Browse our FAQs about RAM

Customer Support

My SD Card is write protected – how do I unprotect it?

SD cards have a write lock. This is a switch on the side of the card. The DOWN position is write protect ON and the UP position is write protect OFF.

To use the device in a camera the position of the switch must be UP. It is a good idea to write protect a card with important data.

Why does my Memory Card show less capacity than stated?

There may be a few reasons why your drive’s capacity may be lower than stated.

The first is that when your operating system formats your drive, it leaves some overhead storage for the file system, boot data, wear levelling, and “shadow storage”.

Second, computers and laptops often come with several partitions, including a hidden recovery partition. There is a chance that some of the space is taken up by this recovery partition.

The third, and the main reason, is due to the difference between how memory manufacturers, PC / Laptop manufacturers, and Windows / Android systems measure storage. Memory manufacturers use a decimal system and PC / Laptop manufacturers & Windows / Android systems use a binary system.

In simple terms:

Memory manufacturers see:

  • 1KB = 1000 bytes
  • 1MB = 1,000KB (1,000,000 bytes)
  • 1GB = 1,000MB (1,000,000,000 bytes)
  • 1TB = 1,000GB (1,000,000,000,000 bytes).

PC / Laptop manufacturers and Windows / Android systems see:

  • 1KB = 1024 bytes
  • 1MB = 1024KB (1,048,576 bytes)
  • 1GB = 1024MB (1,073,741,824 bytes)
  • 1TB = 1024GB (1,099,511,627,776 bytes)

This difference in measurement leads to a difference in how much space is shown on some PCs, Laptops, and Phones. This difference increases as the capacity of the drive increases between MBs, GBs, TBs.

Stated Capacity on Drive Windows PC/Laptop/Android Capacity Shown
1GB 0.93 GB
2 GB 1.9 GB
4 GB 3.7 GB
8 GB 7.5 GB
16 GB 14.9 GB
32 GB 29.8 GB
64 GB 59.6 GB
128 GB 119.2 GB
256 GB 238.4 GB
512 GB 476.8 GB
1 TB 0.9 TB
2 TB 1.8 TB
4 TB 3.6 TB
8 TB 7.3 TB
16 TB 14.6 TB
When I plug in my Integral USB Flash Drive, my computer displays a “USB device not recognized” message, what does this mean?

There can be a various causes to this problem. Follow the steps below to try and solve the issue:

  • Firstly ensure you are plugging the USB Flash Drive directly into the PC or notebook and ensure you have the latest USB drivers for your operating system
  • Try plugging your USB Flash Drive into another USB port on your PC/notebook. You could test the USB on another PC or notebook if available
  • Keep your USB Flash Drive plugged in and perform a full ‘Windows Update’ to check for any missing or newer drivers for your computer. To do this, open Internet Explorer and click Tools> Windows Update and follow the onscreen instructions

If you are still experiencing problems, please fill in the tech support form and we will help with your issue.

Which Crypto USBs are compatible with Mac or Windows?

The table below shows which systems our Crypto USBs are compatible with:

Crypto USB table

 

Please note, our Crypto USBs are fully compatible with Intel-based Mac computers and MacBooks running MacOS Version 10.13: “High Sierra” and above. Our Crypto USBs have a 5 year warranty and OS versions before Version 10.13: “High Sierra” are not supported.

Encrypted USB

I don’t have a USB 3.0 port – Should I buy a USB 3.0 Flash Drive ?

Yes, you can use a USB 3.0 Flash Drive on USB 2.0 devices now, as they are backwards compatible. When you upgrade to a USB 3.0 system you can then benefit from the faster “SuperSpeed” data transfer rates. Integral have also found that our USB 3.0 Flash Drives perform faster on USB 2.0 systems then current USB 2.0 Flash Drives.

What is the difference between FIPS 140-2 and FIPS 197 certification?

FIPS 197 certification looks at the hardware encryption algorithms used to protect the data. FIPS 140-2 is the next, more advanced level of certification. FIPS 140-2 includes a rigorous analysis of the product’s physical properties. So, with a FIPS 140-2 certified USB Flash Drive the tamper-proof design of the circuit board has been approved, as well as the data encryption.

What type of encryption do Crypto Drive, Courier/Ag47 Security Editions use? Software or hardware-based?

The Integral Crypto Drive range, Courier Security Edition and Ag47 Security Edition all use hardware-based 256-bit AES encryption to encrypt your data.

What is AES 256-bit hardware-based encryption?

256-bit AES encryption (Advance Encryption Standard) is an International standard which ensures data is encrypted/decrypted following this approved standard. It ensures high security and is adopted by the U.S. government and other intelligence organizations across the world.

Hardware based encryption is where data which is transferred to and from the Integral encrypted USB is automatically encrypted/decrypted through a AES chip built on the Flash Drive. This is much faster and more secure than a software based encryption system, where data is encrypted/decrypted through a program on the PC/Mac.

Is there a version of the Total Lock user interface in my language?

The Total Lock user interface is pre-loaded in 24 languages that can be selected when the USB is first setup. These include:

  • Bulgarian
  • Chinese
  • Croatian
  • Czech
  • Dutch
  • English
  • Estonian
  • Finish
  • French
  • German
  • Greek
  • Hebrew
  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • Latvian
  • Lithuanian
  • Norwegian
  • Polish
  • Portuguese
  • Romanian
  • Russian
  • Spanish
  • Swedish
  • Turkish
What happens if I forget my password for my Integral AES hardware encrypted USB or Crypto?

After 6 failed password attempts, all data will be erased and the Integral AES 256bit encrypted Flash Drive will be reset to factory settings.

The USB Flash Drive is then reusable. Due to the nature of the USB it is not possible to recover the passwords and it is highly recommended to set a password hint when setting up the encrypted USB. Think about keeping a secure copy of your password.

We DO NOT have any “back-door” tools to recover data.

You should always have a secure backup of your data.

With the CRYPTO DUAL version a Master and User password can be set. If the User forgets their password they are warned of the fifth attempt to go to the Master who can unlock the drive with the Master Password if set. Please click here to see the range. On the sixth attempt the drive is erased.

If I forget my password when using my Integral AES hardware encrypted USB are there any clues/hints for me?

You can setup a clue/hint on the password setup screen and it is highly recommended to do so. For example, if your password was “Superman88” your password hint might be “My favourite comic book and last two digits of special number”. Obviously choose something that cannot be guessed by someone.

Once this is setup you can click on the question mark button to display your present clue/hint of your password.

Do I need to install any software to use my hardware encrypted USB ?

Integral’s Encrypted USBs require no software to be installed on PC/Mac – they have a zero footprint and no subscription fee.

Do I require admin rights to use my hardware encrypted USB on a PC running a Windows operating system?

No administrative privileges are required to use the Integral’s encrypted range of drives.

Can I personalise the Crypto Drive with my contact details so that the Drive can be returned to me should I lose it?

Yes, Crypto Drive contains an optional “Personal ID Function”. You can store your name, address, phone number and company name on the Drive, whilst your confidential data remains secure at all times. (Do NOT put your password here)

What are the password criteria for Integral encrypted USB Flash Drives?

Your password must be 8 to 16 characters long and must include a minimum of one capital letter, one lower case letter and one number. For example:
“Superman88”
“abacus1979X”

Special characters such as *^+# can also be used but are not mandatory.

I’ve heard of AES encrypted USB Flash Drives being hacked. Are the Integral range of AES encrypted USBs affected by this scare?

No, the Integral AES 256-bit encrypted range is not affected by this scare. In summary, the encrypted USBs that were hacked carried out the password comparison on the computer they were plugged into, which can allow a hacker to observe the password verification process and simulate their own verification. The Integral AES encrypted range of USB Flash Drives does the password comparison on the USB itself, and not on the computer  – and so are not susceptible to this attack method. A report that highlights the strength of Integral AES 256-bit encrypted USB Flash Drives compared to other in the market can be found on the following link.

Why can’t I open the ‘Total Lock’ user manual from the Total Lock interface screen when I click it?

This could be because there is no default pdf file reader installed on your PC/Mac. You will need to download and install a PDF reader to view the manual. There are many free pdf readers available on the internet, such as Adobe Reader. Search for “pdf reader” in any search engine and download and install from a trusted source.

Will the Integral secure AES 256-bit USB range be compatible with my endpoint security software?

Yes. All endpoint security software on the market allows the Administrator to create an exception for certain hardware IDs to run. As an Administrator you need to give the Integral AES encrypted USB an exception under the endpoint’s hardware ID feature and ensure that the TotalLock.exe program has the privilege to run off the USB Flash Drive. We do not recommend running another form of encryption over the Integral Crypto.

Which Crypto USBs are compatible with Mac or Windows?

The table below shows which systems our Crypto USBs are compatible with:

Please note, our Crypto USBs are fully compatible with Intel-based Mac computers and MacBooks running MacOS Version 10.13: “High Sierra” and above. Our Crypto USBs have a 2 year warranty and OS versions before Version 10.13: “High Sierra” are not supported.

Can I access more than one Integral Crypto USB drive on my system at the same time.

You cannot access more than one Integral Crypto drive at a time on the same system. The encryption engine has been designed only to access one Crypto drive at a time. Using more than one Crypto could cause problems.

Will an Integral AES security Flash Drive work in my digital photo frame or car stereo?

Unfortunately it will not function as it requires the AES USB Flash Drive’s secure partition to be unlocked. This can only be done with a password on a compatible operating system.

We recommend you purchase a non-encrypted USB from the Integral range.

The Total Lock user interface does not run on our domain for users. How do I fix this problem?

On a domain many security policies can be set to maintain security on the network. If you are a Network Administrator ensure that you give the following permissions for users to run the TotalLock.exe application:

Registry Keys:

The TotalLock.exe requires modify permissions on the following keys:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\MountedDevices
HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\Disk

Applications:

The TotalLock.exe requires permissions to execute the “mountvol.exe” program found in the following path:
C:\Windows\System32\

If you are still experiencing issues running the TotalLock.exe program for your users please fill out the Tech Support form and we can assist in your issue.

General Information

I don’t have a USB 3.0 port – Should I buy a USB 3.0 Flash Drive ?

Yes, you can use a USB 3.0 Flash Drive on USB 2.0 devices now, as they are backwards compatible. When you upgrade to a USB 3.0 system you can then benefit from the faster “SuperSpeed” data transfer rates. Integral have also found that our USB 3.0 Flash Drives perform faster on USB 2.0 systems then current USB 2.0 Flash Drives.

What is the difference between FIPS 140-2 and FIPS 197 certification?

FIPS 197 certification looks at the hardware encryption algorithms used to protect the data. FIPS 140-2 is the next, more advanced level of certification. FIPS 140-2 includes a rigorous analysis of the product’s physical properties. So, with a FIPS 140-2 certified USB Flash Drive the tamper-proof design of the circuit board has been approved, as well as the data encryption.

What type of encryption do Crypto Drive, Courier/Ag47 Security Editions use? Software or hardware-based?

The Integral Crypto Drive range, Courier Security Edition and Ag47 Security Edition all use hardware-based 256-bit AES encryption to encrypt your data.

What is AES 256-bit hardware-based encryption?

256-bit AES encryption (Advance Encryption Standard) is an International standard which ensures data is encrypted/decrypted following this approved standard. It ensures high security and is adopted by the U.S. government and other intelligence organizations across the world.

Hardware based encryption is where data which is transferred to and from the Integral encrypted USB is automatically encrypted/decrypted through a AES chip built on the Flash Drive. This is much faster and more secure than a software based encryption system, where data is encrypted/decrypted through a program on the PC/Mac.

Is there a version of the Total Lock user interface in my language?

The Total Lock user interface is pre-loaded in 24 languages that can be selected when the USB is first setup. These include:

  • Bulgarian
  • Chinese
  • Croatian
  • Czech
  • Dutch
  • English
  • Estonian
  • Finish
  • French
  • German
  • Greek
  • Hebrew
  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • Latvian
  • Lithuanian
  • Norwegian
  • Polish
  • Portuguese
  • Romanian
  • Russian
  • Spanish
  • Swedish
  • Turkish
What happens if I forget my password for my Integral AES hardware encrypted USB or Crypto?

After 6 failed password attempts, all data will be erased and the Integral AES 256bit encrypted Flash Drive will be reset to factory settings.

The USB Flash Drive is then reusable. Due to the nature of the USB it is not possible to recover the passwords and it is highly recommended to set a password hint when setting up the encrypted USB. Think about keeping a secure copy of your password.

We DO NOT have any “back-door” tools to recover data.

You should always have a secure backup of your data.

With the CRYPTO DUAL version a Master and User password can be set. If the User forgets their password they are warned of the fifth attempt to go to the Master who can unlock the drive with the Master Password if set. Please click here to see the range. On the sixth attempt the drive is erased.

If I forget my password when using my Integral AES hardware encrypted USB are there any clues/hints for me?

You can setup a clue/hint on the password setup screen and it is highly recommended to do so. For example, if your password was “Superman88” your password hint might be “My favourite comic book and last two digits of special number”. Obviously choose something that cannot be guessed by someone.

Once this is setup you can click on the question mark button to display your present clue/hint of your password.

Do I need to install any software to use my hardware encrypted USB ?

Integral’s Encrypted USBs require no software to be installed on PC/Mac – they have a zero footprint and no subscription fee.

Do I require admin rights to use my hardware encrypted USB on a PC running a Windows operating system?

No administrative privileges are required to use the Integral’s encrypted range of drives.

Can I personalise the Crypto Drive with my contact details so that the Drive can be returned to me should I lose it?

Yes, Crypto Drive contains an optional “Personal ID Function”. You can store your name, address, phone number and company name on the Drive, whilst your confidential data remains secure at all times. (Do NOT put your password here)

What are the password criteria for Integral encrypted USB Flash Drives?

Your password must be 8 to 16 characters long and must include a minimum of one capital letter, one lower case letter and one number. For example:
“Superman88”
“abacus1979X”

Special characters such as *^+# can also be used but are not mandatory.

I’ve heard of AES encrypted USB Flash Drives being hacked. Are the Integral range of AES encrypted USBs affected by this scare?

No, the Integral AES 256-bit encrypted range is not affected by this scare. In summary, the encrypted USBs that were hacked carried out the password comparison on the computer they were plugged into, which can allow a hacker to observe the password verification process and simulate their own verification. The Integral AES encrypted range of USB Flash Drives does the password comparison on the USB itself, and not on the computer  – and so are not susceptible to this attack method. A report that highlights the strength of Integral AES 256-bit encrypted USB Flash Drives compared to other in the market can be found on the following link.

Will the Integral secure AES 256-bit USB range be compatible with my endpoint security software?

Yes. All endpoint security software on the market allows the Administrator to create an exception for certain hardware IDs to run. As an Administrator you need to give the Integral AES encrypted USB an exception under the endpoint’s hardware ID feature and ensure that the TotalLock.exe program has the privilege to run off the USB Flash Drive. We do not recommend running another form of encryption over the Integral Crypto.

Which Crypto USBs are compatible with Mac or Windows?

The table below shows which systems our Crypto USBs are compatible with:

Please note, our Crypto USBs are fully compatible with Intel-based Mac computers and MacBooks running MacOS Version 10.13: “High Sierra” and above. Our Crypto USBs have a 2 year warranty and OS versions before Version 10.13: “High Sierra” are not supported.

Will an Integral AES security Flash Drive work in my digital photo frame or car stereo?

Unfortunately it will not function as it requires the AES USB Flash Drive’s secure partition to be unlocked. This can only be done with a password on a compatible operating system.

We recommend you purchase a non-encrypted USB from the Integral range.

Troubleshooting

Why can’t I open the ‘Total Lock’ user manual from the Total Lock interface screen when I click it?

This could be because there is no default pdf file reader installed on your PC/Mac. You will need to download and install a PDF reader to view the manual. There are many free pdf readers available on the internet, such as Adobe Reader. Search for “pdf reader” in any search engine and download and install from a trusted source.

Can I access more than one Integral Crypto USB drive on my system at the same time.

You cannot access more than one Integral Crypto drive at a time on the same system. The encryption engine has been designed only to access one Crypto drive at a time. Using more than one Crypto could cause problems.

The Total Lock user interface does not run on our domain for users. How do I fix this problem?

On a domain many security policies can be set to maintain security on the network. If you are a Network Administrator ensure that you give the following permissions for users to run the TotalLock.exe application:

Registry Keys:

The TotalLock.exe requires modify permissions on the following keys:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\MountedDevices
HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\Disk

Applications:

The TotalLock.exe requires permissions to execute the “mountvol.exe” program found in the following path:
C:\Windows\System32\

If you are still experiencing issues running the TotalLock.exe program for your users please fill out the Tech Support form and we can assist in your issue.

Memory Card

What are the differences between FAT16, FAT32 and exFAT file systems?

The default formatting for cards up to 2GB is FAT16.

In recent years, memory cards have gained more storage capacity; 4GB and above. The file format FAT32 is now commonly used in memory cards between 4GB and 32GB.

If a digital device supports only the FAT16 file system you cannot use a memory card bigger than 2GB (i.e. SDHC/microSDHC or SDXC/microSDXC memory cards).

Integral memory cards of 4GB or more such as those in the CompactFlash i-Pro, UltimaPro and SDHC ranges are only supported by FAT32 devices and must be formatted to FAT32.

It is best practice to format the card in your device before use, CAUTION formatting a card will delete all data, please see your device manual.

 

 

FAT 16 (FAT) FAT 32 exFAT (FAT 64)
Maximum file size 2GB* 4GB 2TB (limited by card)
SD Card type SD SDHC, microSDHC SDXC, microSDXC
PC Compatible OS Windows ME/2000/XP/7/8.1 Windows ME/2000/XP/7/8.1 Windows XP/Vista/7/8.1
Notes Windows OS may require updates, please see Table 2 below
Mac Compatible OS Mac OS 8/9/X Mac OS 8/9/X Mac OS X 10.6.5 and above

 

*Recommended limit by Microsoft for compatibility but can be up to 4GB

Table 2

 

Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 and Windows 8.1
Update to SP2 or later, then apply Microsoft update (KB955704). Use with SDXC/microSDXC compatible card reader. Update to SP1 or later. Use with SDXC/microSDXC compatible card reader. Supported – no update required, use with SDXC/microSDXC compatible card reader.

 

 

What is UHS-1 ?

“UHS-1” or more accurately “UHS-I” stands for “Ultra High Speed” – 1 and is a speed class for SDHC and SXDC memory cards. UHS-I has a bus interface speed of up to 104 MB/s. An SDHC UHS-I card will work in any SDHC compatible device at lower speeds, but to take advantage of the UHS-I speed, a UHS-I compatible device is essential. An SDXC UHS-I card will work in any SDXC compatible device at lower speeds, but to take advantage of the UHS-I speed, a UHS-I compatible device is essential. UHS-I compatible cards and devices are normally marked with the symbol below ,”UHS-I” or “I” A speed class is also defined. = Class 1 .”UHS Class 1″

What is the difference between SDUC, SDXC, SDHC and SD cards?
  • SD cards are in the following capacities 4,8,16,32,64,128,256 512MB and 1GB, 2GB only.
  • SDHC cards are available in the following capacities: 4, 8, 16, 32GB
  • SDXC cards are available in the following capacities; 64, 128, 256, 512GB, 1TB, 2TB
  • SDUC cards are available in the following capacities 4, 8, 16, 32, 64, 128TB
  • SDUC memory cards must only be used with SDUC devices.
  • SDXC memory cards can be used with SDXC devices and SDUC Devices.
  • SDHC memory cards can be used with SDHC devices, SDXC devices and SDUC Devices
  • SD memory cards can be used with SD devices, SDHC devices, SDXC devices and SDUC Devices. SDUC (Secure Digital Ultra Capacity), SDXC (Secure Digital eXtended Capacity) and SDHC (Secure Digital High Capacity) were established to meet the growing demand for data heavy apps, 8K, 4K, and HD video and high-resolution image photography. SDUC / SDXC / SDHC are all the same physical size and shape as standard SD.
I need to reformat my memory card, which method should I use?

If you have a digital camera, dashcam, or a phone it is better to format your card in the camera. If you are using the card in a device other than these, we recommend the formatting of the card using a card reader, as described below: If you are using the card in two different devices with different formats (e.g. a Digital Camera and a Phone) we would advise you to use two separate cards. If formatting in the Card Reader (WARNING: FORMATTING CAN & WILL DELETE ALL DATA) please see your device or camera manual before proceeding with a format. Be aware, by default Windows will format a memory card of 2GB or higher capacity to FAT32.

Formatting in a PC:

Windows 2000/XP/Vista/7/10/11 • Open My Computer o Locate the drive letter of your memory card o Right-click on this drive o Select Format… (This will launch the Format Utility Window) o Under the option File System select FAT32 o Click on the Start button • Press Start / Run o Type ‘cmd’ press the OK button o This will launch the MS-DOS window and prompt o Type format *: /fs:FAT32 or NTFS (* represents the drive letter that windows recognises the card as) o Press return and follow the onscreen prompts o Once the routine is complete type EXIT

My device does not recognise my Integral memory card. What is wrong?
  • Make sure the memory card is not inserted upside down, this is a very common issue with memory cards in mobile phone handsets.
  • Try rebooting/switching on your device with the memory card already inserted.
  • Is your device SDHC / microSDHC compatible? – many cameras, PDA’s, mobile phone handsets and built-in card readers (on a PC) produced before Summer 2007 will not work with SDHC memory cards.
  • Check the switch on the side of the memory card is not set to the “lock” position. If the memory card is locked; move the switch to the unlock position and then try again
  • If you have a SDXC card you must use a compatible SDXC device. To use on a PC you will require a compatible device and a compatible operating system. Please click here to see our guide
  • Try another memory card
If memory cards are reusable, why would I ever need more than one card?

If a memory card is used properly it will give many years of service. You could just have a single card but if you invest in 2 or 3 your flexibility is increased greatly:

  • Use an extra card when it is impractical to download your pictures, e.g. on holiday, or on the move.
  • It is sensible to set your camera to at the highest resolution (and therefore highest quality) setting. However, higher resolution images require more space, so with only one memory card you risk running out of storage space quickly. With an extra memory card this problem is eliminated.
  • Many modern digital cameras also record high quality video. These video clips use produce a lot of data, so a single memory card can become full very quickly.
  • Take more shots of your subject and select the best one without having to delete unwanted images straight away.
  • What if your only memory card gets lost or damaged? Precious holiday, birthday, wedding photos could be lost forever! Spread the risk by using 2 or 3 memory cards with your camera.
I have saved my photos back to the memory card. Why can’t I view them in the camera?

Most cameras will only view images stored within a set folder structure. If you have saved the images to new folders we suggest moving the images back to within the camera’s folder structure and you should be able to view them if in the correct format, but this may not be the case always as some cameras will only display images with the correct EXIF information. (This is extra data stored with the image).

If you have modified the original image or changed the file format using Adobe Photoshop or similar the image may now not be compatible with your camera’s operating system and so will not display on the camera’s viewing screen (the images will be perfectly safe and fine to print).

To avoid problems it is best not to save changed images back to the memory card if possible.

How can I transfer the data from my memory card to my computer?

To transfer data from a memory card to a PC – The PC has to recognise the memory card as a removable drive. It is good practice to back up data kept on a card. This can be done in a number of ways including.

  • Leaving the memory card in your device and connecting your device (usually via a USB cable) to your PC. (Please see your device manual for instructions)
  • Using a suitable memory card slot on your PC if available. Insert the memory card correctly into the appropriate slot on your PC. The memory should show as a “removable drive” in your operating system. (Please note some newer cards may not work in older slots e.g. A SDHC card will not work in a SD only slot)
  • Using an external memory card reader – Connect the memory card reader to your PC and then insert the memory card. The memory should show as a “removable drive” in your operating system. (Please note some newer cards may not work in older reader e.g. A SDHC card will not work in a SD only reader)

Make sure that your internal or external card reader and operating system are compatible with your card and format eg a SDHC card will need a SDHC reader, a SDXC card will need a SDXC reader and a operating system compatible with the exFAT format.

Once the memory card is recognised your can cut-and-paste or drag-and-drop data to and from the memory can as you would with any other drive.

Caution: Do not remove the memory card or turn off the power whilst reading or writing data this could corrupt data.

How long will data stay valid for on a memory card or USB Flash Drive ?

Memory cards and USB drives are NOT designed for long term storage. You should always backup your data on to another device. The data will normally stay valid for a period of up to 10 years if stored under normal conditions. The data cells inside carry a charge which can dissipate over time. The data can be refreshed; copy all data off card and then format the card or USB drive and then restore all data to extend the data for another 10 years.

Why do digital memory cards sometimes become “unreadable” ?

This problem is not related to any particular brand of memory card or device. It can occur when the device had been interrupted when accessing the memory card.

To avoid this problem:

  • DO NOT turn OFF the device or remove the memory card while the device is reading, writing, erasing or formatting.
  • DO NOT use the device while the batteries are low. This could result in corruption. In some cases power can run out as the memory card is being written to.
  • AVOID inserting and removing the memory card with the device switched ON.
  • To fix this problem you will need to reformat the memory card (this will destroy all data held on the card).
  • You may be able to recover images from a corrupted memory card before formatting (see FAQ on reformatting the memory card).
  • Some cameras will not access memory cards that have been formatted in a Card Reader, so please read your camera manual before proceeding with a format.
  • When using card readers make sure the readers light is not flashing and wait a few seconds before pulling the card out of the card reader slot.
My SD Card is write protected – how do I unprotect it?

SD cards have a write lock. This is a switch on the side of the card. The DOWN position is write protect ON and the UP position is write protect OFF.

To use the device in a camera the position of the switch must be UP. It is a good idea to write protect a card with important data.

Why does my Memory Card show less capacity than stated?

There may be a few reasons why your drive’s capacity may be lower than stated.

The first is that when your operating system formats your drive, it leaves some overhead storage for the file system, boot data, wear levelling, and “shadow storage”.

Second, computers and laptops often come with several partitions, including a hidden recovery partition. There is a chance that some of the space is taken up by this recovery partition.

The third, and the main reason, is due to the difference between how memory manufacturers, PC / Laptop manufacturers, and Windows / Android systems measure storage. Memory manufacturers use a decimal system and PC / Laptop manufacturers & Windows / Android systems use a binary system.

In simple terms:

Memory manufacturers see:

  • 1KB = 1000 bytes
  • 1MB = 1,000KB (1,000,000 bytes)
  • 1GB = 1,000MB (1,000,000,000 bytes)
  • 1TB = 1,000GB (1,000,000,000,000 bytes).

PC / Laptop manufacturers and Windows / Android systems see:

  • 1KB = 1024 bytes
  • 1MB = 1024KB (1,048,576 bytes)
  • 1GB = 1024MB (1,073,741,824 bytes)
  • 1TB = 1024GB (1,099,511,627,776 bytes)

This difference in measurement leads to a difference in how much space is shown on some PCs, Laptops, and Phones. This difference increases as the capacity of the drive increases between MBs, GBs, TBs.

Stated Capacity on Drive Windows PC/Laptop/Android Capacity Shown
1GB 0.93 GB
2 GB 1.9 GB
4 GB 3.7 GB
8 GB 7.5 GB
16 GB 14.9 GB
32 GB 29.8 GB
64 GB 59.6 GB
128 GB 119.2 GB
256 GB 238.4 GB
512 GB 476.8 GB
1 TB 0.9 TB
2 TB 1.8 TB
4 TB 3.6 TB
8 TB 7.3 TB
16 TB 14.6 TB

Troubleshooting

My device does not recognise my Integral memory card. What is wrong?
  • Make sure the memory card is not inserted upside down, this is a very common issue with memory cards in mobile phone handsets.
  • Try rebooting/switching on your device with the memory card already inserted.
  • Is your device SDHC / microSDHC compatible? – many cameras, PDA’s, mobile phone handsets and built-in card readers (on a PC) produced before Summer 2007 will not work with SDHC memory cards.
  • Check the switch on the side of the memory card is not set to the “lock” position. If the memory card is locked; move the switch to the unlock position and then try again
  • If you have a SDXC card you must use a compatible SDXC device. To use on a PC you will require a compatible device and a compatible operating system. Please click here to see our guide
  • Try another memory card
I have saved my photos back to the memory card. Why can’t I view them in the camera?

Most cameras will only view images stored within a set folder structure. If you have saved the images to new folders we suggest moving the images back to within the camera’s folder structure and you should be able to view them if in the correct format, but this may not be the case always as some cameras will only display images with the correct EXIF information. (This is extra data stored with the image).

If you have modified the original image or changed the file format using Adobe Photoshop or similar the image may now not be compatible with your camera’s operating system and so will not display on the camera’s viewing screen (the images will be perfectly safe and fine to print).

To avoid problems it is best not to save changed images back to the memory card if possible.

How can I transfer the data from my memory card to my computer?

To transfer data from a memory card to a PC – The PC has to recognise the memory card as a removable drive. It is good practice to back up data kept on a card. This can be done in a number of ways including.

  • Leaving the memory card in your device and connecting your device (usually via a USB cable) to your PC. (Please see your device manual for instructions)
  • Using a suitable memory card slot on your PC if available. Insert the memory card correctly into the appropriate slot on your PC. The memory should show as a “removable drive” in your operating system. (Please note some newer cards may not work in older slots e.g. A SDHC card will not work in a SD only slot)
  • Using an external memory card reader – Connect the memory card reader to your PC and then insert the memory card. The memory should show as a “removable drive” in your operating system. (Please note some newer cards may not work in older reader e.g. A SDHC card will not work in a SD only reader)

Make sure that your internal or external card reader and operating system are compatible with your card and format eg a SDHC card will need a SDHC reader, a SDXC card will need a SDXC reader and a operating system compatible with the exFAT format.

Once the memory card is recognised your can cut-and-paste or drag-and-drop data to and from the memory can as you would with any other drive.

Caution: Do not remove the memory card or turn off the power whilst reading or writing data this could corrupt data.

Why do digital memory cards sometimes become “unreadable” ?

This problem is not related to any particular brand of memory card or device. It can occur when the device had been interrupted when accessing the memory card.

To avoid this problem:

  • DO NOT turn OFF the device or remove the memory card while the device is reading, writing, erasing or formatting.
  • DO NOT use the device while the batteries are low. This could result in corruption. In some cases power can run out as the memory card is being written to.
  • AVOID inserting and removing the memory card with the device switched ON.
  • To fix this problem you will need to reformat the memory card (this will destroy all data held on the card).
  • You may be able to recover images from a corrupted memory card before formatting (see FAQ on reformatting the memory card).
  • Some cameras will not access memory cards that have been formatted in a Card Reader, so please read your camera manual before proceeding with a format.
  • When using card readers make sure the readers light is not flashing and wait a few seconds before pulling the card out of the card reader slot.
My SD Card is write protected – how do I unprotect it?

SD cards have a write lock. This is a switch on the side of the card. The DOWN position is write protect ON and the UP position is write protect OFF.

To use the device in a camera the position of the switch must be UP. It is a good idea to write protect a card with important data.

General Knowledge

What are the differences between FAT16, FAT32 and exFAT file systems?

The default formatting for cards up to 2GB is FAT16.

In recent years, memory cards have gained more storage capacity; 4GB and above. The file format FAT32 is now commonly used in memory cards between 4GB and 32GB.

If a digital device supports only the FAT16 file system you cannot use a memory card bigger than 2GB (i.e. SDHC/microSDHC or SDXC/microSDXC memory cards).

Integral memory cards of 4GB or more such as those in the CompactFlash i-Pro, UltimaPro and SDHC ranges are only supported by FAT32 devices and must be formatted to FAT32.

It is best practice to format the card in your device before use, CAUTION formatting a card will delete all data, please see your device manual.

 

 

FAT 16 (FAT) FAT 32 exFAT (FAT 64)
Maximum file size 2GB* 4GB 2TB (limited by card)
SD Card type SD SDHC, microSDHC SDXC, microSDXC
PC Compatible OS Windows ME/2000/XP/7/8.1 Windows ME/2000/XP/7/8.1 Windows XP/Vista/7/8.1
Notes Windows OS may require updates, please see Table 2 below
Mac Compatible OS Mac OS 8/9/X Mac OS 8/9/X Mac OS X 10.6.5 and above

 

*Recommended limit by Microsoft for compatibility but can be up to 4GB

Table 2

 

Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 and Windows 8.1
Update to SP2 or later, then apply Microsoft update (KB955704). Use with SDXC/microSDXC compatible card reader. Update to SP1 or later. Use with SDXC/microSDXC compatible card reader. Supported – no update required, use with SDXC/microSDXC compatible card reader.

 

 

What is UHS-1 ?

“UHS-1” or more accurately “UHS-I” stands for “Ultra High Speed” – 1 and is a speed class for SDHC and SXDC memory cards. UHS-I has a bus interface speed of up to 104 MB/s. An SDHC UHS-I card will work in any SDHC compatible device at lower speeds, but to take advantage of the UHS-I speed, a UHS-I compatible device is essential. An SDXC UHS-I card will work in any SDXC compatible device at lower speeds, but to take advantage of the UHS-I speed, a UHS-I compatible device is essential. UHS-I compatible cards and devices are normally marked with the symbol below ,”UHS-I” or “I” A speed class is also defined. = Class 1 .”UHS Class 1″

What is the difference between SDUC, SDXC, SDHC and SD cards?
  • SD cards are in the following capacities 4,8,16,32,64,128,256 512MB and 1GB, 2GB only.
  • SDHC cards are available in the following capacities: 4, 8, 16, 32GB
  • SDXC cards are available in the following capacities; 64, 128, 256, 512GB, 1TB, 2TB
  • SDUC cards are available in the following capacities 4, 8, 16, 32, 64, 128TB
  • SDUC memory cards must only be used with SDUC devices.
  • SDXC memory cards can be used with SDXC devices and SDUC Devices.
  • SDHC memory cards can be used with SDHC devices, SDXC devices and SDUC Devices
  • SD memory cards can be used with SD devices, SDHC devices, SDXC devices and SDUC Devices. SDUC (Secure Digital Ultra Capacity), SDXC (Secure Digital eXtended Capacity) and SDHC (Secure Digital High Capacity) were established to meet the growing demand for data heavy apps, 8K, 4K, and HD video and high-resolution image photography. SDUC / SDXC / SDHC are all the same physical size and shape as standard SD.
I need to reformat my memory card, which method should I use?

If you have a digital camera, dashcam, or a phone it is better to format your card in the camera. If you are using the card in a device other than these, we recommend the formatting of the card using a card reader, as described below: If you are using the card in two different devices with different formats (e.g. a Digital Camera and a Phone) we would advise you to use two separate cards. If formatting in the Card Reader (WARNING: FORMATTING CAN & WILL DELETE ALL DATA) please see your device or camera manual before proceeding with a format. Be aware, by default Windows will format a memory card of 2GB or higher capacity to FAT32.

Formatting in a PC:

Windows 2000/XP/Vista/7/10/11 • Open My Computer o Locate the drive letter of your memory card o Right-click on this drive o Select Format… (This will launch the Format Utility Window) o Under the option File System select FAT32 o Click on the Start button • Press Start / Run o Type ‘cmd’ press the OK button o This will launch the MS-DOS window and prompt o Type format *: /fs:FAT32 or NTFS (* represents the drive letter that windows recognises the card as) o Press return and follow the onscreen prompts o Once the routine is complete type EXIT

If memory cards are reusable, why would I ever need more than one card?

If a memory card is used properly it will give many years of service. You could just have a single card but if you invest in 2 or 3 your flexibility is increased greatly:

  • Use an extra card when it is impractical to download your pictures, e.g. on holiday, or on the move.
  • It is sensible to set your camera to at the highest resolution (and therefore highest quality) setting. However, higher resolution images require more space, so with only one memory card you risk running out of storage space quickly. With an extra memory card this problem is eliminated.
  • Many modern digital cameras also record high quality video. These video clips use produce a lot of data, so a single memory card can become full very quickly.
  • Take more shots of your subject and select the best one without having to delete unwanted images straight away.
  • What if your only memory card gets lost or damaged? Precious holiday, birthday, wedding photos could be lost forever! Spread the risk by using 2 or 3 memory cards with your camera.
How long will data stay valid for on a memory card or USB Flash Drive ?

Memory cards and USB drives are NOT designed for long term storage. You should always backup your data on to another device. The data will normally stay valid for a period of up to 10 years if stored under normal conditions. The data cells inside carry a charge which can dissipate over time. The data can be refreshed; copy all data off card and then format the card or USB drive and then restore all data to extend the data for another 10 years.

Why does my Memory Card show less capacity than stated?

There may be a few reasons why your drive’s capacity may be lower than stated.

The first is that when your operating system formats your drive, it leaves some overhead storage for the file system, boot data, wear levelling, and “shadow storage”.

Second, computers and laptops often come with several partitions, including a hidden recovery partition. There is a chance that some of the space is taken up by this recovery partition.

The third, and the main reason, is due to the difference between how memory manufacturers, PC / Laptop manufacturers, and Windows / Android systems measure storage. Memory manufacturers use a decimal system and PC / Laptop manufacturers & Windows / Android systems use a binary system.

In simple terms:

Memory manufacturers see:

  • 1KB = 1000 bytes
  • 1MB = 1,000KB (1,000,000 bytes)
  • 1GB = 1,000MB (1,000,000,000 bytes)
  • 1TB = 1,000GB (1,000,000,000,000 bytes).

PC / Laptop manufacturers and Windows / Android systems see:

  • 1KB = 1024 bytes
  • 1MB = 1024KB (1,048,576 bytes)
  • 1GB = 1024MB (1,073,741,824 bytes)
  • 1TB = 1024GB (1,099,511,627,776 bytes)

This difference in measurement leads to a difference in how much space is shown on some PCs, Laptops, and Phones. This difference increases as the capacity of the drive increases between MBs, GBs, TBs.

Stated Capacity on Drive Windows PC/Laptop/Android Capacity Shown
1GB 0.93 GB
2 GB 1.9 GB
4 GB 3.7 GB
8 GB 7.5 GB
16 GB 14.9 GB
32 GB 29.8 GB
64 GB 59.6 GB
128 GB 119.2 GB
256 GB 238.4 GB
512 GB 476.8 GB
1 TB 0.9 TB
2 TB 1.8 TB
4 TB 3.6 TB
8 TB 7.3 TB
16 TB 14.6 TB

USB Flash Drive

Why can’t I copy large files to my USB flash drive

Your USB may be set to the Fat32 file system. USBs set to this have a 4GB limit on file size. For larger than 4GB files format your USB using exFAT or NTFS file format.

Why doesn’t my PC recognise my iPhone photos?

This is most likely because your PC does not recognise the HEIC format. In 2017, Apple began using the High Efficiency Image Container (HEIC) format in iOS 11 and macOS High Sierra. This format allows for smaller file sizes than JPG or PNG.

If you would prefer that your iPhone camera saves images in JPG format, you can go to Settings/Camera/Formats and set the ‘Most Compatible’ option. Your camera will now save all images a JPGs – but be aware that your images will now be larger in filesize.

Windows 10 supports HEIC files, however earlier versions of Windows may not. If you wish to view your HEIC photos on Windows and your PC does not recognise them, we recommend converting them to JPG using this handy online tool: https://heictojpg.com/

Why doesn’t my PC recognise my iPad photos?

This is most likely because your PC does not recognise the HEIC format. In 2017, Apple began using the High Efficiency Image Container (HEIC) format in iOS 11 and macOS High Sierra. This format allows for smaller file sizes than JPG or PNG.

If you would prefer that your iPad camera saves images in JPG format, you can go to Settings/Camera/Formats and set the ‘Most Compatible’ option. Your camera will now save all images a JPGs – but be aware that your images will now be larger in filesize.

Windows 10 supports HEIC files, however earlier versions of Windows may not. If you wish to view your HEIC photos on Windows and your PC does not recognise them, we recommend converting them to JPG using this handy online tool: https://heictojpg.com/

When I plug in my Integral USB Flash Drive a message states that more power is needed. Why?
  • Each USB device (such as an Integral USB Flash Drive) that you plug into a PC or Mac draws power from the system. Each device draws the power consumption that it needs to operate. Each device is slightly different in what power it draws.
  • If you use a USB hub so that you can plug in many USB devices, then this will also be quite a drain on the power from the PC/Mac. The more USB devices you have, the more power you are drawing from the PC/Mac and there will come a cut off point where the PC/Mac cannot output enough power to support all the devices.
  • We suggest that if you are connecting a USB hub to attach more USB devices to your PC/Mac then you will need to independently power the USB hub (e.g. plug into mains power) so that it will have sufficient power for all USB devices attached to it.
  • You can remove other power hungry USB devices, so that you can use the USB drive.
How do I copy my files and documents to the USB Flash Drive?

Copying files could be done in many ways. First insert your USB into the PC after it has booted. The USB should be recognised by the PC and assigned a drive letter. Look under “My Computer” to see the letter assigned.

Using a Windows PC, some of the easiest ways to copy data to your Integral USB Flash Drive are:-

A. Select the files that you want to copy.
B. On the toolbar click on Edit =>Copy. This copies the location to the system memory on the PC.
C. Open the drive for the USB Flash Drive. On the toolbar click on Edit => Paste. This copies   the files from the PC memory to the USB Flash Drive.

Or

A. Select the files that you want to copy.
B. Right-click on one of the files (you will see that the rest of the files stay highlighted) and click on Copy. This copies the location to the system memory on the PC.
C. Open the drive for the USB Flash Drive. Right-click in a white empty space on the drive and click on Paste. This copies the files from the system memory to the USB Flash Drive.

Or

A. Select the files that you want to copy.
B. Press Ctrl and C (this is the Windows shortcut for copy) on the keyboard. This copies the location to the system memory on the PC.
C. Open the drive for the USB Flash Drive. Click in a white empty space on the drive and press Ctrl and V (this is the Windows shortcut for paste) on the keyboard. This then copies the files from the PC memory to the USB Flash Drive.

When I plug in my Integral USB Flash Drive into a USB port, it is not recognised, why?

The Integral Flexi, 360, Secure360, MicroLite and UltraLite USB Flash Drives only have pin contacts on one side of the USB connector.

When you plug the device into the USB sockets of you PC make sure that the contacts are matched up so that the device is plugged in the correct way. If the Integral USB is not recognised, turn it 180º, so it is the other way around in the socket.

I have corrupted data on my USB Flash Drive and the PC will not allow me to delete these files. What can I do?

This can occur if the file allocation table (FAT) has become corrupt in some way (e.g. loss of power etc).

The drive can be formatted to remove the problem.

Formatting the drive can erase all data. If you have any data on there it is advisable to retrieve it first on your computer. You may need to use file recovery software before formatting.

When I plug in my USB Flash Drive, I get the message “hi-speed device plugged into non-high speed device”. What does it mean?

This means that your PC or laptop has a USB 1.1 port and will not function at the high speed offered by USB 2.0 devices.

This is not a error message and your Integral USB Flash Drive is backwards compatible to work at the slower speeds of USB 1.1. To get the full functionality of the USB 2.0 Flash Drive you will need a PC or laptop with USB 2.0 sockets.

The chart below represents the three tiers of the USB Series:

USB Version / Descriptive Term / Transmission Speed

USB1.0 / Low Speed / 1.5 Mbps
USB1.1 / Full Speed / 12 Mbps
USB2.0 / High Speed / 360 ~ 480 Mbps
USB3.0 / Super Speed / 4.8Gbps

Can I plug my Integral USB Flash Drive into a eSATA Combo Port?

Yes you can, the Integral Flash Drive will function as if it were utilizing a USB 2.0 port.

What would happen if I unplug my USB Flash Drive while data is being written to it?

Your data on the USB Flash Drive can become corrupted or lost and the file system of the Flash Drive may become corrupted as well. It is always recommended to use the “Safely Remove Hardware/USB” option when using your Integral Flash Drive on a PC or Mac.

Using my Integral USB Flash Drive I get the message “Please insert disk into drive/format the drive”. Why is this occurring?

If you experience this it may be the case that the USB Flash Drive file table may have become corrupted or damaged. You will need to format the Flash Drive to re-use it. Firstly, ensure you have no important data stored on the Flash Drive. If you are concerned about the loss of some important data files, contact Integral Tech Support before formatting. If you are unable to format the Integral Flash Drive then fill in the tech support form and we can assist you further.

How long will data stay valid for on a USB drive ?

Memory cards and USB drives are NOT designed for long term storage. You should always backup your data on to another device. The data will normally stay valid for a period of up to 10 years if stored under normal conditions. The data cells inside carry a charge which can dissipate over time. The data can be refreshed; copy all data off card and then format the card or USB drive and then restore all data to extend the data for another 10 years.

Why does my USB drive show less capacity than stated on my PC or MAC

The difference is due to way that most storage manufacturers and PC manufacturers define a scale. There are two systems decimal and binary.

Storage devices use a decimal system and PCs use the binary system -this leads to some discrepancy between actual capacity and reported capacity by a PC. The difference can be between about 2% – 9% depending on the capacity of the drive.

Some additional capacity is taken up by features required by the operating system e.g. FAT tables and the flash drive controller e.g. spare blocks for wear levelling.

Decimal (Dec) bytes Binary (Bin) bytes Ratio (Dec/Bin) % Diff
Kilobyte 103                               1,000 210                                       1,024 0.9765625 2%
Megabyte 106                       1,000,000 220                                1,048,576 0.953674316 5%
Gigabyte 109               1,000,000,000 230                       1,073,741,824 0.931322575 7%
Terabyte 1012 1,000,000,000,000 240               1,099,511,627,776 0.909494702 9%
Are USB 3.0 flash drives backward compatible with USB 2.0 ports ?

Yes, Integral USB 3.0 Flash Drives and card readers are backwards compatible with USB 2.0 ports. The USB 3.0 Flash Drive or card reader will work at the speed of the port, for example if you use a USB 3.0 Flash Drive in your USB 2.0 laptop, it will work at USB 2.0 speed. Most systems available today fully supports USB 3.0 SuperSpeed devices and includes all required drivers for desktop and laptop PCs that feature USB 3.0 ports.

Do I need a driver for USB 3.0 flash drives or card readers ?

Yes, a compatible driver is required for USB 3.0 SuperSpeed products such as Flash Drives and Card Readers. This should be included by the manufacturer of the PC or laptop, motherboard or add-in (PCI) card that has the USB 3.0 ports. Most systems available today have native USB 3.0 support.

I don’t have a USB 3.0 port – Should I buy a USB 3.0 Flash Drive ?

Yes, you can use a USB 3.0 Flash Drive on USB 2.0 devices now, as they are backwards compatible. When you upgrade to a USB 3.0 system you can then benefit from the faster “SuperSpeed” data transfer rates. Integral have also found that our USB 3.0 Flash Drives perform faster on USB 2.0 systems then current USB 2.0 Flash Drives.

USB 3.0 – What is the difference between USB 3.1 Gen 1 and USB3.1 Gen2?

The difference between USB 3.1 Gen 1 and USB 3.1 Gen 2 is the speed. USB 3.1 Gen 1 supports speeds of up to 5Gbit/s while USB 3.1 Gen 2 supports speeds of up to 10Gbit/s.

USB 3.0 – What is USB 3.1 Gen 1?

‘USB 3.1 Gen 1’ is the revised name for ‘USB 3.0’, as managed by the USB Implementers Forum (USB-IF). There are no changes in technical specification between USB 3.0 and USB 3.1 Gen 1. USB 3.1 Gen 1 (USB 3.0) also known as ‘SuperSpeed USB’, provides up to 10X the performance (copying data to and from the USB drive and your PC/Mac) than a USB 2.0 drive, when using the drive in a USB 3.1 Gen 1 (USB 3.0) port.

My Integral USB Flash Drive is transferring data at a very slow speed, what can I do?

Reformatting the drive may help

• Backup all required data from the drive. Using your PC or MAC format the drive. Copy back the required data. Shut down other applications and/or reboot system

• Other applications may be causing the system to run slow. Save required data first. Try another system • In case the current system is having performance problems or is infected. Virus check your USB drive and system

• Errant programs may be slowing down your system Try connecting the drive directly to a USB port on the PC

• Using a hub or multiple hubs, may be causing speed and power issues.

How do I safely remove my Integral Flash Drive?

Before you remove/unplug your USB Flash Drive make sure no data is being transferred to or from the USB. PCs running Windows 7 and above and Macs with OS 9 and above have a “safely remove USB” option that we recommend you follow: Windows Locate and left click on the “Safely Remove” icon on the System Tray to display the USB devices connected on your PC/notebook. Select the computer drive letter assigned to your USB and click on the “close/unplug” option, so you can safely remove it. Apple Mac OS 9 and above Locate the USB drive icon on the desktop and drag it onto the Apple Trash can (icon).

When I plug in my Integral USB Flash Drive, my computer displays a “USB Device Not Recognized” message, what does this mean?

There can be a various causes to this problem. Follow the steps below to try and solve the issue: Firstly ensure you are plugging the USB Flash Drive directly into the PC or notebook and ensure you have the latest USB drivers for your operating system Try plugging your USB Flash Drive into another USB port on your PC/notebook. You could test the USB on another PC or notebook if available Keep your USB Flash Drive plugged in and perform a full ‘Windows Update’ to check for any missing or newer drivers for your computer. To do this, select Start > Settings > Windows Update and follow the onscreen instructions If you are still experiencing problems, please fill in the tech support form and we will help with your issue

How do I format my USB Flash Drive on a Mac?

To format your USB Flash Drive on a Mac:

If you use your USB Flash Drive only on a Mac you will want to reformat it to HFS+ (Mac OS Extended (Journal)) which allows larger file sizes.

In your Applications folder there is a folder called “Utilities“. Here you will find an App called “Disk Utility“. Open it

To reformat your USB, select it and then click the Erase Tab

Here you can set the USB name and the file format (Mac OS Extended (Journal)).
When you’re ready click “Erase” button.

When Erase is completed, you can safely remove your USB Flash Drive
by dragging the “USB Disk” Icon to the “Trash“.

My Integral USB Flash Drive is not detected or I Get a Code 10 or Code 28 on Windows Device Manager.

Code10

If you see this error: “This device cannot start. Try upgrading the device drivers for this device. (Code 10)” there may be a need to update your driver To do so, in the device’s Properties, click the Driver tab, and then click Update Driver to start the Hardware Update Wizard. Follow the instructions for the update The system may prompt you to provide the path of the driver. If this is the case and you do not have it, you can try to download the latest driver from the hardware vendor’s website

Code28

If you see this error: “The drivers for this device are not installed. Code28)” we recommend reinstalling the driver manually Follow these steps to do so From Start, search for device manager and select Device Manager from the results. Right-click the device in the list. Select Uninstall from the menu that appears. After the device is uninstalled, choose Action on the menu bar. Select Scan for hardware changes to reinstall the driver. The system may prompt you to provide the path of the driver. If this is the case and you do not have it, you can try to download the latest driver from the hardware vendor’s website

Are Integral USB Flash Drives compatible with Windows 8.1 and 10?

Yes, Integral USB Flash Drives and Card Readers are compatible with the latest Microsoft Windows operating systems. All Integral USB drives and Card Readers support: Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 Windows 8 / 8.1 Windows 10 Windows 11

When I plug in my Integral USB Flash Drive, my computer displays a “USB device not recognized” message, what does this mean?

There can be a various causes to this problem. Follow the steps below to try and solve the issue:

  • Firstly ensure you are plugging the USB Flash Drive directly into the PC or notebook and ensure you have the latest USB drivers for your operating system
  • Try plugging your USB Flash Drive into another USB port on your PC/notebook. You could test the USB on another PC or notebook if available
  • Keep your USB Flash Drive plugged in and perform a full ‘Windows Update’ to check for any missing or newer drivers for your computer. To do this, open Internet Explorer and click Tools> Windows Update and follow the onscreen instructions

If you are still experiencing problems, please fill in the tech support form and we will help with your issue.

General knowledge

When I plug in my Integral USB Flash Drive a message states that more power is needed. Why?
  • Each USB device (such as an Integral USB Flash Drive) that you plug into a PC or Mac draws power from the system. Each device draws the power consumption that it needs to operate. Each device is slightly different in what power it draws.
  • If you use a USB hub so that you can plug in many USB devices, then this will also be quite a drain on the power from the PC/Mac. The more USB devices you have, the more power you are drawing from the PC/Mac and there will come a cut off point where the PC/Mac cannot output enough power to support all the devices.
  • We suggest that if you are connecting a USB hub to attach more USB devices to your PC/Mac then you will need to independently power the USB hub (e.g. plug into mains power) so that it will have sufficient power for all USB devices attached to it.
  • You can remove other power hungry USB devices, so that you can use the USB drive.
How do I copy my files and documents to the USB Flash Drive?

Copying files could be done in many ways. First insert your USB into the PC after it has booted. The USB should be recognised by the PC and assigned a drive letter. Look under “My Computer” to see the letter assigned.

Using a Windows PC, some of the easiest ways to copy data to your Integral USB Flash Drive are:-

A. Select the files that you want to copy.
B. On the toolbar click on Edit =>Copy. This copies the location to the system memory on the PC.
C. Open the drive for the USB Flash Drive. On the toolbar click on Edit => Paste. This copies   the files from the PC memory to the USB Flash Drive.

Or

A. Select the files that you want to copy.
B. Right-click on one of the files (you will see that the rest of the files stay highlighted) and click on Copy. This copies the location to the system memory on the PC.
C. Open the drive for the USB Flash Drive. Right-click in a white empty space on the drive and click on Paste. This copies the files from the system memory to the USB Flash Drive.

Or

A. Select the files that you want to copy.
B. Press Ctrl and C (this is the Windows shortcut for copy) on the keyboard. This copies the location to the system memory on the PC.
C. Open the drive for the USB Flash Drive. Click in a white empty space on the drive and press Ctrl and V (this is the Windows shortcut for paste) on the keyboard. This then copies the files from the PC memory to the USB Flash Drive.

Can I plug my Integral USB Flash Drive into a eSATA Combo Port?

Yes you can, the Integral Flash Drive will function as if it were utilizing a USB 2.0 port.

What would happen if I unplug my USB Flash Drive while data is being written to it?

Your data on the USB Flash Drive can become corrupted or lost and the file system of the Flash Drive may become corrupted as well. It is always recommended to use the “Safely Remove Hardware/USB” option when using your Integral Flash Drive on a PC or Mac.

How long will data stay valid for on a USB drive ?

Memory cards and USB drives are NOT designed for long term storage. You should always backup your data on to another device. The data will normally stay valid for a period of up to 10 years if stored under normal conditions. The data cells inside carry a charge which can dissipate over time. The data can be refreshed; copy all data off card and then format the card or USB drive and then restore all data to extend the data for another 10 years.

Why does my USB drive show less capacity than stated on my PC or MAC

The difference is due to way that most storage manufacturers and PC manufacturers define a scale. There are two systems decimal and binary.

Storage devices use a decimal system and PCs use the binary system -this leads to some discrepancy between actual capacity and reported capacity by a PC. The difference can be between about 2% – 9% depending on the capacity of the drive.

Some additional capacity is taken up by features required by the operating system e.g. FAT tables and the flash drive controller e.g. spare blocks for wear levelling.

Decimal (Dec) bytes Binary (Bin) bytes Ratio (Dec/Bin) % Diff
Kilobyte 103                               1,000 210                                       1,024 0.9765625 2%
Megabyte 106                       1,000,000 220                                1,048,576 0.953674316 5%
Gigabyte 109               1,000,000,000 230                       1,073,741,824 0.931322575 7%
Terabyte 1012 1,000,000,000,000 240               1,099,511,627,776 0.909494702 9%
Are USB 3.0 flash drives backward compatible with USB 2.0 ports ?

Yes, Integral USB 3.0 Flash Drives and card readers are backwards compatible with USB 2.0 ports. The USB 3.0 Flash Drive or card reader will work at the speed of the port, for example if you use a USB 3.0 Flash Drive in your USB 2.0 laptop, it will work at USB 2.0 speed. Most systems available today fully supports USB 3.0 SuperSpeed devices and includes all required drivers for desktop and laptop PCs that feature USB 3.0 ports.

Do I need a driver for USB 3.0 flash drives or card readers ?

Yes, a compatible driver is required for USB 3.0 SuperSpeed products such as Flash Drives and Card Readers. This should be included by the manufacturer of the PC or laptop, motherboard or add-in (PCI) card that has the USB 3.0 ports. Most systems available today have native USB 3.0 support.

I don’t have a USB 3.0 port – Should I buy a USB 3.0 Flash Drive ?

Yes, you can use a USB 3.0 Flash Drive on USB 2.0 devices now, as they are backwards compatible. When you upgrade to a USB 3.0 system you can then benefit from the faster “SuperSpeed” data transfer rates. Integral have also found that our USB 3.0 Flash Drives perform faster on USB 2.0 systems then current USB 2.0 Flash Drives.

USB 3.0 – What is the difference between USB 3.1 Gen 1 and USB3.1 Gen2?

The difference between USB 3.1 Gen 1 and USB 3.1 Gen 2 is the speed. USB 3.1 Gen 1 supports speeds of up to 5Gbit/s while USB 3.1 Gen 2 supports speeds of up to 10Gbit/s.

USB 3.0 – What is USB 3.1 Gen 1?

‘USB 3.1 Gen 1’ is the revised name for ‘USB 3.0’, as managed by the USB Implementers Forum (USB-IF). There are no changes in technical specification between USB 3.0 and USB 3.1 Gen 1. USB 3.1 Gen 1 (USB 3.0) also known as ‘SuperSpeed USB’, provides up to 10X the performance (copying data to and from the USB drive and your PC/Mac) than a USB 2.0 drive, when using the drive in a USB 3.1 Gen 1 (USB 3.0) port.

Are Integral USB Flash Drives compatible with Windows 8.1 and 10?

Yes, Integral USB Flash Drives and Card Readers are compatible with the latest Microsoft Windows operating systems. All Integral USB drives and Card Readers support: Windows XP Windows Vista Windows 7 Windows 8 / 8.1 Windows 10 Windows 11

Troubleshooting

Why can’t I copy large files to my USB flash drive

Your USB may be set to the Fat32 file system. USBs set to this have a 4GB limit on file size. For larger than 4GB files format your USB using exFAT or NTFS file format.

Why doesn’t my PC recognise my iPhone photos?

This is most likely because your PC does not recognise the HEIC format. In 2017, Apple began using the High Efficiency Image Container (HEIC) format in iOS 11 and macOS High Sierra. This format allows for smaller file sizes than JPG or PNG.

If you would prefer that your iPhone camera saves images in JPG format, you can go to Settings/Camera/Formats and set the ‘Most Compatible’ option. Your camera will now save all images a JPGs – but be aware that your images will now be larger in filesize.

Windows 10 supports HEIC files, however earlier versions of Windows may not. If you wish to view your HEIC photos on Windows and your PC does not recognise them, we recommend converting them to JPG using this handy online tool: https://heictojpg.com/

Why doesn’t my PC recognise my iPad photos?

This is most likely because your PC does not recognise the HEIC format. In 2017, Apple began using the High Efficiency Image Container (HEIC) format in iOS 11 and macOS High Sierra. This format allows for smaller file sizes than JPG or PNG.

If you would prefer that your iPad camera saves images in JPG format, you can go to Settings/Camera/Formats and set the ‘Most Compatible’ option. Your camera will now save all images a JPGs – but be aware that your images will now be larger in filesize.

Windows 10 supports HEIC files, however earlier versions of Windows may not. If you wish to view your HEIC photos on Windows and your PC does not recognise them, we recommend converting them to JPG using this handy online tool: https://heictojpg.com/

When I plug in my Integral USB Flash Drive into a USB port, it is not recognised, why?

The Integral Flexi, 360, Secure360, MicroLite and UltraLite USB Flash Drives only have pin contacts on one side of the USB connector.

When you plug the device into the USB sockets of you PC make sure that the contacts are matched up so that the device is plugged in the correct way. If the Integral USB is not recognised, turn it 180º, so it is the other way around in the socket.

I have corrupted data on my USB Flash Drive and the PC will not allow me to delete these files. What can I do?

This can occur if the file allocation table (FAT) has become corrupt in some way (e.g. loss of power etc).

The drive can be formatted to remove the problem.

Formatting the drive can erase all data. If you have any data on there it is advisable to retrieve it first on your computer. You may need to use file recovery software before formatting.

When I plug in my USB Flash Drive, I get the message “hi-speed device plugged into non-high speed device”. What does it mean?

This means that your PC or laptop has a USB 1.1 port and will not function at the high speed offered by USB 2.0 devices.

This is not a error message and your Integral USB Flash Drive is backwards compatible to work at the slower speeds of USB 1.1. To get the full functionality of the USB 2.0 Flash Drive you will need a PC or laptop with USB 2.0 sockets.

The chart below represents the three tiers of the USB Series:

USB Version / Descriptive Term / Transmission Speed

USB1.0 / Low Speed / 1.5 Mbps
USB1.1 / Full Speed / 12 Mbps
USB2.0 / High Speed / 360 ~ 480 Mbps
USB3.0 / Super Speed / 4.8Gbps

Using my Integral USB Flash Drive I get the message “Please insert disk into drive/format the drive”. Why is this occurring?

If you experience this it may be the case that the USB Flash Drive file table may have become corrupted or damaged. You will need to format the Flash Drive to re-use it. Firstly, ensure you have no important data stored on the Flash Drive. If you are concerned about the loss of some important data files, contact Integral Tech Support before formatting. If you are unable to format the Integral Flash Drive then fill in the tech support form and we can assist you further.

My Integral USB Flash Drive is transferring data at a very slow speed, what can I do?

Reformatting the drive may help

• Backup all required data from the drive. Using your PC or MAC format the drive. Copy back the required data. Shut down other applications and/or reboot system

• Other applications may be causing the system to run slow. Save required data first. Try another system • In case the current system is having performance problems or is infected. Virus check your USB drive and system

• Errant programs may be slowing down your system Try connecting the drive directly to a USB port on the PC

• Using a hub or multiple hubs, may be causing speed and power issues.

How do I safely remove my Integral Flash Drive?

Before you remove/unplug your USB Flash Drive make sure no data is being transferred to or from the USB. PCs running Windows 7 and above and Macs with OS 9 and above have a “safely remove USB” option that we recommend you follow: Windows Locate and left click on the “Safely Remove” icon on the System Tray to display the USB devices connected on your PC/notebook. Select the computer drive letter assigned to your USB and click on the “close/unplug” option, so you can safely remove it. Apple Mac OS 9 and above Locate the USB drive icon on the desktop and drag it onto the Apple Trash can (icon).

When I plug in my Integral USB Flash Drive, my computer displays a “USB Device Not Recognized” message, what does this mean?

There can be a various causes to this problem. Follow the steps below to try and solve the issue: Firstly ensure you are plugging the USB Flash Drive directly into the PC or notebook and ensure you have the latest USB drivers for your operating system Try plugging your USB Flash Drive into another USB port on your PC/notebook. You could test the USB on another PC or notebook if available Keep your USB Flash Drive plugged in and perform a full ‘Windows Update’ to check for any missing or newer drivers for your computer. To do this, select Start > Settings > Windows Update and follow the onscreen instructions If you are still experiencing problems, please fill in the tech support form and we will help with your issue

How do I format my USB Flash Drive on a Mac?

To format your USB Flash Drive on a Mac:

If you use your USB Flash Drive only on a Mac you will want to reformat it to HFS+ (Mac OS Extended (Journal)) which allows larger file sizes.

In your Applications folder there is a folder called “Utilities“. Here you will find an App called “Disk Utility“. Open it

To reformat your USB, select it and then click the Erase Tab

Here you can set the USB name and the file format (Mac OS Extended (Journal)).
When you’re ready click “Erase” button.

When Erase is completed, you can safely remove your USB Flash Drive
by dragging the “USB Disk” Icon to the “Trash“.

My Integral USB Flash Drive is not detected or I Get a Code 10 or Code 28 on Windows Device Manager.

Code10

If you see this error: “This device cannot start. Try upgrading the device drivers for this device. (Code 10)” there may be a need to update your driver To do so, in the device’s Properties, click the Driver tab, and then click Update Driver to start the Hardware Update Wizard. Follow the instructions for the update The system may prompt you to provide the path of the driver. If this is the case and you do not have it, you can try to download the latest driver from the hardware vendor’s website

Code28

If you see this error: “The drivers for this device are not installed. Code28)” we recommend reinstalling the driver manually Follow these steps to do so From Start, search for device manager and select Device Manager from the results. Right-click the device in the list. Select Uninstall from the menu that appears. After the device is uninstalled, choose Action on the menu bar. Select Scan for hardware changes to reinstall the driver. The system may prompt you to provide the path of the driver. If this is the case and you do not have it, you can try to download the latest driver from the hardware vendor’s website

When I plug in my Integral USB Flash Drive, my computer displays a “USB device not recognized” message, what does this mean?

There can be a various causes to this problem. Follow the steps below to try and solve the issue:

  • Firstly ensure you are plugging the USB Flash Drive directly into the PC or notebook and ensure you have the latest USB drivers for your operating system
  • Try plugging your USB Flash Drive into another USB port on your PC/notebook. You could test the USB on another PC or notebook if available
  • Keep your USB Flash Drive plugged in and perform a full ‘Windows Update’ to check for any missing or newer drivers for your computer. To do this, open Internet Explorer and click Tools> Windows Update and follow the onscreen instructions

If you are still experiencing problems, please fill in the tech support form and we will help with your issue.

Encrypted SSD

Can creating or changing the BIOS password on my system affect my encrypted data?

No. The Crypto SSD is independent of the BIOS and your data will not be affected with credential changes made in the BIOS.

Is my Crypto SSD Compatible with Apple Macs or Linux computers?

No. The Crypto SSD encryption is only compatible with Windows Operating Systems.

On other Operating Systems the Crypto SSD can only be used as a normal SSD without encryption enabled.

How do the Master and User Dual Profiles on the Crypto SSD work?

A Dual Profile secured SSD is an ideal solution for administered network environments. IT network staff can setup a Crypto SSD with a Master profile, to access the Crypto SSD should the user forget their password or lock themselves out of the Crypto SSD due to invalid password attempts.

Dual Profiles can also be used for single users, to have two access points should one credential be forgotten.

Can I install my Crypto SSD as a secondary drive?

Yes. Although it can only be used a secondary drive but encryption cannot be enabled. For encryption to be set the Crypto SSD must be the master drive on your system.

What is Full Disk Encryption (FDE)?

Full Disk Encryption (FDE) is a method for encrypting the entire hard drive to protect your data. This includes the operating system and data FDE works through the controller of the storage device encrypting/decrypting data as it is received back and forth. There are many encryption algorithms used with FDE devices, the most common of which is 128-bit and 256-bit AES (Advanced Encryption Standard). The Integral Crypto SSD and USB use hardware-based FDE and utilises 256-bit AES to protect your data. SSD and USB Certificates for FIPS 140-2 Level 3 – PCB: 3970 and AES 256 Bit Encryption: 3887 Crypto USB Certificate for FIPS 197 – C1686 (AES 256 Bit) Crypto SSD Certificate for FIPS 197 – C1688 (AES 256 Bit)

Can re-flashing the BIOS affect my encrypted data?

No. The Crypto SSD is independent of the BIOS and your data will not be affected if you were to re-flash or clear the CMOS jumper of your motherboard.

Are there are on-going licence fees to use the Crypto SDD?

Unlike some software solutions, there are no on-going licence or usage fees for the Crypto Hardware Encrypted SSD.

SSD

Will Superfetch be disabled on SSDs?

Yes, for most systems with SSDs. If the system disk is an SSD, and the SSD performs adequately on random reads and doesn’t have glaring performance issues with random writes or flushes, then Superfetch, boot prefetching, application launch prefetching, ReadyBoost and ReadDrive will all be disabled. * Windows SuperFetch SuperFetch enables programs and files to load quickly. SuperFetch monitors which applications you use the most and preloads these into your system memory so they will be ready when you need them ( This is used in Windows Vista and Windows 7 Operating systems) *The prefetch folder is used for speeding up your system. The way it does this is by doing the following:

  • Windows 11 is configured to prefetch application and program components so that when you load them to memory; it appears to be very quick.
  • When Windows 11 does this the first time, it winds up copying portions of the program to the prefetch area of your local disk.
  • When Windows 11 boots up it will prefetch portions of the files you use the most.
  • Windows 11 loads all associated files, libraries, and pointers necessary to run the program in advance, the preloaded subset makes your system appear quicker.
Does the Integral SSD require a driver to operate?

No, the SSD itself does not require a driver. However, your SATA controller may require a driver. You can obtain this from the manufacturer.

Should I be worried about compatibility when replacing my traditional SATA hard drive with a SSD SATA drive?

No. Any standard SATA based SSD will normally work with any SATA based socket.

If I dropped my SSD, would it still work?

SSDs can still break if you drop it, but as a whole, the lack of moving parts makes that SSD is less prone to damage from shocks.

Will the SSD be as noisy as my HDD?

Typical hard drives will measure anywhere between 24 and 36 dBA depending on what they’re doing at the time (i.e. idle or seeking data).
In comparison SSD are effectively silent both when they’re idle and under load (reading or writing data).

Will I save battery life using an SSD instead of traditional HDD?

Yes, the power consumption of an SSD is a fraction of that of a traditional hard disk drive thanks to the lack of mechanical moving parts and the speed at which data can be accessed (less computing time to get at your data). Also less heat is noise and heat are generated.

How do I copy my files and documents to the External SSD?

Copying files could be done in many ways. It all depends on which makes you more comfortable.

Using a PC, some of the easiest ways to copy data to your Integral External SSD are:-

A. Select the files that you want to copy.
B. On the toolbar click on Edit => Copy. This copies the data to the system memory on the PC.
C. Open the drive for the Integral External SSD. On the toolbar, click on Edit => Paste. This copies the files from the PC memory to the External SSD.

Or

A. Select the files that you want to copy.
B. Right-click on one of the files (you will see that the rest of the files stay highlighted) and click on Copy. This copies the data to the system memory on the PC.
C. Open the drive for the Integral External SSD Drive. Right-click in a white empty space on the drive and click on Paste. This copies the files from the system memory to the Integral External SSD.

Or

A. Select the files that you want to copy.
B. Press Ctrl and C (this is the Windows shortcut for Copy command) on the keyboard. This copies the data to the system memory on the PC.
C. Open the drive for the Integral External SSD. Click in a white empty space on the drive and press Ctrl and V (this is the Windows shortcut for Paste command) on the keyboard. This then copies the files from the PC memory to the Integral External SSD.

General Knowledge

Will Superfetch be disabled on SSDs?

Yes, for most systems with SSDs. If the system disk is an SSD, and the SSD performs adequately on random reads and doesn’t have glaring performance issues with random writes or flushes, then Superfetch, boot prefetching, application launch prefetching, ReadyBoost and ReadDrive will all be disabled. * Windows SuperFetch SuperFetch enables programs and files to load quickly. SuperFetch monitors which applications you use the most and preloads these into your system memory so they will be ready when you need them ( This is used in Windows Vista and Windows 7 Operating systems) *The prefetch folder is used for speeding up your system. The way it does this is by doing the following:

  • Windows 11 is configured to prefetch application and program components so that when you load them to memory; it appears to be very quick.
  • When Windows 11 does this the first time, it winds up copying portions of the program to the prefetch area of your local disk.
  • When Windows 11 boots up it will prefetch portions of the files you use the most.
  • Windows 11 loads all associated files, libraries, and pointers necessary to run the program in advance, the preloaded subset makes your system appear quicker.
Does the Integral SSD require a driver to operate?

No, the SSD itself does not require a driver. However, your SATA controller may require a driver. You can obtain this from the manufacturer.

Should I be worried about compatibility when replacing my traditional SATA hard drive with a SSD SATA drive?

No. Any standard SATA based SSD will normally work with any SATA based socket.

If I dropped my SSD, would it still work?

SSDs can still break if you drop it, but as a whole, the lack of moving parts makes that SSD is less prone to damage from shocks.

Will the SSD be as noisy as my HDD?

Typical hard drives will measure anywhere between 24 and 36 dBA depending on what they’re doing at the time (i.e. idle or seeking data).
In comparison SSD are effectively silent both when they’re idle and under load (reading or writing data).

Will I save battery life using an SSD instead of traditional HDD?

Yes, the power consumption of an SSD is a fraction of that of a traditional hard disk drive thanks to the lack of mechanical moving parts and the speed at which data can be accessed (less computing time to get at your data). Also less heat is noise and heat are generated.

How do I copy my files and documents to the External SSD?

Copying files could be done in many ways. It all depends on which makes you more comfortable.

Using a PC, some of the easiest ways to copy data to your Integral External SSD are:-

A. Select the files that you want to copy.
B. On the toolbar click on Edit => Copy. This copies the data to the system memory on the PC.
C. Open the drive for the Integral External SSD. On the toolbar, click on Edit => Paste. This copies the files from the PC memory to the External SSD.

Or

A. Select the files that you want to copy.
B. Right-click on one of the files (you will see that the rest of the files stay highlighted) and click on Copy. This copies the data to the system memory on the PC.
C. Open the drive for the Integral External SSD Drive. Right-click in a white empty space on the drive and click on Paste. This copies the files from the system memory to the Integral External SSD.

Or

A. Select the files that you want to copy.
B. Press Ctrl and C (this is the Windows shortcut for Copy command) on the keyboard. This copies the data to the system memory on the PC.
C. Open the drive for the Integral External SSD. Click in a white empty space on the drive and press Ctrl and V (this is the Windows shortcut for Paste command) on the keyboard. This then copies the files from the PC memory to the Integral External SSD.

Troubleshooting

RAM

Can I mix different DRAM memory speeds?

You can use memory modules of different speeds as long as they are faster than those specified for your computer. It is recommended to use modules of the same speed as those already installed in your system. If you do mix speeds, the modules will all run at the speed of your slowest modules.

Can I mix DDR, DDR2 and DDR3 modules in my PC?

No. DDR3, DDR4 and DDR5 are different. You must select the correct type to match your system. DDR3, DDR4 and DDR4, DIMM and SODIMM modules have notches in different places to prevent insertion into a incompatible system

What are memory module RANKS and how are they used ?

A RANK is a 64bit (or in a case of an ECC module 72bit) data width addressable area of a memory module. Currently a module can be: SINGLE RANKED (Rank 1) DOUBLE RANKED (Rank 2)QUAD RANKED (Rank 4).OCTO RANKED (Rank 8)1 RANK = 64bit width (or 72bit with ECC). Ranks are for interleaving to make a system run faster. This is where one device or part of a device is being accessed for data whilst another device or part of a device is getting ready to deliver data.

Can I install an ECC DIMM on a Non-ECC motherboard?

Most motherboards that do not have an ECC function within the BIOS are still able to use a module with ECC, but the ECC functionality will not work.

Keep in mind, there are some cases where the motherboard will not accept an ECC module, depending on the BIOS version.

What are “unbuffered” and “registered” (reg) memory modules ?

UNBUFFERED – No buffer the memory is connected directly to the chipset controller. Memory modules that are used in desktops or notebooks are mostly unbuffered.

BUFFERED – A buffer is used to help the system control large amount of memory.

REGISTERED – Registered modules do not have a buffer but do contain a register that delays all information transferred to the module by one clock cycle, this increases reliability and the main application is for servers.

What is the difference between CL2 and CL3?

CL stands for CAS (Column Access Strobe) Latency, which is a term referring to the time that it takes to retrieve data from the module.

  • CL2 and CL3 refer to the amount of clock cycles that it takes before the initial stream of data is sent.
  • CL2 modules wait two clock cycles before sending data.
  • CL3 modules wait three clock cycles before sending data.
  • CL2 modules are faster since they only wait two clock cycles. Some systems may specify either CL2 or CL3 memory.
How do I know which is the first memory module socket?

Normally the memory module sockets (slots) are marked 0, 1, 2, 3 etc… with socket zero being the lowest. If there are no markings on the motherboard, the socket nearest to the CPU is normally considered socket zero (or the first socket).

Will additional memory speed up my computer?

In general yes it will speed up your computer.

Additional memory will not increase the speed of the CPU, however it will reduce the time a CPU spends waiting for information from the hard drive. RAM provides data to a CPU faster than a hard drive, so it will not take as long for programs to execute. If your system is running slow and you have less than the ideal amount of memory, -increasing the memory is an easy way of boosting system performance.

What is ESD?

ESD (Electrostatic Discharge) is static electricity. ESD occurs when touching an object that conducts static electricity. ESD can damage memory modules.

To protect your memory module from ESD, always store components in antistatic packaging until use. Before handling memory modules we recommend you discharge any static by touching an earthed metal object such as a nearby unpainted radiator or pipe.

ESD wrist straps can be purchased to provide additional ESD protection.

What is the difference between Physical and Virtual Memory?

Physical and Virtual memory are two different things. Virtual memory allows you to use some of your hard drive as though it were RAM. Your hard drive is up to 100 times slower than RAM. When you upgrade your RAM, you can reduce or eliminate the use of virtual memory. Upgrading RAM makes more (physical) memory available to complete tasks previously handled by virtual memory.

What is ECC (Error Correcting Code)?

ECC stands for ERROR CORRECTING CODE.

This uses technology on the motherboard to test the accuracy of outgoing and incoming data by using a checksum. Some errors are automatically corrected; ECC modules are normally used in high end workstations and servers where data integrity is vital. ECC applies to DDR3, DDR4 and DDR4 modules.

ECC modules have a extra memory chip for every eight chips. e.g. 9 or 18 as opposed to 8 or 16 for a NON-ECC module.

In most cases you can install a ECC module into a NON-ECC system but generally a ECC system will require a ECC module. Please check your PC manual.

What is Parity?

Parity is a method of checking for data corruption in memory. One check-bit is added to each byte (8 bits). Errors are detected, but not corrected.

Can I visually see if the modules have ECC?

In general yes, count the total number of memory chips on the module. If the number of data chips can be divided by 3 then the module has ECC. (i.e. ECC will have an odd number of data chips)

What is the difference between a SIMM and a DIMM?

A SIMM (Single In-Line Memory Module) has a single line of connectors. Connectors on each side of the Board are the same. SIMMs are now obsolete.

A DIMM (Dual In-Line Memory Module) has 2 lines of connectors. Connectors on each side of the board are not connected. DIMMs and SoDIMMs are supported in DDR3, DDR4 and DDR5

What is JEDEC?

Jedec is the Joint-Electron-Device-Engineering-Council, an important body that sets the standards in the memory industry.

Areas like the dimensions and functionality of DIMMS are set by JEDEC. This ensures compatibility.

What is Dual-Channel Memory?

The phrase Dual-Channel memory is incorrect. The true statement is Memory in Dual-Channel mode. This refers to a machine utilising a pair of modules processing the data more efficiently and reducing system latencies (interleaving). If your machine is Dual-Channel mode compatible then you will see the benefit when using compatible memory in pairs.

What is SDRAM?

SDRAM (Synchronous Dynamic Random Access Memory) is the term used for all memory that run with timing cycles that are synchronous to the Motherboard. Prior to SDRAM, memory ran in its own clock cycle which caused waiting time for the CPU.

SDRAM was introduced at the same time as the 133Mhz Pentium Processor.

What is the difference between SDRAM and DDR?

Single Data Rate (SDR) SDRAM has been superseded by faster Double Data Rate (DDR RAM)
DDR RAM with a Double Data Rate is achieved this by “double pumping” (transferring data on both the rising and falling edges of the clock signal), hence double the data rate. The other differences include : number of pins, voltage, speed and latency.

SDRAM will not fit or work in a DDR system and vice-versa.

What is an SPD?

The SPD (Serial Presence Detect) chip on a memory module is an additional chip holding 128Hex bytes of information about the module.

This identifies the module to the BIOS during POST so the Motherboard knows its characteristics and timings that can be used. This was introduced at the same time as SDRAM.

What is POST?

POST (Power On Self Test) occurs as the computer is turned on. The BIOS checks each necessary component is responding and reads info for access timings. In the case of memory modules, it will read the SPD (Serial Presence Detect) to check compatibility and access timings. If the wrong type of memory is installed or if the memory has become faulty – there may be a POST error reported, sometimes with beeps.

Why does my computer need memory modules installed in pairs?

The most common reason is that the machine is designed to work in Dual Channel Mode where the memory controller utilises a pair of modules in turn (interleaving) so that it can reduce the time that it waits whilst the memory is read giving a better performance.

What is a NanoSecond?

A nanosecond (ns) is one billionth of a second (10-9 s).

They are used to show the length of time a memory chip takes to complete a single read/write cycle.

How can I tell how much memory is installed in my printer?

Normally the amount of installed memory will show when you print a status page. Please refer to your device’s handbook for instructions on how to do this.

What is CAS Latency ?

CAS Latency (CL) stands for Column Address Strobe. This is the number of clock cycles that pass from when an instruction is given for a particular column and the moment the data is available.

Cisco UCS Manager is showing that servers with Integral memory modules have “Invalid FRU” DIMMs installed. What does this mean?

The Cisco UCS Manager uses a catalogue system to identify DIMMs. In some situations, for example where the UCS Catalogue in service is not the most recent, or if the Integral components are not recognised, then these messages will be reported for servers with Integral memory installed.

However, there is absolutely no impact on the memory performance and these messages can be safely ignored.

General Knowledge

Can I mix different DRAM memory speeds?

You can use memory modules of different speeds as long as they are faster than those specified for your computer. It is recommended to use modules of the same speed as those already installed in your system. If you do mix speeds, the modules will all run at the speed of your slowest modules.

Can I mix DDR, DDR2 and DDR3 modules in my PC?

No. DDR3, DDR4 and DDR5 are different. You must select the correct type to match your system. DDR3, DDR4 and DDR4, DIMM and SODIMM modules have notches in different places to prevent insertion into a incompatible system

What are memory module RANKS and how are they used ?

A RANK is a 64bit (or in a case of an ECC module 72bit) data width addressable area of a memory module. Currently a module can be: SINGLE RANKED (Rank 1) DOUBLE RANKED (Rank 2)QUAD RANKED (Rank 4).OCTO RANKED (Rank 8)1 RANK = 64bit width (or 72bit with ECC). Ranks are for interleaving to make a system run faster. This is where one device or part of a device is being accessed for data whilst another device or part of a device is getting ready to deliver data.

Can I install an ECC DIMM on a Non-ECC motherboard?

Most motherboards that do not have an ECC function within the BIOS are still able to use a module with ECC, but the ECC functionality will not work.

Keep in mind, there are some cases where the motherboard will not accept an ECC module, depending on the BIOS version.

What are “unbuffered” and “registered” (reg) memory modules ?

UNBUFFERED – No buffer the memory is connected directly to the chipset controller. Memory modules that are used in desktops or notebooks are mostly unbuffered.

BUFFERED – A buffer is used to help the system control large amount of memory.

REGISTERED – Registered modules do not have a buffer but do contain a register that delays all information transferred to the module by one clock cycle, this increases reliability and the main application is for servers.

What is the difference between CL2 and CL3?

CL stands for CAS (Column Access Strobe) Latency, which is a term referring to the time that it takes to retrieve data from the module.

  • CL2 and CL3 refer to the amount of clock cycles that it takes before the initial stream of data is sent.
  • CL2 modules wait two clock cycles before sending data.
  • CL3 modules wait three clock cycles before sending data.
  • CL2 modules are faster since they only wait two clock cycles. Some systems may specify either CL2 or CL3 memory.
How do I know which is the first memory module socket?

Normally the memory module sockets (slots) are marked 0, 1, 2, 3 etc… with socket zero being the lowest. If there are no markings on the motherboard, the socket nearest to the CPU is normally considered socket zero (or the first socket).

Will additional memory speed up my computer?

In general yes it will speed up your computer.

Additional memory will not increase the speed of the CPU, however it will reduce the time a CPU spends waiting for information from the hard drive. RAM provides data to a CPU faster than a hard drive, so it will not take as long for programs to execute. If your system is running slow and you have less than the ideal amount of memory, -increasing the memory is an easy way of boosting system performance.

What is ESD?

ESD (Electrostatic Discharge) is static electricity. ESD occurs when touching an object that conducts static electricity. ESD can damage memory modules.

To protect your memory module from ESD, always store components in antistatic packaging until use. Before handling memory modules we recommend you discharge any static by touching an earthed metal object such as a nearby unpainted radiator or pipe.

ESD wrist straps can be purchased to provide additional ESD protection.

What is the difference between Physical and Virtual Memory?

Physical and Virtual memory are two different things. Virtual memory allows you to use some of your hard drive as though it were RAM. Your hard drive is up to 100 times slower than RAM. When you upgrade your RAM, you can reduce or eliminate the use of virtual memory. Upgrading RAM makes more (physical) memory available to complete tasks previously handled by virtual memory.

What is ECC (Error Correcting Code)?

ECC stands for ERROR CORRECTING CODE.

This uses technology on the motherboard to test the accuracy of outgoing and incoming data by using a checksum. Some errors are automatically corrected; ECC modules are normally used in high end workstations and servers where data integrity is vital. ECC applies to DDR3, DDR4 and DDR4 modules.

ECC modules have a extra memory chip for every eight chips. e.g. 9 or 18 as opposed to 8 or 16 for a NON-ECC module.

In most cases you can install a ECC module into a NON-ECC system but generally a ECC system will require a ECC module. Please check your PC manual.

What is Parity?

Parity is a method of checking for data corruption in memory. One check-bit is added to each byte (8 bits). Errors are detected, but not corrected.

Can I visually see if the modules have ECC?

In general yes, count the total number of memory chips on the module. If the number of data chips can be divided by 3 then the module has ECC. (i.e. ECC will have an odd number of data chips)

What is the difference between a SIMM and a DIMM?

A SIMM (Single In-Line Memory Module) has a single line of connectors. Connectors on each side of the Board are the same. SIMMs are now obsolete.

A DIMM (Dual In-Line Memory Module) has 2 lines of connectors. Connectors on each side of the board are not connected. DIMMs and SoDIMMs are supported in DDR3, DDR4 and DDR5

What is JEDEC?

Jedec is the Joint-Electron-Device-Engineering-Council, an important body that sets the standards in the memory industry.

Areas like the dimensions and functionality of DIMMS are set by JEDEC. This ensures compatibility.

What is Dual-Channel Memory?

The phrase Dual-Channel memory is incorrect. The true statement is Memory in Dual-Channel mode. This refers to a machine utilising a pair of modules processing the data more efficiently and reducing system latencies (interleaving). If your machine is Dual-Channel mode compatible then you will see the benefit when using compatible memory in pairs.

What is SDRAM?

SDRAM (Synchronous Dynamic Random Access Memory) is the term used for all memory that run with timing cycles that are synchronous to the Motherboard. Prior to SDRAM, memory ran in its own clock cycle which caused waiting time for the CPU.

SDRAM was introduced at the same time as the 133Mhz Pentium Processor.

What is the difference between SDRAM and DDR?

Single Data Rate (SDR) SDRAM has been superseded by faster Double Data Rate (DDR RAM)
DDR RAM with a Double Data Rate is achieved this by “double pumping” (transferring data on both the rising and falling edges of the clock signal), hence double the data rate. The other differences include : number of pins, voltage, speed and latency.

SDRAM will not fit or work in a DDR system and vice-versa.

What is an SPD?

The SPD (Serial Presence Detect) chip on a memory module is an additional chip holding 128Hex bytes of information about the module.

This identifies the module to the BIOS during POST so the Motherboard knows its characteristics and timings that can be used. This was introduced at the same time as SDRAM.

What is POST?

POST (Power On Self Test) occurs as the computer is turned on. The BIOS checks each necessary component is responding and reads info for access timings. In the case of memory modules, it will read the SPD (Serial Presence Detect) to check compatibility and access timings. If the wrong type of memory is installed or if the memory has become faulty – there may be a POST error reported, sometimes with beeps.

Why does my computer need memory modules installed in pairs?

The most common reason is that the machine is designed to work in Dual Channel Mode where the memory controller utilises a pair of modules in turn (interleaving) so that it can reduce the time that it waits whilst the memory is read giving a better performance.

What is a NanoSecond?

A nanosecond (ns) is one billionth of a second (10-9 s).

They are used to show the length of time a memory chip takes to complete a single read/write cycle.

What is CAS Latency ?

CAS Latency (CL) stands for Column Address Strobe. This is the number of clock cycles that pass from when an instruction is given for a particular column and the moment the data is available.

Troubleshooting

How can I tell how much memory is installed in my printer?

Normally the amount of installed memory will show when you print a status page. Please refer to your device’s handbook for instructions on how to do this.

Cisco UCS Manager is showing that servers with Integral memory modules have “Invalid FRU” DIMMs installed. What does this mean?

The Cisco UCS Manager uses a catalogue system to identify DIMMs. In some situations, for example where the UCS Catalogue in service is not the most recent, or if the Integral components are not recognised, then these messages will be reported for servers with Integral memory installed.

However, there is absolutely no impact on the memory performance and these messages can be safely ignored.

USB Card Reader

When I insert a USB Card Reader into my PC nothing seems to happen – Why ?

You must have a correctly formatted card for your operating system in one of the slots. Please insert a suitable memory card into the correct slot and re-insert USB reader.

If the memory card is not formatted correctly, you will need to format the card either in the PC or in your device. CAUTION – Formatting a card will erase all data.

Make sure the memory card is the correct way up and that you are using the correct slot (if using a multi-slot device) – Do NOT use force.

You will also need to check that your memory card is compatible with your USB Reader.

A SDHC/MicroSDHC memory card requires a SDHC/MicroSDHC compatible reader. Many older readers (including ones in PCs) may not be SDHC compatible.

A SDXC memory card requires a SDXC compatible reader and a exFAT compatible operating system. Proceed with caution.

Do you still need assistance? Contact us and one of our agents will get back to you shortly.