OverviewI have been caught buying one of these 8Gb USB sticks.
The price seemed cheap, yet not too cheap and the seller's feedback was good.
They show up in your PC as 8Gb, they format to 8Gb, but in reality, any files copied to them after the 2Gb limit are unusable. Another good indicator is the time required to copy the files, it shows as 60+ minutes to copy, but when the REAL 2Gb limit is reached, the copying time suddenly drops to seconds and then completes.
TestingThe reason for this guide is to warn people about them. The normal use of these USB sticks is for backing up important data or transferring them to other places, so it is vital that the data is secure.
I have 30+ years experience in the IT industry so I know how to test them properly.
Select a number of folders from your PC to copy to the USB stick, in total about 3Gbs worth.
After copying each folder, check the space used on the USB stick by going to "My Computer", right-click on the drive and select properties. You will see the amount of space used.
When this space has exceeded 2Gb, or 2000Mb, copy another folder over to the USB stick. Open this folder on the USB stick and see if you can open any of the files just copied - you can't. Typically the directory of the files copied over at the 2Gb boundary are also duplicated several times.
Alternatively, copy a large folder to the USB stick, then, from the USB Stick, copy the same folder over and over creating new "Copy" folders, until you exceed the 2Gb limit and then check the last copied folder contents.
Dealing with the Supplier who sold this to you can be difficult to resolve this fraud - see other eBay guides on how best to do this, but in the end you may just have to bear the loss. The cost of sending it back, Registered Post to ensure the delivery can be tracked is around the same cost of the refund expected, so it is not worth it.