What are the differences between Memory and Storage devices?

Though it may seem from the names that memory and storage devices are same thing, but actually they are far different. Following are the differences between Memory and Storage Devices.

Differences between memory and storage devices:

Very speedy, that is, it responds very fast
Slower than memory devices
Very expensive compared to storage devices
Less expensive when compared to memory devices
Storage Type
Mostly volatile
Impact on Performance
Has high impact on overall computer performance
Has low impact on overall computer performance
Accessible by
Can be accessed by CPU and programs
Can be accessed by both CPU, programs and users
Required Size
Generally requires less in storing capability
Generally requires more in storing capability
Memory is a required component of a computer
Storage is not a required component
Alternative use
Can’t be used as an storage device
Can be used as a memory device


  1. Memory: RAM, ROM. Cache Memory etc.
  2. Storage Devices: Hard Disk Drive, Optical Disks etc.

Author: Tanmay Chakrabarty

Tanmay Chakrabarty is a former CSE student, currently working as a Senior Software Engineer with 5+ years of experience in the field of Web Application development in PHP+MySQL platform with strong skills in Javascript, JQuery, JQuery UI and CSS. He tries to write notes every week but fails due to heavy loads of duty.

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