capsule review

DiskOnKey

At a Glance
  • M-Systems DiskOnKey

    Macworld Rating

A USB flash drive is about thesize of a seven-stick pack of gum and works with any computer that has a USB port. DiskOnKey, available in four sizes from 8MB to 128MB, has a big advantage over the other USB flash drives on the market: it autoloads its driver so you don't have to install any software to mount the drive, a feature that extends its portability.

True to its name, DiskOnKey comes with a detachable key ring. It doesn't have a switch for locking the device, although M-Systems is working on a lock application called KeySafe, due out by the time you read this. In our performance tests, we copied 12MB to the drive in roughly 37 seconds--not fast, but acceptable.

DiskOnKey worked flawlessly in Mac OS 9. Although we were able to use it in OS X, we got an error stating that it hadn't been put away properly even after we unmounted it. M-Systems knows of the bug and is working with Apple on a solution.

Macworld's Buying Advice

Flash memory drives are expensive when compared with their larger hard-drive cohorts, but if you need portability and just a few megabytes of storage, DiskOnKey is worth the price.

At a Glance
  • Macworld Rating

    Pros

    • Mounts automatically
    • Very portable
    • Basic functionality in OS X

    Cons

    • Expensive for capacity
    • No provision for locking
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