Why ‘C’ is the Default Hard Drive Letter in So Many Computers

When hard disk drives became standard in most PCs in the later 1980s, since the first two letters were already commonly used for these floppy drives, they logically labeled the third storage device “C”, even though it now tended to be the main storage medium for the computer, including usually containing the operating system.

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One thought on “Why ‘C’ is the Default Hard Drive Letter in So Many Computers”

  1. This only applies to Windows aka Microsoft products, but stems from MSDOS and so on. In windows however thru Drive Management you can re-assign the C drive to another letter. Go to Control Panel, Administrative Tools, Storage Devices, and find the C drive, right click on it, and change drive letters. WARNING to do so however is NOT a good idea, as many installed software looks for C by detault. You can however try it if you wanted and just change it back. As stated in the design of the original IBM PC was only floppy drives A and B and then C was the default first non removable drive, and so forth.
    Linux and Mac assign them as sd instead, and the first hard drive is sd0. However floppy drives in Mac and Linus are sa0 and cdroms ar0 so you see it depends on the operating system. Windows took fd0 and fd1 this is where so much confusuion exists also. In Linux and Mac a drive is Mounted. Qhwn you unmount it, it means the media in the drive can be removed. This is true for all removable media type drives.
    Windows you do not unmount a drive but to be safe you remove it from the icon on the taskbar. With all OS they may still be transferring data in and out of the drive even though your not copying files. This is because wi9ndows maintains a recycle bin, linux uses a .trash1000 folder, and Mac uses .appedouble folders, which are constrantly updated to reflect deleted or moved files.

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