Let’s face it, optical discs are large and bulky. At nearly five inches in diameter, the discs are big when compared to the size of modern laptops and now tablets. Even though the optical drives has been greatly reduced in size, more and more laptops have dropped the technology to conserve on space and power.
If you are not talking about the size of the mobile computer, the space used up by an optical drive can be used for more practical things. That space could be better used for the battery which can extend the overall running time of the system. If the system is designed for performance, it could store a better or bigger solid state drive in addition to a hard drive for added performance. Maybe the computer could use a better graphics solution for graphic design or gaming.
When CD-R drives first came into the market, they offered a huge storage capacity that rivaled traditional magnetic media of the day. After all, 650 megabytes of storage was well beyond what most hard drives were at the time. DVD expanded this capacity even further with 4.7 gigabytes of storage on the recordable formats.
While the growth rate of optical media was good, it is nowhere near the exponential growth that hard drives and USB sticks have seen. Optical storage is still stuck in the gigabytes while most hard drives are pushing even more terabytes. Using the CD, DVD and Blu-ray for storing data is just not worth it anymore. The write time is too slow and the seek time to find your data is equally as slow. The hard drive and it’s portable version, USB flash drive have found the main stream masses.
Keeping these points in mind, you can see why optical media is all but dead. Sure, the CD-R and DVD-R will last another year, probably another five, but it’s USB and hard drives which have taken over. The next step in the logical progression, is how to data load USB media? With optical media you had CD and DVD tower duplicators. There are many systems with robotics and printers so duplicate to the optical media and also print a label. But those systems are getting harder and harder to find.
The equipment most companies and organizations are seeking now are USB duplicators. These are flash memory copier systems which can data load content to USB flash drives at ultra-fast speeds. CD and DVD duplicators went through some phases of supported formats like discs being finalized or disc-at-once over track-at-once. Well, USB duplicators have a similar issue to resolve. There is file copy and binary copy and duplication from an ISO file or an IMG file. There are many ways to copy the data from the source to the target USB media.
It’s important to have a USB duplicator which supports all these functions. There are some duplicators with as many as six copy modes. A system like this makes it extremely versatile for the user to move data around. There is file copy, copy add, unique data streaming, copy from a physical device, copy from an IMG file, copy from an ISO file. These are all great resources to have if you are not sure how the content is being given to you.
Today, Hynix put out a press release on their Gold S31 solid-state drive (SSD). The SATA III, first generation, is the first of their SuperCore series of products.
With a 560MB/s read speed, this device becomes an ideal SSD drive for high demand users, such as Gamers. What’s also somewhat unique about the new Gold S31 drives is that they’re entirely built in-house.
“All key components in Gold S31, from NAND flash and built-in controller to DRAM and firmware, were designed and produced by SK Hynix. The in-house components are built for robust performance and reliability,” SK Hynix says.
What is more interesting, at least for us at this moment, is the history of SK Hynix we uncovered by doing some research about the company.
I always wondered what happen to Maxtor, an optical media giant back in the early 2000s. Well, SK Hynix bought them. SK Hynix is the third largest conglomerate in South Korea.
Hynix is the world’s second-largest memory chipmaker (after Samsung ) and the world’s 3rd-largest semiconductor company. Founded as Hyundai Electronic Industrial Co., Ltd. in 1983 and hasn’t stopped growing since.
Hynix memory is well know for quality flash and used in products made by Apple, Asus, Google, Dell, Nexcopy and Hewlett Pakard.
The company also merged with LG Semiconductors in 1999.
These guys had an operating income of 18 billion for 2018, so it’s a company with
Came across an article today, which I thought was a very good read. It’s a niche article, but for anyone who deals with flash drives, I would suggest checking it out.
From the article:
The optical drive is nearly dead – they are no longer found in laptops and rarely found in tower PCs. With that said, the trend for giving out data is shifting to USB flash, not CD or DVD media. Because of this shift, many companies are taking a closer look at buying a USB duplicator.
There are several factors one must consider before spending thousands of dollars on a USB duplicator. We have broken down the most important considerations into four categories. After reviewing these four categories, you should have an excellent idea of which type of duplicator is best for your organization.
USB Duplication Speed
Speed is the first area you should analyze to figure out which direction you should go. When considering speed, we are not simply talking about the copy speed of the USB duplicator, but other factors as well, such as number of USB sockets and the user interface required for feedback during operation. Questions you should ask, include:
# How many USB drives will you need to copy in a day or week?
# How large is the data load in MBs or GBs?
# What kind of turn-around time do you have between a duplication request and when that request should be completed?
# Is there printing, or branding required, on the outside of the USB?
# Do you need proof of performance via a log file?
Answering the above questions will give you an idea of what type of USB duplicator to consider. The type of duplicator will be size, how many USB sockets, copy speed of the duplicator and what type of software, if any, your organization will need.
Your Production Crew
Your next step is to consider the production crew who will be running the equipment. Will there be non-technical people running the equipment, or will a more hands-on approach be required? Is the IT department looking to restrict user access to the equipment or restrict access to the data content during the duplication process?
Much of the above depends on how the data is received before copied to the USB flash drive. For example, a duplication company might receive a physical master from a client; where-as a fulfillment house may get content delivered from a server from an on-line order submission process.
Will the organization require multiple USB duplicators located in different parts of the world? Said another way, many global companies standardize on one manufacturer so the user experience is the same across multiple locations. This also makes production easier as both support and experience can be shared between divisions to streamline processes on a global scale.
Knowing the production crew, their capabilities and responsibilities will help narrow the search for the right piece of equipment.
Read-Only or Read-Write
The third category worth investigating is asking the state of what the USB should be once sent delivered. Is the organization looking to ship out a read-only flash drive? By default all flash drives are read-write. Because of this, many organizations fear a virus could jump onto the drive and spreading to other computers. With that fear in mind, most companies are looking for a USB duplicator which creates a read-only drive product. This means the USB drive is locked, or write protected. The files cannot be deleted or formatted off the drive, and more importantly, files cannot jump onto the drive.
Nexcopy is world leader in read-only flash drive duplicators and therefore used as an example of a duplicator system worth considering.
Nexcopy is a bit of classic entrepreneurial story, starting out in a home garage and sales on the first day of business, this is a story about a copy that has gone only upward.
Tech Company News had some time to sit down with the owner of Nexcopy, Greg Morris, and fire off some questions.
Here is a snippet from the interview…
Question: What kind of technology does Nexcopy offer?
Answer: Nexcopy has a specific focus on flash memory duplication, printing and production needs. The business started out with one product geared towards USB duplication. From that single product, Nexcopy’s business has expanded into other duplication equipment such as SD card duplicators, microSD cards duplicators, Compact Flash cards duplicators, and of course our most recent product, the USB Type C duplicator. During this expansion process of hardware, Nexcopy also developed copy protection of digital files on USB drives and mobile devices. Several years ago, Nexcopy introduced a USB flash drive printer which really rounded out our product offering. From the devices, to the duplication equipment to the branding equipment, Nexcopy is a one-stop manufacturer for anyone who deals in flash memory.
The full Nexcopy interview is available on the Tech Company News website.
In a recent news press release from Nexcopy Inc., it appears USB Type C is trending up for consumer demand.
Via the EIN News Wire Service, Nexcopy announced a twenty target USB-C Duplicator. Some of the information posted in the release talks about the upward trend manufacturers are seeing with USB type C product. In addition, the production of a mass aggregator, or duplicator, is another indication users are data loading, in bulk, to USB-C product.
“Apple computers and Iot, or Internet Of Things, are driving the force behind the increased demand for USB-C flash drive consumption. Although the internet is great for many data sharing applications, there is still a great need for data dissemination off line. USB is still the definitive choice among users to share data via flash memory,” states Greg Morris, President of Nexcopy.
Morris continues, “We see the demand of USB-C duplication to only rise in the coming years. In technology, smaller is always better, and as devices get slimmer in size the USB type A socket will eventually phase out and USB type C taking over. The transition is slow, but it is inevitable; and with that said, we are ready – today.”
Nexcopy is also well known for the PRO series duplicators that perform advanced functions to flash drives, such as USB write protection (USB read-only), partitions at the controller level, and serial number control for UFD identification. From the press release, these advanced functions will also be available on the USB-C200PC duplicator.
The USB-C duplicator has a list price of $1,299 from what we understand and available now through a list of on-line retails like Amazon and NewEgg. The product is also available through a worldwide network of authorized resellers.
Nexcopy did allude to
USB write protected means the USB cannot be written to. But why?
There are really only two reasons why a USB stick is write protected.
#1 The USB is corrupted in some way and is no longer working properly. It’s actually very easy to destroy a USB stick and the most common way is sending multiple write threads to the device. So for example, you decide to copy a bunch of files form your computer to your USB stick. While that data transfer is going on, you give another request to write data to the flash drive. If the second request doesn’t write protect the USB, then try sending a third command, all at the same time of course, and this will certainly write protect the drive.
#2 The USB is write protected by design. Meaning the content owner (person who put data on the drive) made the stick read only. Read only is another way of saying write protected.
How you make a working USB stick write protected is sending a