DMA Explained

"DMA (also referred to as bus mastering) is a technique that some components and devices use to transfer data directly to and from memory without passing through the Central Processing Unit (CPU). DMA reduces CPU overhead by providing a mechanism for data transfers that do not require monitoring by the CPU." (description by Microsoft Corporation)

Lack of DMA usually results in occasional loss of system responsiveness, and excessive processor usage during hard-drive and CD-ROM transfers. Most hard-drives manufactured after 1998 support DMA.

Depending on your operating system, please choose one of the following links for more information:

Windows 2000, XP
Step by step visual guide on enabling DMA.

Windows 98, Me
Step by step visual guide on enabling DMA.
Microsoft's Knowledge Base Article on enabling DMA (Q258757)

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