Windows 7 Forums

Welcome to Windows 7 Forums. Our forum is dedicated to helping you find support and solutions for any problems regarding your Windows 7 PC be it Dell, HP, Acer, Asus or a custom build. We also provide an extensive Windows 7 tutorial section that covers a wide range of tips and tricks.


Windows 7: Are flash drives reliable for storing photos and documents?

06 May 2016   #11
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit
 
 

The worst thing about flash drives in my experience is the construction of the case and connector.

They are just glued together. The casing can just come apart in your hands. Leaving aside the memory cells inside, they are just too flimsy to be taken very seriously---but I do use them casually.

Alphaniner--thanks for the link to that Windows checksumming tool. I'm going to have to get serious with that. Checksummer's latest version is 10 years old yesterday---do you know if it is fully compatible with 64-bit Win 7, 8, and 10?

I've got close to 100,000 data files of one type or another. I'd guess 90% of them have not been accessed in several years other than to copy. The text files haven't been read by my own eyes, most of the pictures haven't been looked at, and probably 3/4 of the mp3s haven't been played.

If 1/10 of 1% of them are in fact bad (unopenable, distorted, corrupted, unplayable), that's 100 bad files.

When I do a "backup", I'd just be backing up 100 bad files from point A to point B---without knowing those 100 files were totally useless.

Is there any way out of that dilemma? I'd guess not, if you don't have known good copies to compare to. And who can say they have personally actually opened and looked at or heard all of their tens of thousands of data files since they were first made over the last 20 plus years?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
06 May 2016   #12
Bernardus

Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bits 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

Never rely on one medium. Any HD will fail in time.
So keep it where you want it, but still burn one or two DVD's in case one crashes.
Flash drives are easily lost or they crash.
Your pictures may be much more valuable then a DVD or Flash drive.
I have lost often information on flash-drives who for unknown reasons wouldn't read any-more.
So I always back them up with Acronis on a seperate HD
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 May 2016   #13
derekimo

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ignatzatsonic View Post
The worst thing about flash drives in my experience is the construction of the case and connector.
I just got one of these,



Nice metal case, small size too, these are both 8GB Data Travelers,

Are flash drives reliable for storing photos and documents?-wp_20160505_23_51_41_pro.jpg

As for the topic of this thread, I've never lost anything on flash drives but I only use them for installers or transferring files, myself.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

06 May 2016   #14
Callender

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

I've lost data on flash drives a few times in the past. Mostly due to being unable to safely eject due to something locking files on the flash drive like a buggy shell extension.

See:

How to Use Safely Remove Hardware to Eject a Device in Windows 7 and Windows 8

Any time you have a problem with "Safely Remove Hardware" option to eject a flash drive - the way to remove it without loosing / corrupting data is to switch off the computer before removing the drive.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 May 2016   #15
Callender

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ignatzatsonic View Post
Alphaniner--thanks for the link to that Windows checksumming tool. I'm going to have to get serious with that. Checksummer's latest version is 10 years old yesterday---do you know if it is fully compatible with 64-bit Win 7, 8, and 10?
You might be interested in DataHealthCheck:

DataHealthCheck Download

Quote:
The first time a folder is scanned it adds all files MD5 and last modification date to a database. For subsequent runs it will rescan the folder and build a list of all the files and if a file previously existed it will compare the current "hash/modification date" with the old "hash/modification date" from the database to determine if the file is unchanged/changed/corrupt. If the file is changed it will add the new MD5 hash to the database and if new files are found their hashes will be added to the database.
So basically you have to scan your files at least once before subsequent scans at a later time will show problems.

For .jpg files I use a certain utility:
Are flash drives reliable for storing photos and documents?-jpg-check.jpg
For corrupt video file detection take a look at the thread here:

Where are the Most Recently Used Lists?

Quote from Post #30 in the above thread:

Quote:
But I tried out Media Preview anyway. And guess what? Besides seemingly working good, it allows Explorer to show thumbnails for .flv files. And I quickly discovered that it doesn't build a thumbnail for a corrupt file! It turns out I had a lot of corrupt .flv files!

And it was a breeze deleting them all, too. I just set Explorer to show medium icons and deleted all that didn't have a preview thumbnail. Boom, done! So it turns out to also be a good tool for finding corrupt files, too.
So if you try it - set Explorer to show video thumbnails and only check those videos where no thumbnail i displayed. It saves having to play them all to test for corruption.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 May 2016   #16
ThrashZone

Win-7-Pro64bit 7-H-Prem-64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Callender View Post
Any time you have a problem with "Safely Remove Hardware" option to eject a flash drive - the way to remove it without loosing / corrupting data is to switch off the computer before removing the drive.
In win-7 shut down is easy
In win-8 and 10 not so much seeing fast start does not shut down the system it only hibernates
I've only had the issue in 8 and 10 with errors reconnecting flash drives or even exterior hard drives becoming or being seen as Raw or getting the well known Must initialize disk before you can use it
Fast Startup - Turn On or Off in Windows 10 - Windows 10 Forums
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 May 2016   #17
MilesAhead

Windows 7 32 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ignatzatsonic View Post
The worst thing about flash drives in my experience is the construction of the case and connector.
That became my main concern. Also just spending money does not always guarantee reliability. My first flash drive was a Sandisk Titanium. All great revues but it turned out the "sliding guts" was not very solid. It died after about a dozen insertions. Fortunately I got a warning with intermittent contact and got my data off.

My preferred drive now as a price/performance/ruggedness standby is AData s102 USB 3.0. The body is corrugated aluminum and the connection seems solid with no moving parts. I bought some AData and Kingston "cheapies" just for copying files on to plug into another machine(a PC on a wired network for cheaper printing as example) but generally my warning would be avoid moving parts. Especially the "sliding guts" design. My first s102 I kept in my pocket and it had to absorb my weight on the body. The little cap on the back end falls off since I am too lazy to super glue it. But it still works fine. Of course I haven't tried dozens of brands because I try to avoid throwing money away. But I do like the s102. It comes in capacities 16GB all the way up to 256GB.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 May 2016   #18
alphaniner

Windows 7 Professional x64, Arch Linux
 
 

@MilesAhead: I have a couple AData s102 Pros, and I definitely agree WRT price and ruggedness. However, write speeds aren't impressive: I barely see any difference if plugged into USB 3 slot vs USB 2 slot. I have the 16GB model, and the advertised speeds of 100MB/s write are based on the 256GB model. What size do you have, and what kind of speeds do you see?

Mine also get quite warm just sitting idle while plugged in, but that could be normal for USB 3 drives for all I know.

Edit: I just found the "datasheet". The 16 and 32GB models are advertised as 25MB/s write.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 May 2016   #19
MrWhoopee

Windows 7 Ultimate x86 and x64
 
 

I have 2 all-metal flash drives which live on my key-ring. The 32 gb Sandisk Cruzer Force is my everyday workhorse, containing my most used tools and utilities for working on client machines. Over the 3 or 4 years I've had it, it has survived multiple reformats, hundreds of improper disconnects and thousands of read/write cycles. It has been absolutely bullet proof. I just bought the 32 gb Samsung USB3, so it hasn't seen much use yet.

One cautionary tale. I had a client who was using a flash drive (Lexar, iirc) for backup and left it plugged in at all times. It died. For so many reasons, remove/disconnect whatever your backup media is when not in use.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 May 2016   #20
Callender

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

Yes I've never had a problem with flash drives loaded with repair tools. Only problems with corrupted personal files.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
Reply

 Are flash drives reliable for storing photos and documents?




Thread Tools




Similar help and support threads
Thread Forum
The most reliable hard drives in 2015, according to Backblaze
Read more: The most reliable hard drives in 2015, according to Backblaze | ZDNet
News
Don't buy flash memory on eBay, it's not reliable
I'll preface by saying that it is not 100% unsafe to buy USB drives or SD cards from eBay- I have bought genuine cards before and there are legit sellers of such products. I bought 2 genuine Micro SD cards about 3 months ago- not only did both pass tests, but I've had each one filled to capacity...
Chillout Room
Storing Files On a Bootable Flash Drive
This is Just a Question. While A Flash Drive is bootable, are you still able to store files on it?
General Discussion
RELIABLE hard drives?? where's the QA
gang I have been reading up on the current crop of new/unused hard drives - the spinning kind - and am bummed to see the high levels of negative feedback on so many of the 'top ranked' hdd's. I have been sorting the rankings by user/owner feedback to find one that first of all has a lot of...
Hardware & Devices
storing scanned documents
Right now all of my scanned document are stored by the month i.e.. February, March, etc. I do not want them stored this way. I just want them accessible without regard to the month. Help!
Software
Windows storing "Documents" folders in wrong place
So I recently upgraded to an SSD, I moved the Location of the Documents folder to my HDD, now when I play games it stores files, where they should normally be in the Documents Folder, in the E:\ drive rather than E:\Documents. My "Document Properties" look like this: ...
General Discussion


Our Sites

Site Links

About Us

Find Us

Windows 7 Forums is an independent web site and has not been authorized, sponsored, or otherwise approved by Microsoft Corporation. "Windows 7" and related materials are trademarks of Microsoft Corp.

Designer Media Ltd

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 18:28.
Twitter Facebook Google+ Seven Forums iOS App Seven Forums Android App