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Storage devices, what are your best options?

In the past decade, we have witnessed a rapid evolution of computer related information storage.It used to be floppy disk that everything was stored on, remember?Now a lot of computers don't even have a disk drive for the floppies and hopefully you have saved the information from your floppies on some other device.Then there was a big move to compact disks, or CDs, which held more information than floppies.Now, most computers allow you can store information on DVDs, which hold tons of information.However, the cutting edge method of storing information now, is by using removable storage devices.There are a number of different types of removable storage, some better than others.

Memory cards-if you have a digital camera you will be familiar with memory cards.These are the flat, removable, pieces that act as "film" in your camera.You might take your memory card to the kiosk at the mall and pick the pictures that you want to have developed.You also might have a port on your computer that you can put the memory card in. If you do have such a port, you will be able to save your pictures directly onto your computer.If you don't have a port and you want to be able to save a digital copy of your pictures you can get an adapter.The adaptor plugs into the computer's USB port on one side and accepts the memory card on the other.This is a decent way to handle your pictures but it isn't the greatest way to store other types of information.

Removable hard drives-a removable hard drive is a big (really big) storage device.These devices are mainly used for data backup and they are so big that they can be used to backup entire computers.It is a good idea to use a removable hard drive and periodically backup everything on your computer.Computers do occasionally melt down, usually because of viruses or electrical problem.If your computer melts down there will be no way to salvage any of the data that was on it.All of your documents, music, and pictures will be gone unless they are backed up somewhere.

Today's removable hard drives have massive storage capacity and the prices aren't that outrageous.You can buy 80 GB of storage for less than $200.80 GB is enough to backup your whole computer and $200 is not a lot to spend for the safety of your files.While the removable hard drives are a great way to backup data, they are a little too cumbersome for data transfers and mobile storage.

Memory sticks-memory sticks, sometimes called thumb drives or flash drives, are probably the best option for data transfer and mobile storage.Flash drives plug into the USB ports that are available on almost any computer.They are about finger sized and you might see them attached to key chains, or worn around necks.These little memory sticks plug into the USB port and immediate offer to open the files stored on the drive.You can easily access any of the files and click and drag the files onto any computer.Placing files on the memory sticks is just as easy.Y canjust click and drag the file onto the memory stick or you can click "save as" from the menu bar and save to the "removable storage device".

Besides being small and convenient, these memory sticks are durable.Mine has suffered through a couple of years of abuse (it goes skiing a lot, sits in my truck during the summer, and was once ripped from the computer by a clumsy dog) and works just as well as the day I bought it.

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