A storage medium from which data is read and to which it is written by lasers. Optical disks can store much more data -- up to 6 gigabytes (6 billion bytes) -- than most portable magnetic media, such as floppies. There are three basic types of optical disks:
CD-ROM :Like audio CDs, CD-ROMs come with data already encoded onto them. The data is permanent and can be read any number of times, but CD-ROMs cannot be modified.
WORM : Stands for write-once, read -many. With a WORM disk drive, you can writedata onto a WORM disk, but only once. After that, the WORM disk behaves just like a CD-ROM.
erasable: Optical disks that can be erased and loaded with new data, just like magnetic disks. These are often referred to as EO (erasable optical) disks.
Hard DiskA hard disk is part of a unit, often called a "disk drive," "hard drive," or "hard disk drive," that stores and provides relatively quick access to large amounts of data on an electromagnetically charged surface or set of surfaces. Today's computers typically come with a hard disk that contains several billion bytes (gigabytes) of storage.