Unplug usb flash drive

Could I unplug a USB flash drive without safely ejecting

Absolutely (from Windows 10 version 1809).

Microsoft acknowledges the fact that "not many users remove the USB devices after ejecting", so it has changed the way Windows 10 handles disconnecting USB or Thunderbolt storage devices.

Windows 10 can now unplug USB devices directly without any worries. (Starting from version 1809)

Everyone has always known: When you unplug the USB flash drive inserted into your computer, you should manually click to safely remove the USB device to prevent hardware damage or other problems.

But Microsoft's telemetry data shows that not many users will do it manually, which means that most users just unplug it directly, so Microsoft changed its Windows system's default use of external storage devices. With the widespread deployment of Windows 10 version 1809 (updated in October 2018), this change takes effect.

In other words, starting from the Windows 10 version 1809, users can directly unplug the USB device without any worries.

What exactly did Microsoft change?

Before this, Windows' default policy when disconnecting USB storage devices has always been the "better performance" setting. This means that Windows manages data transfer and storage operations in a way that improves performance, including caching data when transferring, opening, or preparing certain operations.

However, the side effect is that the user must use the "safely remove hardware" process to delete the external drive to ensure that all cache operations are completed to protect the integrity of the data on the device.

Another strategy is "Quick Delete", which manages storage operations in a way that keeps the device ready for deletion. However, Windows cannot cache disk write operations, which may reduce system performance, and data moved to external storage devices may take longer to transfer.

In Windows 10 version 1809, the default state of all USB and Thunderbolt storage devices has been changed to "Quick Remove", which is a state where external storage devices can be disconnected without following the "Safely Remove Hardware" process.

Can this policy be changed manually?

If you want better write performance and have a simpler usage habit to "safely remove hardware" operations, you can manually change it by switching back to the previous "better performance" strategy.

How to change it?

  1. Connect USB flash drive and other devices to the computer
  2. Press [WIN+E] to enter the file manager and view the drive letter identified by the external device (such as USB Drive)
  3. Right-click to start, and then click Disk Manager
  4. In the lower part of the "Disk Management" window, right-click the label of the device and select "Properties"
  5. Select the strategy to be used in "Strategy"

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