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Is it Safe to Pull out USB Devices Without “Ejecting” Them?

We who have used computers for a long time probably know the basic rule that you should not pull out external storage devices connected via USB, before first “ejecting” them. This is so that there will be no reading and writing problems.

However, if you have Windows 10, and are constantly upgrading it, Microsoft has changed the settings so that it is okay to just pull out your USB flash drives and hard drives. You can control each unit yourself if you wish.

If you use a Mac, you know how the angry operating system complains if you pull out a USB device without first choosing to eject it, for example by dragging the device to the trash.

Not so in Windows, it has been popular to do so, but there have been no major problems. However, with newer versions of Windows 10, it is perfectly acceptable to pull out devices when you feel it.

That being said, you should not do it while actually writing data to the device. If you are copying a heavy file to your USB memory, and in the middle of the copying you plug out the memory, you will encounter some problem. Apart from this, it is free to pull out when you want.

Safe removal by default

In previous editions of Windows, the rule has been that you should eject the device first. To do this, right-click the USB icon at the bottom of the status bar, then select Drive and Eject. This is to make sure that all reading and writing to the unit is complete before you can unplug.

There are two settings for each external device; Quick removal and better performance respectively. In newer Windows 10, the default setting is Fast. This will disable the cache management which increases the performance of writing files, which does not cause problems when you unplug the USB connector.

If you want to change the settings on a specific drive – you may have an external hard drive that is always plugged in and you want to set to Better Performance – then do this in the Disk Management application. You will find this if you right-click on the Start icon or just search for the name.

In Disk Management, you will find all connected storage devices. Right-click on any of them and select Properties. In the next window, select the Hardware tab and then click on your device, followed by Properties. Under the Principles tab you will find the two options.

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