NVRAM

Updated: 10/11/2017 by Computer Hope

Short for Non-Volatile Random Access memory, NVRAM is a memory that saves its stored data regardless if the power is on or off. Today, a good example of NVRAM is flash memory like that used in a Jump drive. NVRAM is also in your computer monitor, printers, cars, smart cards, and other devices that require remembered settings.

Non-volatile RAMNote: Your computer memory (RAM) is volatile, which means if you turn off your computer everything stored in the memory is lost. Although memory such as the ArxCis-NV from Viking is non-volatile RAM, it is only used with servers and not something you would be using in a home computer.

Types of NVRAM

Today, there are different types of NVRAM available for all computers. The RTC/NVRAM on your computer motherboard is a battery-backed NVRAM that uses the CMOS battery to charge and store system settings such as the date and time.

Another good example of NVRAM in computers is the EEPROM, which is used for the BIOS in many computers. Even your hard drive and other storage devices are considered non-volatile memory.

Ferroelectric RAM, FeRAM, or F-RAM and Magneto resistive RAM or MRAM are also types of NVRAM used for various applications.

Why are the advantages and disadvantages of NVRAM?

Advantages

  • NVRAM has no moving parts and is almost always faster than volatile memory for both reading and writing.
  • With less moving parts, NVRAM requires much less power.

Disadvantages

  • NVRAM that requires a battery that will eventually need to have the battery replaced.
  • As information is re-written to flash memory, it deteriorates and will eventually no longer work.

CMOS, EPROM, Hard drive terms, Hardware terms, Memory terms, Non-volatile, PRAM, SRAM, Volatile