Friday, March 31, 2006

USB Plug N Play Hassle - How The Alphabet Can Solve It

Ok - before I start the topic of this post that drew you in, I have to update you on a few developments. 3lephiphany has quoted Small Firm Life right at the top of his blogosphere taxonomy blog. He's looking at blogs the way Aristotle and Galileo looked at the stars - and Small Firm Life made the cut!

Ok - you're right, it went to my head. Then - as if my week were not exciting enough - Denise Howell of Bag & Baggage said Small Firm Life was cool! ("Too cool" was the precise quote). Let me tell you why that's gnarly (bag and baggage is Californian). Small Firm Life admires greatly Denise's cheap low-tech podcast that celebrates its lo-fi I'mtalkingintomycellphoneduringmycommute vibe. Not only that, but Denise declared the demise of the large firm as we know it based on tech developments in her podcast of 5/19/2005 based (in turn) on a theory of shared knowledge that was quite smallfirmlife in its take on the future of the legal profession. And if none of that impresses you, she sprinkles her podcasts with stories about buying the Paris Hilton line of costume jewelry on Amazon for girls in the neighborhood while raising a kid and holding down a job at Reed Smith!!!!!!!

Ok. Enough celebrity worship. And enough paragraphs that begin with OK. I had a problem plugging in a 1 GIG Sandisk USB storage device. These are great toys about $50.00 (after rebate) that you can put all kinds of files on. My partner started using them for intellectual property classes that we teach at NYU's night school. He just plugged it into NYU's laptop, hit the drive that said "removable device" and opened up his Powerpoint presentation. I thought he was a geek wearing it around his neck until I tried it. Have Sandisk, will travel. Maybe Paris Hilton can help us on the style front by slapping some bling onto this new neckwear.

So when plugging my Sandisk into my desktop, the drive showed on my network map, and the computer recognized the device, but I couldn't access my files. Last weekend, I bought a USB digital recorder Olympus DM-10 and had the same issue. Both times, the solution was the same. The DM-10 acts as an external hard drive.

Go to "My Computer". Right click. Click on "Manage". Click on "Storage". Click on "Disk management". Wait. When the drives show up, maximize the screen. You will see your problem device. Right click on it. Left click on "Change drive letter and paths". Assign an exotic letter of the alphabet. My Sandisk is now my "Z" drive and my Oympus DM10 is now my "W" drive. Apparently, the Plug N Play assigns conflicting letters of the alphabet.

Since I had to have a tech guy explain all of this, and my googlings on the topic and troubleshooting using HELP were useless, Small Firm Life just saved you a small fortune in time and wear and tear on your adrenal cortex. Go score a gig of bling and say your ABC's.


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