In the previous section, we talked about what secondary storage is, but common types of storage can be grouped in a number of different ways.
We know that memory is always internal to the computer, but storage can be either internal or external.
There is a need to have internal storage for the computer, however having the ability to remove storage easily from the system makes it easier to transport and backup data.
When looking at internal and external storage, we can compare examples by looking at their purpose. For example:
A hard disk drive is internal storage – its purpose is to store programs and data that are used on the computer system including the operating system whilst the system is shut down. If this was external, it would need to be reconnected and identified every time the system was booted up.
A memory stick is external storage – its purpose is to store files and programs and transport them to other computer systems. Because of this, it is light and durable.
Consider the following different types of secondary storage. What purpose might they be used for? Are they internal or external? (hover over the images for the answer)
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