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Difference between Register and Memory

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  • Difficulty Level : Easy
  • Last Updated : 22 May, 2020
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1. Register :
Registers are the smallest data holding elements that are built into the processor itself. These are the memory locations that are directly accessible by the processor. It may hold an instruction, a storage address or any kind of data such as a bit sequence or individual characters. For example, an instruction may specify that the contents of two defined registers be multiplied together and then placed in a specific register.

Example: Accumulator register, Program counter, Instruction register, Address register, etc.

2. Memory :
Memory is a hardware device used to store computer programs, instructions and data. The memory that is internal to the processor is a primary memory (RAM), and the memory that is external to the processor is a secondary memory (Hard Drive). Memory can also be categorized on the basis of volatile and non-volatile memory. Volatile memory is memory that loses its contents when the computer or hardware device loses power. RAM (Random Access Memory) is an example of volatile memory. Non-volatile memory is the memory that keeps its contents even if power gets lost. EPROM is an example of non-volatile memory.

Example : RAM, EPROM etc.

Difference between Register and Memory :

1.Registers hold the operands or instruction that CPU is currently processing.Memory holds the instructions and the data that the currently executing program in CPU requires.
2.Register holds the small amount of data around 32-bits to 64-bits.Memory of the computer can range from some GB to TB.
3.CPU can operate on register contents at the rate of more than one operation in one clock cycle.CPU accesses memory at the slower rate than register.
4.Types are Accumulator register, Program counter, Instruction register, Address register, etc.Type of memory are RAM,etc.
5.Registers can be control i.e. you can store and retrieve information from them.Memory is almost not controllable.
6.Registers are faster than memory.RAM is much slower than registers.

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