Q:

What do KB, MB and GB stand for in terms of bytes?

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Quick Answer

In information technology and digital storage, kB, MB and GB usually refer to multiples of 1,024 bytes. By this measure, a kilobyte (kB) is 1,024 bytes. A megabyte (MB) is 1,048,576 bytes. A gigabyte (GB) is 1,073,741,824 bytes.

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Full Answer

The most commonly used symbols for measures of digital information are kilobit (kb), megabit (mb), gigabit (gb), kilobyte (KB), megabyte (MB) and gigabyte (GB). Sometimes kB substitutes for KB.

The conflict between the SI unit of kilo meaning 1,000 and the common use of kilobyte to denote 1,024 in information technology is a source of confusion. Some organizations use the terms kibibyte (KiB), mebibyte (MiB) and gibibyte (GiB) to refer unambiguously to units that use multiples of 1,024 bytes. This interpretation allows for more intuitive measures in which kilobyte, megabyte and gigabyte are multiples of 1,000.

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