What is a byte in relation to computers

byte


Summary of 8 bits, the standard unit of measurement for data sizes in computers.

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The "byte" (sounds like the English please, the bite, is also - especially in connection with networks - referred to as the octet) is the unit of measurement for the amount of information and storage capacity. A byte is created by combining eight bits, which corresponds to an eight-digit binary number.

A byte can represent a total of 256 (0 to 255 = 0x0 to 0xFF hexadecimal) different characters and control characters, the different meanings of which are determined by a character table (e.g. ASCII).

For example, the binary number 01100111 represents the hexadecimal number 0x67, the octal number 0147, the (most common for humans) decimal number 103. In ASCII, this number is assigned the lowercase letter "g".

Usual units

According to the standardization of the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), the following list is actually incorrect: there, for example, kilobytes are used as 103 Bytes defined (see "Sizes for hard disks"), KiBiByte is suggested as the "new" designation, whereby the "Bi" stands for binary. However, this standardization has not yet caught on.

Annotation: Converted values ​​are listed under the designation.

Danger! Abbreviations with a lowercase b (Kb, Mb, Gb, etc.) usually denote - especially in the network sector - bit (!), Ie. by a factor of 8 smaller than the number of bytes. For a list of sizes see bit.

bit

0 or 1

Byte (b)

8 (= 23) Bit

KiloByte (KiloByte, KByte, KB, K, k)

according to IEC: KiBiByte (KiB)

1.024 (= 210) Byte

8.192 (= 213) Bit

MegaByte (MegaByte, MByte, MB, M)

according to IEC: MeBiByte (MiB)

1.024 (= 210) Kilobytes

1.048.576 (= 220) Byte

8.388.608 (= 223) Bit

GigaByte (GigaByte, GByte, GB, G)

according to IEC: GiBiByte (GiB)

1.024 (= 210) MegaByte

1.048.576 (= 220) Kilobytes

1.073.741.824 (= 230) Byte

8.589.934.592 (= 233) Bit

TeraByte (TeraByte, TByte, TB, T)

according to IEC: TeBiByte (TiB)

1.024 (= 210) GigaByte

1.048.576 (= 220) MegaByte

1.073.741.824 (= 230) Kilobytes

1.099.511.627.776 (= 240) Byte

8.796.093.022.208 (= 243) Bit

PetaByte (PetaByte, PByte, PB, P)

according to IEC: PeBiByte (PiB)

1.024 (= 210) TeraByte

1.048.576 (= 220) GigaByte

1.073.741.824 (= 230) MegaByte

1.099.511.627.776 (= 240) Kilobytes

1.125.899.906.842.624 (= 250) Byte

9.007.199.254.740.992 (= 253) Bit

ExaByte (ExaByte, EByte, EB, E)

according to IEC: ExBiByte (EiB)

1.024 (= 210) PetaByte

1.048.576 (= 220) TeraByte

1.073.741.824 (= 230) GigaByte

1.099.511.627.776 (= 240) MegaByte

1.125.899.906.842.624 (= 250) Kilobytes

1.152.921.504.606.846.976 (= 260) Byte

9.223.372.036.854.775.808 (= 263) Bit

For hard disks, the "usual trick" is given as the size with the base 10, which results in large differences between the size bought and the size displayed on the PC.

Hard drive sizes

1 megabyte corresponds to 1,000,000 (106) Byte

1 GigaByte corresponds to 1,000,000,000 (109) Byte

For example, with a 120 GB hard drive, there is a difference between the purchase size and the size displayed on the PC of approx. 8.25 GB (120 billion bytes correspond to approx. 111.75 GB).


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