With the progression of cloud based storage solutions, techies everywhere are starting to develop large stores of USB flash drives. There are many uses for the flash drives you have laying around that will make them more than a drawer filler. Any true power user will find the idea of reusing old technology to be fun and useful. Here is a list of six of the best projects you can do to make use of a USB stick again.
* Portable Operating System – There are several Linux distributions that fit perfectly on a USB flash drive. You can even go as far as installing Windows or OSX if you have sufficient space on your drive. The caveat here is that it makes the stick a one trick pony.
* Lock Your System – We have all seen movie characters lock and unlock machines with USB keys. With a small program called Predator, you can do this as well. The idea is that when the proper USB stick is plugged into the computer, you can work normally. If that thumb drive is not plugged in, however, the machine is in a locked down state.
* Automated File Backup – We all know that file back-up is vital to computing survival. Your most vital files are often small enough to live on a flash drive, and that’s probably a good idea. Microsoft offers a small program called SyncToy that will allow you to automatically back up a set of files to a given USB stick.
* ReadyBoost – Windows has a built in utility that will allow you to speed up your windows instillation. You essentially use the USB stick as an extra bit of RAM. Plug in your drive into a Windows computer to see the option.
* Recovery Disk – It is possible for you to create a recovery disk on a USB thumb drive. Instructions are easily found on Google, and you can use a USB thumb drive recovery disk to rebuild an installation of Windows that has suffered from some sort of error.
* Data Encryption – If you have sensitive data that you want to keep on your USB stick, then you can look into using high level encryption on it. If you do it right, it will take so long to crack that doing so will not be worth it to anyone.
It’s a great idea to make use of your old USB drives because you will feel bettter about being more environmentally friendly (rather than just throwing them away) and you will become more efficient with the way you use your technical resources. This will make you think about recycling other goods and saving yourself some money.
As you can see, there are several more advanced uses for your unused flash drives. The full instructions for each of these six projects are easy to obtain from any search engine. The hardest part is choosing which to do first on the list.
Molly works in marketing and researches all the best products to send out to people that will be memorable and useful. She visits Fluid Branding’s promotional product range for innovative ideas.