Read these 13 PC Storage Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about PC tips and hundreds of other topics.
Different types of removable storage pop up all the time. In a year there will probably be a new one. One of the forms of storage that has been around for a little while now, but not many people seem to know about, is Internet Storage Servers.
These are dedicated servers online where you can store all the data you would normally have on your hard drive and back up on an external drive or in discs. With this option you do not have to worry about your hard drives crashing and losing all your data. If there was a fire and your computer and external hard drive were destroyed, having it backed up on that external would not do much for you.
Internet Storage Servers charge a fee based on the amount of storage space you require. Some servers charge as little as $5 or $10 per year for unlimited storage. Some people are hesitant to have their personal information stored on a server out on the Internet where someone else can try to access it. Internet Storage Servers allow you to encrypt your information and secure it in various ways, promising that only you can access your data. So if you are comfortable with that, these servers would be a viable option for removable storage.
Flash memory is a type of removable storage used by several handheld electronic devices such as cell phones, digital cameras, mp3 players, voice recorders and more. It is a solid state electronic storage device, similar to the type of solid state drives showing up in some new lines of laptops like the Sony VAIO TZ Series.
Flash memory removable storage has become so widespread that most computers today come with ports for connecting the various forms this media takes. Among the types of storage devices are Memory Stick Pro Duo, Smart Media, Compact Flash and SD Card.
All of these formats, which are used in a multitude of electronic devices, interface with computers for data transfer and storage. Most computers have ports for some, but not all of these formats. This has led to the development of card readers, devices that connect to your computer through the USB port and can read each of the various formats and provide the interface between them and the computer. Using a card reader, you can access any of these removable storage types on your computer.
Don't want to spend the bucks to boost your computer storage memory? There are some cheaper external alternatives. Though, it depends on what type of drives your computer features. For little money you can use floppy disks for storage. Though, these disks are usually just good for word files since they don't have much space. If you are looking to save larger files (and your computer has the drives) you can use CDs, zip disks and even DVDs.
CDs are one of the more cheaper Removable Storage options. From pictures to programs the possibilities are endless. If your computer doesn't have the capability to record on CDs, external devices are available. The best external burners like the Panasonic SW-9581 offer options like recording DVDs as well as CDs. Also make sure that the drive you purchase comes with the right cables and software so it can sync up to your computer with little effort. As with any electronic device it's always a good idea to purchase a warranty just in case trouble should arise.
Not everything you use with your computer needs to be permanently part of its system. A Removable Storage device is one such thing. They are any type of drives for that can be removed and stored elsewhere. They can run anything from CDs, DVDs to all kinds of disks. These devices make transferring data from computer to computer a breeze. Not to mention they are much easier to upgrade than their permanent computer counterparts.
External Zip Drives like the Iomega Zip 100MB USB External Drive can offer big help for those big projects. This Removable Storage can easily attach to any PC. Their disks also feature large memory space making it perfect for storage of large image files, power point presentations, spreadsheets and any other gargantuan-size file a computer can spit out. One major advantage they hold over CDs is their durability. They are much more resistant to scratches and clumsy drops. Zip drives and disks are also much faster when it comes to saving & accessing files.
Other than CD or DVD burners, ZIP drives or Jump drives, removable hard drives are quickly gaining in popularity with computer users. There are number of reasons why someone would choose a removable hard drive. These drives are easy to install and remove while can you the opportunity to store large amounts of information on a single drive. Many people who use removable hard drives do so because of their ability let you remove the drive and store it someone place else. This is especially handy for critical or sensitive information. Also removable hard drives can be purchased either as an internal or external unit.
One of the most popular forms of Removable Storage is called the flash or Jumpdrive. These mini storage devices like the Lexar 128MB Jumpdrive connect to the computer through a USB port. It then creates a temporary space on your desktop where you can store or retrieve items. Its memory capacity can range from megabytes to gigabytes. Portability, is probably its biggest feature. Since the device is so small it can be attached to a keychain. Popped in a pocket. Even double as a pen. Yet, still hold hundreds of files.
Whatever removable storage device you go with make sure your computer has the ability to accept them. The easiest way to be certain is if your computer comes with USB or FireWire ports. Also, while these external devices offer extra storage capabilities remember they tend not to run as fast as internal devices. Plus, on average most external devices do cost more. However, on the plus side, they do cost considerably less than buying an extra computer.
Walk down the street and you will probably see 10 people at any given time listening to mp3 players or iPods. While marketing for iPods may be focused on listening to music and looking cool, there is another way of using these devices that is taking this generation by silent storm.
With storage capacities of 30 and 40GB or more, these portable music players can also be used as removable storage devices for computer data. People who own iPods tend to carry it around with them a lot. Who says they have to hold music, though? So now they do not just have music at their fingertips. They could carry around an entire computer hard drive with them.
Think about it. Everywhere you go you could have a copy of your resume, banking records, homework or files from your job, medical records, all in the palm of your hand and available to you at a second's notice. Grab a USB cable and jump on the nearest computer and you are in business.
Mp3 players and iPods are the new removable storage drives for all types of data, and most people do not even know it ... yet.
If you are running any version of Microsoft Windows Vista on your computer, then you have the option of using ReadyBoost. ReadyBoost is a new concept in which you can use a USB flash drive or flash memory stick to improve your system performance without actually adding anything to the inside of the computer.
The USB Flash drive or memory stick will serve as additional cache memory. This is memory that the computer can access much faster than data stored on a hard disk drive. This can be done to facilitate more multi-tasking, or even to make a video game run a little bit smoother. It will not be a night and day difference, but you should notice a boost in your system's performance while doing this.
It is recommended to use a ReadyBoost device that is equal to the amount of RAM you have onboard. So if you have 2GB of RAM, you will want to get a 2GB flash drive or memory stick for the best performance boost possible.
There are three main categories of removable storage. Zip, tape and floppy disk drives are all examples of magnetic removable storage. CDs and DVDs are examples of optical removable storage, while flash memory (memory cards) is known as solid state removable storage.
Each of these formats are still used today as storage drives for a number of purposes. Some of those purposes include backing up sensitive data, transferring data between two computers, storing information that you do not need to regularly access, or securing information you do not wish others to have access to.
Floppy and zip disks can record data instantly and be erased and reused many times, but zip disks will have a higher storage capacity. CD and DVD will have even higher capacity, while flash memory has the highest capacity and is the fastest.
These computer storage methods have been around for several years. Though external hard drives and USB flash drives are more common now than the above methods, they are still available and in use today.
Even though they might not be the latest technology available for removable storage, tape drives still provide a reliable method for storing large amounts of information. They are often used in business and finance areas in which a backup of servers are needed to be completed frequently.
Therefore, tape drives should not be overlooked as removable storage because they are old. The reliability of this from of removable storage allows them to be stored safely, and accessed if information is lost.