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Difference Between Optical Disk and Magnetic Disk

Optical Disk vs Magnetic Disk

Summary: Difference Between Optical Disk and Magnetic Disk is that an optical disc is a type of optical storage media that consists of a flat, round, portable disc made of metal, plastic, and lacquer. These discs usually are 4.75 inches in diameter and less than one-twentieth of an inch thick. While Magnetic Disk is a type of storage device in which stores data by using magnetization process. And through magnetization write, rewrite and access data.

Difference Between Optical Disk and Magnetic Disk

Optical Disk

An optical disc is a type of optical storage media that consists of a flat, round, portable disc made of metal, plastic, and lacquer. These discs usually are 4.75 inches in diameter and less than one-twentieth of an inch thick. Optical discs primarily store software, data, digital photos, movies, and music. Some optical disc formats are read only, meaning users cannot write (save) on the media. Others are read/write, which allows users to save on the disc just as they save on a hard disk.

Nearly every personal computer today includes some type of optical disc drive installed in a drive bay. On some, you push a button to slide out a tray, insert the disc, and then push the same button to close the tray; others are slot loaded, which means you insert the disc in a narrow opening on the drive.

With some discs, you can read and/or write on one side only. Manufacturers usually place a silk-screened label on the top layer of these single-sided discs. You insert a single-sided disc in the drive with the label side up. Other discs are double-sided. Simply remove the disc from the drive, flip it over, and reinsert it in the drive to use the other side of the disc. Double-sided discs often have no label; instead, each side of the disc is identified with small writing around the center of the disc. Some drives use LightScribe technology, which works with specially coated optical discs, to etch labels directly on the disc (as opposed to placing an adhesive label on the disc).

Optical discs store items by using microscopic pits (indentations) and lands (flat areas) that are in the middle layer of the disc. A high-powered laser light creates the pits. A lower-powered laser light reads items from the disc by reflecting light through the bottom of the disc. The reflected light is converted into a series of bits the computer can process. Manufacturers claim that a properly cared for high-quality optical disc will last 5 years but could last up to 100 years.

Magnetic Disk

Magnetic Disk is a type of storage device in which stores data by using magnetization process. And through magnetization write, rewrite and access data. Magnetic Disk is covered with a magnetic coating and it stores data in the form of spots, tracks or sectors. The most common examples of Magnetic Disks are Hard Disk, Zip disks and floppy disks. A Magnetic Disk often consists of a rotating magnetic surface and a mechanical arm that keep circulating over this magnetic surface. The data Magnetic Disk reads or write data to it is by using this Mechanical Arm. Mostly, Magnetic Disk is the primary storage for computers, and data is organized in it is in the form of tracks and sectors. All read and write operations that are going to perform on Magnetic Disk are performed on sectors.

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