20 January 2010

No More Flashdrives?

I heard from a fellow teacher in my school this week that IT is going to be banning the use of flashdrives in district computers next year for security purposes.

It makes sense - the ability to boot smaller operating systems like Linux or OS 9 from a thumbdrive, or any game (aside from any malicious file that can be introduced) poses a security risk that twarts all the firewalls and access guidelines the district can proactively employ.  Even the most well-meaning, innocent user could unknowingly contract a worm on their home machine and then transfer it to the district server when opening their lesson for the day.  'Nough said; I get the reasons.

The question that came to mind when I breezily shared this with a class yesterday was this: do we even need flashdrives anymore?  Certainly as an alternative to floppys, CDs, and ZIP disks the flashdrive was a welcome addition.  However, with growing free space on district servers, remote access to shared space from email/IM/news clients like FirstClass, and the recently announced free space for any file in Google docs, are they even necessary?

Could you live without your flashdrive?

1 comment:

  1. To answer my own question: "YES. (mostly)" The only thing I use my flashdrive for is running my own version of Chrome. I save everything on the school servers that follow me anywhere in the building or in GoogleDocs which follow me anywhere I can access the internet.

    What I do use my flashdrive most often for now is transferring files to my non-networked mac g3 in the classroom that I use for students catching up on old notes. I'd say I don't need the flashdrive for this because I can use CD-RW and the burner on my main machine, but that is even "worse" than saying I use a flashdrive. :)


Thanks for sharing!