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USB Flash Drives

Dominican no longer supports floppy drives. USB Flash Drives are the supported method for transferring and storing data on Dominican-provided computers.

 

Table of Contents

 

usb drive
A Sample USB Drive


Floppy disks were invented in 1971 (http://inventors.about.com/library/weekly/aa110198.htm) and Dominican no longer recommends their use or supports technical problems when using them.  Due to their mechanical nature, floppy disks are prone to failure, and in turn, prone to losing data.  If you want to avoid losing your term paper the day before it is due, Dominican STRONGLY recommends that you no longer use Floppy Disks.  If you use a floppy disk and have a problem, we cannot help you.


USB Drives are simple, non-mechanical devices that work on both Windows and Macintosh computers so you can transfer files between both Macs and PCs.  Simply insert a USB drive into a USB port on the computer and the USB Drive will appear as a removable disk drive on the computer.  They are supported on all public machines, although some flash drives require a user to install drivers before use. Flash drives can hold any type of data, including excel, jpeg, video, and text files. Flash drives are also commonly referred to as key drive, thumb drives, jump drives, USB drives and pen drives.

Flash drives are meant as a way to get files to and from multiple computers. They are NOT a good method for doing backups because they are easily lost. We strongly encourage users to backup files to CD-RW or CD-R disks, zip disks, or simply e-mail your files to yourself.

Please note that not all flash drives are the same. Some may require extra drivers to be installed on a computer in order for them to function properly. Public computers do not allow drivers to be installed. Therefore, not all flash drives will be compatible with public computers, but over 99% of them are. If you purchase on of our 'supported' USB drives, they will work perfectly.

WE STRONGLY RECOMMEND getting USB drives that are backwards compatible with USB 1.1.  USB 2.0 is faster, but do not work on older computers.

Flash drives come with varying amounts of memory. You may purchase a flash drive that is approximately the size of a zip disk, or 256MB. Also, you have the option of purchasing a few 32MB drives instead of a single 256MB drive.


We've found that you MUST have a USB drive that is backwards compatible with USB 1.1.  The one manufacturer that seems to have the product that works most reliably is from Silicon Mt. Memory.

  • Silicon Mountain Memory - http://www.smmdirect.com/ .  (Click on the link to USB drives)  These drives are USB 1.1 compatible and seem to work everywhere we've tried them.

After Silicon Mountain Memory :

  • The Dominican Bookstore sells USB Drives.
  • Some of the most popular brand name drives, are Lexar, Sandisk, Kingston, Dell and Iomega.
  • All of these products can be purchased online at places like:

    1. Open My Computer and see which drives are shown. Most computers, for example, have a hard disk such as a C: drive and a few removable storage devices such as a floppy drive, a CD-ROM drive, and perhaps a zip drive.
    2. Insert the flash drive into the USB port and watch to see where the USB flash drive appears. Most will appear as removable storage, but some will instead appear as hard drives. Note the name Windows is using to refer to the flash drive ("Removable Disk (G:)," for example).
    3. Open My Documents or the location from which you want to transfer files to the flash drive. Select the files or folders you want to save to the flash drive by left-clicking on them. To select more than one, hold down the CTRL key while you click and select all of the files you wish to save.
    4. Right-click on the file(s) or folder(s) you selected, then select Send to, then select the name you saw appearing in My Computer for the flash drive ("Removable Disk (G:)," for example).
    5. When the copying is finished, do not immediately remove the flash drive from the USB port. Instead, left-click on the Remove Hardware icon  located in the System Tray. A window containing a list of the USB devices will appear. Left-click on the Safely Remove Mass Storage Device line that matches your flash drive (for example, Safely Remove Mass Storage Device - Drive(G:)). windows toolbar 1





    6. When you see the following message appear in the bottom left toolbar, it is, as it says, safe to remove the flash drive from the USB port; you may close the message or ignore it, as it will close itself automatically:windows ok 1






       

    1. Open My Computer and see which drives are shown. Most computers, for example, have a hard disk such as a C: drive and a few removable storage devices such as a floppy drive, a CD-ROM drive, and perhaps a zip drive.
    2. Insert the flash drive into the USB port and watch to see where the USB flash drive appears. Most will appear as removable storage, but some will instead appear as hard drives. Note the name Windows is using to refer to the flash drive ("Removable Disk (G:)," for example).
    3. Double-click on the flash drive to locate the file(s) or folder(s) you want to copy to this computer. Select the files or folders you want to copy by left-clicking on them. To select more than one, hold down the CTRL key while you click and select all of the files or folders you wish to copy.
    4. Right-click on the files or folders you have selected and choose Copy.
    5. Open My Documents or the location to which you want to transfer files from the flash drive.
    6. Click on the Edit menu, then select Paste.
    7. When the copying is finished, do not immediately remove the flash drive from the USB port. Instead, left-click on the Remove Hardware icon located in the System Tray. A window containing a list of the USB devices will appear. Left-click on the Safely Remove Mass Storage Device line that matches your flash drive (for example, Safely Remove Mass Storage Device - Drive(G:)). windows toolbar 2




       
    8. When you see the following message appear in the bottom left toolbar, it is, as it says, safe to remove the flash drive from the USB port; you may close the message or ignore it, as it will close itself automatically:windows ok 2




       


    1. Insert the flash drive into the USB port.
    2. A white USB drive icon will appear on the desktop:mac1


       
       




    3. Find the files or folders you want to copy to the flash drive. Select the files or folders you want to save to the flash drive by clicking on them. To select more than one, hold down the APPLE key while you click and select all of the files and folders you wish to save.
    4. Drag and drop the selected files/folders to the white USB flash drive icon.
    5. When you have finished copying, do not immediately remove the flash drive from the USB port. Instead, drag the white USB drive icon to the Trash Can, located on the Dock. Note: the Trash Can will change to the Eject Icon.
    6. The white USB drive icon will no longer be visible on your desktop. It is now safe to remove the flash drive from the USB port.

    1. Insert the flash drive into the USB port.
    2. A white USB drive icon will appear on the desktop:
      mac2

       
    3. Double-click on the white USB drive icon to see the files and folders currently stored on the drive.
    4. Open the folder where you would like to copy the files or folders from the Flash Drive.
    5. Back at the USB flash drive folder, select the files or folders you want to copy from the flash drive by clicking on them. To select more than one, hold down the APPLE key while you click and select all of the files and folders you wish to save.
    6. Drag and drop the selected files/folders to the folder on the computer where you would like them to be copied.
    7. When you have finished copying, do not immediately remove the flash drive from the USB port. Instead, drag the white USB drive icon to the Trash Can, located on the Dock. Note: the Trash Can will change to the Eject Icon.
    8. The white USB drive icon will no longer be visible on your desktop. It is now safe to remove the flash drive from the USB port

    • Some USB flash drives may require a driver; these models will not work in our public lab computers.
    • You should be able to take a USB flash drive back and forth between Macintosh and Windows computers; however, not all files are compatible with both platforms.

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