Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between MTP and MSC

computerMTP vs MSC

MSC stands for Mass Storage device Class and is a term that is commonly associated with USB or flash drives. A lot of portable media players have also adopted this format for their internal memory where users save their media files. The Media Transfer Protocol or MTP is a newer protocol that was designed to replace MSC in media players. MTP allows for greater functionality and easier use compared to MSC. MTP allows the transfer of all information related to the media file like album art and other metadata. It also allows the user to password protect the entire drive to restrict access. All these features are lacking from MSC.

One key feature that has driven support for MTP among the big software companies is the addition of DRM support. DRM prevents a copyrighted file from being played in another player than the one it was originally downloaded to. Although you can save DRM protected files to an MSC device, it would not be able to play the file regardless of whether it’s the first device that it was saved to.

There are some major drawbacks that to MPT that still make MSC a good contender. The first is the lack of support in some devices. Most computers can be updated to support MTP but devices like DVD players and car stereos that have USB ports often lack support for MTP and can only play files from an MSC device. Second is the inability to use of disk recovery tools in case portions of the file system become corrupted. This is because MTP prevents access to the internal file system of the device. Since MSC devices work just like hard drives, recovery is pretty much the same. Lastly, MTP devices do not allow the direct modification of the files that are stored within. This means that if you wish to edit the file, you need to save it to your hard drive first then copy the edited file back to the device. Editing directly from an MSC device means that the time needed to transfer the file back and forth is eliminated.

1. MTP allows for greater functionality in transferring media files not found with MSC
2. MTP allows the playback of audio files that have DRM protection while MSC does not
3. The media on an MTP device could not be read by most non-PC devices while media on MSC devices can
4. MTP devices cannot use common disk recovery tools while MSC devices can
5. MTP does not allow for the direct modification of a file while MSC does

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1 Comment

  1. MTP forces users to copy data/files (including malware) to the host computer when opening files from the MTP device and stored in a file path may require admin access.

    MTP is like DOS, one function at a time. Already opening a movie (and waiting ages while it’s copied off the device) but want to listen to a music file on the same device while you wait – To bad so sad, not possible.

    MTP is supposed to allow you to use the phone and the computer to access the device at the same time, as above, this is a lie. You can not access a file from the phone while it’s being accessed from another device. You can only access other files from the MTP device not the file being viewed.

    MTP can be regarded as a user control protocol, even files you create on the MTP device (eg video’s recorded on a phone) may be blocked by DRM and prevented from transfer by MTP to another device.

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