What does "4 GB of memory" mean? Is it the same as RAM?

I've been looking into buying a new computer, and I'm trying to compare it to the one I have now.  Currently, my laptop tells me that it has 1 GB of RAM (I looked it up in the systems tab thing).  On the website of laptop I'm looking into, it says that it has 4 GB of memory.  No where does it mention RAM (unless I missed it, which is a possibility).  

I guess in short, my question is, is RAM and memory the same thing?

Thanks and here is the website of the Laptop I was looking at


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7ofclubs6 years ago
There are two basic types of computer memory, RAM and ROM. ROM stands for Read Only Memory and is hard coded onto the chip, you can't change the programing on it at all, its permanent. ROM contains the computers operating system or OS. The OS tells your computer how to write things on the screen, or listen to your keyboard. RAM means Random Access Memory. RAM can be changed. When you load a program from your hard drive into your computer, like Microsoft Word, or your Internet browser, you are putting the program into RAM. When you turn off your computer the RAM is erased, the ROM is not.
When someone tells you that a computer has 4GB of memory they are referring to RAM. Some computer programs, especially Windows, uses RAM to swap frequently loaded programs back and forth, it makes the computer seem to run faster. The amount of RAM you need depends on what you do with your computer. If you run heavy graphics based programs get lots of RAM, as much as you can get. If you only use your computer for word processing or to surf the Internet you will not need as much RAM.
As for what does GB refer to? Easy. GB = gigabytes, MB is megabytes and KB is kilobytes.
A byte is just a piece of information, without getting technical think of a byte as one letter or number. Now normally a kilobyte would be 1,000 bytes, BUT, do to the way computers are organized a kilobyte is 1,024 bytes. A megabyte is 1,024 kilobytes, and a gigabyte is 1,024 megabytes.
If you think of information a kilobyte is 1,024 letters or numbers, a megabyte is 1,048,576 letters or numbers, and a gigabyte is 1,073,741,824 letters or numbers.
Hope that helps. -=7ofclubs=-
sjo232 (author)  7ofclubs6 years ago
ok great! Thanks a lot for your help, you really know your stuff haha
MoFracka2 years ago

most non-gamer computers will say memory rather than ram which is random access memory-this means that it is the information that your computer is currently using such as having a web page open takes up ram or any sort of app or window. rom is a term that means read only memory which is to say its the information that you cant see. read only memory is the information that tells the computer how to turn on how to run you operating system which in turn controls the home page of your computer and what sort of applications can be ran on your computer a few of the bigger names in opperating systems are the Mac OSX or the windows family such as windows 7 and 8 and many others like those and of corse Linux which is more popular for a gamer because there are more options on what you can do and can be modified to run certain apps if the user chooses so. this determines your ram amount so if your memory is 4 GB then you have 4GB of ram in conclusion yes ram and memory are the same thing.

thanks you helped me buy a laptop for christmas

3Z3K13LZ3 years ago

Thanks so much for your wisdom. I love this....

orksecurity6 years ago
RAM stands for Random Access Memory. While RAM is used for other purposes (caches, for example), when folks are talking about gigabytes (GB) they're generally talking about main memory.

So: Yes.
Dr. Pepper6 years ago
yokozuna6 years ago
yep, RAM and memory in this case would mean the same thing.