Main » TERM » S »

size on disk

Files are stored on the disk in what is called called clusters (a group of disk sectors). Size on disk refers to the amount of cluster allocation a file is taking up, compared to file size which is an actual byte count.

The lowest cluster size for FAT32 is 1, so if the actual file only needs a small portion of the cluster, the size on disk for that file will reflect the entire cluster as being used. This is why when you check the properties tab of a file (using Microsoft Windows), you will usually see the size on disk size is larger than the file size.

size vs size on disk
Image: File size vs. size on disk.

Also see related terms cluster and file.







TECH RESOURCES FROM OUR PARTNERS
LATEST ARTICLES
3 Free Java Courses for Beginners

List of free online Java courses for students and IT professionals looking to enhance their skills . Read More »

SEO Dictionary

From keyword analysis to backlinks and Google search engine algorithm updates, our search engine optimization glossary lists 85 SEO terms you need... Read More »

Slideshow: History of Microsoft Operating Systems

Microsoft Windows is a family of operating systems for personal computers. In this article we look at the history of Microsoft operating... Read More »

STUDY GUIDES
Java Basics, Part 1

Java is a high-level programming language. This guide describes the basics of Java, providing an overview of syntax, variables, data types and... Read More »

Java Basics, Part 2

This second Study Guide describes the basics of Java, providing an overview of operators, modifiers and control Structures. Read More »

The 7 Layers of the OSI Model

The Open System Interconnection (OSI) model defines a networking framework to implement protocols in seven layers. Use this handy guide to compare... Read More »