The Tech Discussion Dictionary 32 replies

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Revenge VIP Member

Shizzle my nizzle

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28th July 2004

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#1 13 years ago

Let's try this out. In here, you can request the meaning of certain computer definitions. For example, you could post saying: "What does 'EEPROM' stand for and what does it do?", and someone would say:

JimWhat does 'EEPROM' stand for and what does it do?

"Electronically Erasable Programmable Read-Only Memory - It's like RAM, but does not lose its data when the power is switched off. Most (all?) modern BIOS chips are EEPROMs now. Additionally, a great number of embedded devices (such as mobile phones, PDAs, and DAPs) make use of EEPROM chips, and many pieces of hardware store their firmware on EEPROMs. In a nutshell, if it can be "flashed", then it's probably got an EEPROM in it. (mostly answered by C38368 smilie.gif) ^ End of answer ^ Quote the original request in your answer, and don't answer if someone else already has (unless they've answered it wrong). Keep this place legible. I'm a little wary about this, as they often turn into spam-fests. If this gets out of hand it'll be closed, and that will end the fun.




Eagle One

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#2 13 years ago

ok.... DVD-RAM? all i know is that it is similar to DVD-RW and it is available in 8.4GB too




Revenge VIP Member

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#3 13 years ago
Eagle Oneok.... DVD-RAM? all i know is that it is similar to DVD-RW and it is available in 8.4GB too

DVD-RAM stands for Digital Versatile Disc Random Access Memory, and is part of a long story. When DVDs first came about around the turn of the millenium, there were two main rivals making different kinds of discs fighting for the top spot, for all standards to be set. Panasonic backed DVD-RAM while Sony backed DVD-ROM, along with other companies in each 'team'. Both disc types had advantages, but in the end Sony won. You can now pick up a DVD-RAM-RW drive for about £20, because it's hardly used any more.




Pethegreat VIP Member

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19th April 2004

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#4 13 years ago

Now when I am reading spec. for card and stuff I see the acronym "Ramdc" or something like that with a mhz rating after it. what does this mean?




C38368

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#5 13 years ago
PethegreatNow when I am reading spec. for card and stuff I see the acronym "Ramdc" or something like that with a mhz rating after it. what does this mean?

RAMDAC. As you might suspect, it's a collection of acroynms: RAM and DAC. The RAM portion is just that: random access memory. This part is rather snappy static memory charged with storing RGB values in a digital form. The DAC part, for those of you familiar with audio, is a digital-to-analog converter. This converts the digital RGB values into a signal that can be sent to the monitor. The spec is really relatively useless. RAMDAC speed determines what resolution and refresh rate (maximums) you can run, which is usually also given in the specs. 230MHz is enough for 1600x1200 @ 85Hz. A note on EERPOMs: Since these were used in the original example, and since (hopefully) people coming to this thread will read that post, I'd like to make one correction to the sample answer, regarding the use of EEPROMs. Most (all?) modern BIOS chips are EEPROMs now. Additionally, a great number of embedded devices (such as mobile phones, PDAs, and DAPs) make use of EEPROM chips, and many pieces of hardware store their firmware on EEPROMs. In a nutshell, if it can be "flashed", then it's probably got an EEPROM in it.




War Hawk

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#6 13 years ago

What are RAM timings? Could someone explain them to me? What is a decent RAM timing?




C38368

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#7 13 years ago
War HawkWhat are RAM timings? Could someone explain them to me? What is a decent RAM timing?

RAM timings are a variety of numbers that represent the number of clock cycles are required to perform an action. Although there are a myriad of measureables under the heading of "memory timings", five are most commonly used: CAS, tRCD, tRP, tRAS and CMD. The first four are the numbers you see attached to memory (such as 2.5-3-3-7, which is fairly loose). The fifth is often represented as xT, where x = 1 or 2. CMD isn't really a function of the memory so much as of the memory controller, but older A64 controllers couldn't handle high speeds at 1T, and 2T was presented as an option. I've never seen CMD settings on a P4 platform. Anyway, here's a quick overview of each of the four "major" timings: CAS Latency: The number of cycles that elapse between the time a column is requested from an active page and the time that the data is ready to begin bursting across the bus. CAS Latency (or CL) is the most common action in memory modules, which is why so much weight is placed on this number. tRCD: RAS-to-CAS delay. The delay between the time a row is activated and when a column of data within the row can actually be requested. Occurs when data is requested that is not within the active row. tRP: Time for RAS precharge. Time that is required to flush an active row out of the "cache" before a new row can be requested. tRAS: The minimum time that a row must remain active before a new row within that bank can be activated. CMD is simply the number of cycles that a command must be "presented" to the memory before it is executed. At 2T, a request must be presented for two cycles before the memory can act. See why this is bad? For DDR memory, 2-2-2-5 at 1T is the tightest timings available. When DDR2 debuted at 533MHz, I believe 4-4-4-12 was the best it could manage. I think I've seen modules closer to 3-3-3-10 since then, however. Needless to day, DDR2 requires looser timings than DDR regardless. The tradeoff is supposed to be that DDR2 can run at much higher frequencies than DDR: this is true, but it isn't until DDR2-667 or DDR2-800 that the sheer speed begins to outpace the looser timings. That gets us back to the speed-versus-timings question. As you might expect, high speeds and tight timings are always preferable, but at what point does it work in your favour to loosen the timings and bump the clock up? The short answer is that "it depends". More to the point, you'll need to test and try for yourself to see what works best. But for illustrative purposes, I'll use my current scenario: I've got a 2.4C Gallatin and 2x512MB of OCZ PC3200 EL Platinum R2 modules. This memory is good to past DDR600 on an A64 platform, and to about DDR580 on an Intel platform. At those speeds, timings are artound 3-3-4-8: pretty loose. But that's past the point that sheer speed makes up for the loss, so it's good for me to run the modules that high. However, they'll only tighten to about 2.5-3-2-6 at DDR500. OCZ's PC4000 EL Gold VX, on the other hand, will do DDR500 at 2-2-2-5 if you can supply enough voltage. So if I were CPU-limited to around 250MHz (like my 3E was on this mobo) I'd be better served with the VX Gold, despite the fact that it won't go much above 250MHz. Follow? Short version: If you've got a CPU that can handle insane FSB speeds, faster memory with looser timings is probably in your favour. If your CPU can't overclock much, then slower memory with tighter timings is probably better. However, YMMV depending on other factors.




Revenge VIP Member

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#8 13 years ago

What does RAID actually stand for?




Rod Menass

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29th March 2005

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#9 13 years ago

Raid: Redundant array of independent disks Wikipedia pwns everything: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Redundant_array_of_independent_disks




Johnny Mullet

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7th March 2005

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#10 13 years ago

CPU...............Processor I just figured that one out recently! Duh.