Data Storage Data Size

We all throw around terms in Data Storage like gigabyte and kilobyte, but do we truly know the meanings of the terms we are using or are we talking through our hats?

For those who really aren’t sure, here is a basic explanation of the ways in which we measure data, and the terms we use to describe that.

That sounds easier than it is, since there are two different types of storage, and they have slightly different measurements.

What you Need to know

Basically all the data terminology in the world has limited value to the average person.

You won’t pay less for data storage if you understand what the data size means.

Bottom line is essentially the more you store the more you pay.

What type of data uses the most storage.

Do you pay equally for all data types


In processor or virtual storage, data is calculated slightly differently than in disk storage, skewing the numbers a small amount.

In either type of measurement, a bit is a binary digit, either a zero or a one.

A string of 8 bits is called a byte.

At this point, things begin to differ a little.

In virtual storage, there are 1024 bytes in a kilobyte, and 1024 kilobytes in a metabyte.

There are 1024 metabytes in a gigabyte, 1024 gigabytes in a terabyte, and 1024 terabytes in a petabyte.

Disk Storage

If you use 1000 instead of 1024, you get the measurements for disk storage, which goes by a more easily understood system of measurement.

Whichever system you use, though, the results are reasonably close.

You can go on through the measurements and see that an exabyte is 1000 petabytes, and a zettabyte is 1000 exabytes.

A thousand zettabytes is a yottabyte, and 1000 yottabytes is a brontobyte.

Finally, we come to the geopbyte, which, of course, is 1000 brontobytes.

The Entire Internet

The whole of the internet contains about one yottabyte of data.

The possibility of anyone on earth now ever seeing a hard drive containing a geopbyte of information is remote, to say the least.

Twenty years ago a 2 terabyte storage device would have seemed equally farfetched, so I may be wrong.