Can you clarify the following terms for me?

Can you clarify the following terms for me?What are the differences between them in implementation method?

  1. Imaging file
  2. ISO file,
  3. Imaging website, Thanks,
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In article , Lee writes


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Chris Hills

If you will promise never to top-post again I will take pity on you. Your answer belongs after (or intermixed with) the material to which you are replying, after snipping out anything that is not germane to your reply. That way the results can be read and make sense. Especially in the comp.* hierarchy, top-posting is considered rude and boorish.

Take the 'imaging website' first. You are probably thinking of a mirror. That is a site that maintains the same content as another site, usually to distribute the load on the original site. They usually have software that periodically contacts the primary site and downloads anything that is new or changed.

For the others, consider what a disk (or partition) actually contains. This is some sort of space, usually divided into logical sectors containing 512 bytes each and each identified by a sector number, from 1 to something. It is a blank slate.

A file system imposes some sort of rules on the use of those sectors. Something in there identifies which sectors are used, which free, which belong to which files, what those files are named, etc.

An image of that disk is simply a file that contains the whole contents of the disk/partition, without interpretation. That will include useless data that happened to be in unused sections of the disk. That image can be placed on another disk/partition of the same size and sector numbering convention, and thus recreate the original disk/partition if handled by software (file managers etc) that follow the same rules as did the original file control software.

An ISO file is simply something that follows a particular set of rules devised for making a file system on a CDROM. Bear in mind that a CDROM is normally a read/only medium. The term could be used differently, but I think this is what you are talking about. The file can be kept as a file on a normal hard drive, and used to recreate the original CD via CD writers. This also avoids the relatively long delays of reading another CD in order to write the new one, when such delays can prevent the write being successful. (HDs are much faster than CDs). The ISO file is a particular kind of disk image.

Chuck F ( (
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