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This question already has an answer here:

If I store information on a USB Flash drive and hardly ever read or write to it, how long can I expect the information to be retained?

I'm referring to natural de-magnetization and anything similar. Not to "read disturb" etc.

EDIT

Thanks for the link. The question there is indeed similar to mine. But unfortunately the answers there just assume that the answer is: more than other limiting factors. But is that true? This needs some backing, does it not?

marked as duplicate by DavidPostill, Máté Juhász, Ramhound, fixer1234, Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007 Feb 11 '17 at 15:34

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

  • @DavidPostill Thanks for the link. Unfortunately, while that question is very similar to mine, the answers just assume that the answer is: more than other limiting factors. But is that true? This needs some backing, does it not? – ispiro Jan 30 '17 at 13:02
  • Not really. Your question is way too broad. Consider for example the following "As market forces push USB flash drive prices down, manufacturers often sacrifice quality to compete. This leads to increased flash drive failure rates even among the major brands.". This alone makes the question unanswerable in any detail. – DavidPostill Jan 30 '17 at 13:16
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Around 10 years.

This is based on the numbers for the first NAND flash datasheet that google gave me here which indicates 10,000 write cycles and a data retention of 10 years.

There will be some variation, if nothing else it will depend on which flash chips they used, but this gives you a reasonable ballpark number.

For an exact number you would need to open up the USB drive, find out the exact chips used and look them up.

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