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Thursday, Dec. 4, 2008
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Upgrade your PC by installing RAM
My computer is running slow. I don't have the budget to buy a new computer. So, I'm planning to add RAM. I know this will boost my speed. But I'm not sure how to install RAM. Is it too complicated?
Adding RAM isn't very difficult. You'll certainly be able to do it yourself. But first, you'll need to do some shopping.
Not all RAM is created equal. When shopping for RAM, you'll run into three types. These are DDR1, DDR2 and DDR3. These types are not interchangeable. Your motherboard will dictate which type you need. Check out this tip for more on the types of RAM.
Shopping for the right RAM really is the hard part. The actual installation is fairly simple.
First, unplug all the connections on the back of your computer. Then open the computer's case. Ground yourself by touching the computer's frame. Otherwise, static electricity could damage your computer.
Find the motherboard. It's the large circuit board into which everything plugs. Locate the memory slots near the microprocessor. There will be two to four slots, about four inches long. At least one memory module will be installed, standing on its side.
To install the RAM, pull back the retaining clips at the slot ends. The slot will have one or more raised pegs. These line up with notches in the stick of RAM. Push the memory firmly into the slot. You may have to push hard. When it's in properly, the retaining clips will snap into place.
You may have several sticks of RAM with varying capacities. For example, your computer may have a 512MB module already installed. And you're installing two 1 GB sticks. When mixing capacities, you'll have to install them in specific slots.
Always install the largest capacity module in the 0 bank (computers count from 0). The next largest goes in bank 1, and so on. The above example would look like this: 1 GB in bank 0, 1 GB in bank 1 and 512 MB in bank 2.
That's it for installation. Now, just check to make sure it's working.
Check your new RAM
Your computer should recognize and start using the new RAM automatically. But you'll want to check to be sure. So, start up your computer.
In Windows Vista, click Start>>Control Panel. If necessary, click Classic View in the left panel. Double-click System. Find the “Memory (RAM)” label. You'll see the accessible RAM.
In Windows XP, click Start>>Control Panel. Double-click System. Select the General tab. At the bottom of the window you'll find the accessible amount of RAM.
The memory reported by your computer may not be what you installed. This can happen for a couple of reasons. First, make sure the RAM is properly seated in the slots. This often clears up the problem.
The other possibility is tied to how Windows handles memory. A 32-bit operating system can only use so much RAM. To make sure you're not wasting money, read this important tip.
More tips for boosting speed:
• Which is faster, Hibernate or Sleep?
• Test your Internet connection speed
• Don't forget to visit Kim's Performance Center
Every day, Team Komando produces some of the best content you'll find anywhere on the Internet. Here is a sampling of what's new on our site today!
• Are You A Winner?: Now you can be! Enter my Great Giveaway Sweepstakes every day for your big chance! We are giving away over 280 prizes totaling over $80,000 daily online and on-air. Today, enter to win Seagate's FreeAgent Go Portable Storage Solution ($180 value). Now you can carry your media on the slimmest external drive available today. Enter to win daily here.
• Video of the Day: Apple makes impressive products. But its fans are pretty obsessed. Both are ripe for satire. And the Simpsons deliver.
• Cool Site of the Day: Have some fun with your holiday greetings. All you have to do is Elf Yourself. This site is just too much fun!
• Digital Minute, on your radio: Teenagers can get into a lot of trouble with camera phones. So parents, tune in and heed my warning!
• Free Download of the Day: Printing documents isn't cheap. Ink and paper cost a lot. I've got some great ways to save.
• Tip on the site: Just like your attic, over time your PC fills with stuff. You'll eventually need to add some storage. I'll show you how.
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