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Prefixes for bit and byte multiples
Value SI
1000 k kilo
10002 M mega
10003 G giga
10004 T tera
10005 P peta
10006 E exa
10007 Z zetta
10008 Y yotta
1024 Ki kibi K kilo
10242 Mi mebi M mega
10243 Gi gibi G giga
10244 Ti tebi
10245 Pi pebi
10246 Ei exbi
10247 Zi zebi
10248 Yi yobi

The mebibyte (a contraction of megabinary byte, pronounced MEH-bee-byte) is a standards-based binary multiple (prefix mebi-, symbol Mi-) of the byte, a unit of digital information storage. Mebibyte is abbreviated MiB.[1][2]

1 MiB = 220 bytes = 1,024 kibibytes = 1,048,576 bytes

The unit prefix mebi was defined by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) in December 1998. Use of mebibyte and related units is endorsed by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the International Committee for Weights and Measures (CIPM) in contexts where use of a binary prefix makes sense, in order to protect the unambiguous definition of the unit prefix mega. Megabyte is sometimes used in place of mebibyte, or to refer to 106 bytes = 1,000,000 bytes, or even 1,000 times 1,024 bytes, depending on context.

The historical binary interpretation of mega is still in wide use by the consumer software industry and use of the mebi prefix is still not common. This leads to consumer confusion when 220 (1,048,576) bytes is referenced as 1 MB (megabyte) instead of 1 MiB. For example, the operating system Windows XP shows a file of 220 bytes as "1.00 MB" in its file properties dialog, while showing a file of 106 (1,000,000) bytes as "976 KB". Apple's Mac OS X 10.6, on the other hand, would report a 106 byte file correctly as "1 MB".[3]

In another example, the 1.44 MB floppy disk's storage capacity is calculated using 1,024,000 bytes per "MB" (i.e. 1.44×1024×1000), rather than 1.47 MB (1.47×1000×1000) or 1.40 MiB (1.40×1024×1024). The three size designations are similar in value.

In The Art of Computer Programming, Donald Knuth proposed that this unit be called a large megabyte (abbreviated MMB), though this usage has never been common.

See also



Simple English

A mebibyte is a unit of measure. It represents 1024 * 1024 bytes.

A mebibyte (a contraction of mega binary byte) is a unit of information or computer storage, abbreviated MiB.

1 MiB = 220 bytes = 1,048,576 bytes = 1,024 kibibytes

The mebibyte is closely related to the megabyte (MB). This can either be a synonym for mebibyte, or refer to 106 bytes = 1,000,000 bytes, depending on context (see binary prefix for background). The two numbers are relatively close together, but mistaking the two has nevertheless occasionally led to problems.

The unit was defined by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) in December 1998. Use of mebibyte and related units is strongly endorsed by IEEE and CIPM and is slowly becoming more common.

One mebibyte equals 1024 (= 210) kibibytes, and 1024 mebibytes equal one gibibyte.

Mibibyte is a common misspelling, presumably from the "i" in the abbreviation or confusion about how the surrounding prefixes (i.e. "kibi" and "gibi") were actually formed. The "i" is actually from the end of the prefix. Tebi- and pebi- are similarly abbreviated Ti- and Pi-, but they are not usually misspelled, as storage sizes (and corresponding terms) currently are only this large in specialized situations.

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