Windows 10 Makes USB Drive Removal Safe Again

In Windows 10 version 1809 and later, a change in the default behavior for USB storage devices will allow you to remove your device without using the “Safely Remove Hardware” procedure. Yes, you’ll be able to just remove your USB drive without any data corruption. This is due to the change in the default setting for USB storage devices. Rather than using the Better Performance policy, they are now using the Quick Removal. This does lower the performance of the device for the ease of use by turning off the cache disk write setting. This just changes the default setting and it can be changed at any time.

Windows defines two main policies, Quick removal and Better performance, that control how the system interacts with external storage devices such as USB thumb drives or Thunderbolt-enabled external drives. Beginning in Windows 10 version 1809, the default policy is Quick removal.

In earlier versions of Windows the default policy was Better performance.

You can change the policy setting for each external device, and the policy that you set remains in effect if you disconnect the device and then connect it again to the same computer port.