Outline of storage details with reference to blocking, sectors, cylinders and heads.


  • Track: is a circular line going around the platter at the same radius (see image)
  • Blocks: a seires of data bits or bytes with a nominal size on the Track (see image)
  • Blocking: the process of putting data on to Blocks
  • Sector: a section of a Hard Disk (see image)

harddisk.jpg
Internal view of a HDD with the components labled (drawing is simplified)

The Graphic above shows a Hard drive and its elements.
  • The entire platter turns with the arm (head attached) going over the platter reading or writing the information onto the platter.
  • There may be many platters on top of each other all running simultaneously.
    • If many platters run along parallel, the information written is the same too, so one sector on the top platter will be the same sector on the platter beneath it and so on.
  • Tracks are the smallest writeable spaces on the disc, they resemble to one line all around the hard drives platter. Many tracks above each other (since they’re parallel) are called a cylinder.

  • The Hard drive as it is explained above is a long term memory storage, as to speak that it is non volatile and will not be deleted after being turned off.
  • Information can be stored in volatile memory or non volatile memory. The difference is that Volatile memory will be lost after no more energy runs through the chip, and non volatile memory will still be there after the circuit is opened again.


Powerpoint presentation including animation of a hard disk drive:

Examples for Volatile Memory are:

  • Cache
  • RAM (Random access memory)

Non-Volatile:
  • Hard drives
  • USB Sticks / Flash memory
  • Flash ROM

Further Images

harddisksmall.jpg
Internal view of a a Hard DIsk

USB_Stick_128MB_Innenansicht.jpg
Internal view of a USB flash drive

RAM_n.jpg
Different types of RAM