Smallest Unit of Computer Memory Storage in Computer System


In this post, we will learn and discuss the smallest unit of computer memory in computer system with examples, definitions, charts, descriptions, and explanations.

The Smallest Unit of Computer Memory is a bit.

Time is measured in seconds, the sound is measured in decibel, distance is measured in meters and miles, weight is measured in KG and Pounds, Temperature in kelvin (K), and computer storage is measured in bytes, Megabyte and Gigabyte. 

The Smallest Unit of Computer Memory in Computer Technology

The smallest unit of computer memory in computer systems and technology is considered to be a byte. Furthermore, a byte consists of 8 binary digits, i.e., bits.

The bit consists of 0s and 1s and is therefore called binary.

The computer converts and translates every information and data in binary language also called machine language.

A bit is denoted as a binary digit, and it is the smallest unit of data stored in the computer hard disk drive. The data stored in computer hard disks are stored in different and unique locations that can be located and identified by a unique address called “Memory Address.”

The binary symbols are 0 and 1, which are denoted by bit. The binary is further categorized as “1” is represented and acknowledged by conducting the state of an electronic circuit.

“1” is also considered as high or ON.

Whereas “0” is acknowledged by a non-conducting state, also known as Low or Off.

In simple terms, a byte consists of 8 bits which is a character.

The computer memory units are the data storage unit representing the amount of file size allocated or occupied in the computer hard disk drive [HDD].

Tip: 4 bits are equivalent to 1 nibble.

12 Basic Memory Units of Computer Storage | Units Smallest to Largest with Diagram and Chart

  • Bit
  • Nibble
  • Byte
  • word
  • Kilobyte
  • Megabyte
  • Gigabyte
  • Terabyte
  • Petabyte
  • Exabyte
  • Zettabyte
  • Yottabyte
BitBBinary Digit 0 and 1
Nibble—-4 bits
ByteB8 bites
Word—-8 to 96.
KilobyteKB1024 bites
MegabyteMB1024 KB
GigabyteGB1024 MB
TerabyteTB1024 GB
PetabytePB1024 TB
ExabyteEB1024 EB
YottabyteYT1024 YB
Memory Units of Computer Storage
Memory Units of Computer Storage

The bit is the smallest unit of computer memory storage. The bit is denoted or recognized by 0s and 1s and therefore called “Binary.”

Therefore the value of a bit can be 0 or 1.


The nibble is the second smallest unit of computer memory storage.

The value of 1 Nibble = 4 bit.


The byte is considered the standard unit of computer storage. All the data and information or files stored in a computer system are measured in a byte.

The value of 1 Byte= 8 bits.


The word is a collection or group of bits that are easily recognized by a computer system. The value of word can be different in different computers.

The value of 1 Word = 8 to 96.


The kilobyte can be denoted as K or KB. 

In this computer era, data and information stored in computer hard disks are measured in kilobytes. The KB is used in measuring small files whose file size is smaller, like a simple text file.

The value of KB= 1024 Bytes.


The Megabyte can be denoted as MB.

The Value of 1 Megabyte = 1024 MB.


The Gigabyte is an advanced memory storage unit. The vast data can be measured in Gigabyte,

The value of 1 Gigabyte = 1024 MB.


 The Terabyte is denoted as TB. A Terabyte is approximately one trillion bytes or 1,000 Gigabytes.

 The value of 1 Terabyte= 1024 GB.


A Petabyte is approximately 1,000 Terabytes or one million Gigabytes. PB dents the Petabyte.

The value of 1 PB = 1024 TB.


An Exabyte is approximately 1,000 Petabytes. The Exabyte is abbreviated as EB.

The value of 1 EB= 1024 Petabyte.


A Zettabyte is approximately 1,000 Exabytes. The Zettabyte is abbreviated as ZB.

The value of 1 Zettabyte =1024 EB. 


A Yottabyte is approximately 1,000 Zettabytes. Yottabyte is abbreviated as YT.

The value of 1 Yottabyte= 1024 Zettabyte.

What is Computer Memory?

The computer memory is capable of storing data and instructions given to them almost permanently and can be recalled or retrieved whenever required.

They can store an incredible amount of data and pieces of information according to the user’s needs.

The computer hard disk drive {HDD} is used as a secondary storage device that can hold or save an incredible amount of data and information like songs, videos, documents, files, folders, images, and software.

The computer hard disks are non-volatile. They don’t tend to lose the data and information when there is power loss compared to RAM and ROM, which are volatile, and lose data when there is a power loss.

The RAM {Random Access Memory} is called “Read Only Memory” they are not capable of storing data permanently and are therefore called “Temporary Memory.”

The data, information’s and instructions, once lost, cannot be retrieved once deleted.

The RAM & ROM is called “Internal Memory” or “Main Memory.”

The secondary memory of computer storage is called “Permanent storage.” The prime examples are Hard Disk Drive, SSD {Solid State Drive}.

The memory is very slow to operate and inexpensive. 

Also Read::

Types of Memory Unit

 There are four types of computer memory units. Those are mentioned below.

  • Internal Processor Memory
  • Main memory | RAM (Random Access Memory)|Primary Memory
  • Cache Memory
  • Storage | Secondary Memory

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