Can someone please tell me why the abbreviations for Kilobyte, Megabyte and Gigabyte on KDE desktop apps (eg. Dolphin) are given as KiB, MiB and GiB, when the international standard for these is KB, MB and GB?

Hello petermcph,

Here’s a wikipedia pages explaining it: Mebibyte - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The problem is, what is an KB?
Is it 1000 Bytes, because kilo is 1000?
Or is it 1024, because in binary it’s 2^10?

This confuse gave USB stick producers the chance to say a USB stick is 4 GB.
But actually it’s only 1000X1000X1000 bytes, but it should be 1024x1024x1024.
Sometimes the even calculated like this: 1024x1000x1000?

To solve this problem Mebibyte etc were created.

Hopes this information is useful.

Good luck!:wink:

Strictly speaking they are abbreviations for kibi-, mebi-, gibibyte. Why they are chosen, I don’t know. However, with Kilobytes (etc) there is some sort of ambiguity as 1 KB might refer to 1000 bytes or to 1024 bytes. 1 KiB on the other hand unabiguously refers to 1024 bytes.

As to intenational standards … hmm, have a look at this:
IEEE 1541-2002 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

ETA: x-post with Edward_Iii

what language is your system/DE using?

like, in addition to adding unneeded “i’s” does it also add
unnecessary “u’s” as in colour or flavour?


CAVEAT: [posted via NNTP w/openSUSE 10.3]

Aha - that explains it folks. Thanks for that. I must read up on these things.:slight_smile:

Hello petermcph,

Glad to hear that your question is answered.

Just discovered this error in my own post.:shame:
In my example it should be an 1GB USB stick.

Good luck!:wink: