access time


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Related to access time: seek time

access time

Computing the time required to retrieve a piece of stored information

access time

[′ak·ses ‚tīm]
(computer science)
The time period required for reading out of or writing into the computer memory.

access time

(hardware, storage)
The average time interval between a storage peripheral (usually a disk drive or semiconductor memory) receiving a request to read or write a certain location and returning the value read or completing the write.

access time

(1) Memory access time is how long it takes for a character in memory to be transferred to or from the CPU. In a PC or Mac, fast RAM chips have an access time of 70 nanoseconds (ns) or less. SDRAM chips have a burst mode that obtains the second and subsequent characters in 10 ns or less.

(2) Disk access time is an average of the time between initiating a request and obtaining the first data character. It includes the command processing, the average seek time (moving the read/write head to the required track) and the average latency (rotation of disk to the required sector). This specification must be given as an average, because seek times and latency can vary depending on the current position of the head and platter.

Fast hard disks have access times of 10 milliseconds (ms) or less. This is a common speed measurement, but overall disk performance is significantly influenced by channel speed (transfer rate), interleaving and caching. See cache, seek time and latency.
References in periodicals archive ?
The new technology applies to distributed object storage*, and in test cases of access concentrations on the Internet, has been proven to ease those concentrations by approximately 70%, resulting in an improvement in access times of tenfold or greater.
This drive, which retails for $765, also has a 280 ms average random access time for text searches.
With additional guard banding, the certified XPM has a relatively slow performance of 70ns access time, but can often out-live the silicon it is embedded in.
A disk's access time of even 5ms is an eternity compared to the access time of a solid-state disk, which is measured in microseconds (1 ms is 1000[micro]s).
In long-term data retention, raw access time becomes less important and data authenticity and trust-worthiness, timely access to data and low Total Cost of Ownership come to the forefront.
VT-Stream's hybrid circuit/packet solution improves the customer experience by reducing content access time by up to 90% over pure packet based applications for streaming media.
That's when an average access time of 20 seconds to one minute-plus can seem like hours to a waiting user, but access improvements are available.
Also featured in the Premium Deluxe Multimedia Kit is Media Vision's "Reno" portable CD-ROM player with the fastest double-speed drive available in a kit; its access time is 180 milliseconds.