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Serial ATA (SATA)

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Close up of a serial ata cable pluged in a high tech hard disk
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Definition: Serial ATA (SATA) is an IDE standard for connecting devices like optical drives and hard drives to the motherboard. The term SATA generally refers to the types of cables and connections that follow this standard.

SATA cables are long, thin, 7-pin cables. One end plugs into a port on the motherboard, usually labeled SATA, and the other into the back of a storage device like a hard drive.

Serial ATA replaces Parallel ATA as the IDE standard of choice for connecting storage devices inside of a computer. SATA storage devices can transmit data to and from the rest of the computer over twice as fast as an otherwise similar PATA device.

Thunderbolt is a potential replacement for SATA.

Also Known As: SATA
Examples:
"My new 500GB drive uses SATA connections. My older motherboard didn't have any SATA ports so I had to buy and install an SATA expansion card. The expansion card gave me 4 SATA ports. Problem solved!"

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