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Back up your data - Solid State Storage
Solid State Storage

A solid-state drive (SSD) is a data storage device that uses solid-state memory to store persistent data.

There are a wide variety of devices which fall into the SSD category including USB flash drives, thumb drives, Secure Digital cards, Memory Sticks, SmartMedia, and CompactFlash.

The most common use of flash drives is to transport and store personal files such as documents and multimedia. The vast majority of PCs support USB drives. Flash capacities are continuing to increase, with the current maximum capacity now at a lofty 256GB. However, 256GB sticks are very expensive, and only offer write speeds of approximately 10 MB/s, so are relatively slow, which is important to bear in mind when backing up large amounts of data. 16GB and 32GB drives are much more price competitive and have sufficient capacity to make an effective backup of personal files. The size of most modern PC hard disks precludes using solid state storage as a complete system backup solution. However, some flash drives are often used for small business turnkey solutions (such as point-of-sale systems).

In summary, USB flash drives can provide a simple, reliable, and portable storage. They are very robust mechnically as they have no moving parts. This minimises the risk of damage to the drive, although the circuit board and connector can break if the drives are mis-treated. Some drives do not even lose their data being immersed in water, although we would not recommend such treatment.

Besides the relatively small storage capacity and high price per GB, other disadvantages of the medium is that they are not suitable for archiving purposes given that the majority of flash drives do not have a write-protect mechanism. Furthermore the downside of being so portable is the risk of USB flash drives being stolen or lost.

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1. Introduction - Optical Discs (first page)
2. External Hard Disks
3. Network Storage
4. Online Backup Services
5. Tape Drives
6. Solid State Storage (current page)

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Last Updated Sunday, December 13 2009 @ 10:10 AM EST

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