what is the difference between ram and rom

The RAM memory of a computer is not the same as the ROM memory. In fact there are many differences between these two types of memory. In this article we explain all their differences. But, first let’s review what each of them is. what is the difference between ram and rom

What is RAM (Random Access Memory)?

RAM is an acronym for random access memory , a type of computer memory where the operating system (OS), application programs, and data in current use are stored so that the device’s processor can access them directly and fast.

RAM memory is used to store the data that the CPU is currently processing. RAM is a common hardware component in electronic devices, including desktops, laptops, tablets, and smartphones. In computers, RAM can be installed as memory modules, while in tablets and smartphones, RAM is usually built into the device and cannot be removed.

The term RANDOM ACCESS applied to RAM comes from the fact that any storage location can be accessed directly, also known as a memory address.

RAM only stores data when the device is on. When the device is turned off, the data stored in RAM is erased. When the device restarts, the operating system and applications load new data into the system memory. In this sense, RAM is classified as volatile memory.

The RAM storage capacity on a device determines how much memory the operating system and the open application can use. When a device has enough RAM, multiple programs can run simultaneously without any slowdowns. However, when a device has used almost 99% of the available RAM, the speed and overall performance of a device take a hit.

RAM types  what is the difference between ram and rom

There are two main types of RAM: dynamic RAM (DRAM) and static RAM (SRAM).

  • DRAM is widely used as the main memory of the computer. Each DRAM memory cell is made up of a transistor and a capacitor within an integrated circuit, and one bit of data is stored in the capacitor. The DRAM must update every few milliseconds to retain the data.
  • SRAM is made up of four to six transistors. It keeps data on the system, unlike DRAM, which must be updated periodically. SRAM is faster but is more expensive to purchase.

RAM characteristics you need to know

  1. RAM is a thin rectangular chip that is usually inserted into a slot on the motherboard.
  2. The data stored in RAM is not permanent, it can be rewritten, modified or erased many times.
  3. RAM is high speed memory.
  4. RAM is available in two main sizes, whether it is used in a desktop or laptop. Desktop computer RAM is about 6 inches long and 1 inch wide. Laptop RAM is about half the length of desktop RAM.
  5. The CPU is capable of accessing data stored in RAM.
  6. RAM has a larger memory storage capacity. Many RAM chips typically have a storage capacity of 1GB to 256GB.
  7. RAM stores the temporary data that the CPU is currently processing.
  8. RAM is a type of volatile memory. Its content is lost when the device is turned off.
  9. RAM is used as the main memory in electronic devices. Primary memory is made up of DRAM, DIMMs, and CPU cache (SRAM).
  10. RAM is relatively expensive compared to ROM.
  11. By increasing the speed of the RAM, you increase the speed of the CPU when you run a program.
  12. The types of RAM include DRAM, SRAM, SDRAM, and DDR.

What is ROM (read-only memory)?

ROM

ROM is an acronym for Read-only memory (ROM) is a type of storage medium that permanently stores data on personal computers (PCs) and other electronic devices.

ROM contains the programming necessary to start or regenerate a computer each time it is turned on. ROM also performs large input / output (I / O) tasks and contains software programs or instructions.

Since the ROM is only ready, once the data is written to a ROM chip, it cannot be changed. ROM is also classified as non-volatile memory, which means that data stored in ROM is not erased even when the device is turned off.

There are a lot of ROM chips located on the motherboard and some on the expansion boards. The chips are essential for basic input / output system (BIOS), booting, reading and writing on peripheral devices, basic data management, and basic processing software for certain utilities.

ROM is mainly used for firmware updates. A simple example of ROM is the cartridge used with video game consoles, which allows a system to run multiple games.

ROM types  what is the difference between ram and rom

The main types of ROM include:

  • Mask ROM:
     It is a type of read-only memory whose content can only be programmed by an integrated circuit manufacturer.
  • EEPROM:   EEPROM is an acronym for Electrically Erasable Programmable Read-Only Memory. Store and delete instructions in a special circuit.
  • PROM:
    PROM is an acronym for programmable read-only memory. This type of ROM is written or programmed by a particular device.
  • EPROM:
    EPROM is an acronym for Erasable Programmable Read-Only Memory. Stores instructions that are only erased when the memory is exposed to UV light.

ROM Features You Need to Know

  1. ROM is typically an optical drive made of magnetic tapes.
  2. The data stored in ROM is permanent. The stored data can only be read, but not altered or modified, hence the name »read-only memory».
  3. ROM is high speed memory.
  4. ROM can range in size from less than an inch in length to several inches in length and width, depending on its use.
  5. The CPU cannot access the data stored in ROM. Data must be transferred to RAM before ROM can access it.
  6. ROM is smaller than RAM and has a lower memory storage capacity. Many ROM chips typically have a storage capacity of between 4GB and 8GB.
  7. The ROM stores the instructions necessary during the boot process.
  8. ROM is a type of non-volatile memory. Its content is preserved even if the device is turned off.
  9. ROM is used in firmware like BIOS and UEFI. Microcontrollers, RFID tags, medical devices, as well as in devices where permanent memory solutions are required or needed.
  10. ROM is relatively cheaper compared to RAM.
  11. Increasing the speed of the ROM increases the overall speed of your PC.
  12. ROM types include EPROM, PROM, EEPROM, Mask ROM.

Differences between RAM and ROM

Next, we show you a comparative table with the main differences between this type of memory.
RAM ROM
RAM is a thin rectangular chip that is usually inserted into a slot on the motherboard. ROM is typically an optical drive made of magnetic tapes.
The data stored in RAM is not permanent, it can be rewritten, modified or erased many times. The data stored in ROM is permanent. The stored data can only be read, but not altered or modified, hence the name »read-only memory».
RAM is high speed memory. ROM is high speed memory.
RAM is available in two main sizes, whether it is used in a desktop or laptop. Desktop computer RAM is about 6 inches long and 1 inch wide. Laptop RAM is about half the length of desktop RAM. ROM can range in size from less than an inch in length to several inches in length and width, depending on its use.
The CPU is capable of accessing data stored in RAM. The CPU cannot access the data stored in ROM. Data must be transferred to RAM before ROM can access it.
RAM has a larger memory storage capacity. Many RAM chips typically have a storage capacity of 1GB to 256GB. ROM is smaller than RAM and has a lower memory storage capacity. Many ROM chips typically have a storage capacity of between 4GB and 8GB.
RAM stores the temporary data that the CPU is currently processing. The ROM stores the instructions necessary during the boot process.
RAM is a type of volatile memory. Its content is lost when the device is turned off. ROM is a type of non-volatile memory. Its content is preserved even if the device is turned off.
RAM is used as the main memory in electronic devices. Primary memory is made up of DRAM, DIMMs, and CPU cache (SRAM). ROM is used in firmware like BIOS and UEFI. Microcontrollers, RFID tags, medical devices, as well as in devices where permanent memory solutions are required or needed.
RAM is relatively expensive compared to ROM. ROM is relatively cheaper compared to RAM.
By increasing the speed of the RAM, you increase the speed of the CPU when you run a program. Increasing the speed of the ROM increases the overall speed of your PC.
The types of RAM include DRAM, SRAM, SDRAM, and DDR. ROM types include EPROM, PROM, EEPROM, Mask ROM.

Advantages of RAM  what is the difference between ram and rom

  • RAM is the fastest storage medium outside of CPU
  • RAM uses much less power than disk drives
  • RAM is the memory that is used to manage various tasks on your computer
  • Allows the computer to perform its operations without diminishing performance
  • RAM data can be written, rewritten or erased
  • CPU can read information faster than ROM
  • Since there are no moving parts, the operation of the RAM is completely silent

Advantages of ROM

  • It is static and does not require an update action
  • Memory content cannot be lost when device is turned off
  • They are relatively inexpensive compared to RAM
  • It is difficult to change or delete data
  • ROM circuits are simple
  • ROM is easier to connect than RAM
  • ROM is more reliable than RAM

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