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How do most flash drives work?

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Quick Answer

A flash drive transfers data from a computer to a storage device via a USB port. A flash drive stores data on a small piece of silicon that has billions of tiny transistors. Each tiny transistor has the ability to store single bits of binary digital information.

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How do most flash drives work?
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Full Answer

Flash drives are small, highly portable devices. A flash drive has a protective casing and USB connector that protrudes from the device. The USB connector is inserted into a computer to store and transfer data. Flash drives do not require a power source and they communicate with computers via a standard USB 2.0 interface. A computer's operating system has the ability to detect the flash drive and install any required drivers. After the flash drive is detected, the device can be used for storing and transferring data.

These devices have a large memory capacity that exceeds the memory of outdated devices such as floppy disks and CDs. The flash memory on this device is non-volatile, which means the memory can be electrically reprogrammed or erased. Flash drives are considered plug-and-play devices, which makes them easy to use. Transferring data is effortless as a result of the computer detecting the device as if it were a standard hard drive. A flash drive consumes very low amounts of power, while providing increased storage capacity, speed and portability.

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