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Unformatted text preview: ns of Optical Disks
Advantages As a secondary storage device, optical disks have the following advantages:
1. The cost-per-bit of storage for optical disks is very low because of their low cost and
enormous storage density.
The use of a single spiral track makes optical disks an ideal storage medium for
reading large blocks of sequential data, such as music.
3. Optical disk drives do not have any mechanical read/write heads to rub against or
crash into the disk surface. This makes optical disks a more reliable storage medium than
magnetic tapes or magnetic disks.
4. Optical disks have a data storage life in excess of 30 years. This makes them a better
storage medium for data archiving as compared to magnetic tapes or magnetic disks.
5. Since data once stored on an optical disk becomes permanent, the danger of stored
data getting inadvertently erased/overwritten is not there with optical disks.
6. Due to their compact size and light weight, optical disks are easy to handle, store,
and port from one place to another.
Music CDs can be played on a computer having a CD-ROM drive along with a
sound board and speakers. This allows computer systems to be also used as music
systems whenever desired.
As a secondary storage device, optical disks have the following limitations:
1. It is a read-only (permanent) storage medium. Data once recorded, cannot be erased
and hence the optical disks cannot be reused.
2. The data access speed for optical disks is slower than magnetic disks.
3. Optical disks require a more complicated drive mechanism than magnetic disks.
Uses of Optical Disks
Optical disks are typically used for one or more of the following purposes:
1. For distributing large amounts of data at low cost. For example, a complete
encyclopedia, dictionary, world atlas, dictionary of quotations, biographies of great
people, information about all educational institutions of a particular type in a country, etc.
are often distributed on CD-ROM disks.
2. For distribution of electronic version of conference proceedings, journals, magazines,
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- Spring '14