Difference Between Volatile Memory and Non-Volatile Memory

By Aina Parasher|Updated : April 22nd, 2022

Difference Between Volatile Memory and Non-Volatile Memory: Memory is an essential part of the computer that helps the devices access the data quickly and perform according to their need. Memory is differentiated on a lot of different parameters. One of them is based on permanent and temporary storage. Computer memory is divided into two types:

  • Volatile Memory
  • Non-Volatile Memory

Volatile Memory is used to store real-time computer programs and data that the CPU requires, and it is wiped once the machine is turned off. Volatile memory is RAM and cache memory. Non-volatile memory, on the other hand, is permanent and stays in the computer even after it is turned off. ROM and hard disc drives (HDD) are two types of non-volatile memory. Further, let us check the major difference between volatile memory and non-volatile memory.

Table of Content

What is a Volatile Memory?

Volatile memory is the memory hardware that fetches/stores data at a high speed. It is also referred to as temporary memory. The data in the volatile memory is retained for as long as the system is operational, but once the system is shut off, the data is immediately erased. It includes things like RAM (Random Access Memory) and cache memory. Data retrieval and storage are quick and cost-effective here.

Static RAM and Dynamic RAM are two forms of volatile memory. Simple random access memory (Static RAM) is a kind of random access memory. Each data bit is stored using flip-flops. When the system's electric power is turned off, the RAM loses its data as well. Even when the system is turned on, dynamic RAM loses its data in a very short period. Because it is tiny and inexpensive, this memory is employed as the primary memory.

What is a Non-Volatile Memory?

Non-volatile memory is a sort of memory in which data or information is retained even after the power is turned off. The most prevalent type of non-volatile memory is ROM (Read Only Memory). When compared to volatile memory, it is less cost-effective and slower to acquire and store data, but it can store a larger amount of data.

Non-volatile memory is used to store information that must be kept for a long period of time. The storage capacity of a system is greatly influenced by this type of memory. Some examples of non-volatile memory are- ROM (Read-Only Memory) and HDD (Hard Disk Drive).

Difference Between Volatile Memory and Non-Volatile Memory

Computer memory is divided into two types: volatile and non-volatile. Volatile memory is used to store real-time computer programs and data that the CPU requires, and it is wiped once the machine is turned off. Non-volatile memory, on the other hand, is permanent and stays in the computer even after it is turned off. Non-volatile memory (ROM) and hard disc drives (HDD) are two types of non-volatile memory. Let us discuss, the key difference between volatile memory and non-volatile memory listed below.

Difference between Volatile Memory and Non-Volatile Memory
Volatile MemoryNon-Volatile Memory
It's a sort of temporary computer memory that only saves data and information until it receives a constant power source.It is a sort of computer memory that keeps and preserves data long after the machine has been turned off by the user.
The quickest kind of memory in nature is volatile memory. These memories save the most frequently used information, and any user may rapidly retrieve them.Non-volatile memory is a type of memory that is slower than volatile memory. Accessing data from a non-volatile memory is slower than accessing data from volatile memory.
Volatile memory, such as RAM (Random Access Memory), is one example.The non-volatile memory includes ROM (Read Only Memory).
It requires less storage capacity.It requires more storage capacity.
Volatile memory is inefficient in terms of cost. Here, the cost of a unit is quite high.Non-volatile memory is quite inexpensive. Memory is less costly per unit here.
In volatile memory, the information or data is not permanent.In non-volatile memory, the information or data is permanent.

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FAQs

  • The basic difference between volatile and non-volatile memory is that a volatile memory stores the data temporarily while, a non-volatile memory that stores the data permanently, i.e., it retains the data in the system even when the power is gone.

  • A volatile memory is a type of computer memory that stores data temporarily. The data in this memory gets erased when the system's power is turned off. RAM is an example of volatile memory.

  • Non-volatile memory is a type of computer memory that stores data permanently. The data in this memory does not get erased when the system's power is turned off. ROM is an example of non-volatile memory.

  • Among these two, RAM is a volatile memory. It temporarily stores all the information and data that you are working on. On the other hand, ROM is a non-volatile memory that permanently stores the data in your computer.

  • The speed difference between volatile memory and non-volatile memory is such that the volatile memory is faster than the non-volatile memory.

  • The difference between volatile memory and non-volatile memory in terms of cost is provided below.

    • Volatile memory is inefficient in terms of cost. Here, the cost of a unit is quite high.
    • Non-volatile memory is quite inexpensive. Memory is less costly per unit here.

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