Memory not accounted for

  mcheathen 18:27 13 Feb 09

Have you ever noticed that a hard drive never shows the memory that it is rated with in 'Properties', after taking into account the memory used for the operating system and installed programs. What exactly has happened to this missing memory?

  iqs 18:31 13 Feb 09

the lost/used memory is used for the low level format,track,sectors etc etc

  MAJ 18:45 13 Feb 09

You mean storage space rather than memory, mcheathen?

It is taken up by hidden system files and folders and in the way that the size of the drive is measured. A manufacturer will state that a hard drive is, say, 100GB in size, using 1000MB to equal 1GB, while Windows will see it as less that 100GB because, actually, there are 1024MB in 1GB.

  mcheathen 20:11 13 Feb 09

My hard drive is rated at 500GB. Yet it has 456GB of free memory and 8.99GB is used. So 35Gb must be a heck of an amount of space to use for low level format,track,sectors.

If a HD is 100GB in size and there is actually 1024 MB in a GB, then the actuall size must be 100 + (100 * 0.024 So that you surely make the memory rating greater.

  MAJ 20:17 13 Feb 09

It's 500GB because the manufacturers use 1000MB = 1GB:

500 * 1000 = 500,000 MB

Windows sees a GB as 1024 MB, so your 500,000 MB drive is seen as 500,00 MB Divided by 1024 MB = 488 GB.

  mcheathen 21:30 13 Feb 09

If Windows sess a GB as 1024 MB, then that would make more sense - thanks! So wiht my hard drive as 488 GB, there will be (according to iqs) 23GB used for the low level format,track,sectors and whatever the etc etc actually is. That still seems like quite a lot!

  interzone55 22:09 13 Feb 09

A 500gb drive will normally be 476gb after formatting. So the calculations above seem correct...

  DieSse 23:31 13 Feb 09

Drives are already "formatted (low-level)" when new. The amount lost by user partitioning/formatting is really tiny.

You can see that in the Drive Properties. Windows will show the capacity in actual Bytes (500,000,000,000 - or a few more in most cases) - as well as in GBytes calculated on the 1024=1KB method).

You really do get 500,000,000,000 bytes of storage - though the filing system uses a little in tables etc - and the OS quite a bit more. That's still your storage though - used to store the stuff of your system. Your system of course must store OS, programs and your data - it's all your stuff to store, whatever it's used for.

  AL47 23:59 13 Feb 09

i added a second internal HDD to my laptop of 320GB

itdoes indeed read 320'070'479'872 bytes!
just a shame manufactuers cant jus t use the more 'real' measurement for clarity

  mcheathen 17:07 14 Feb 09

Just one question - if Windows sees a GB as 1024 MB - does it only apply to HDD or does it also apply to RAM?

  interzone55 19:38 14 Feb 09


Windows sees a GB as 1,024MB, or 1,073,741,824 bytes.

It's only the hard drive manufacturers who've started rounding GB to 1,000,000,000 bytes...

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