What is DRAM?
DRAM (Dynamic Random Access Memory) is a type of RAM (Random Access Memory) used as the main memory in various computing devices, including desktop and notebook computers, servers, and high-end workstations. It is the most commonly used semiconductor memory in current generation computers and offers several significant advantages.
Advantages of DRAM
DRAM offers several advantages, including:
- Structural simplicity
- High packing densities (number of bytes that can be stored per unit of chip area)
- Low power consumption
- High data read/write speeds
Types of DRAM
There are several types of DRAM available for deployment on different computing platforms, such as home/personal computers, portable computers, and network servers. These include:
- Registered memory
- Fully-buffered (FB) memory
Registered Memory (RDIMMs)
Registered DIMMs (RDIMMs) are designed with an additional hardware register between the DRAM module and the system's memory controller. This provides several advantages, such as a lower electrical load on the memory controller and sustained stability even with an increase in the number of installed memory modules. RDIMMs are often the default choice for deployment in server-class computing systems.
Fully-Buffered Memory (FB-DIMMs)
Fully-buffered DIMMs (FB-DIMMs) are intended for use in systems requiring higher memory densities with limited board space. Unlike normal DRAM, FB-DIMMs transfer data in a serial format using an additional buffer, known as an advanced memory buffer (AMB), between the memory controller and the FB-DIMM modules. The AMB acts as an intermediary and handles all data reads/writes for the memory modules, reducing any overhead on the memory controller and providing a reliable alternative for deployment in server-grade machines.