Random access memory or RAM is a form of dynamic storage that is directly accessible, i.e., any part of the memory can be directly addressed, and can be read from and written to. This is opposed to ROM which is read-only memory.
In the first electronic computers, vacuum tubes, followed by magnetic core were used as RAM. The term "core dump" is still used to describe a system failure where the information is written out for analysis, and is known to most people as the numbers on a Blue Screen of Death.
Computers use this type of memory to hold the program text and variables during execution. RAM is a member of the larger class referred to as computer storage. Unlike some other forms of computer storage such as disk storage and tape storage, RAM is typically entirely deleted when the computer is powered down.
Common types of RAM:
- SRAM or Static RAM
- SDRAM or Synchronus Dynamic RAM
- RDRAM or Rambus Dynamic RAM
- DDR-SDRAM or Double Data Rate Sychronus Dynamic RAM
- EDO-RAM or Extended Data Out RAM
- Fast Page RAM