USB storage is handy if you need to take work home, if you get laid off and want to take the client list with you, or if you’re a corporate spy. But copying files back and forth gets tedious — not to mention insecure (what happens if you lose the device?). Enter the Forward Solutions Migo, a keychain-size USB flash memory drive with built-in synchronization software. Better still, the Migo offers password protection and a utility that lets you clone your PC anywhere you go.

The software included on the Migo copies whatever is on your computer’s desktop, plus Internet Explorer favorites, any hard drive folders you select, and Outlook folders that your specify. For instance, you can tell it to copy your contacts file, to-do list, and the last few days’ or weeks’ worth of e-mail.

To use the Migo on another computer, just plug it in, double-click the synchronization application, enter your password, and log on. The computer then assumes the personality of your own system, right down to the desktop wallpaper and the Outlook folders (Outlook — not Outlook Express — must be installed on the target system for this feature to work.) When you log out, any files you’ve changed are automatically updated on the Migo, and you’re good to go. The Migo is rated at 1MB per second, but we got about half that. Migo’s mail folder synchronization works only with Outlook folders; support for Lotus Notes and AOL e-mail is planned for early 2004.

All that automation comes with a premium price tag — about $1 per megabyte, compared with 20 to 40 cents per megabyte for generic USB storage devices. But, hey, your time’s valuable, too. -Dylan Tweney

Forward Solutions Migo
$150 (128MB); $200 (256MB)
Weight: 0.4 ounces
Size: 2.75 x 0.9 x 0.5 inches
Specs: USB 1.1; Windows 98 SE, Me, 2000, and XP

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Link: Forward Solutions Migo

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