Premium USB or E-Sata Flash drives which are a lot faster then cheap generic USB flash drives can save you a lot of time since once your flash drive finishes copying all your important files, you can go home. The key to picking a fast flash drive is picking the right connection type like USB 2.0, USB 3.0, eSATA, firewire, etc and the drives Read and write speed. Most Premium flash drives are also built to last compared to flimsy cheap USB drives you buy for a few dollars. Premium USB flash drives usually have a protective rubber or metal case to protect it from drops, being stepped on, water, dust, and dirt. The caps are also better built, and don’t crack like cheap plastic caps on cheap flash drives. Most premium flash drives also have longer warranty like a lifetime warranty for the Patriot Xporter XT Boost 8 GB USB 2.0 Flash Drive compared to 1 year or less warranties for cheaper generic flash drives.
Fast flash drives are also good for making Live bootable Flash drives or running portable programs off of like the portable version of Firefox web browser sort of like those Floppy disks you boot into when Windows 98 could not start-up. But, these days live flash drives use full featured Operating Systems like Ubuntu Linux, Fedora, and BartPE. You can also run games off of faster flash drives with no or much slowness because of slow read and write speed.
First, you need to pick the right connection type. If your computer is very old and still uses USB 1.1, you won’t see any performance increase by pluging in a USB 2.0 flash drive since USB 1.1 has a max speed of 12 Mbps vs USB 2.0 480 Mbps. Same goes for if you plug in a USB 3.0 flash drive into a USB 2.0 port on your computer.
If you are still using USB 1.1, I recommend you install a cheap USB 2.0 card which you can get for 20 dollars or less online. You can even get one for a dollar on Ebay if you look around.
If you own a newer computer with E-Sata or USB 3.0 ports, and money is not a problem. I recommend you either get an E-sata or USB 3.0 connector.
But, E-SATA, and USB 3.0 drives can cost close to 100 USD or more, so they are not very economical.
Never buy a USB 2.0 flash drive because it said it can be used with Readyboost since it does not tell you the exact read or write speed of your drive or if it saids it is a 480Mbps drive since it is just the max speed USB 2.0 can run at, but your drive is a lot slower in many cases then 480 Mbps. Buy a flash drive based on its Read and Write speed in MB/s which you can find on the box, user reviews, or Flash drive company website.
I recommend the Patriot Xporter XT Boost 8 GB USB 2.0 Flash Drive since they can read at over 20+ MB/s and writes files at over 11+ MB/s which is pretty good for a USB 2.0 flash drive. Plus, it has a sturdy rubber coating which is shock, dust, and water resistant. It also comes with a life time warranty. All these features for under 20 dollars is a great deal.
Amazon has great deals on Flash drive and their shipping is great in my experience compared to other stores I shop at online! If you spend over 25 bucks, and live in the US, you get free shipping. International shipping price is reasonable, too.
I also recommend formating your drive as FAT 32 since it is compatible with Linux, Mac, and older versions of Windows like 95, 98, and Me. Plus, NTFS is an indexing File system, so it might reduce the life of your flash drive from the constanr read and writes to your flash drive.
Also, you should never defrag your USB Flash Drive since it will make your flash drive not last as long due to the limited amounts of writes.