Computer Memory: Definition, Usage and How It Works

What is Computer Memory?

RAM (Random Access Memory) is a memory which stores all important data of your computer. A simple definition of computer memory is that it is a central part of your computer in CPU which stores the huge amount of temporarily data. You can access this data randomly or through an electronic data in a fixed order. RAM is a memory which does not have any sequential order and you can access it in anyway, even when your computer is working.

At any point of time, you can access different storage locations in RAM. You can find another memory in your computer which is ROM (Read Only Memory). It is also a random access memory but can be only read not write. However, RAM is easily assessable and changeable as per your requirements.

Whenever you access RAM, it does not affect your computer speed. The data on computer memory can be lost, if unfortunately the power turned off, and when the data is not saved in hard drive. There are two kinds of RAM i.e. static and dynamic RAM. Most of the computers are manufactured with dynamic RAM and you can find it very commonly.

The chip of dynamic RAM is made with a number of transistors and tiny capacitors which already stores a few bits of automated data. An automatic process runs in memory controller which stores your all important data on regular basis. On the other hand, static RAM is used for various technologies and does not require continuous refreshing.

Factors of Operating System

The capacity of RAM can differ as per the operating systems. Minimum 2 GB of RAM is required for 64-bit version of Windows Vista and Windows 7. For 32-bit version of Windows Vista and Windows 7 minimum 1 GB of RAM is required. You can work with Mac OS and Windows XP with 512 MB of RAM. Previous versions of operating system can even work with minimal RAM.

How Does Computer Memory Work?

A capacitor and transistor of RAM is paired to make a cell that signifies single bit of your data. The capacitor has information of bit as O and 1. The transistor reads the main status of capacitor and allows it to control the circuitry of memory chip. The capacitor is similar to small size of bucked which stores electrons.

Program and Application for RAM

The capacity of your computer memory determines the size of program and application that you can open at the point of time. If your RAM has more capacity, you can open multiple programs without affecting the speed of your computer.