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Computer Memory Hierarchy

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Awais Qazi

on 28 October 2013

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Transcript of Computer Memory Hierarchy

Computer Memory Hierarchy
Computer Memory Hierarchy
Alexander Vigna, Jecoh Limpin, JanMichael Ang, and Awais Qazi
The Pyramid
•The bottom of the pyramid represents larger, cheaper and slower storage devices, while the top represents smaller, more expensive and faster storage devices.
•The pyramid is primarily organized by response time, but there is also a correlation between factors such as size, memory capacity and price.


CPU
Central Processing Unit
Fastest access in hierarchy
Typically the most expensive and smallest part in a PC
Consists of 2 primary components:
Arithmetic Logic Unit(ALU) and Control Unit(CU)
ALU completes tasks through arithmetic and logic function
CU receives, decodes, stores and executes data

CPU Cache
Cache of temporarily stored data that is readily accessible by the CPU
3 Layers: L1, L2, L3

Hierarchy Pyramid
Physical Memory (RAM)
Random-Access Memory
A random-access device allows stored data to be accessed directly in any random order
In contrast, other data storage media such as hard disks, CDs, and DVDs, read and write data only in a predetermined order, consecutively, because of mechanical design limitations. Therefore the time to access a given data location varies significantly depending on its physical location.

Solid State Memory
A solid state drive (SSD) has no moving mechanical components. This distinguishes them from traditional electromechanical magnetic disks such as hard disk drives (HDDs) or floppy disks, which contain spinning disks and movable read/write heads.
When compared to electromechanical disks, SSDs are typically more resistant to physical shock run more quietly, have lower access time, and have less latency.
However, while the price of SSDs has continued to decline in 2012, SSDs are still about 7 to 8 times more expensive per unit of storage than HDDs.

Virtual Memory
If your computer lacks the random access memory (RAM) needed to run a program or operation, Windows uses virtual memory to compensate.
Virtual memory combines your computer’s RAM with temporary space on your hard disk. When RAM runs low, virtual memory moves data from RAM to a space called a paging file. Moving data to and from the paging file frees up RAM to complete its work.
The more RAM your computer has, the faster your programs will generally run. If a lack of RAM is slowing your computer, you might be tempted to increase virtual memory to compensate. However, your computer can read data from RAM much more quickly than from a hard disk, so adding RAM is a better solution.


Works Cited
http://software.intel.com/sites/products/collateral/hpc/vtune/performance_analysis_guide.pdf
http://www.encyclopedia.com/doc/1O11-memoryhierarchy.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Random-access_memory
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solid-state_drive
http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-vista/what-is-virtual-memory
http://www.plantation-productions.com/Webster/www.artofasm.com/Windows/HTML/MemoryArchitecture.html
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