Modern digital storage devices have come a long way from the floppy disks of the past. Their massive capacity and capabilities would have seemed impossible only ten or fifteen years ago. They are compact, versatile and affordable. Because they are used for storing everything from photos to expense reports, it’s no coincidence that the business world has seen a sharp increase in the use of digital storage devices. With the many options available today, the convenience of digital storage will always trump the bulkiness of hard copies.
In addition to storing data for daily use, it is crucial to back up important files for permanent safekeeping. Computer crashes, fires, theft and other disasters can claim your files in an instant, making back ups essential. The storage device should be kept in a separate area from your computer, so if something were to adversely affect your computer, the data will hopefully still be safe.
Here is a brief introduction to five of the most popular digital storage devices on the market today:
External hard drives are similar to the storage components in your main computer, but as the name suggests, they are completely separate units. Data is transferred from the computer to the external hard drive via a high-speed cable. External hard drives vary in size and are one of the most powerful storage options available.
Flash drives are an extremely convenient way to store data. They plug directly into your computer and transmit data through the USB connection. While they generally can’t hold as much data as an external hard drive, they are smaller and easier to transport. For this reason, flash drives are perfect for everyday use.
Compact disks (CDs) are a cheap and convenient way to store data. Although they have limited capacity, they are compatible with almost all computers and are easily stored. High-end CDs are advisable because they are designed to last longer and resist surface damage.
Digital virtual disks (DVDs) are similar to CDs, but offer increased capabilities. Their capacity is often five times that of CDs, and they support more sophisticated media. As with CDs, the high-end brands are recommended because of their durability.
Blu-Ray disks (BDs) are a more advanced alternative to DVDs. They are similar in size and design, but can hold an incredible 50 GB of data. They are currently the most sophisticated of the disk storage options.
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