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Introduction to Computing

Lecture # 9
Types of Secondary Storage
Floppy Disks
Hard Disks
Optical Disks
Magnetic Tapes
Flash memory cards
Secondary Storage
Secondary storage hardware devices that
permanently hold data and information as well as
The purpose of a storage device is to hold data
even when the computer is turned off so the data
can be used whenever it is needed.
Magnetic devices (hard drives, floppy drives, tapes) use
a magnet
Optical devices (CD-ROM, DVD-ROM) use lasers
Solid-state devices (flash memory, smart cards, solid
state disks) have physical switches
Floppy Disks
Floppy disk - a removable flat piece of
mylar plastic packaged in a plastic case.
Several types:
5.25: 360K (Low density) and 1.2M
(High density)
3.5 : 720K (Low density) and 1.44M
(High density)
Write-protect notch - allows you to
prevent a diskette from being written to.
Tracks - concentric circles on which data
is recorded.
Sectors - invisible wedge-shaped
sections used for storage reference
Read/write head - used to transfer data
between the computer and the disk.
A floppy disk rotates at 300 to 360 RPM
Floppy-Disk Cartridges
Zip disks 100, 250, or
750 megabytes Zip
Zip disks manufactured by disk
Iomega Corp Are disks
with a special high-quality
magnetic coating.

Jaz disk
Jaz disk 1GB / 2GB

3.5-inch floppy disks Floppy

1.44 megabytes disk
Hard Disks
Thin but rigid metal,
glass, or ceramic
platters covered with a
magnetic substance that
allows data to be held in
the form of magnetized
Most hard disks have at
least two platters.
The greater the number
of platters, the larger the
capacity of the drive.
A hard disk rotates at
5,400 to 15,000 PRM
Hard Disks

Bits on disk (through microscope)

dark stripes are 0 bits and bright
stripes are 1 bits
Hard Disks
Non-removable hard disks -
housed in a microcomputer system
unit and used to store nearly all
programs and most data files.

Removable hard disks - one or two

platters enclosed along with
read/write heads in a hard plastic
case, which is inserted into the
microcomputers cartridge drive.
Hard Disks
Head crash - An event that happens when the surface of
the read/write head or particles on its surface come into
contact with the surface of the hard-disk platter, causing
the loss of some or all of the data on the disk.

Hard-disk controller - a special-purpose circuit board that

positions the disk and read/write heads and manages the
flow of data and instructions to and from the disk.
Hard Disk Controller/Interface
Most commonly used controllers/interfaces:
Ultra ATA (Advanced Technology Attachment) also called
EIDE (Enhanced Integrated Drive Electronics)
SCSI (Small Computer System Interface)


Low cost, mainly for PC Relatively expensive, for workstation
Reasonable performance More intelligent, better performance
Devices in IDE chain cannot operate All devices in SCSI chain are capable
at the same time (must take turn) to operate at the same time
At most 2 devices in chain Up to 7 / 15 devices in chain
Easy installation May require extension card
Good for single user using 1-2 devices Good for multi-user environment
Hard Disk Interface the NEW
New standard for Hard disk connection: Serial ATA
Faster data transfer speed than EIDE (Ultra ATA)
Support hot-plug (remove hardware without reboot)
Better ventilation inside system unit / case

Ultra ATA
(IDE) cable
SATA cable
Optical Disks: CDs & DVDs
Optical disk - a
removable disk
on which data is
written and read
through the use
of laser beams.

An optical disk is
usually 4.75
inches in
diameter and
less than one-
twentieth of an
inch thick.
Optical Disks: CDs & DVDs
CD-ROM - read only.
For pre-recorded text,
graphics, and sound
Recordable) - for
recording only once
Read/Write)- for
rewriting many times

CD Capacity:
A standard CD has a capacity of about 74 minutes of CD audio
music (650MB of data). There are extended CDs that can actually
pack more than 80 minutes (700MB of data) on a disk.
CD-RW Drive
A CD-RW Drive can be used to read CDs, as well as
writing data to CD-R and CD-RW
All recorders has a set of 3 numbers indicating the
speed (e.g. 16x10x40)
The first number is the max. speed for writing CD-R
(e.g. 16x)
The second number is the max. speed for writing CD-
RW (e.g. 10x)
The third number is the reading speed (e.g. 40x)
The Symbol X in the drive
speed (as in 56X) denotes
the original data transfer
rate of 150 kilobytes per
Range from 16X to 75X.
It is a good idea to have a
CD-RW drive for data

However, many user

requires a DVD drive for
viewing movie.

It is a waste of space &

power to have two separate Like CD-RW drive,
it begins to fade out.
drives. As DVD writer are becoming
more common
Hence Combo-Drive is
developed which allows
READING DVDs as well as
Optical Disks: CDs & DVDs
DVD-ROM - for reading only

DVD ROM stands for digital versatile disk or digital

video disk, with read-only memory. It is a CD-style
disk with extremely high capacity, able to store 4.7 or
more gigabytes.

DVD-R / DVD+R - for recording on once

For rewriting many times:

DVD: Why so Many Formats?
Mainly for commercial reason.

DVD-R, DVD-RW and DVD-RAM are supported by:

Panasonic, Toshiba, Apple Computer, Hitachi, NEC,
Pioneer, Samsung and Sharp.

DVD+RW and DVD+R formats are supported by:

Philips, Sony, Hewlett-Packard, Dell, Ricoh, Yamaha.

Basically, + and - format are not compatible. The trend

is that different formats are becoming more
compatible and more intermixed.

New DVD writer brought from shops already supports

all +/- R/RW formats
DVD Capacity
The New Optical Storage Standard:
Blu-ray Disc
The name Blu-ray Disc is derived
from the blue-violet laser used to
read and write

Each layer/side can store 25GB

data (5.3 times of DVD)

double sided-double layer =


Supported by Sony, Samsung,

Sony, Panasonic, Philips, LG,

The new Sony PlayStation 3

system is equipped with 2x blu-ray
disc drive
Yet Another New Standard:
Stands for High Density
DVD / High Definition

Competitor of Blu-Ray
Disc (New format war ?)

Supported by Microsoft,
Intel, Toshibaetc

Each layer/side can store

15GB data
Magnetic Tape
Magnetic tape - thin
plastic tape coated with
a substance that can be
magnetized (for 1s) or
left non-magnetized (for
0s). Magnetic tape

Tape cartridges -
modules resembling
audio cassettes that
contain tape in
rectangular, plastic
Tape cartridge
Flash Memory Cards
Flash memory card - circuitry on credit-card-size PC
card that can be inserted into slots connecting to the
motherboard on notebook computers.

Most common types:

Secure Digital - Compact Flash
Memory Stick - MultiMedia Card (MMC)
xD-Picture Card - SmartMedia

card reader
Portable, Small physical size,
Large storage capacity.
Fast access speed
(no mechanical part).
Flash Memory Cards
MultiMedia Card (MMC) :
small in physical size

Secure Digital Cards:

Outside similar to MMC
Also available as mini-SD card

Compact Flash:
Two classes: Type I and Type II

Some digicams are equipped with

a CompactFlash Type II card slot
which can hold either a Type I CF
or the thicker Type II CF or memory
devices like Microdrive
Flash Memory Cards

xD-Picture Cards:
small in physical size

Memory Stick:
By Sony in 1999
Memory Stick Duo: Only half of the size

Smart Media:
Max capacity: 128MB
New digital camera do not use SmartMedia