A Random Access Memory module, commonly abbreviated as “RAM,” is an important part inside a computer system together with the core processor, hard disk drive and the motherboard. This memory module is the one that contains the “virtual memory” of an operating system. It also has many different types of models with different specifications and functions depending on its type (SDRAM, DDR1, DDR2, etc).
A RAM module is a rectangular shaped printed circuit board (PCB) with microscopic electronic wires that are imprinted on it. There are also tiny electronic circuits (IC) which are soldered to board and coated with thin sheet silicon or plastic coating.
The main function of a RAM is that for example, when you input any kind information using an input hardware device (either by using a mouse, a keyboard, a digital pen and tablet, etc.), the inputted data travels through different electronic connectors and then analyzed by the core processor and then passed on to the virtual memory for RAM processing. So the purpose of the RAM is like being a “sidekick” of the core processor to help it process the collected information and generate the desired output.
If the memory module or RAM is broken, your computer will start up, but it cannot load your operating system, leaving your computer disabled and useless. Even slight damage inside the module can result in bad or inefficient computing because the RAM is composed of “nano-electronic” parts that are “microscopically small” and very sensitive to static electricity.
Holding a RAM without caution and proper anti-static protection could break your precious memory module. Although this piece of electronic module is sensitive and delicate, it will not break if you handle the device correctly and properly. Here are some safety measures in handling a RAM.
- It would be best if you have even a little knowledge about how to remove the RAM from your computer so that you will not break the RAM right before you take it out from the motherboard.
- Use anti-static wrist straps or anti-static clips to drain all the static electricity that is present in your body and which you could acquire if you have a carpeted floor. Anti-static straps are very important because not only could you damage your RAM, but the other parts of your computer are also vulnerable to static electricity (because those are also electronic devices).
- After taking the RAM out of your computer, do not place it anywhere because it could be exposed to other elements (especially water or anything moist) and it is better that you put it in an anti-static plastic container first before placing the RAM in a safe location. The anti-static plastic container protects your memory module from static electricity that could be present in other materials and it protects your RAM from water, moisture, and dirt.
- If possible, wear thin rubber gloves when holding the RAM. Place your fingers on the edge of its corners (the green plated part of the module with plastic coating) to avoid the chances of damaging the sensitive parts of the RAM.