Read-Only Memory

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read-only memory

[′rēd ¦ōn·lē ′mem·rē]
(computer science)
A device for storing data in permanent, or nonerasable, form; usually a static electronic or magnetic device allowing extremely rapid access to data. Abbreviated ROM. Also known as read-only storage.

Read-Only Memory

(ROM) A type of data storage device which is manufactured with fixed contents. In its most general sense, the term might be used for any storage system whose contents cannot be altered, such as a gramophone record or a printed book; however, the term is most often applied to semiconductor integrated circuit memories, of which there are several types, and CD-ROM.

ROM is inherently non-volatile storage - it retains its contents even when the power is switched off, in contrast to RAM.

ROM is often used to hold programs for embedded systems since these usually have a fixed purpose. ROM is also used for storage of the lowest level bootstrap software (firmware) in a computer.

See also Programmable Read-Only Memory.
References in periodicals archive ?
Standing for Digital Versatile Disk Read-Only Memory, DVD-ROM uses discs similar to CD-ROM discs, but they typically hold seven to eight times more data.
But Oki Electric officials said the firm plans to ask Fujitsu to pay the damages, saying the malfunction of its ATMs resulted from Fujitsu-made read-only memory chips (ROMs) it had bought to install in its ATMs.
Atmel Smartcard IC Ltd UK will make read-only memory (ROM) for contact and high-end contactless cards at an East Kilbride fab bought from Motorola in April.