If you’re a student or working professional, then most probably you’re using a USB flash drive. Also known as a pen drive, a USB flash drive provides an efficient way of storing and transferring files between devices. Due to their compact size and ample storage capacity, flash drives have become users’ favorite. This storage device is great for moving data but not the best choice for backing up data. Flash drives aren’t the ideal option for keeping a backup of critical data because they’re vulnerable to damage.
With USB flash drives, there’s a high risk of losing data when your flash drive gets broken or become inoperative, which is why you may need thephotostick backup device. Apart from physical damage, all flash drives eventually fail because their internal memory chips work only for a finite number of times. However, most flash drives fail for reasons other than reaching the maximum number of read and write because reaching the maximum limit rarely happens. This means that before the memory fails from overuse, there are more chances of any of the drive’s components getting damaged.
How do Flash Drives fail?
Unlike HDDs, flash media has no moving parts. Flash drives have a plastic or rubber casing with printed circuit boards inside. These drives can be connected to computers and laptops via USB ports. These drives offer fast speed and large capacity compared to other portable media. However, just like all forms of digital storage, USB drives may also get damaged and cause data loss. Below we’ve mentioned the most common reasons for USB flash drive failure. Understanding the causes of external flash drive failure may help you in taking preventative care of your flash drive, to prevent data loss.
USB Connector Gets Damaged
Your computer always suggests you to properly eject or unmount a USB flash drive before removal to prevent it from potential damage. If removed abruptly, the USB connector of the drive may break out from the flash circuit board. The USB drives connect externally to computers and laptops which makes them prone to accidents that can bend or break the connector. If you try to plug the drive with a broken connector then you could destroy the drive and all of the data on it. So, make sure to properly fix the connector at the same position before trying to use it again.
Flash Drive Component Failure
All data storage devices, including flash drives, consist of internal components that may fail due to factors like a power surge or short circuit. When flash drive components like microcontrollers, resistors, and capacitors get damaged, only a professional like a WD data recovery specialist might have the expertise and spare parts to repair the USB flash drive and retrieve the lost data. The controller wafer that resides on the PCB is most likely to fail.
NAND Memory Failure
The life expectancy of any decent USB Flash Drive is typically more than one hundred thousand-rated reads and writes. This means that your drive can last for several years, possibly a decade before it reaches its memory’s maximum read and write potential. If in a rare case your USB drive is not physically damaged or logically corrupted then the drive will eventually go bad if it is written to and read from enough times. However, there are high chances of its internal components getting failed before reaching NAND memory reaches max read and write limit.