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How is Boot Camp Useful on an External Hard Drive and How to Run It?

How to use Boot Camp on an external drive

How to use Boot Camp on an external drive

Installing Windows operating system on an external hard drive would be the great solution for disk space problems, especially if you wish to run Windows on your Mac system. But, Boot Camp restricts installation of Windows on an external drive.

However, there are few techniques you can try to install Windows operating system on an external hard drive, like generating clones of current PC, using Microsoft IT programs and more.

But, in this informative blog article, it is illustrated how to install Windows OS on an external hard drive without prior installed Windows PC or virtual environment.

Note: Completely go through the process once, before implementing it. Also, it is suggested make earlier backup of your external hard drive data.

Things You Need to Run Boot Camp on External Hard Drive:

1.     USB flash drive (min 4GB capacity)

2.     Bootable external hard drive

3.     Original Windows 10 ISO or install CD/DVD

4.     Mouse/Keyboard (wired)

5.     Boot Camp Windows Support Software

6.     VirtualBox virtualization app

Pre-Preparations:

  1. Erase and Format the External Drive

  • Connect the external hard drive to Mac machine
  • Go to Applications -> Utilities and launch Disk Utility
Applications Utilities - Disk Utility

Applications Utilities – Disk Utility

  • Select the external hard drive and click the Erase button
  • Set the Scheme to Master Boot Record
  • And, Format to MS-DOS (FAT)
  • Name the external hard drive (suggested naming Win10 external)
Scheme to Master Boo Record

Scheme to Master Boot Record

  • Choose the Erase option
  1. Erase and Format the USB Flash Drive

  • Connect the USB flash drive to the Mac
  • Go to Applications, then Utilities and select Disk Utility
  • Select the USB flash drive and click the Erase button
  • Set Scheme and Format to Master Boot Record and MS-DOS (FAT) respectively
  • Name the USB flash drive
  • Click the Erase option
  1. Get Boot Camp Windows Drivers on USB Flash Drive

  • Navigate to Applications -> Utilities and open Boot Camp Assistant
  • Click the Continue button and in Select Tasks dialogue box
  • Disable “Create a Windows 7 or later version install disk” and “Install Windows 7 or later version” options
  • Enable “Download the latest Windows support software from Apple” option and hit Continue
Select Tasks - Boot Camp Assistant

Select Tasks – Boot Camp Assistant

  • Select the USB flash drive to install Windows support files and click Continue

Now, Boot Camp Assistant installs Windows support software on the USB flash drive. Provide credentials (administrator password) for Boot Camp to change the file permissions on the USB flash drive and hit the Continue button.

Note: Want to “fix disk is unreadable” error on Mac in just a few simple steps? Then, check this page!

Procedure to Install Windows on the External Hard Drive using VirtualBox:

Step 1: Install VirtualBox

  • Download and install VirtualBox
  • Go to Mac Applications, select Utilities then launch Terminal
Launch Terminal

Launch Terminal

  • Type diskutil list and press Enter key
  • A list of all attached disks to Mac will be displayed. Find your external hard drive (it should be WIN10 of type DOS_FAT_32). Note down its disk number (Identifier). E.g. disk1, disk2, disk3, etc.
  • Locate the external hard drive on the Desktop/Finder Right-click on it and select Eject option

Step 2: Map External Hard Drive to VirtualBox Disk

  • In the Terminal, type sudo VBoxManage internalcommands createrawvmdk -filename “bootcamp.vmdk” -rawdisk /dev/diskX and hit Enter key
  • Replace X with the actual disk number (disk identifier) of your external hard drive
  • In Terminal, type in your admin password, and press Enter button

Step 3: Create VirtualBox Virtual Machine for Windows

  • In Terminal, type sudo /Applications/VirtualBox.app/Contents/MacOS/VirtualBox; press Enter
  • In the VirtualBox, go to Tools (toolbar) and click on the New button
  • Give a Name for the installation (suggested WIN10), Set Type and Version to Microsoft Windows and Windows 10 (64-bit) correspondingly
  • Click Continue, accept the default memory size and proceed
  • In the Hard Disk dialogue box, choose to Use an existing virtual hard disk file
  • Under, “Use an existing virtual hard disk file” category, click on the folder icon (located at the right of the dropdown menu), browse and select vmdk file (present in home folder), click Open button, then Create
Use Bootcamp vmdk file

Use Bootcamp vmdk file

  • In VirtualBox, select your Windows 10 virtual machine, and find your Optical Drive. (typically located under Storage section of the virtual machine)
  • Open the Optical Drive item and select Choose Disk Image
  • Browse and select the Windows 10 ISO image; click Open.

Step 4: Install Windows on External Hard Drive using VirtualBox

  • In the VirtualBox toolbox, click the Start
  • The Windows 10 installation process will begin. Track the on-screen instructions.
  • Go for “Custom: Install Windows only (advanced)” option when prompted that “Which type of installation do you want?
  • The Windows setup displays the available drives and partitions on which Windows can be installed. Select the external hard drive, and click Format
  • After format, click Next. Windows installation process will start
Caution: When computer says, “Windows needs to restart” after the installation process, shut down the Virtual Machine immediately.

Step 5: Reboot Mac with Windows using External Hard Drive

  • Close all running applications and reboot the Mac
  • Hold down the Option key during restart, use arrow keys and select Windows drive (external hard drive)
  • Now, your Mac will boot from the external Windows hard drive
  • Windows may restart Mac during this process. So, while Mac is rebooting, hold down the Option key and select Windows to boot from

Step 6: Tune Apple Hardware to work Under Windows

  • Connect the USB flash drive (used earlier to make the Windows Support software) to Mac
  • Click the Windows Start menu and open File Explorer
  • In File Explorer, select your USB flash drive
  • Double-click on the Boot Camp folder and run the setup file (executable file) present inside it
  • Follow the on-screen instructions and install the Boot Camp drivers.

Once the installation of drivers is completed, all your Apple hardware, such as wireless keyboard, mice, mouse, etc. will work.

Added Info: A perfect flash drive data recovery software to recover data from any flash storage devices after virus attack, corruption, file system damage, error messages, and more. Check it out…

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What to Do with False Positive Result in Anti-Virus?

False positive virus

What is a false positive?

A false positive is a result that indicates a particular attribute is present even when it is not. It is a standard term that is used in the technology field, medical and chemical industries and in many other areas.

In this blog post, we are going to discuss false positives with respect to anti-virus. Meaning, we will discuss an anti-virus flagging a particular file or software as a virus when it is not.

Now say, for instance, you are trying to download software from a pretty trusted source. But to your dismay, you see a warning that the software is unsafe. Not many of us have the guts to go ahead and install it right? What if it’s really a virus? Could turn out to be dangerous right?

How to find out if the software is a virus or a false positive?

There is always a possibility that your anti-virus isn’t perfect and can make mistakes. This is particularly true when the anti-virus program has a very broad detection algorithm. In that case, there is a high possibility that your file/software will be detected as false positive.

In order to help you find out if the software is really harmful or if it just flagged false positive, we are going to provide you with some helpful tips below.

  1. First of all, type the name of the software that your anti-virus is flagging as false positive into Google and look it up. You can also include the word ‘False positive’ along with the name of the software to see instances posted by other users. Do thorough research to find out if the software is dangerous.
  2. You can also Google the warning message that your anti-virus is displaying along with the name of the software. These 2 steps should help you get a fair idea of the problem. If it doesn’t help, you can use the Virus Total which is specifically designed to check for false positives.

Whenever your file/software is detected as a virus, just go ahead and upload it to Virus Total. This tool will scan your file against 48 different anti-virus scanners and provide you with the result. This will help you easily identify if you’re dealing with a false positive.

Virus threat

How to deal with anti-virus false positive?

If you find that the software is being detected as a false positive, the guide below will help you. But remember; always use your judgment before you make this call.

  1. Open your anti-virus software and click Settings in the toolbar
  2. You will see options like ‘Whitelist’, ‘Exceptions’ or ‘Allowed List’ or something on those lines
  3. Add the path of the .exe file that is showing you a false positive to this list and save the changes

Now, you have added an exception to your anti-virus program, so you should be able to install and use the software without the anti-virus interfering.

Data recovery using Remo Recover software

In some cases, it is possible that your internal system files are scanned by anti-virus and detected as virus by mistake (again a typical case of false positive). In that case, if you take action and delete those files, there is a possibility that your Windows will not boot anymore. In such cases, it is extremely important that you recover them to get back working on the system. And Remo Recover is a wonderful choice to recover these files. It can not only recover files that are deleted by anti-virus, but also files that are deleted accidentally, files that are deleted by virus or files lost due to other reasons. All kinds of files like Word documents, notes, PDF’s, photos, videos etc. can be recovered using Remo Recover.

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How to Keep Your Laptop Safe When Stored for a Long Time?

Laptop hard drive maintenance

A laptop consists of tiny components that are arranged like a puzzle. The main components include hard drives, motherboard, RAM, battery pack, processor etc. Since laptops are portable, their components are designed to thin, compact, fragile and are arranged very closely. Hence, care should be taken while using them as well as while storing them.

If you are not going to use your laptop for a while, it is better to understand some important aspects and take necessary precautions while storing them to make sure it is safe. And the same is covered in this article.

Environmental conditions

Extremely hot or cold environments can cause the components of the laptop to expand/contract, thus leading to damage in the actuators and other components of the laptop. Exposure to moisture can cause a short circuit and cause the components to burn inside. Similarly, exposure to direct sunlight can also cause damage to your laptop.

If at all your laptop is exposed to extreme temperatures at some point, make sure you wait for a while until temperatures are returned to normal before you turn ON the laptop. If you have to store your laptop for a long time without using it, make sure you store the laptop in a cool and dry environment with good air circulation.

Avoid exposure to magnetic and electric fields

Make sure you don’t store your laptop near any appliances that generate electric fields. Exposure to electric fields can cause damage and lead to data loss. Same is the case with magnetic fields. Exposure to magnetic fields can also cause damage to internal components and lead to loss of data.

Mechanical issues

Keeping the laptop idle for a very long period of time can cause the internal components like the motor, actuator, bearings etc. to get corroded/damaged. This in addition to the environmental factors can cause more harm to the laptop.

What to do if your hard drive fails?

If your hard drive has failed and data is lost due to storing it for a long period of time, then you can make use of data recovery tools like Remo Recover to your rescue. Its effective scanning algorithms can recover data from failed or damaged hard drives. Refer the link to recover data from dead laptop hard drive. It works with all kinds of hard drives like SATA, SSD, IDE, HDD etc. And all file systems like FAT 16, FAT 32, ExFAT, NTFS etc. are supported by the tool.

It has a disk image feature that helps you recover data even when the hard drive has bad sectors. What the tool does is, it skips the bad sectors and creates a disk image, using which you can recover data.

Conclusion

  • If you intend to store the laptop without using, make sure you store it in a cool and dry place with sufficient air circulation.
  • Make sure you remove any external devices such as USB’s or other storage media and also remove power chords. You can also remove the CMOS coin battery to avoid battery leak.
  • Make sure that your laptop is completely turned OFF. Do not store it in sleeping mode.
  • Do not store the laptop in a suspended or inverted position. Put the laptop in a bag (with silica sachets) and keep it in a safe place.
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Tips to Customize Toolbar in Photoshop CC According to Your Needs

Customize Photoshop Toolbar

Adobe Photoshop CC is an updated version of Photoshop where CC stands for Creative Cloud. Although the features of Photoshop CC and the older version Photoshop CS6 are similar, there are 2 main differences. One is the payment, that is the former one, Photoshop CC is based on a monthly subscription, whereas the latter, Photoshop CS6 is a one-time thing.

Secondly, Photoshop CC offers a customizable toolbar. Why is this used? Basically, your Photoshop offers around 66 tools in its toolkit. But it’s not like we are going to all these tools every day, tight? So, in order to make it easier to organize and locate these tools easily, it makes sense to customize your toolbar based on your need.

With customization, you can easily choose the tools most used and place them all close together. Second, you can also group or ungroup tools in a way that make the most sense to you. (Grouping refers to grouping tools that are available to you when you right click on a particular Photoshop tool).

How to customize your Photoshop toolbox?

Customizing your Photoshop toolbox is really simple. But before you begin, it is a good idea to have a plan beforehand of how you want to organize your tools and how you want to group them. Once that’s ready you are ready to customize your toolbox.

  1. Go to the Edit option on the menu and select Toolbar
  2. Command + click on the ‘three dots’ icon and choose Edit Toolbar
  3. Clicking on Edit Toolbar opens a dialogue to customize your toolbar

 

  1. How to re-organize tools in Photoshop?

In the customizable toolbox dialogue box, there are 2 columns. The column on the left is actually where you can see the current toolbox arrangement and also edit them. To change the tool positions, choose a tool that you want to change position and simply drag it down (or up) and place it where you want it to be.

Tip: If you want to move a tool all the way to the bottom of the toolbox, it may be hard to scroll. In that case, use the right column labeled ‘Extra tools’ to store the tool temporarily. Then scroll down and drag the tool from the Extra tools section to the desired location.

  1. How to group/ungroup tools in Photoshop?

Grouping and ungrouping tools are as a simple drag and drop. Just drag the Photoshop tool that you want to move and place it in the desired location. As a simple rule, notice the blue horizontal line to help you identify the location where the tool will be placed.

Now that you have understood how to re-organize tools and group them based on your interests, go ahead and customize your Photoshop according to your needs.  Having these tools organized will help make your work a lot easier and quicker.

Repair PSD files

Whether you’re using Photoshop CC or any other version, one thing is for sure; the tool may freeze occasionally when you are working on a project or your computer may shut down suddenly. In these cases, the PSD file you are working on may get corrupted and you may lose your work. In order to repair these PSD files, Remo Repair PSD for Mac or Windows OS is a fantastic choice.

All your corrupt, damaged or inaccessible PSD files can be repaired using this tool. It works with all Photoshop versions like CC, CS6, CS5, CS4, CS2, CS1 etc. Download a trial and repair your PSD file for free!

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What’s the Difference between Recovery Partition and Partition Recovery?

Hard Drive Partition

Although the terms ‘recovery partition’ and ‘partition recovery’ sound somewhat similar, they are two very different things. This article explains both these terms in detail and when they are used. To begin with, let’s cover some details about ‘recovery partition’ and how it’s used.

What do you mean by Recovery Partition

The recovery partition is a partition in your hard disk that is mainly used to reinstall your operating system in case of a system failure or other disasters. It is fairly straightforward to access the recovery partition. To access the recovery partition,

  1. Turn ON your Mac
  2. Press and hold the Command + R keys until you see a Mac OS utility screen. This is called the recovery mode/partition.

Here you will see the following options:

  • Reinstall Mac OS: This provides an installation of the Mac OS in case of a system crash or a failure.
  • Restore from Time Machine backup: As the name suggests, this restore feature is used when you want to restore your Mac from a Time Machine backup in the event of a system crash or other disasters. However, this is possible only when you have Time Machine set up beforehand.
  • Access Disk Utility: The First Aid feature in Disk Utility is a wonderful feature to use when you want to repair damaged/corrupted volumes on your hard disk.

In addition to this, there is another distinguishing feature called ‘Internet Recovery’, which is what sets your Mac OS recovery partition apart from other OS’s. Internet Recovery comes in handy when the regular recovery partition isn’t working or is missing.

Now that we’ve seen what a recovery partition is, let us now look at partition recovery in the next section.

What is Partition Recovery

partition recovery

We normally think of a hard drive as one ‘whole’ disk, but it actually consists of multiple partitions within it. These partitions can get deleted due to various reasons such as improper usage of ‘Disk Utility’ tools, file system corruption or bad sectors on the disk etc. Recovery of deleted, lost or damaged partitions is termed as ‘partition recovery’.

In order to perform partition recovery, one needs to make use of tools designed specifically for this purpose, and Remo Recover’s partition recovery software is a top choice. This software is designed to recover lost or deleted partitions in the event of a hard drive failure, partitions deleted as a result of improper usage of disk utility tools or due to bad sectors on the disk. In addition to this, Remo Recover can also be used to recover data from formatted hard drives.

The advantage of using Remo Recover is that all your partitions are recovered in the exact same form as it was originally. This is possible because of the read-only mechanism that the software relies on.

You can use the software to recover data from all kinds of hard drives like SSD, HDD, SCSI, IDE, etc. and all storage devices like SD cards, external hard drives, and USB flash sticks. Remo offers a free trial; so go ahead and download the software to recover your files for free!

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Fixed: Windows 10 Reset Stuck or Windows 10 Fails to Reset

Windows Stuck at Reset

All systems, OS or any software for that matter, do run into issues at some point or another. And Windows 10 is no different! This blog post discusses a problem that is reported while performing a factory reset on your Windows 10 PC. The problem is that Windows is stuck on the same reset screen for hours.

How do you solve this problem? Read on to find out more. First, we walk you through the startup repair processes and then if that doesn’t work, we explain about reinstalling your OS as a next step. Lastly, we also provide solutions to recover data after a factory reset.

But first of all, before we begin with the troubleshooting steps, wait for a good amount of time before you assume anything is wrong with the reset process. It is possible that your system is performing some background operations and hence you may find it stuck at the factory reset screen for a long time. However, if after waiting for long enough, the screen is still stuck, proceed with the troubleshooting steps below.

Solution 1: Run automatic repair

  1. Press the Power button to restart your computer and repeat this process 3 times.
  2. In the third restart, your OS should ideally enter recovery mode with a ‘Preparing automatic repair’ screen
  3. Enter the required login and password credentials to proceed
  4. Click on Advanced Options > Troubleshoot
  5. Once again, select Advanced Options and select Startup Repair

This should fix any inherent startup issues, and you should be able to login to your system. However, if this process doesn’t help, proceed to the next step.

Solution 2: Reinstall Windows 10

If the startup repair as described above doesn’t work as expected, you may have to reinstall Windows 10. For this, you will need a Windows installation disc handy. Then follow the steps below.

  1. Insert the Windows installation disc into your computer and boot from the disc
  2. Click on Install Now and follow the on-screen instructions to do a fresh installation of Windows

Recover data using Remo Recover

If you have lost data while performing a factory reset and backup is not available, you can use data recovery tools to your rescue. And Remo Recover provides a great solution to recover data after a factory reset. All your data and partitions will be recovered in the same manner as it was originally. So the originality of your data is maintained after recovering data using Remo Recover.

Recovering data after a factory reset using Remo Recover is a really simple process. Once the software is installed, the main screen opens, from there select Recover Drives and then select Partition Recovery. Then select the drive to recover data and that’s all you pretty much need to do. The software then takes care of recovering all files for you. For a detailed info, please refer recover data after a factory restore.

The software is compatible with all versions of Windows like Windows 10, Windows 8, Windows 7, XP and Vista. The trial version of this tool is available for free, so make sure you check it out!

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How to Use Windows 10’s Backup and Recovery Tools

Windows provides built-in options to back up your PC. All we have to do is take the time out and set it up according to our needs and be regular. This way we are safe in case of unfortunate events such as a crash or malfunction. In Windows 10, there are 2 main backup programs: File History and Windows Backup & Restore.

File History is useful for Word documents or Powerpoint files or any files that are edited a number of times. Multiple versions of the document are saved, so you have a choice to restore the version you want.

The Backup & Restore feature is used to create a backup of the most recent version of your files. There are 2 categories within Backup & Restore File Back up and System Image. File Backup stores all your files as a Zip file. System Image, on the other hand, saves full system backup in the form of images. This image can be later used to restore files. In this article, we explain both File History and Back & Restore options and how to use them.

How to set up and use File History?

File History is a useful feature that maintains a backup of your files. All you have to do set it up for the first time and the tool will take care of updating the backups periodically. To enable File History, follow the steps below.

  1. Click on the Start button and type File History
  2. Click on File History settings when it shows up after you search and hit Enter
  3. Choose Backup and click on ‘Add a drive’
  4. Then choose a destination to save your backups
  5. To customize your backup, click on More Options. Here you can choose details such as the amount of time to keep your backups, choose only specific folders to backup or if you want to change the destination location to save your files
  6. Then click on Backup Now

File History creates a backup and updates it periodically. It builds a complete history of the file over time. And you are free to restore any version of your choice.

Restore from file history backups

To restore the file history backup created,

  1. Go to Control Panel and select File History
  2. Click on Restore personal files
  3. You can choose the version of the file you wish to restore. You are also allowed to preview the file before restoring.

How to use Backup & Restore

The second backup feature is the Backup & Restore which is used to create a system image which is a complete image of the system used in case of boot drive failure. To set up backup & restore, follow the steps below.

  1. In Windows 10, go to Control Panel and select Backup & Restore
  2. Click on Set up Backup
  3. Choose a destination to save your backups. This can be local or on a network drive.
  4. Next, you have 2 options to choose what to back up. You can either let Windows do it for you or you can customize what folders you want to backup. If Windows uses the default, it will save all your libraries, desktop and Windows folders. It also creates a system image from which you can restore files at a later time.
  5. Finally, click on Save settings and run backup for the system to start the process.

How to restore the system image

Once the system image has been created, it’s simple to restore. Go to Settings and click on Update & Security. Then select Recovery and reboot your computer through advanced recovery menu. Once the computer restarts, you will be presented with a couple of recovery options such as System Repair, System Image Recovery, Command Prompt etc.

You will select System Image Recovery and follow on screen instructions to restore the image created. This will help you restore the files when required.

Conclusion

File History and Backup & Restore are great backup features offered by Windows. If these features are set up properly, you can feel confident about your data being safe at all times. But remember, you can never have too many backups. So, it best to enable both these features and have multiple backups.

There are situations when files are deleted from your system by accident or due to third party cleaning tools and you don’t have a backup. In such cases, you can use a professional recovery program called Remo Recover to recover deleted files and folders. For detailed steps on the process, refer how to recover deleted files in Windows 10.

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5 Things You shouldn’t Do with SSD’s

No doubt your SSD’s are faster and more durable than traditional mechanical drives. In order to make the best use of these, you should understand what makes them different and how to take advantage of them.

In this article, we’ll learn what you shouldn’t be doing with SSD’s to maximize their performance.

  1. Don’t defrag your SSD

Defragmentation re-arranges blocks of files that are fragmented in a sequential order, so the drive head doesn’t have to move as much. Thus, improving speed and reducing overhead on the drive. This works in case of mechanical drives.

On the other hand, with SSD’s, there are no mechanical parts involved. The data can be read instantly from the blocks, no matter where it is placed, thus defragmentation is unnecessary.

Defragmentation on SSD’s can do more harm than good because there are a limited number of write cycles SSD’s can handle. And defragging process results in a large number of writes, thus exhausting the limited number you have.

  1. Don’t fill the drive completely

It’s natural to feel ‘Oh! I have paid a lot of money for my SSD, so I’ll use it completely’. However tempting it is to not waste space on your precious SSD, it is recommended that you fill only 75% of the drive.

To understand why to read on. A drive with free space has a number of empty blocks.  So, when you write to it, it’s easy to fill them up. However, if the drive is full, it will have only filled blocks. So, it’s difficult to write to them and takes twice as long as it would if the drive were free, thus decreasing performance drastically.

  1. Don’t use Indexing

Coupled with the Search feature is an indexing operation that runs in the background. It basically keeps tracks of changes to files and folders. This feature updates itself regularly resulting in an increased number of write cycles.

So, it is a good idea to disable indexing to protect your SSD’s. Don’t worry, you can use Search the same way without index feature.

To disable Indexing, right click on the drive and click Properties. Click on the tab ‘General’ and uncheck ‘Allow files on the drive to have contents indexed’ and click Ok.

  1. Don’t use it to store unused files

SSD’s are meant for faster access of files and hence the premium price. So ideally, you should be storing your operating system files and programs etc. here in this drive. It is also great for storing your games. Basically, any files you need faster access to are stored here.

It is not a good idea to store less used or unused files. These could be your large collection of unused music or movie files. You would be wasting precious and expensive SSD space by doing so.

  1. Don’t use Windows Vista or XP

Commands such as TRIM are available in newer operating systems. How does TRIM work? When you delete a file, index of the file is removed and the OS sends a TRIM command to mark the space as available for new data. This improves the performance of SSD’s as the OS can write data in a more efficient manner.

But in Windows XP and Vista, TRIM is not available, making it unsuitable. Also, they are not optimized for use with SSD’s.

Conclusion: Now that you know what you can do to improve the performance of an SSD, it is important to understand that they are not exempt them from common issues that traditional drives experience. System crash, data loss etc. are some of the inevitable things all drives experience. In case of data loss, one can easily recover data from SSD after crash, format, deletion, and other data loss with the help of Remo Recover software. This software comes in both Windows and Mac edition that is compatible with the latest Windows 10, and macOS High Sierra.