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Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Binary prefix

Prefixes for multiples of
bits (b) or bytes (B)
Value Metric
1000 k kilo
10002 M mega
10003 G giga
10004 T tera
10005 P peta
10006 E exa
10007 Z zetta
10008 Y yotta
1024 K kilo Ki kibi
10242 M mega Mi mebi
10243 G giga Gi gibi

Ti tebi

Pi pebi

Ei exbi

Zi zebi

Yi yobi
In computing, a binary prefix is a specifier or mnemonic that is prepended to the units of digital information, the bit and the byte, to indicate multiplication by a power of 1024.
The computer industry has historically used the units kilobyte, megabyte, and gigabyte, and the corresponding symbols KB, MB, and GB, in at least two slightly different measurement systems. In citations of main memory (RAM) capacity, gigabyte customarily means 1073741824bytes. As this is the third power of 1024, and 1024 is a power of 2 (210), this usage is therefore referred to as a binary prefix.
In most other contexts, the industry uses the multipliers kilo, mega, giga, etc., in a manner consistent with their meaning in the International System of Units (SI), namely as powers of 1000. For example, a 500gigabyte hard disk holds 500000000000bytes, and a 100megabit per second Ethernet connection transfers data at 100000000bit/s. In contrast with the binary prefix usage, this use is described as a decimal prefix, as 1000 is a power of 10.
The ambiguity of using the same unit prefixes for two different representations within the same industry has caused some confusion. Starting around 1998, several standards and trade organizations approved standards and recommendations for a new set of binary prefixes that refer unambiguously to powers of 1024. Accordingly, the SI prefixes should only be used in the decimal sense, even when referring to data storage capacities: kilobyte and megabyte denote one thousand bytes and one million bytes respectively (consistent with SI), while new terms such as kibibyte, mebibyte and gibibyte, having the symbols KiB, MiB, and GiB, denote 1024bytes, 1048576bytes, and 1073741824bytes, respectively.[1]


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