These are also called 'fixed disks' in older computerese because the storage media is mounted within the computer and not intended to be removed.

Hard drives consist of one or more metal platters stacked together on a single spindle. Multiple read/write heads (one for the top and bottom of each platter) float next to the surface of the drive. Hard Disk drive capacities are determined by the number of cylinders and blocks per cylinder a drive will support.


Named for the media disks that could be pulled out and that would 'flop' when carried. These disks are designed to allow users to store data to a disk, remove it and carry the data elsewhere. These typically come in one of two formats in the United States: 3.5" @1.44Mbytes and 5.25" at 1.22 Mbytes.


These are drives where the drive itself can be removed or ported elsewhere. The media is usually not pulled out. Removable hard drives are a good example of these.

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