsite. It is relatively simple for the end-user and increases the likelihood that backups will be performed regularly (one of the most common reasons for a failure to backup is the complexity of the process). Because the drive is small, it is easy to carry offsite. Flash drives are very robust and reliable, compared to other tape and optical backup media. Large drives often permits backup of several images on a single flash drive. The use of flash drives as a backup solution is often far cheaper than alternatives, which may require additional hardware or recurring media costs.

For simple file storage and transport (docs, spreadsheets, text files) anything around 1Gb to 2Gb should suffice. For larger files (movies, video clips, applications) an 8Gb or 16Gb flash drive is the way to go. Bigger is always better. Currently, 64Gb is the biggest thumb/pen/flash drive capacity available.

Check out the physical dimensions of the thumb drive. Thumb drives come in a variety of cool shapes, but make them impractical for plugging into some pc’s and laptops. I stick to the rectangular shape, I want function over style. I was given a 64Gb pen drive that is oval shaped, runs fine, but it covers all 4 USB ports on the front of my pc! It would be impossible to use this pen drive on a laptop if I wanted to plug in an external keyboard and mouse.

Learn the features of the USB drive before buying. Does it have built in software for encryption or portable applications? Secure storage of data, application and software files is a common feature on better flash drives.

Once you have an idea of the storage capacity you want in a thumb drive, visit online stores such as, and, read the reviews on different thumb drives to find the most reliable and functional USB drives. Pay close attention to the number of bad reviews vs. good reviews on the thumb drive. Corsair, Sandisk, Transcend, Memorex, Verbatim, LG, Sony, Lexar and Iomega are some of the reliable brands that offer a variety of USB drives.

Decide how much $ per Gb to budget for purchasing the USB drive. Prices vary according to manufacturer, thumb drive capacity, and flash drive features. Prices on thumb drives tend to be exponential as the flash drive capacity increases. The 64Gb is the most expensive thumb drive, being the newest development in storage capacity.

Don’t buy a USB drive in a retail store. After comparing prices (retail vs. online), you’ll get more Gb per dollar even after adding in shipping.

USB flash drives are a cheap alternative for file storage. Flash drives enclosures are nearly impervious to the scratches and dust that were problematic for compact discs, ZIP disks, and floppy disks, and the solid-state design means they often survive accidents like a trip through the washing machine. Flash drives are ideal for transporting personal data or work files from one location to another. USB support is on all modern computers means that flash drive files can be accessed almost anywhere. Flash drives are also a relatively dense form of storage, where even the smallest (128Mb) will store dozens of floppy disks worth of data. Many can hold more data than a CD (700MB) or a DVD (4.5GB) and flash drives with 64 GB are becoming common. The power consumption of a flash drive is very low as compared to the portable hard disk, which requires external power. Flash drives have no moving parts, offering greater portability. Flash drives implement the USB mass storage device class, meaning that most modern operating systems can read and write to flash drives without installing any extra software. Some flash drives can retain their memory after being submerged in water. Letting the flash drive out to dry completely is the key to recovering your flash drive data. Flash drives have been cooked, run over, frozen and shot out of cannons just to prove the data on the flash drive could be recovered even after the flash drive housing was damaged.

Flash drives have a limited life span only having a number of write and erase cycles before failure. Under normal conditions thumb drives will have several hundred thousand cycles, although write operations will gradually slow as the device ages. Consider this before using a flash drive to run applications or an operating system. Several companies have developed software to optimize use on a flash drive. Portable applications such as Firefox and certain Linux operating systems minimize read/writes to flash memory buy using the pc’s RAM for temporary storage. Most USB flash drives do not include a write-protect mechanism, although some have a switch on the housing of the drive itself to keep the host computer from writing or modifying data on the drive. Write-protection makes a flash device suitable for repairing virus-contaminated host computers without risk of infecting the USB flash drive itself.

In the past, compared to other portable storage, particularly external hard drives, USB flash drives have had a high price per unit of storage and are only available in comparatively small capacities; but in the smaller capacities (4Gig and less), USB flash drives are much less expensive per unit of storage than the hard drives they have replaced. At the speed technology is developing and prices dropping, flash drives seem to be the future replacement for the mechanical internal hard drive.

logo flash drives

Privacy Policy


I have respect your privacy and as outlined in this policy, I am committed to safeguarding your privacy while online at this site Flash Drive Report. The following discusses how I obtain and disseminate information for this Blog.

Log Files and Stats

As with most blogging platforms I employ log files, in this case Statcounter. This retrieves information such as internet protocol (IP) addresses, browser type, internet service provider (ISP), referring, exit and visited pages, platform used, date/time stamp, track user’s movement in the whole, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses, etc. do not gather and are not linked to your personally identifiable information.


A cookie is a piece of data stored on the user’s computer tied to information about the user. This blog doesn't use cookies. However, some of my business partners may use cookies on this site (example: advertisers). I don't have access or control over these cookies once the advertisers have set them.


This Blog contains links to other sites. Please be aware that I have no control and am not responsible for the privacy practices of these other websites. I suggest my vistiors to be aware of this when they exit this blog and to examine the privacy statements of each and every site that collects personally identifiable information. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this site.

Contact Information

For any questions or comments please contact us at flashdrivereport(at)gmail(dot)com

Privacy Policy Updated 28th February 2009.

Flash Drives