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Optic drives have been almost eliminated from all modern computers. A DVD drive can be too heavy, cumbersome, and takes too much energy to use. One company has begun to plan for the replacement of the optical drive.
Let’s face the facts: CDs and DVDs can be too large and not durable. If you have recordable media, you may worry about UV light damaging the data.
The discs are nearly five inches wide and weigh almost five inches. They are also much slower than other storage mediums. The optical drive’s dimensions are optimized to the smallest possible and lightest. But, that is not enough to ensure that it can be used in laptops.
Today’s laptops are extremely small and lightweight. You can use the space provided by an optical drive for more practical components. This space can be used to store larger batteries, which will increase performance, or for graphic cards that are more powerful to satisfy graphic designers and gamers. A laptop should provide maximum performance within the smallest possible form factor.
All of this being said, it is impossible to use outdated technology such as an optical drive.
Optical discs, regardless of whether they are CDs or DVDs, have some very valuable features that should not be forgotten. One company is working hard to keep those memories alive.
Nexcopy is a California-based company that specializes in feature-rich USB flash drives. It offers advanced configurations and functions. Its primary purpose is to offer near-identical optical disc alternatives in flash storage.
The Company Offers Five Options
The auto-run features, as well as the read-only function, are the two most requested features on an optical disk.
Everyone loves the auto-run function of an optical disc. The software can be provided by companies that automatically install software when an optical disc is accessed. Standard USB flash drives can’t run automatically and can’t mount on computers like optical discs.
#1 Disc License
Nexcopy reacted to this issue by creating a product that addressed the auto-run feature. When connected to a host computer, the USB device which appears as a USB CD-ROM device. Full auto-run functionality remains intact, and the device works exactly as an optical disk.
For example, a disc-duplication house could use its ISO files that were used previously for CD and DVD duplication to create USB CD-ROM flash drives. Even though the optical disc is on the verge of extinction, that doesn’t necessarily mean the concept is dead.
An optical disc’s other most popular characteristic is its read-only option. This feature ensures data on optical drives cannot be changed, cannot altered, and will always remain the same as when it was written.
The standard USB flash drives do not have a read-only function. The universal method to make flash drives read-only or write-protected is not available. This makes the feature more difficult to find. Flash memory is like a mini hard disk. Because flash memory has a default nature to read and write, it can be difficult to configure this “mini hard drive” so that data cannot be altered.
Many companies are finding it difficult to find optical drives in computers. As a result, they can no longer offer optical discs to clients. Clients no longer have the ability to read the disc. These companies are searching for alternatives to optical media, as read-only features are as important as content.
#2 Lock License
Nexcopy has created a product that addresses the USB drive reading-only problem. The Lock License Drive is a USB flash drive that can be read only by default.
In other words, the Lock License USB does not allow a user to write to the USB, but can only read from it. To force the Lock License USB to become writable, you must first force it to.
Lock License drives have a unique approach that prevents content from being modified or copied. In addition, viruses cannot jump onto the USB drive as the USB can only be read at all times. This combination makes the Lock License USB Drive the perfect solution for those looking to write protection with a USB stick.
It is worth noting that you can remove the USB write protection and make it writable. This process is safe and requires that the content owner grants specific write access privileges.
The Lock License Drive’s subtle and beautiful feature is that, even after the device has been unlocked and written to, the default state of the USB stick reverts into read-only status when it is disconnected from the PC. It is impossible to make the Lock License drive readable. This is an extremely secure solution for anyone who wants to make content permanently on a USB flash stick.
#3 USB Copy Protection
It was very common to share video via optical media such as a DVD or CD without worrying about it being shared with others. There are tools available to “rip” video off a disc. However, this is an intricate process that most non-technical people would not bother with. With the optical drive gone, what options do you have for transferring a video to a USB? It is safe from being copied.
We have already established that a USB flash drives works as a mini hard disk, which is by default a write and read device. Now the question is: How do you share an audio or video file from a flash drive that can’t be copied?
Nexcopy offers USB copy security with the Copy Secure flash drive. The flash drive only allows access to the file. The flash drive cannot be used to save, copy, transfer, share or stream the file.
Copy Secure is similar to an encrypted file but it does not require a password to view it.
Copy protection could be achieved with optical media using the DVD Copy Control Association protocol. This system linked the playback chipsets on a DVD player to encoded content on a disc. This system allowed software companies and major studios to purchase a security system that protected their intellectual properties. However, USB flash drives are not subject to a universal security control system.
Nexcopy resolved this issue by allowing common file types, such as MP3, MP4, HTML, and PDF to be copy-protected while being played back on a flash disk. The content can be viewed on an Apple or Microsoft Windows computer. While the solution is not universally compatible with devices such as TVs or car stereos, copy-protected content will play back in both the most popular operating systems.
Like the Lock, and License drives the Copy Secure drives can be read only (write protected), so users cannot claim “a file was removed, can I get another?” to obtain a second copy for free.
#4 USB Encryption
Copy Secure drives can be used as encryption. However, they do not require passwords. There is a subtle distinction between encryption and copy protection. Encryption works by scrambling the data. Once the password is entered, the content will play. An encryption password can only be used to protect honesty. This means that once a file has been decrypted, it is open to anyone who wants to print, copy or share the file.
What happens if the password is shared with others? This is what copy protection does.
If you want to make sure that data is secure on your drive, an encryption solution can be used.
Nexcopy is a solid choice. It will place encrypted data on the USB flash stick and display the contents only after the correct password has been entered.
One example is that the accounting department at a large corporation store financial documents on a flash device for transportation between home and office. This trust is maintained, but it is necessary to protect the USB in case the USB is lost in the garage or stolen. The files will be protected by encryption.
Like the previous products, it is unassailable to format or delete the contents of the drive. The person who discovered the drive couldn’t put a virus onto it (perhaps trying to hack into the company), and return it to them while pretending to be innocent.
#5 Secure Disk
Hidden partitions that hold data are a feature that CD and DVD didn’t offer. An optical disk is a product that writes data linearly. The data writing process begins in the disc’s interior and moves to the outside.
Notice: Mass-produced DVD and CD media is “stamped”, therefore the previous sentence refers only to writable disc and DVD media.
Secure Disk hides most USB memory for users who connect the device to a PC. It is very unlikely that the user will be able to access the hidden area of memory if they aren’t aware of its capabilities.
If the Secure Disk connects to a Windows system, it will only allow for a 20MB partition. This 20MB partition can read and write any information. However, the hidden memory area space is also available to users who know how to access it.
As an example, the USB could be a 32GB flash drive. The 20MB partition is not visible to the user. The public partition of 20MB will disappear if the login.exe file has been accessed with the correct password.
After logging in, the 32GB private partition is accessible for reading and writing and can store any type of data. This private partition is not encrypted or copy protected.
Secure Disk was designed originally to be a HIPAA-compliant flash drive. HIPAA compliance means that patient records, information and history must be kept in a secure location. Secure Disk is compliant with HIPAA because it is protected by a password. Access to the secret area of memory can only be done by the right password.
Secure Disk has more uses than HIPAA medical records. It is worth considering for international travelers who need to carry sensitive data.
While the Secure Disk cannot replace certain optical media technologies, it shows Nexcopy to be a forward-thinking company.
Because so many flash drive products were developed, it was important to also create data load products that can be mass-produced efficiently. Nexcopy was founded in 2004 with its original offering of the USB200PC, a PC-based, twenty-target USB flash drive duplicator. Since then, many other products have been added to the Nexcopy product line including USB flash drives printer systems, standalone USB systems, and other data loading products.