Ever since the USB drives have arrived, we have been informed to always use the “safely remove hardware” option rather than just pulling out the USB drive directly from the computer. However, that is about the change now.
With the Windows 10 build 1809, Microsoft has decided to change the default settings that are applied to the USB drives and other removable media. This means that the default policy now being applied to removable storage devices is Quick Removal and not Better Performance. So, you can now just pull out the USB drive from your computer/laptop without a second thought.
The company explained that Windows defines two main policies, Quick removal and Better performance, that control how the system interacts with external storage devices. Now, the default policy is Quick removal while in earlier versions, it was Better performance.
The Quick removal policy keeps storage operations going in such a way that USB storage devices can be unplugged at any time without needing the Safely Remove Hardware process. On the other hand, Better performance policy ensures improved system performance. Better performance policy lets Windows cache write operations to the external USB drive. So, to protect data integrity on the external device, it requires the use of the Safely Remove Hardware process.
To manually change the policy, go to Disk Management, right-click on the label of the device and then select ‘Properties’. Then go to ‘Policies’ and select the option you wish to use.