When you view the size of a file or folder on your computer, you may see two different numbers. One is usually labeled “size” or “size (bytes)” and the other is usually labeled “size on disk” or “size on disk (bytes)”. The difference between these two numbers is important to understand, as it can help you manage the storage space on your computer more effectively.
The size of a file or folder is determined by the amount of information it contains. For example, if you have a text file that contains “Hello, World!”, the size of that file would be 12 bytes. This is because each character of the sentence takes up one byte of space. On the other hand, the size of a folder is determined by the total amount of space all of the files and folders inside it take up.
The size on disk, on the other hand, is determined by the amount of space the file or folder takes up on the hard drive. This is because files and folders are stored on the hard drive in blocks, which can vary in size depending on the type of hard drive you have. For example, if you have a hard drive that stores data in 512-byte blocks, then a file that is 12 bytes in size will take up 512 bytes of space on the hard drive. This is because the hard drive will store the file in a single block, even though the file is only 12 bytes in size.
This is why the size on disk is always greater than the size of the file or folder. The hard drive will always store the file or folder in a block of a certain size, regardless of how much information it actually contains. This can be beneficial in some cases, as it means that the hard drive does not need to store multiple blocks of data for a single file or folder. However, it can also be a problem if you are trying to conserve disk space.
In order to make the most effective use of your hard drive, it is important to understand the difference between size and size on disk. If you are trying to conserve disk space, it is usually best to delete files or folders that have a large size on disk, as this indicates that the hard drive is storing more information than is actually required. On the other hand, if you are simply trying to free up storage space, it is usually best to delete files or folders that have a large size, as this indicates that the hard drive is storing less information than is actually required.