411 Tech Tip: Computer Memory
Warning: Geek talk ahead…
Is your PC slower than it should be?
Outside of being a “smart” computer user (using your PC better, avoiding viruses, proper hard drive management, etc.,) there is one very simple way to attain huge improvements in the performance of your PC: Maximize the amount of memory it can hold.
Computer memory (RAM) has never been cheaper. In the past year, the cost for memory dropped more than 70%. Memory is exponentially faster than the hard drive in your computer, and the more your PC has, the less often it has to use the slower Hard Drive. Without getting complicated, it’s probably best that you install 4 gigabytes (GB) of RAM in your system.
I recently doubled the RAM in my Dell PC (from 2gb to 4gb – I bought an entire 1gb x 4 800mhz kit for $119) running Windows Vista, and the difference was immediately noticeable. I no longer hear the disk chugging away constantly. (tech note: While the systems cannot necessarily use all 4gb for applications, the system does make good use of the memory from 3-4gb.. there are ways to squeeze an extra bit more out of it, but will not get into that here.)
There are several places you can go. Tech experts will usually go to a place like newegg.com, which has excellent prices and a diverse selection. If you’re unsure of the kind of memory you need, you can visit sites like crucial.com, which have memory selectors that help find which product fits your machine. You can then either purchase there, or take that info and price-check at other places, such as Amazon.com.
If you’re looking to make some improvements, without breaking the bank, the best thing to try first is increasing your memory. If you’re already maxed out, then you’re probably in line for a new computer. If anyone has any random computer questions, please feel free to comment, or email me directly.