Flash drive shows less space than printed capacity?

Asked By 90 points N/A Posted on -

When we purchase any HDD, memory card or USB flash drive etc. It shows less space than its printed capacity. What is the actual reason behind this? Ex.:- a 500 GB capacity HDD only shows 465.75 GB. Where are other 34.75 GB? If we check flash drive shows less space than printed capacity. Same thing happened with other storage media. I want to know its actual reason. Please reply if you know.

Best Answer by Monty Nekoda
Answered By 0 points N/A #168702

Flash drive shows less space than printed capacity?


Hello Noah Jessie,

Don’t worry, it is perfectly normal and will happen with any storage device you would use, I will explain you the reason for it. Basically the thing is that, human beings think about numbers in decimal, while computers interpret numbers in their own binary system. 

Therein lies the problem, it is just a marketing strategy, what they aim to perceive is that 1 GB is equal to 1,000,000,000 Bytes, however from a computer 1 GB is 1,073,741,824 bytes. That is why the size written on the product and the size we actually get is different.

I hope this was informative.

Best Answer
Best Answer
Answered By 0 points N/A #168704

Flash drive shows less space than printed capacity?


All the data on the computer is stored in binary format called a bit. 8 Bits make a byte.

So, a Kilobyte (KB) = 1024 Bytes, Megabyte (1024 KB), Gigabyte (1024 MB), Terabyte (1024 GB).

1 KB = 1024 bytes.

1 MB = 1024 kb = 1048576 Bytes.

1 GB = 1024 MB = 1,073,741,824 Bytes.

1 TB = 1024 GB = 1,099,511,627,776 Bytes.

So if I have a 500 GB hard drive, windows will report it as (500*1024*1024*1024) 536,870,912,000 Bytes.

Manufacturers rate the hard drive capacities on the standard base 10 number that we use in day to day calculations. Hence according to this calculation.

1 KB = 1000 bytes.

1 MB = 1000 kb = 1,000,000 Bytes.

1 GB = 1000 MB = 1,000,000,000 Bytes.

1 TB = 1000 GB = 1,000,000,000,000 Bytes.

Therefore you lose approximate. 48,576 bytes in a MB, 73,741,824 bytes in a GB & 99,511,627,776 bytes in a TB. Based on this calculation for each GB, manufacturers over report the disk space by 73,741,824 Bytes (approximate. 70 Mb). So a 500 GB hard drive, the actual disk space is approximate. 465 GB or approximate. 7% less.

Hope this answers your question.

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