A hard disk drive:sometimes abbreviated as Hard drive, HD, or HDD is a non-volatile memory hardware device that permanently stores and retrieves information. There are many variations, but their sizes are generally 3.5″ and 2.5″ for desktop and laptop computers respectively. A hard drive consists of one or more platters to which data is written using a magnetic head, all inside of an air-sealed casing.Internal hard disks reside in a drive bay, connect to the motherboard using an ATA,SCSI, or SATA cable, and are powered by a connection to the PSU (power supply unit).
A hard drive can be used to store just about any type of data, including pictures, music, videos, and text documents. Computers have a hard drive and use it to store files for the operating system and software that run on the computer, as well as files created or downloaded to the computer by a user.
The amount of data a hard drive can store depends on the storage space of the hard drive. Older hard drives had a storage size of several hundred megabytes (MB) to several gigabytes (GB). Newer hard drives have a storage size of several hundred gigabytes to several terabytes (TB). Each year, new and improved technology allows for increasing hard drive storage sizes.
Hard drive components
As can be seen in the picture above, the desktop hard drive consists of the following components: the head actuator, read/write actuator arm, read/write head, spindle, and platter. On the back of a hard drive is a circuit board called the disk controller.
Tip: New users often confuse memory (RAM) with disk drive space.
Note: The above picture is an example of a traditional hard drive and not an SSD.
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