mSATA USB Sticks
Since the M.2 NVME form factor has won the high performance solid state drive war many of you may be stuck with older micro SATA (mSATA) drives. These still have a very awesome use that will only cost you a few bucks to take advantage of. A blistering USB flash drive can be created out of them instead of throw them away!
These are full blown SSDs and their performance blows a regular USB flash drive out of the water. They support the trim command and show up as “fixed disks” instead or removable storage. This means they support cache write optimizations that normal USB removable drives don’t. This allows you to do all sorts of awesome things on them. Some examples: Windows to Go, Fast Portable Linux, Virtual Machine storage, etc. You can also just use it as a really fast drive to transfer files back and forth with your friends while looking like a total techie badass.
Exhibit A – USB 3.0 SSD mSATA “Flash” Drive
Build with pictures:
Exhibit B – Enclosed USB 3.0 SSD mSATA “Flash” Drive
If you want more protection for your drive or want a more finished look to it you can use a enclosure. These are only slightly more but will add little bit of bulk. In exchange you get a much more finished look and far better protection:
Once you have built your drive run my Raspberry Pi Storage Benchmark and compare your drive with other similar drives in the mSATA section to make sure you are getting the correct performance. They can be extremely fast!
Despite mSATA falling out of favor these drives still far outperform any USB flash drive you will come across. They absolutely destroy my Sandisk Extreme USB drive. The advantages of these drives being classified as “fixed disks” enable many performance enhancements that are not applied to traditional “removable storage”. These include write-caching, trim, dedicated memory buffers, and many more! Build your own supercharged portable SSD today with yesterdays technology!