A Tutorial on the Use of Flash Drivesby Michael Butler
Flash drives, sometimes called thumb drives or USB drives, offer more storage capacity than other types of portable drives, such as DVD-Roms and SD Cards. Flash drives are compatible with multiple operating systems, and you can use them to transfer files between Windows and Mac computers. You can also back up your important documents on flash drives.
Insert a flash drive into a USB port on your computer. If this is the first time you have used the flash drive, the drive will take a few moments to install the proper hardware onto your computer.
Click "Open Folder to View Files" in the Windows "Autorun" menu. The folder that opens displays the current contents of the flash drive.
Drag and drop files or folders from other locations on your computer into the flash drive folder window to copy them to the drive. You can also choose to save files directly to the flash drive from the "Save" dialog in any program by navigating to the drive and clicking "Save."
Close the flash drive folder window when you finish with it. You can open it again later by clicking the Windows "Start" button, clicking "My Computer" and double-clicking the flash drive icon.
Click the "Safely Remove Hardware" icon in the Windows task bar.
Click on the name of the flash drive. When prompted that it is safe to remove the drive, pull the drive out of the USB port on your computer.
- Jeffrey Hamilton/Digital Vision/Getty Images