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Computer memory types: Static RAM vs. dynamic RAM

In this installment from's Computer Memory for your Windows Environment guide, contributor Bernie Klinder explains how static RAM and dynamic RAM differ.

In addition to form factor, the chip technology used on the computer memory module defines the type of RAM.

SRAM (static RAM). This type of memory maintains data in storage as long as it is powered. Because it is faster and more reliable and expensive than DRAM, SRAM is most often used as cache memory. Earlier forms of SRAM were classified as Async or Sync RAM if they were synchronized with the system clock. The most common type of SRAM today is pipeline burst SRAM, which can operate at higher bus speeds.

DRAM (dynamic RAM). This type of RAM retains its data by being continuously rewritten every few milliseconds. Like SRAM, the data in storage is volatile, meaning it is lost when the system is not powered. DRAM is the most common type of expandable company memory in workstations and servers today, but there are several different types of DRAM.

Computer Memory for your Windows Environment

  Form Factors: Computer memory modules and pin configurations
  Computer memory types: Static RAM vs. Dynamic RAM
  Types of DRAM
 Error Correcting Code and Parity

Bernie Klinder, MVP, consultant
Bernie Klinder is a technology consultant for a number of Fortune 500 companies. He is also the founder and former editor of, a comprehensive resource index for IT professionals who support Microsoft Windows NT/2000/XP/2003 and BackOffice products. For his contributions to the information technology community, Bernie was selected as an MVP (Most Valuable Professional) by Microsoft. Copyright 2004 TechTarget

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