Difference Between Memory vs. Hard Disk

Primary Difference

A computer architecture is a complex system and there are many terms which although look very similar, but are different from each other with the slightest of variations. There are many devices used in a computer hardware which performs several functions but is related to each other and two such devices are known as a hard disk and memory. The differences between them will be discussed in this space. The main one is that a hard disk is a device which stores memory while the memory is the information which is stored on a hard disk. The memory on a hard disk can be stored magnetically only while information of a memory device is stored in the form of electric signals and data. There are other ways of showing this difference too, for example, a memory can be lost when power is shut down but it can still exist if stored on a hard disk. Another way of telling the difference is that upgrading the space for memory is a relatively difficult process while adding another hard disk on the computer is an easy process. There are many other differences which will be explained in the end while a detailed explanation of both these types is given in the next two paragraphs.

Comparison Table

MemoryHard Disk
DefinitionThe process in which information is obtained and stored and then encoded in a manner that it can be obtained at a later time.This is a data storage device which is used to store and access information which is present on the computer.
Data Losscan be lost in most cases when power is shut down immediatelyAnything on it stays there in case of power shortage
InformationData is stored on a memory stick in the form of electric formats.Data is stored on a hard disk in the form of magnetic memory
PriceFreeCostly

Definition of Hard Disk

This is a data storage device which is used to store and access information which is present on the device, it is entered into the device by the user who wants to keep it at a place where it can be accessed at any time. This can be done in the form of folders and files while information such as documents, videos, audio and even pictures. The structure is simpler where the rotating disks are placed which is coated with magnetic material. These are connected with magnetic heads which are placed on the moving arm that helps to read and writing the data. This data is accessed through RAM which means the information which is present on the device can be opened without any proper sequence. It was first introduced in 1956 and has increased its space over the years. It has been produced by more than 150 companies over the years but the most famous ones are Seagate and Toshiba. The size of normal HDD is 3.5 inches for computers while the size for a laptop is around 2.5 inches. USB are the devices which have originated from the hard disks and gaining popularity.

Definition of Memory

In simple words, memory is the process in which information is obtained and stored and then encoded in a manner that it can be obtained at a later time. This allows information from the outside sources to be arranged in a proper manner, this data is changed into codes which are only understood through the encoding and gives it a safe space to exist where it cannot be lost. This is a computer hardware which is used to store information in such a manner that it can be used at any time by the computer and the functions keep on running. The memory is operated at high speeds and can exist in several places such as RAM and hard disk, there are different cases in which memory is used and kept safe on these devices which will not be favorable to discuss in this space.

Differences in a Nutshell

  1. Memory can be lost in most cases when power is shut down immediately while the if the memory is on a hard disk it will not be lost.
  2. The hard disk is the device which stores memory while the memory is the information which is stored on a hard disk.
  3. Memory helps the computer runs in a faster manner while hard disk does not play any such function.
  4. Data is stored on a hard disk in the form of magnetic memory while it is stored on a memory stick in the form of electric formats.
  5. Upgrading the space for memory is a relatively difficult process while adding another hard disk on the computer is an easy process.

Comparison Video

Conclusion

The two terms Memory and hard disk are different ones in the working and functions. This article, therefore, gives a proper understanding of the two types for people to get a clearer idea. The task is achieved by adding more differences and giving more details about the topic which hopefully will be helpful.

Posted in: IT

Author:

Harlon Moss

Harlon currently works as a quality moderator and content writer for Turpy Media. He graduated from the University of California in 2010 with a degree in Computer Science. Follow him on Twitter @HarlonMoss or on Pinterest @HarlonMoss

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