Difference Between Block Storage and Object Storage

Storage is a vast field and every day we hear about something new about this technology. Block storage and object storage are the two forms of data storage and in this article, we will see what is the difference between block storage and object storage and when to use them.


Difference Between Block Storage and Object Storage


Difference Between Block Storage and Object Storage


Block storage is one of the oldest forms of data storage which can be formatted for the file system creation. In this type of storage, data is stored in fixed-sized chunks called “blocks“. Block storage is mostly used in storage area network (SAN), file system of the server, etc. The files or data here are split into evenly sized blocks of data, each with its own address but with no metadata.

In Block storage, each block can be used as an individual hard disk and can be configured by the administrator. These blocks are controlled by the system’s operating system like Linux, Windows, etc. and are generally used by Fibre Channel, iSCSI or Fibre Channel over Ethernet protocols.

One of the main advantages of block storage is high performance and speed. Also, as stated above each block can be formatted with the file system required by the application.


In Object storage, data is not divided into raw blocks and instead, entire data is stored as an object. Now, this object contains the data, metadata, and the unique identifier. Here, the unique identifier is used to quickly locate the objects from the storage.

The ability to edit one part of the file is not provided in object storage, unlike block storage. Here you will have to modify the complete whole object and then again save it to the storage. This process reduces the performance.

One of the main advantages of object storage is its price. It is cheap in comparison to block storage and is also highly available and highly durable, so there are very fewer chances of data loss. Also, data can be stored across multiple regions. One of the best examples of this is Amazon S3.


When to Use Block Storage and Object Storage


Block storage is used where high performance is required, mainly for file systems and databases. RAID arrays are also a typical example which uses block storage. As we all know in RAID, multiple independent disks are brought together for data protection and performance.

Almost all of us use the Virtual machine, so the storage which we assign to the VM is another good example of block-level storage.

Object storage is mainly used to store the files like videos, music, pictures, etc. Everyone who has used social networking website has used the object storage. The best use case of object storage is websites like Netflix and Amazon Prime. Additionally, it also helps in solving the exponential increase in the data and help in storing it without much cost.

We hope that you are now able to understand what is the difference between block storage and object storage. If you have any doubt or query, please let us know through your comments. If you like the article, please do not forget to share it on your social media channels and do subscribe to Storage Tutorials by Email for more such awesome articles.

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