We have all in some situation been in the need to copy information in a short period of time to a usb pen, and removed the pen without safely removing it first on Windows, some even make this practice their standard, while others respect the suggestion of the software giant, Microsoft, and first proceed to the safe removal of the usb device, and only after remove the pen, others never do, and remove the pen directly, but after all, is it important to safely remove the usb devices?
The truth is that that extra time has a reason to exist, and this is to terminate any and all information transactions in progress, whether those are copies or even file deletions, and although in the latest version of Microsoft’s Windows operating system, such as Windows 10, the information recording process on the pen is started immediately and as quickly as possible in the previous software house operating systems, often the information was only recorded when the computer considered that it represented the lowest energy consumption to the computer, because these operating systems treated the external disks and usb pens as devices that would be coupled for a long time to the computer.
Of course there is also the old method of letting the copy finish, close the window, and wait 5 seconds before removing the USB stick, but actually the safest method, although not 100%, is to safely remove the USB device, even when we are just reading data, because we always have the risk of corrupting part of the pen file system, or even of corrupting the information and making it inaccessible.
To better understand, for the computer, which deals only with priority vs efficiency, it is not efficient to record only one file, then it will wait to see if any more files need to be written to the device, in order to reduce energy consumption and not interrupt operations you may be doing.
But what happens then, that’s so different when we click on removing the hardware safely? Well, first of all, when we ask the operating system to do this operation, it orders all files on the waiting list to be written to the device, then alerts all programs that may eventually been accessing the device that you want to remove, that it will be removed, and if everything goes well, let us know that it is safe to remove the device, otherwise it warns the user that there are programs still accessing the device and preventing the safe removal of the device.
Of course, as we said above, modern operating systems make management a lot smarter, reducing risks to minimum, but security is never enough.