What is the real use of hard disks?

Questions about hard disks' performance, issues, tips, and software.
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shravan
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Joined: Sat Nov 13, 2021 7:17 am

What is the real use of hard disks?

Post by shravan »

HDDs have played a big role when it comes to modern storage for computers, what are they exactly for? What do the different amounts of storage mean? And what about the SSD?

What is the HDD for?
The hard drive is a way to store your data. Your RAM holds the information for what you’re working with right now, but the issue with RAM is that it’s a volatile form of memory, which means that it loses all the information it holds the moment it loses power. This is where Hard-drives come in. They store all the files in your computer and maintain said files up until you delete/overwrite it OR until it breaks.

That’s really all I can say about your hard-drive, it’s there to store your files. It’s slower than RAM, but comes in a larger quantity and maintains that information up until you break it/ remove said files or overwrite them.

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What about the SSD?
Recently a lot of people have been talking about SSDs, SSDs as boot drives etc. What does that even mean?

SSDs are very similar to HDDs by the fact that they store information like them. But, SSDs are much faster because they don’t have moving parts. HDDs have a moving platter and a “head” to write the information down, which is why they’re fragile (relatively speaking). So, SSDs are sturdier, faster and smaller, why would you want the HDD then? I’m glad you asked (Yes, you did, don’t lie.)

Both have advantages and disadvantages.
HDDs have the advantage of:

Being cheaper.
Having more versions with more space
SSDs have the advantage of:

Being faster.
Being sturdier.
But they also have downsides.

HDDs have the downside of:

Being much more fragile.
Being slower.
Being bigger
While SSDs have the disadvantage of:

Being much more expensive.
Having a limited amount of rewrite cycles.
So you have to pick based on what you value the most: Is it the amount of storage? The price? The longevity? Do you overwrite a lot?

It can be a tough pick.

Conclusion: Let’s wrap this up!
The HDD is there to store information up until broken or having said information rewritten. The SSD is very similar, but it doesn’t have moving parts, so it’s faster, but may experience issues when overwriting in the future (Albeit you have to overwrite a lot)

That’s about all I can think of on the top of my head.
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