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TIHE Encyclopedia

What is Ram?

RAM, short for Random Access Memory is the short storage area for your PC. Often just called memory or system memory RAM is just an electromagnetic storage that loses all its data once the power has been removed. RAM is used by your operating system and other programs and games in order to store data that is required at speed. Computers with large amount of memory often perform faster simply because the CPU is not idle waiting for data to be retrieved from slower components such as the hard drive and can be stored in memory.

  • Why is RAM considered Random Access

    RAM can be accessed by the computer for any piece of data in any cell of the memory bank. There is no need to go through the entire memory bank to get to the data you require. The opposite to Random access is serial access. SAM or Serial Access Memory needs to be read from the start to get to the data you require. An example of SAM storage would be a cassette tape. Of course there are things which fit in-between these two examples such as a CD or DVD. Because these have tracks they can be random access to a point but then need Serial access to get to the exact spot required.

  • How does RAM store data

    RAM consists of many capacitors and transistors. A capacitor and a transistor are paired together to make a memory cell. The capacitor represents one "bit" of data, the transistor is able to change the state of the capacitor to either a 0 or a 1. the Zero's and ones when read in a sequence represent the code which the computer understands. This is called binary data because there is only two states that the capacitor can be in.

    In order for a capacitor to achieve a value of 1 it needs to be filled with electrons. To achieve a value of 0 the capacitor needs to be emptied of electrons. You may of noticed when purchasing RAM that many types of RAM you buy are called DRAM or SDRAM. DRAM or Dynamic Random Access Memory has a small problem with the capacitors holding a value of 1. It is called dynamic RAM because its state of 1 or 0 needs to be constantly refreshed on order to stay in the correct state. In order to demonstrate this and for a much more detailed look into the workings of RAM a good site site is How stuff works. This article will show you a much more technical look at the workings of RAM and has a great Diagram to illustrate the nature of Dynamic Random Access Memory

    There is a type of RAM that doesn't have to be refreshed constantly. This is called SRAM or Static RAM. Static RAM uses a type of Flip Flop to hold the data in the cell. This can take around 6 transistors on a chip per cell rather than just the one., The consequences are that Static RAM needs more chips per Mb than DRAM and therefore is much more expensive.

  • Types of RAM

    Down the years the face of RAM has changed dramatically in the early days of computing we had the SIMM. SIMM was a Single Inline Memory Module. Moving on the next logical step was the DIMM, Double Inline Memory Module. The introduction of DIMM's brought with it new speeds and sizes to give computers more power than ever before. The big advances in recent years has been the introduction of DDR RAM (Double Data Rate). DDR effectively doubled the speed that RAM could transfer data without actually increasing the MHz. E.g. a stick of PC133 (133MHz) RAM with DDR would effectively transmit data at 266MHz but still have a bus speed of 133Mhz.

  • Measuring the Speed of RAM

    Like CPU's RAM is measured in MHz. The higher the MHz the greater the speed of the RAM. To keep this calculation simple when dealing with DDR RAM, retails often simply put the effective MHz rating. For example a 133Mhz DDR module would be advertised as 266Mhz. That is basic speed test of the memory module. However there is another important factor in high performance memory and that is CAS latency.

    CAS meaning Column Access Strobe, the basics of CAS latency are that CAS latency is the amount of clock cycles it takes for the response from the memory from a query. Shorter is obviously better. CAS-2 is a 2 cycle delay and CAS-3 a 3 cycle delay.

    How to install ram.

    For computer to run in better speed, there are different ways to improve your computer speed but the simplest is to add some more ram and this section you are going to see how the ram are install into the computer.

    1 Step : Checking for power cable
    First, make sure that the power is off and then unplug the power cable.Take the screw driver and unscrew and then remove the case(only one side).Some case is just one so just remove it at once.

    Diagram 1
    unplugged unscrewed

    2 Step : Inside the unit
    Take a look inside the unit and find the type of Ram you install and check for any available slot for your ram to put on.

    Diagram 2
    inside DIMM

    Step 3: Installation
    To install the ram try to look through which right order for the ram teeth to put on and then push it down(dont force it if it doesnt go in correctly,check again) so that you can here the two lever beside it snap to the two side of the ram,then its done.

    Diagram 4

    Last step : Finallising
    Turn the computer and check for the ram upgraded is occur or not ,if it just the same then turn it off and try again. To tell the amount of ram, type msinfo32 in the run command then press enter.After finishing your job done then screw the cover again.....

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