Computer data storage, often called storage or memory, is a technology consisting of computer components and recording media used to retain digital data. It is a core function and fundamental component of computers.
The central processing unit (CPU) of a computer is what manipulates data by performing computations. In practice, almost all computers use a storage hierarchy, which puts fast but expensive and small storage options close to the CPU and slower but larger and cheaper options farther away. Generally the fast volatile technologies (which lose data when off power) are referred to as “memory”, while slower persistent technologies are referred to as “storage”; however, “memory” is sometimes also used when referring to persistent storage.
In the Von Neumann architecture, the CPU consists of two main parts: The control unit and the arithmetic / logic unit (ALU). The former controls the flow of data between the CPU and memory, while the latter performs arithmetic and logical operations on data.
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