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I am looking for a cheap read-only storage medium with around 4 GB space, in most of my cases 1 GB is enough. The idea is to make the device bootable and use it as an replacement for a live CD (CD=slow). One example would be an SD card if I wouldn't have found out that they don't have a real physical write lock and the write lock is often realised in firmware, software etc.

Are there maybe special USB sticks that have a real physical write lock? I never know if there is any malware on the system where I use the medium. CD/DVD would be read-only, but it's so damn slow ): Thanks for any hint!

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Tape can be made read only. – Ramhound Jul 13 '12 at 15:12
how would one do that? using a hardware device that provides only read function? it's not suitable for my use cases, I am curious however ;-) – Jul 13 '12 at 15:34
up vote 2 down vote accepted

Yes there are USB drives that come with write protection switch. One such drive is Ritek Slider ID10 has got list of such devices, more details:

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The problem is that many of them are no longer available. – James Jul 13 '12 at 14:34
I found the TrekStor CS 4GB and PQI Cool Drive U339 4GB to be available in my country, both around 10 € (~12 USD). There are even more available e.g. in the US, however they are all more expensive anyway, so I don't miss them ;-) So thanks to Shivaranjan :-) – Jul 13 '12 at 15:27

Look as I have done it.

Perhaps it is also a solution for you.

Write protecting by filling up the disk.

Create temporary files to consume all available free space on the drive.

It’s difficult to infect the drive, If there’s no space to create even a small autorun.inf file.

This is probably better than nothing since it will stop some infections.

look here how raymond done it

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Malware can simply delete files, and they certainly do exactly this, these authors are not stupid. – Ramhound Jul 13 '12 at 15:13
How malware can get onto a stick that has no space not a byte ? – moskito-x Jul 13 '12 at 15:24
malware run on host, then infecting usb stick (first deleting files there). – Jul 13 '12 at 15:30

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