igcse ict ao2.3 notes

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  • Created on: 11-05-13 19:29
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AO2.3 Storage devices and media
A. describe common backing storage media (including magnetic tapes, hard discs, all forms of CD
and DVD, memory sticks, flash memory) and their associated devices
B. identify typical uses of the storage media, including types of access (e.g. serial/sequential,
direct/random) and access speeds
C. describe the comparative advantages and disadvantages of using different backing storage
Storage media Advantages Disadvantages
Fixed hard drive very fast data transfer rate Easily damaged
and fast access times to Not portable unless a
data. portable one is used
Very large memory
Portable hard disk drive very fast data transfer rate easily damages
and fast access times to
very large memory
can be used to transfer
documents between
Floppy disk drive using a CD to store a small low memory capacity
file is deemed as wasteful very few modern computers
cheap to buy have floppy disk drives
data transfer rate is slow
not very robust
Magnetic tapes cheaper than hard disk access time is very slow
very robust when updating, another
data transfer rate is fast tape is needed
CDROM and DVDROM hold more data than floppy data transfer rate and data
disks access time are slower than
cheaper than hard disks hard disk
CDR and DVDR cheaper than RW disks only be recorded once
once burned they are like not all CD/DVD players can
ROM disks read them
CDRW and DVDRW reused many times
D. define the term backup and describe the need for taking backups

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The process of backing up, refers to the copying and archiving of computer data so it may be used to
restore the original file if a problem occurs. Backups are needed because in big places like offices or
schools, there is a lot of work that people do and that can all be lost in seconds if something like a
fire or flood was to happen. Personal things can also be lost like old photos so backups are really
necessary.…read more

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Item Description capacity Use
Magnetic Tape thin strip of plastic which is coated 1.6TB batch processing, back
in a magnetic layer. The data is up media.
stored in magnetic areas which
represent 1s and 0s.
Hard disk It is connected to the computer via up to 400GB It can be used as back
USB port (universal serial bus) and up systems to prevent
can be disconected and used on loss of data. They can
different computers.…read more

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Memory stick The memory stick is thin, fast and average of 16GB Memory sticks are usd
uses solid state technology. They for transporting files
have a much faster data access between computers or
time, all enabling it to replace hard used as a back up store.
disk drives in computers soon. They They are also used as a
are connected to the computer security device (a
through the USB port and they are dongle) to prevent
extremely small and ver portable. software piracy.…read more

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Type of access Advantage Disadvantage
serial access cheaper than hard slow access time, when
disk, robust updating another tape is
technology, fast data needed.
transfer rate
direct access They can access time It can be easily accidently
and data transfer is damamged if the user drops it
very fast. They have or does not shut it down
large memory correctly after use.
capacities and they
can be used as a
method of
between computers.…read more

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They are very It is not possible to write
compact and protect the data and files.
portable media. Additionally, their small
They are also very physical size means they are
robust. very easy to lose.
direct access very compact, very expensive per GB of memory,
robust. finite life, lower storage
capacity than hard disks.…read more


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