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(v.) (1) To copy files to a long-term storage medium for backup. Large computer systems often have two layers of backup, the first of which is a disk drive. Periodically, the computer operator will archive files on the disk to a second storage device, usually a tape drive.

On smaller systems, archiving is synonymous with backing up.

(2) To compress a file.

(n.) (1) A disk, tape, or directory that contains files that have been backed up.

(2) A file that contains one or more files in a compressed format.

(adj.) In DOS systems, the archive attribute marks files that have been modified since the last backup.

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