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Abbreviation for Direct Memory Access (or addressing). DMA is a method of transferring data from one memory area to another without having to go through the CPU. In many computer systems DMA is allocated in “channels.” Computers with DMA channels can transfer data to and from devices much more quickly than those in which the data path goes through the computer’s main processor. DMA channels are limited in number, and you can’t allocate one channel to more than one device. There are also newer enhanced (faster) versions of DMA known as UDMA, or Ultra DMA.

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