NIST binary

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NIST binary

In 1995, the National Institute of Standards & Technology defined a new standard for designating binary numbers in order to eliminate ambiguity. For example, one megabyte can mean 1,000,000 (106) bytes or 1,048,576 (220) bytes, which is the true binary value.

The traditional kilo, mega, etc. designations were changed to kibi, mebi, etc. The first two letters of the word were retained followed with "bi" for binary (see table below).

Will It Catch On?
After decades, NIST measurements are not mainstream but are used to avoid ambiguity. See binary values.

BITS in:Decimal         NIST Binary

 kilobit (Kb)    kibibit (Kib)

 megabit (Mb)    mebibit (Mib)

 gigabit (Gb)    gibibit (Gib)

 terabit (Tb)    tebibit (Tib)

 petabit (Tb)    pebibit (Pib)

 exabit  (Eb)    exbibit (Eib)

 zettabit (Zb)   zebibit (Zib)

 yottabit (Yb)   yobibit (Yib)


 BYTES in:Decimal         NIST Binary

 kilobyte (KB)   kibibyte (KiB)

 megabyte (MB)   mebibyte (MiB)

 gigabyte (GB)   gibibyte (GiB)

 terabyte (TB)   tebibyte (TiB)

 petabyte (TB)   pebibyte (PiB)

 exabyte  (EB)   exbibyte (EiB)

 zettabyte (ZB)  zebibyte (ZiB)

 yottabyte (YB)  yobibyte (YiB)
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