The Importance of BuffersBy Amber D. Walker, eHow ContributorMany applications and devices use data buffers to temporarily hold data before it is used.This is usually done to ensure that there are no interruptions in the flow of data to itsdestination. What is a Buffer? 1. A buffer is section of memory set aside to store a set amount of data before it is sent to another device or application. Why Buffers are Necessary 2. Buffers are used when the rate of data transfer between two devices is either dramatically different, variable or prone to temporary interruptions. Difference Between a Buffer and a Cache 3. Buffers and caches are related concepts, and many implementations will fill both roles. But there is a key distinction: A buffer stores information to ensure it can be sent without interruption, while a cache stores information that is expected to be used more than once. Common Uses of Buffers 4. A good example of buffer use is streaming video over the Internet. Speeds can vary widely over the course of a download, but users expect video to play without interruption. Use of a buffer allows for continuous playback despite an uneven flow of data. Buffer Overflow Error 5. A buffer overflow, or overrun, error occurs when a program attempts to write more data to a buffer than it is capable of storing, overflowing the buffer and flooding other parts of memory with the data.