What are Data Storage Devices?

What Does Storage devices Mean

In computing , data or information storage devices are the different electronic components that a computer or some other similar computer system has, and that allow it to save or retrieve information temporarily or permanently, on some type of physical medium.



They are devices that allow the input and output of information, in which the system deposits certain data for later retrieval. They can be of various types, as we will see later, depending on the type of mechanisms used to store the information.

On the other hand, they can be classified according to their behavior within the system:

  • Primary devices. They are those that store information in the memory of the computer , so they are usually used continuously, receiving a constant flow of electricity .
  • Secondary devices. On the contrary, they are for occasional use, and sequentially store the information on external devices when the user so wishes, so that they can take them with them and retrieve them wherever and whenever they want.

On the other hand, depending on the information retrieval mode, we can in turn distinguish between:

  • Sequential access devices. Those in which you must read record after record in order to access the information, from the beginning to the desired point. They tend, therefore, to be slower.
  • Random access devices. The information is searched directly in the physical place where it is stored, without having to start reading from the beginning of the medium.

Storage devices are vital to the operation of any computer system. In them you will find the essential information for the interface with the user and for the administration of other peripherals, such as the Operating System .

On the other hand, they allow information to be extracted and entered into the system, or information to be moved from one computer to another without the need for them to be connected to a network .

It can help you: Internal parts of a computer

Magnetic storage

Magnetic devices like the floppy disk are now obsolete.

Magnetic devices are those that use different materials endowed with ferromagnetic properties, to contain information according to binary coding (the binary system ), using the orientation of the charged particles as a writing system.

To do this they use a head that can be recorded and re-recorded, overlaying the information over and over again in its place. Most of them are obsolete systems, some with enormous storage capacity, among which are magnetic tapes, floppy disks or cassettes, and hard disk drives (the computer's hard disk).

Optical storage

Optical storage is practical and reliable.

Optical drives work through a laser reading and writing system. This type of storage operates on circular optical discs, on which the laser creates microscopic grooves (on only one of their faces), thus encoding the information so that it can be recorded and retrieved.

Generally, it allows a single recording and then only the recovery of the data, but they are usually practical and reliable, although most of them are also obsolete.

Examples of this system are compact discs (CD), their video variants (DVD) and other newer models such as Blue-ray or rewritable discs (CDR and DVDR).

Electronic storage

Electronic storage uses chips and technologies dependent on electricity.

Electronic or solid-state storage involves the use of generally removable storage devices, which store information inside chips and technologies dependent on the flow of electrical current .

Its writing mechanism consists of a set of voltage microvariations when connected to a specialized port ( USB port ). Examples of this system are pen drives, MicroSD cards or NAND Flash technology.

Internal and external storage

Internal storage stores data within the system.

Depending on where they occupy within the physical architecture of the system, it is generally distinguished between the devices of:

  • Internal storage. It is located inside the computer and is supposed to save the data within the system.
  • External storage. It is removable by the user, since it uses units or devices outside the system, generally removable, and that can range from a pendrive to an external hard drive.
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