Storage Technology Definitions

This glossary explains the meaning of key words and phrases that information technology (IT) and business professionals use when discussing storage and related software products. You can find additional definitions by visiting WhatIs.com or using the search box below.

  • #

    3.5" SSD (3.5 solid-state drive)

    A 3.5 solid-state drive (SSD) is a data storage device designed for the 3.5-inch hard disk drive (HDD) form factor. It fits into the drive slot as a same-sized HDD in a portable computer, enterprise server, or storage system.

  • 3D NAND flash

    3D NAND is a type of flash memory in which memory cells are stacked vertically in layers, in comparison to planar NAND, which uses a single layer of memory cells.

  • 3D XPoint

    3D XPoint is memory storage technology jointly developed by Intel and Micron Technology Inc.

  • 8-track tape

    An 8-track tape is a hard plastic cartridge about the size of an external modem that houses a continuous loop of non-digital (analog) audio data stored on magnetic tape.

  • A

    access method

    In computing, an access method is a program or a hardware mechanism that moves data between the computer and an outlying device such as a hard disk (or other form of storage) or a display terminal.

  • access time

    Access time is the time from the start of one storage device access to the time when the next access can be started.

  • active archive

    An active archive is a collection of data that is too valuable for a company to discard, but only needs to be accessed occasionally.

  • address space

    Address space is the amount of memory allocated for all possible addresses for a computational entity, such as a device, a file, a server, or a networked computer.

  • ADSTAR Distributed Storage Management (ADSM)

    ADSTAR Distributed Storage Management (ADSM) is a collective term for IBM's family of high-end software that helps a customer manage the storage devices (such as mainframe storage, PC disk drives, and Zip drives) that are scattered around the company.

  • AHCI (Advanced Host Controller Interface)

    An AHCI (Advanced Host Controller Interface) is a hardware mechanism that allows software to communicate with Serial ATA (SATA) devices.

  • AIT (advanced intelligent tape)

    AIT (advanced intelligent tape) is a magnetic tape and drive system used for computer data storage and archiving.

  • all-flash array

    An all-flash array is a solid state storage disk system that contains multiple flash memory drives instead of spinning hard disk drives. A flash array can transfer data to and from solid state drives (SSDs) much faster than hard disk drives.

  • Andrew file system (AFS)

    An Andrew file system (AFS) is a location-independent file system that uses a local cache to reduce the workload and increase the performance of a distributed computing environment.

  • application-aware storage

    Application-aware storage is a storage system with built-in intelligence about relevant applications and their utilization patterns.

  • archival storage

    In computers, archival storage is storage for data that may not be actively needed but is kept for possible future use or for record-keeping purposes.

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