Storage devices are a set of components that serve to record or read various data on the data storage medium permanently or temporarily. These devices have the ability to perform read or write operations that come from the media where they have been physically stored in the files of some computer system.

Due to the large amount of information that is handled by users today, these devices have become as necessary products as computers, but despite their large memory storage capacity, they are not enough to transport certain documents. and reserve important information. Because of this, some have been created that have their own technology.

Functions of storage devices

These devices encompass a series of functions and benefits for the temporary or permanent storage of different programs or data that must be handled by the different applications that are carried out in this type of systems, therefore, they can work together with any medium that stores the data. files from a computer.

Among the most outstanding functions, we can mention:

  • They are units that serve to store various information, in such a way that they can be available to retrieve them quickly and easily.
  • They are devices that, when connected to a computer, allow files or information to be saved with large amounts of data.
  • With this system, other computing units such as bytes, megabytes, kilobytes, and gigabytes can also be referenced.
  • They can become internal or external to the computer and can also make up what is known as secondary memory of the computer.
  • They have the property of referring to logical storage units.
  • This computer system can store a large amount of information in memory and storage devices.
  • Internally, the data can be stored for a time in the random access memory (RAM), which is found directly on the main circuit board of the computer or on the peripheral cards that are similarly connected to the motherboards. computer main circuit.
  • External devices can inhabit the computer and at the same time be outside the main circuit board.

Classification of storage devices

Their classification is based on the way in which the data they contain can be accessed:

Sequential access

In this access, the reading element found on the device has to go through the space that is occupied by all the data that is already stored previously on the computer, which make up the entire set of information that you want to access.

Random access

In the mode of this access, it is direct, since the reading element can directly access the address where all the information to be located is located without the need to go through the entire recording surface from the beginning and the place where the searched information is stored.

Types of storage devices

These devices are as follows:

Magnetic devices

  • Magnetic tape : It is made up of a plastic tape protected with a ferromagnetic material, on this tape the characters are registered in the form of combinations of points. They are a sequential support that present drawbacks, since, in order to access specific information, the preceding ones have to be read.
  • Magnetic drums : They are made up of magnetic cylinders with the ability to hold information. It can be recorded and read by means of a head where the arm moves in the direction of the axis of rotation of the drum, which means that the information has direct access.
  • Hard disk : Currently it is the main information storage subsystem in the computer system. This device is responsible for storing all program files on the computer, which makes it extremely important.
  • Floppy disk or floppy disk: It is a device that is formed by a circular piece composed of a magnetic material that gives access to read and record the data

Optical devices

They are electro-mechanical units that have the ability to save and retrieve all information found on a special disk that has laser light. They have a design that can be used to work with various types of media, such as the ones that we will show below:

  • The CD – R: It is a compact disc that can be read as many times as you want, despite that its content cannot be modified when it has already been recorded. Because they cannot be erased or rewritten, they are ideal for storing unchanging information files.
  • CD – RW: They contain the same capacity of CD – R, however, they differ in terms of these since they are rewritable, which gives them much more advantage.
  • DVD – ROM: It is a compact disc with more storage capacity than those mentioned above. They can store the desired data on both sides of the disc and can read up to four levels of data. Thus, they can read full-length movies, games containing high-resolution videos, and 3D graphics.
  • DVD – RAM: it is also a double-sided disc, where any type of disc can be read, but cannot be written to.
  • Pc – Cards: They are reliable, compact and light cards, which makes them very suitable for notebook, handheld, palmtop and PDAS. This is due to its small size and its large storage capacity for data, electronic cameras, applications, cell phones, and memory cards.
  • Flash Cards: They are memory cards that can keep data even when they are powered by electrical sources, their data can be read, modified or erased. These digital devices are applicable in cell phones, personal assistants, digital cameras, and digital music devices due to their speed and efficiency.

Removable storage devices

  • Pen Drive or Memory Flash: This small device uses flash memory to save any information without having to use batteries. In this design it can be read and written without having to use special drivers.
  • Zip drives: This is a removable disk drive that comes in two interface designs and another that can be connected to parallel ports.

What is data recovery?

It is a process that can restore certain information that is contained in a secondary storage device that has been damaged, is defective or cannot be used or accessed normally.

Mostly the information can be recovered from the devices that are stored on hard drives, CDs, RAIDs, tapes, DVDs, among others.

This recovery process can occur due to physical damage or damage to the file system that prevents it from being accessed from the operating system.

Advantages and disadvantages of storage devices

Each storage device has its advantages and disadvantages, some of these are:

Floppy disk

  • Advantage: It has excellent capacity for today’s needs.
  • Disadvantage: Their long-term storage capacity can be unreliable, as they are easily damaged by humidity, cold, heat and the deterioration of the magnetic tape.

USB memory

  • Advantage: Depending on the storage capacity it contains, it can be easily handled and transported.
  • Disadvantage: You have a great chance of getting a virus.


  • Advantage: It can last for many years as long as it is used properly, the stored data is safe, since it has very little wear and tear and also has a large capacity to store information.
  • Disadvantage: Your information only depends on a physical medium that could be easily misplaced. Due to the lack of foresight, some computer scientists choose to create applications that are usually saved on CD and depend on a single operating system. In this sense, it is convenient to project applications in cross-platform browser programs.

Storage Device Usage Conclusion

Storage devices are units that can be able to read and write different information with the intention of storing it permanently.

At present, we have a wide variety of classes and categories that can be found in the market and with various amounts of storage. You can also get secondary devices, which can store information inside. Some of them are pen drives, memory cards, blu-ray, DVD or CD.

Samantha Robson
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Dr. Samantha Robson ( CRN: 0510146-5) is a nutritionist and website content reviewer related to her area of ​​expertise. With a postgraduate degree in Nutrition from The University of Arizona, she is a specialist in Sports Nutrition from Oxford University and is also a member of the International Society of Sports Nutrition.

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