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Friday, April 06, 2007

Why I hate U3

Yesterday I got a new flash drive - they were on sale at OfficeMax, and I needed one. So of course I got a SanDisk Cruzer, because I love them. But I also had to get the u3 removal software (http://www.u3.com/uninstall/) so that I could rid myself of the grossly unnecessary u3. In their little survey for reasons I was removing it, they didn't have the "I hate U3 and think it's the stupidest idea in the history of flash drives" option. So, I wrote them a little note in the "Other" section, and this is how it went:
I hate U3 because it pops up whether I want it to or not, did not have my permission to be there, and takes the messy and unfriendly step of adding another CD drive to my computer. I don't need a proprietary platform to run my portable apps on, a guy named John Haller has already provided me with a quality, universal, and free solution, with a launcher and a bunch of nicely-bundled, well-done apps over at Portable Apps. There's a multitude of other compatible apps at Portable Freeware that are also free. And if John Haller's launcher isn't your style, there's PStart as an alternative. Note that none of these solutions require adding an extra CD drive to my computer, a simple ini file will have them ask when I plug it in (note the asking) if I want to run it, and they are free. I have choice - I don't need to use either launcher if I don't want to, or if for some reason I wanted to, I could use a couple of them. Notepad++, Firefox, Gaim, OpenOffice.org/AbiWord, FileZilla, Gimp, Nvu...the list goes on of quality software that I can have portably without U3. Oh, by the way, SanDisk is my brand loyalty. All five of my flash drives that I've purchased have been SanDisk, and when I recently bought my first mp3 player, I went with a Sansa. I love all my flash drives. I grew out of the first one, and washed the second one three times before it gave out. With the third one, I dropped my computer on top of while it was plugged in, which cracked the casing open, bent the connector 45 degrees, and knocked the innards out of the casing. I bent the connector back, put the insides back in, and snapped the casing shut. It worked fine. My fourth one died inexplicably after a fairly short time, and I am working on seeing the possibilities of RMAing it. I just got a fifth, a 2GB one. As a poor college student, I generally just get the cheapest, but SanDisk is the exception because I trust you guys so much and have had such a good experience with you. But U3 is where my loyalty ends. It's not what's next, and it's not smart. It's stupid, badly designed, and will not remain on my flash drive after the first time I plug it in.

What's more, PortableApps works just fine under Wine. What more could I ask?


  • my reason for uninstalling was "Because I just want a fcking USB drive without this extra bullshit."

    By Anonymous aetern, at January 16, 2008 9:34 AM  

  • Whine, whine, whine. STFU BITCH!!

    If you dont like it frakkin uninstall it! No ones hold a gun to your head and MAKING you use it! You're more annoying that those plebs who bitch about mobile phones that come with cameras/mp3/GPS/ipod/internet/etc. . . Get over yourself!

    Some of us like the U3 feature, its frakkin awesome when your backpacking around the globe!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at November 24, 2008 4:44 AM  

  • The trouble is that it CAN'T be 100% removed. The 'gun to your head' argument is just stupid. No one is holding one to your head to make you go backpacking around the globe either, but there you are, espousing the virtues of U3 as it pertains to your narrow usage of the it. BTW, U3 is useless when you get to an Internet Cafe that is all *Nix based. Good luck with that.
    I can't trust the device, so I can't use it.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at July 24, 2009 6:37 PM  

  • "The trouble is that it CAN'T be 100% removed"

    Well then sherlock, why not buy a regular flash drive instead of buying a U3 drive and then bitching about it?

    "U3 is useless when you get to an Internet Cafe that is all *Nix based"

    LOL!!!! I've never seen this in my life, and I've used a ton of internet cafes. I've never had a single problem with my U3 drive.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at September 30, 2009 5:41 PM  

  • To contribute my voice back to the discussion, a few points:
    -I dislike U3. Quite a bit. That doesn't mean it's useless, and for some people it may actually be useful.
    -It CAN be 100% removed. The uninstaller removes the U3 partition and re-formats the drive into a clean, single partition. After that, it's a dumb flash drive, and perfectly trustable.
    -I buy U3 drives because the companies that I trust/like are the higher-end ones, and therefore include U3 because they think it's useful.

    U3 is obnoxious, and I wish they would do it differently. And recently, they have been - I believe that last time I plugged my flash drive in the first time, it asked me if I wanted to remove it, which I did. That is a significant improvement. For people who aren't tech control freaks like me, U3 is a good enough system.

    By Blogger Joel Bradshaw, at October 02, 2009 9:44 AM  

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