What is a Hard Drive?
For all those of you who have a personal computer, you may well be familiar with the term hard drive. For the rest of us, a hard drive is an external storage device, usually attached to a computer or laptop, that is designed to hold information on a computer.
The Uses of Hard Drives
Hard drives come in various sizes, which allows for a greater amount of storage and for personal computers to be much more powerful. With the use of space and electronic memory constantly increasing, hard drives are becoming more important to computers, which is why we use them for our personal computers.
Hard drives have two vital parts, namely the heads and the platters. Heads are the elements which make up the platter, which stores data onto the disc of the hard drive and platters are the elements within the heads which stores data onto the disk.
Most platters have an arrangement that is so complex that even a software engineer cannot figure out its logical arrangement by themselves. This is one of the reasons why it is so difficult to find a hard drive on the web that is not already well-known to the world. A disc can only be made when it is platted properly, which is the technical and mechanical process of making the disk’s surface smooth.
A disk can only be so full of data before it begins to “lose” space, the most common and effective way of avoiding this is to use logical partitions. The word partition is quite confusing because there are different types of partitions; in this case there is a logical partition (which is what one considers a partition), but also a physical partition which is placed into the drive as a part of the drive.
Each logical partition, or more commonly called a partition in the context of hard drives, is a logical group of data. It consists of one or more primary partitions, the logical drives within the partition, and, sometimes, it also has other logical drives within it. Each logical partitions is basically its own independent entity and as such has its own set of partitions. The logical partitions are designed to accommodate different types of data and, depending on the drive’s manufacturer, it might also have a different level of access to the drives.
Another thing to keep in mind is that the primary partitions of a logical partition (which also sometimes referred to as the primary partition) is where the operating system is installed. In some cases, it also houses all of the data for the system, meaning it must be very well protected from anything that might accidentally damage it.
In a way, this is similar to the drive that is placed within the computer as a whole because it is where the operating system resides. The operating system is a software application that provides a complete and detailed view of the computer, such as basic functions and an overview of all of the programs that are running.
Now, a hard drive can also function as a virtual storage device, one that is connected to the computer but that is not totally independent from it. It has no connection to the computer, but it has a backup copy of the files, files which are stored entirely within the hard drive.
It is important to remember that an operating system exists to protect all of the information on the hard drive, from the computer’s hardware to the applications and other files that the computer uses. The operating system keeps the hard drive organized and prevents problems from occurring as a result of badly formatted disks, such as backing up important data onto a different disk.
Hard drives can be used in many ways, and many of these purposes may be a bit confusing. They can store data, they can be used to boot computers, they can store information and they can serve many purposes.