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[ The PC Guide | Systems and Components Reference Guide | Motherboard and System Devices | System Buses | System Bus Functions and Features ]

Bus Width

A bus is a channel over which information flows. The wider the bus, the more information can flow over the channel, much as a wider highway can carry more cars than a narrow one. The original ISA bus on the IBM PC was 8 bits wide; the universal ISA bus used now is 16 bits. The other I/O buses (including VLB and PCI) are 32 bits wide. The memory and processor buses on Pentium and higher PCs are 64 bits wide.

The address bus width can be specified independently of the data bus width. The width of the address bus dictates how many different memory locations that bus can transfer information to or from.

Next: Bus Speed


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