What is RAM; Many people often compare the computer to the human brain, which is sometimes a good comparison. For example, both the brain and the computer use short-term and long-term memory. RAM is also a kind of short-term memory of a computer, and in the following, we will discuss its features.
What is RAM?
RAM stands for “Random Access Memory” and if you have ever opened a desktop or laptop computer, you are sure to come across this piece. In the image above, you can see a modern RAM memory for desktop computers. These types of rams use an attractive case that also acts as a heat dissipator. However, this feature is mainly for users who are interested in overclocking their system, otherwise, this feature further increases the appearance of RAM.
At the same time, laptops’ RAM is much simpler and smaller because laptops have less space for hardware components. Also, unlike modern desktop computer cases, which use transparent panels, they are not found inside laptops. However, you can buy heat-dissipating laptop RAMs, especially for gaming laptops.
What does RAM do?
So now we know that these components are connected to the motherboard RAM and act as the short-term memory of the system, but in practice what does this RAM do? When you want to do something like open a text file with your computer, the computer must have access to the data in that file. When you do not work on the text or click the save option, the latest version of this file is stored in long-term memory on the hard drive.
However, when you edit that file, the latest data is stored in RAM for faster access. This applies to all types of files and tasks. For example, all kinds of programs and operating system files are stored in RAM so that the system can perform tasks faster.
It should be noted that RAM is not the only short-term memory of a computer. The graphics card, for example, uses some kind of RAM, and even processors have cache, which is also temporary memory. Ultimately, however, RAM is the most important place for data to be actively used by the system.
How RAM works
RAM consists of small capacitors and transistors that can hold an electric charge; This is the process of storing data, and for example, processors and other parts of the computer use essentially the same process. This electrical charge must be constantly updated. If this is not done, the capacitors will lose their charge very quickly and the data will disappear from the RAM memory.
The fact that data can be lost quickly increases the importance of storing it on hard drives or SSDs. As a result, many programs take advantage of the automatic storage feature and regularly store the desired content in the computer’s permanent memory so that users’ information is not lost if the computer shuts down unexpectedly.
Specialists can recover data from RAM under certain conditions. But often, when you are done with a file or turn off the computer, the information in the RAM is lost.
What is DDR?
RAM comes in many forms and is currently the most commonly used DDR4 RAM. In short, these types of memories move two units of data per clock cycle instead of one and are therefore called Double Data Rate, or DDR for short.
As you probably know, DDR3 RAMs were used before DDR4. Some computers still use this type of RAM. DDR4 RAM was unveiled in late 2014, and this type of RAM became widespread a few years later. In general, each generation of DDR is faster than the previous generation, consumes less power, and reduces latency.
It should be noted that each generation of this RAM can only be used with computers compatible with the same generation, and if, for example, your system motherboard supports DDR3 RAM, you can not use DDR4 RAM for it. This is due to the number of connection pins of each of these RAMs and the distance between the gaps in the middle of the module, which differs between different generations.
There are also two general structural forms for RAM, one called DIMM and the other SODIMM, the main difference being the size of these modules. DIMMs are larger and more expansive and are used in desktop computers and servers. But SODIMM RAMs are built into All In One laptops and computers due to their smaller size.
Some laptops have RAM modules integrated with the motherboard. If the laptop has such a feature, other users can not replace or upgrade its RAM.
Speed, voltage and capacity
While the basics of RAM are very simple, even among DDR4 RAMs there are a wide variety of models. For example, RAMs come in different speeds such as 2400, 3000, or 3200 MHz, and we should also mention various capacities such as 4, 8, or 16 GB.
Another important point about RAM is the number of channels. There are single-channel, dual-channel and four-channel rams on the market today. In general, using a multi-channel system improves bandwidth, which means that RAM can move more data at any time. Therefore, instead of buying one 8 GB RAM, it is recommended to buy two 4 GB RAMs.
Many users claim that different models of RAM can be connected to the motherboard side by side. While this is true to a large extent, it is generally recommended that you use frames based on capacity, speed, and even the same company build for your system.
Experts advise users to pay attention when buying RAM that these memories have the same voltage. Of course, since almost all DDR4 desktop RAMs are based on 1.35 volts, there is not much to worry about. However, the situation is slightly different for laptops and other generations of RAM.
If you can not find the same model used to upgrade the laptop RAM, at least make sure it uses the same voltage, speed, and capacity. How much RAM you can use depends on your system motherboard. For example, an older laptop might only support 8GB of DDR3 RAM.
However, modern desktop computers may support up to 128 GB of DDR4 RAM depending on their processor and motherboard. However, for most users, 8 to 16 GB of RAM is sufficient.
In this article, we have tried to explain in very simple language some of the main concepts related to RAM, and in this regard, much more can be explained. We hope that with these simple explanations, you can make an easier decision to upgrade your computer’s RAM than before.
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