ThimphuTech was the first technology blog in Bhutan. We started writing it in 2009, just as broadband and mobile internet started to take off. (Although internet in Bhutan was launched in 1999, it was either super-slow or super-expensive, and was only used by a selected few).

In the blog, we wrote about technology and food, but also about plenty of other stuff. The blog became popular and influential in Bhutan. A companion bi-weekly column -- Ask Boaz -- was published for many years in the Kuensel, Bhutan's national newspaper. (The complete Kuensel columns are available as an ebook, Blogging with Dragons).

We stopped updating the blog when we left Bhutan in 2014, but the information within the posts can still prove useful, and thus we decided to keep it online.

We thank all our readers.
Tashi Delek,
Boaz & Galit.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Unplugging devices (K2 #52)

Questions of the Week

Should we click on the green arrow button before removing an external drive? If we don't, can this cause any harm to the external drive?

— Rinzin


Dear Rinzin,

Indeed, it is good practice to use the “Safely Remove Hardware” icon before unplugging external drives or pulling out a pen drive from the computer. You can find the icon in the system tray - this is the bottom right corner area of the desktop that shows the time and has a bunch of different icons. On Windows XP, the icon is a green arrow, whereas on Windows 7 it looks like a USB plug with a green checkmark.

Before unplugging the device, click the icon and wait. A list of all removable media will soon be displayed. Select the device you want to disconnect, select the Eject option, then wait until a confirmation message is displayed.

If you unplug a device without following this procedure you run the risk of corrupted files, or even worse, an inaccessible device, which is guaranteed to ruin your day.

How can I order stuff from eBay to Bhutan? Can I receive the item to any place in Bhutan? Does any courier service collaborate with eBay?

— Jambay Dorji, Teacher, Mongar HSS


Dear Jambay,

eBay ( is a huge online marketplace, connecting crores of buyers with lakhs of sellers who offer everything from shoelaces to cars. You always buy the goods from individual sellers, never from eBay. Shipping is usually not the problem: many sellers agree to ship their items to Bhutan using the postal service, sometimes for free (especially if the item is lightweight, such as a pen drive), so just make sure Bhutan Post can deliver packages to the required address. Some sellers also offer the option of a courier service such as UPS, although this can be quite expensive.

The main hurdle in Bhutan, however, is not the shipping - it’s the payment method. For payment on, you need access to an international credit or debit card that is accepted online. Once you have access to one, let the shopping spree begin!

Readers are encouraged to submit technology-related questions to

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