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How to Rename a USB Flash Drive

Patrick, a computer technician, is a dedicated writer who wishes to make the world better by informing individuals who seek more knowledge.

What Is a USB Flash Drive?

Before we learn how to rename a USB flash drive, let's learn what it is and its importance.

A USB flash drive is a commonly used data storage device. The device has replaced the floppy disks, which were mostly used in the early computers.

USB flash drives are typically removable and rewritable data storage devices.

Thumb Drives Use Flash Memory Technology

The USB flash drive is small, lightweight, compact, and more accommodating (in terms of the data it can store) than the floppy disk. It uses flash memory technology to store data.

A USB flash drive can be kept on a keychain, carried around your neck, and can also be worn on your wrist like a watch. Their small size and compatibility make them a good choice for professionals to carry, even across the border.

Uses of Flash Drives

A USB flash drive is very important because it can be used for various reasons:

  1. Data transportation: It can be used to carry and transfer your digital content from one computer to another swiftly.
  2. Data backup: You can use a flash disk drive to backup your important files, documents, and software.
  3. Installations: You can use a flash disk for software installations.
  4. Running open-source software: You can run open-source software from the flash disk.
  5. High capacity storage: A flash disk can hold a lot of data depending on its size which is expressed in terms of gigabytes (GB), for instance: 2GB, 4GB, 8GB, 16GB, 32GB, 64GB, and so forth.

Renaming a Flash Drive

A flash drive using the default name.

A flash drive using the default name.

Is It Important to Rename a Flash Disk?

You might be asking yourself this question. Is it really important to rename your USB flash drive? Well, the answer is yes.

Once you rename your flash drive, it becomes easier for you to recognize and work with it. It will make it much easier when you have a number of them and you do not want to mess up. Or you do not want to keep checking which drive is which.

And instead of giving it a name, you can opt to write your telephone number. This can help if it gets lost by bad luck. Or if you misplace it and it is found by a Good Samaritan. The Good Samaritan will be able to call you, and you will be happy to get your very important files back—and of course your flash drive.

But remember, it is always important to backup your data somewhere else other than on your flash drive to avoid data loss.

The Easiest Way of Renaming a Thumb Drive

  1. Click on "Start" then select "My Computer" or double click on the "My Computer" icon on the desktop.
  2. Locate your flash disk under the "Devices with Removable Storage." Most probably if you have never given any name or volume label, it will be calling itself "Removable Disk" (then followed by the drive letter, for instance, F:).
  3. To rename, right-click on the device icon and select "Rename."
  4. Enter the name or your mobile phone number. The drive will now assume the name or numbers you have assigned to it.

When renaming a flash drive, remember:

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  • You can not leave it without a name.
  • You can only enter 11 characters or numbers.

Formatting Your Flash Drive

The other way of renaming a flash drive is when you are formatting. Though this method should only be used when it is necessary to format your flash drive. Make sure you have backed up your data otherwise you will lose it.

Right-click on the flash drive icon, then select "Format". Enter the volume label before you click on the "Start Format" button. The volume label you will enter is the drive name it will assume.

Formatting a Flash Drive

Right-click on your drive and then select "Rename."

Right-click on your drive and then select "Rename."

Type the name or number, a maximum of 11 characters.

Type the name or number, a maximum of 11 characters.

Renaming Your Flash Drive Using Properties Option

Another way of renaming your flash drive is using the properties option. Right-click on the drive icon and select "Properties."

At the very top, you will see the current name of the drive. Use this area to write the new name you want. Click on apply and close the properties window.

Renaming a Flash Drive Using MS-DOS

You can also rename a USB flash disk drive using MS-DOS.

  • Check the drive letter of the flash drive from My Computer.
  • Click on start and search for cmd at the search box. This will launch the command prompt.
  • Assuming the flash drive letter is F, type F:
  • Type Vol. It is not necessary but it will display the volume label (current name of the drive)
  • Type the following command to rename the drive. Label F: John
  • After pressing enter, your drive will assume the name you will assign it.

Encrypt Your Flash Drive

The flash drive can be lost at any time. Since you do not know who will find it, it is best to encrypt it.

Encryption is one of the best ways to protect your data. Non-encrypted flash drives can indeed leave you vulnerable to malware and other device security threats.

Encryption means only those with an encryption key file or password will be able to access the data. Thus if your flash drive falls into the wrong hands, whoever will have it will not be able to access its data.

There are free applications that will give you a high level of protection.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2011 Patrick Kamau

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