Get To Know Your PC

Friday, June 30, 2006

KB vs. MB vs. Kbps

When you see a file size posted as 1,000KB, it is not the same as a file size of 1MB. 1MB(megabyte) is equal to 1,024KB(kilobytes), so that means the 1MB file is actually larger than the 1,000KB file. The same applies for a 1GB(gigabyte) file equalling 1,024MB, or 1,048,576KB.
can be different from file sizes. When downloading a file, the speed is usually given in kbps(kilobits per second), which is not the same as KB/s(kilobytes per second). 1 kilobyte is equal to 8 kilobits. So, downloading at 50KB/s will be faster than downloading at 50kbps.


  • Thanks man! This is exactly what I needed, in the simplest form possible. Smarter than "Computers For Dummies", yet specific enough to meet my needs. Thanks!

    By Blogger Nbbls, at October 12, 2007 10:16 AM  

  • Thanks Man!! You had the exact information I needed. Smarter than "Computers For Dummies" and yet specific enough enough to meet my needs. Awesome!

    By Blogger Nbbls, at October 12, 2007 10:17 AM  

  • This was exactly what I needed too! Thanks for being so clear.

    By Anonymous asugarmom, at December 05, 2007 11:01 AM  

  • thank you. i was trying to see if i had enough space on my flash drive to hold the rest of my info. i knew i had 3 mbs left but had to put ~ 1200 kb on the drive. your explanation, if i read it correctly, says i have enough space.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at January 22, 2008 8:16 PM  

  • Perfect info for the non-profit office-appointed "techie".

    By Anonymous flowergirl6912, at February 11, 2008 1:22 PM  

  • What about .pdf files? Can they be accepted by gmail?

    By Blogger Kim, at April 17, 2008 9:03 PM  

  • The best way of nearly guaranteeing that a file can be sent via email is to archive or "zip" the file. To do that in Windows XP, right click the file (or folder) you want to "zip" and choose 'Send To' > 'Compressed (zipped) Folder'.

    By Blogger TechnoBlogger, at April 18, 2008 5:06 PM  

  • Hi, I found your site trying to determine the difference between stated speeds of my DSL company and my cable company.

    DSL says: up to "1500 kbps"
    Cable says: up to "3MB/384k"

    Do you think the cable company means something other than MB and the rep who emailed me just doesn't have a clue?

    I'm having trouble determining which to go with for fastest internet access.

    Thanks for your thoughts. =]

    By Blogger Karyn, at April 18, 2008 8:55 PM  

  • The DSL company is stating that you get a 1,500 kbps download speed.

    The Cable company is stating that you get a 3 mbps (3,000 kbps) download speed and a 384 kbps upload speed.

    It would seem obvious to go with the cable company, but keep this in mind:
    Both companies are advertising the best possible speeds, which you will not always get. DSL will generally be close to the advertised speeds, and not vary much (you have an unshared connection). Cable will generally be far under the advertised speeds (although not always), and vary alot (you are sharing your connection with others in your neighborhood).

    By Blogger TechnoBlogger, at April 19, 2008 5:40 PM  

  • Can you advise how to calculate the file size of an audiobook. For example, how much space would a 3 hour audiobook take up

    By Blogger Chip Cookie, at June 30, 2008 1:20 PM  

  • hey man! how fast would 56kbps be cuz I am trying to get high speed internet but all I can get is
    56kbps do you know how to make it faster?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at October 09, 2008 12:44 PM  

  • Is KB bigger MB bigger GB bigger or L is bigger.
    Wrich size is bigger

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at January 29, 2011 3:34 PM  

  • Thanks, quite useful! I needed to make sure that 10224 KB (I believe in total that'd be 1 MB with 200 KB) wasn't too high, because I was going to use a song 10224 KB in a project but in order to upload it, it had to be 10 MB or less. Thanks!

    By Blogger FirstSkyler1, at February 11, 2012 1:37 PM  

  • Mathematically speaking:
    K = kilo = 1000
    M = mega = 1000'000
    G = giga = 1000'000'000
    B = Byte = 8 Bits.

    Now in computing it is ofter said :
    a kilo for 2^10 = 1024
    a mega for 2^20 = 1048576
    a giga for 2^30 = 1073741824

    A. When you hear something like "I'm downloading at 50k"
    This could mean:
    - 50KBits = 50'000 · 1 Bit = 50'000 bits / sec
    - 50 · 1024 · 1 Bit = 51'200 / sec
    - 50KB (Kilo bytes) = 50'000 · 8 Bits = 400'000 bits / sec
    - 50 · 1024 · 8 Bits = 409'600 bits / sec

    Actually the most common in the third one (in Bytes)

    B. When you are talking about a provider speed, they are using Bits
    Example: I've a 20 mega connection
    It means 20 MBits which is actually 20 · 2^20 = 20'971'520 bits /sec = 2.5 MB (Mega bytes)

    C. I've a HD of 2GB (Giga bytes)
    - This is the mathematic Giga i.e. 2 · 1000'000'000 Bytes
    - In former operating system the 1K = 1024 was used which made the system recognize the HD as smaller as it was.
    1Go mathematic = ~0.931 Go using the 1k = 1024 conversion.
    - In modern OS, 1k = 1000, which makes the HD be recognized as it real size.

    By Blogger Unknown, at March 02, 2012 6:08 PM  

  • Thanks for elaborating, Unknown.

    The reason 1 kilobit equals 1,024 bits is because you're storing a decimal number (base 10) in binary terms (base 2). It takes 10 bits in binary (2^10 or 1,024) to store the decimal number 1,000.

    Computer systems use binary numbers (0-1), while we like to use decimal numbers (0-9). So, until we surpass transistor-based processing, or we all start using binary instead of decimal (multiplication table is much simpler in binary :P), there will always be confounded people wondering why 1,000 megabytes is not the same as 1 gigabyte or 1,000 megabits.

    By Blogger TechnoBlogger, at March 06, 2012 8:33 PM  

  • i need to define it in an interview and it ll help me a lot thanx

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at December 02, 2012 2:51 PM  

  • what about KIB?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at December 31, 2012 10:36 PM  

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