My computer keeps freezing: RAM

You can tell when you could use more RAM if you open some programs on your computer only to find that with each click, they open slower and slower. “My computer freezes!” is the last thing you say before you punch the desk and walk away in a huff.

What is RAM memory?

RAM stands for “random access memory” and is a form of computer data storage. Unlike hard drive memory, RAM is emptied every time the computer is turned off. It decides how many programs can be easily run at once, and to a certain extent, how well a program can run. Most types of RAM fall under one of two options. SRAM, or static RAM, stores a portion of data in a flip-flop state. DRAM, the most popular type of RAM, stands for Dynamic RAM.

RAM limits in Windows

The standard amount of RAM on most computers is 4 GB. This is because we are still in the “32-bit phase”, where many people still have 32-bit operating systems. The maximum amount of RAM that a 32-bit operating system can handle is 4 GB. This means that putting more than 4 GB of RAM into a computer running a 32-bit operating system will be wasted. 64-bit operating systems are becoming much more popular now, and with that, the RAM ceiling is increasing dramatically. A basic 64-bit installation of Windows Home can handle 8 GB, while a 64-bit version of Windows 7 Ultimate can handle 192 GB. Most consumers own the Home or Professional version, but most do not have the maximum amount of RAM.

RAM memory installation

Installing more RAM is the best price-speed ratio for making your computer run faster. What I mean is that for the amount of money you will pay, this is one of the best slow computing solutions available.

1. Determine what type of RAM is installed in your current system. If you buy DDR2 RAM when your computer accepts DDR3, it will cause incompatibility issues. DDR3 RAM is not interchangeable with DDR2.

2. When the RAM is purchased and ready to be installed, make sure the computer is unplugged and the case is open.

3. Find the location of your current RAM inside your computer.

4. Assuming you have extra slots, make sure you put the RAM in the slot closest to the computer, and probably also closest to the current RAM that’s already there.

5. There will be clips on each side of the slot that you will need to push back. Slide the RAM into a slot giving a good amount of pressure. As you push the RAM in, the clips should snap into place in the notches on the RAM sticks.

That’s all the installation required. If you hear a constant beeping sound when you turn on your computer, that probably means that the RAM was not pushed all the way in. Unplug everything and try to lock the clips in place again.

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