Verbatim U3 Store'n'Go 1GB USB flash drive - OS2

This is a discussion on Verbatim U3 Store'n'Go 1GB USB flash drive - OS2 ; [This is a hardware report/case study.] I was in Staples/Business Depot on the weekend to buy some 2007 tax software, when I noticed that this USB flash drive (see subject) was on sale for Cdn$30 (regular price $65). I've been ...

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Thread: Verbatim U3 Store'n'Go 1GB USB flash drive

  1. Verbatim U3 Store'n'Go 1GB USB flash drive

    [This is a hardware report/case study.]

    I was in Staples/Business Depot on the weekend to buy some 2007 tax
    software, when I noticed that this USB flash drive (see subject) was on
    sale for Cdn$30 (regular price $65).

    I've been meaning to get a USB flash drive for ages. (I have an old and
    exceedingly cheap one from Sony, but it's only 128MB and is literally
    falling apart as well.) So I figured, for $30 it was a worthwhile risk.

    This particular model claims to have several pre-installed applications
    for mobile computing purposes (Windows, or course), but a note on the box
    said it could also be used as "regular" USB storage under Mac and Linux,
    so I guessed it had a decent shot at working under OS/2.

    The first thing I did was try it under Win2K. Upon insertion, a fancy
    splash screen comes up, then a "U3" icon appears in the system tray.
    Clicking the icon brings up a slick graphical control panel, with a list
    of installed applications on the left, together with a "download" button
    for downloading additional ones from the Verbatim site; on the right are
    several other controls, including documentation and an "explore drive"
    icon. Underneath is a large red "eject" button.

    It actually shows up under Windows as two drive letters: an emulated CD
    drive containing the control panel software (in an AUTORUN.INF), and the
    actual USB data drive, which contains pre-existing "Documents" and
    "System\Apps\xxx" directories. It all works slickly enough under Windows.

    Next, I rebooted to OS/2 and put the key back in. (I have USB 2.0 ports
    with the USBEHCI driver installed.) The drive was detected... sort of:
    a "drive J" appeared, but I couldn't access it. Attempts to open it
    through the WPS, or change to it from CMD, were unsuccessful. I took a
    look in LVM, but it reported a corrupt partition table and was
    inaccessible.

    Fair enough... I fired up DFSee (v7.13) and took a look. It reported
    having a FAT16 partition. First I tried "fix CHS values to geometry", but
    that made no discernable difference. Okay, I said to myself -- I bought
    this thing for USB storage, not for its fancy pre-installed applications
    (which include an OEM version of ACDSee, Thunderbird, some backup program
    and a couple of other Win-specific things). I decided to delete the
    partition and recreate it, which I did right from DFSee. I set the new
    partition's type back to FAT16, then removed the key and reinserted it.

    This time, drive J: showed up as a normal, accessible volume. I formatted
    it with FAT16, and now it is perfectly useable under OS/2.

    I was somewhat surprised the next time I inserted it under Windows,
    because the Verbatim splash screen and control panel came up again! The
    only difference was that the control panel no longer listed any software
    on the left-hand side except for "download applications". But it was as
    fully-functional as before. It even automatically recreated a "Documents"
    subdirectory on the drive. Clearly, this must be built into the firmware.

    Just to make sure, I verified that it still works fine under OS/2. So it
    seems I now have the best of both worlds: an OS/2-compatible memory key
    which continues to have its special features work under Windows (for those
    rare occasions when I have to boot into the Other Side). The control
    panel is really rather slick... especially the "eject" button, which is
    much more convenient than the awkward Win2K USB eject mechanism.

    The device itself is slim, compact and attractive. It comes with an
    optional lanyard, although you also attach it to a keychain or whatnot
    instead.

    The special $30 price at Staples (probably most Canadian stores) seems to
    be valid until the 27th or so. Note that this is the 1GB U3 drive, NOT
    the "pro" version which seems to have extra encryption features.

    --
    Alex Taylor
    http://www.cs-club.org/~alex

    Remove hat to reply (reply-to address).

  2. Re: Verbatim U3 Store'n'Go 1GB USB flash drive

    [A complimentary Cc of this posting was sent to
    Alex Taylor
    ], who wrote in article <45feada1$0$69358$bb4e3ad8@newscene.com>:
    > [This is a hardware report/case study.]


    Last time I saw it mentioned, you need to remove the U3 stuff before
    you can do anything reasonable with the device. (Kinda obviuous,
    since U3 provides, among other things, security.) My memory is
    extremely hazy, google groups for details.

    Usually this can be done under Win* using utilities supplied on the
    manufacturer's site.

    Hope this helps,
    Ilya

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