Spinning Disk

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What Does Spinning Disk Mean?

A spinning disk is the mechanism within a hard disk drive to which memory is written. With rotating plates attached to an arm that writes the data, the spinning disk mechanism physically resembles a record player (although it is sealed within an enclosure). The plates are magnetized (similarly to cassette tapes) in order to store data that is written using copper heads.

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Techopedia Explains Spinning Disk

Spinning disk technology has been arguably the most popular form of computer storage for decades, but has been increasingly superseded by solid state drives (which are particularly common in newer notebooks and laptops) in recent years. Nevertheless, the older hard disk technology has dramatically increased its storage throughout the years. In spite of its constant physical size and uniform form factor, higher precision and sophisticated design has allowed the spinning disk hard drive to increase its capacity into the terabyte range.

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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert
Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.