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JMTek USBDrive Professional (64MB) review:

JMTek USBDrive Professional (64MB)

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The Good Lots of useful utilities; USB extension cord included.

The Bad Cap fits loosely and seems likely to fall off; skimpy printed manual; won't work with the first edition of Windows 98.

The Bottom Line Powerful e-mail, security, and privacy programs make this drive a good pick for the mobile business user.

Visit manufacturer site for details.

CNET Editors' Rating

8.0 Overall

If you don't want to break the bank, just about any USB flash drive will do. But if you spend a little more, you can get a model with advanced features. The JMTek USBDrive Professional is just such a drive. It costs about $50 more than the competition, but unlike its rivals, it includes powerful software for protection and privacy. If you don't want to break the bank, just about any USB flash drive will do. But if you spend a little more, you can get a model with advanced features. The JMTek USBDrive Professional is just such a drive. It costs about $50 more than the competition, but unlike its rivals, it includes powerful software for protection and privacy.

While some vendors sell drives as small as 8MB, JMTek offers the USBDrive Professional in only the larger capacities: 64MB ($109.95), 128MB ($149), 256MB ($229), 512MB ($399), and 1GB ($749). This is just as well since JMTek's security software takes up a few megabytes of drive space.

The drive is compatible with Windows 98 SE (but not the first edition of Windows 98), Me, 2000, and XP, as well as Linux 2.4.24 and Mac OS 9 and up. You'll need to install drivers for Windows 98 SE, but all of the other operating systems should recognize the USBDrive immediately. The drive's manual is more like a foldout and briefly covers installation, specs, and warranty info. The unit comes with neck strap, and its cap doubles as a clip, which we found to be rather loose and apt to fall off. A USB extension cord and a keychain clip are also included.

The built-in software offers several handy features not found among its competitors. USBMail is a fully functional e-mail client, operating from the drive rather than a deskbound PC or notebook. Once the program is configured, you can send and receive e-mail from anywhere via your USBDrive. USBSecureZip saves space on the drive and secures your data by compressing and/or password protecting them using simple drag-and-drop processes.

USBLock restricts any unauthorized access of your PC. When your USBDrive is disconnected, the PC is locked. You may program the system to unlock after a set time or only when you reinsert the drive. To protect the data on the drive itself, USBDrive includes a write-protection switch but does not offer password protection.

JMTek offers decent support for the drive, beginning with a standard one-year warranty. Web resources include FAQs, downloads, a knowledge base, and e-mail support. Phone support is available via a toll call Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. PT.

Overall, the JMTek USBDrive's features seem best suited for the mobile user. If you need to transport or share files only occasionally, you'll be better off with a cheaper drive such as the EasyDisk or the driverless version of the JMTek. But only the USBDrive Professional lets you carry around your e-mail on a keychain.

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