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[ The PC Guide | Systems and Components Reference Guide | System Memory | Memory Errors, Detection and Correction ]

Parity in Advanced Memory Technologies

Due to parity memory's fall from grace, it is hard to find parity versions of any of the newer memory technologies that have been invented since parity went out of favor. FPM parity memory is commonplace, but newer technologies can be hard to find in parity.

Parity EDO memory does exist (contrary to popular myth). However, it is hard to find and usually necessitates either a special order or a purchase from a large memory company (which is usually a good thing from a quality and service standpoint anyway, although it can be costly). It is more expensive than FPM parity memory, and much more expensive than EDO non-parity memory. I usually don't bother, I use FPM parity memory and I have yet to find anyone who can tell the difference (except in pointless benchmarking exercises).

SDRAM is now available in an ECC form as well. I have never seen true parity SDRAM and I doubt that it exists. ECC SDRAM of course requires a motherboard and chipset that supports it; its introduction was spurred on no doubt by Intel's 440LX chipset, which supports both ECC and SDRAM. There are also new Socket 7 motherboards with non-Intel chipsets that support ECC SDRAM.

Next: Mixing Parity/ECC and Non-Parity Memory


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