?
Solved

What Kind of RAM Do I Have/Need ???

Posted on 2006-04-29
7
Medium Priority
?
415 Views
Last Modified: 2010-04-25
Okay, I apologize for this extemely newb question .... but how can I tell what kind of RAM I have in my computer, and what kind I need if I am to buy an upgrade/add additional RAM?  Is there a way to figure it out through some system tool?
0
Comment
Question by:tcraw1010
  • 4
  • 3
7 Comments
 
LVL 97

Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 16569536
Easiest, most reliable way, visit www.kingston.com or www.crucial.com and use their website tool to identify your computer and/or motherboard - then buy online (which will almost certainly be cheaper than buying in a store).  If you insist on buying in a store, print out the web page from those sites that indicates what memory you need.
0
 

Author Comment

by:tcraw1010
ID: 16569556
THANK YOU VERY MUCH ... I am going to give those tools a try right now.

Incidentally, I was planning on going to the Computer Fair (www.lacomputerfair.com) today to look for memory upgrades.
Not a good idea ??
0
 
LVL 97

Accepted Solution

by:
Lee W, MVP earned 200 total points
ID: 16569563
Fairs can be good, but they often have businesses of questionable integrity.  I'd suggest making sure you buy from a LOCAL vendor - someone with a store you can drive to near by.
0
VIDEO: THE CONCERTO CLOUD FOR HEALTHCARE

Modern healthcare requires a modern cloud. View this brief video to understand how the Concerto Cloud for Healthcare can help your organization.

 

Author Comment

by:tcraw1010
ID: 16569666
Okay ... I checked the Kingston site a- as well as found my original sales slip from DELL (I have a Dimension 8300).  It says my RAM is 1GB Dual Channel DDR SDRAM at 400MHz (2x512M).  Of course, this means I have two cards at 512 MB each.  

The Kingston site says I should be able to expansd up to 4GB.  However, it also talks about DDR333 or DDR400.  Is the number (333/400) the MHz ??  In other words, would I want to buy a DDR400 stick ???
0
 
LVL 97

Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 16569695
Yes, that relates to speed.  Since you already have 400 MHz, you want any new RAM you buy to be equal to 400 MHz or your existing RAM will fall back and operate at the lower speed.

Note: XP due to hardware limitations will NOT see 4 GB if you buy 4 GB.  You will typically see between 2.75 and 3.5 GB.  Again, this is because of hardware and NOT XP's fault.  Though to get XP to recognize more than 2 GB you do need to modify your boot.ini file.

Also, Since you have Dual Channel RAM, you want to buy new RAM in PAIRS - Dual Channel will run faster than single channel but requires IDENTICAL pairs of RAM.  Not ALL chips need be identical, but you have an identical set already - when you buy more, make sure you buy TWO new identical (to each other) sticks of RAM.  If you don't, your RAM will operate slower as it will no longer run in Dual Channel mode.
0
 

Author Comment

by:tcraw1010
ID: 16569713
Wow, I really appreciate this help, leew. (I wish I had given this question more point value for you).

So, I guess my plan will be to look for either two sticks at 512M or two sticks at 1G each .... which will bring my total to between 2G and 3G max.  (I have four slots available).  

So, if I understand you correctly, if I went the twp 1G sticks rooute, I would not have to tweak anything to get everything to operate properly?
0
 
LVL 97

Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 16569742
I'm not sure where the cutoff is - either 2GB or 3GB.  If your computer doesn't see more than 2GB AND you have more than 2GB, you would need to modify the boot.ini file with either a /PAE switch and/or a /3GB switch:
http://www.sysinternals.com/Information/bootini.html
0

Featured Post

Free Tool: Site Down Detector

Helpful to verify reports of your own downtime, or to double check a downed website you are trying to access.

One of a set of tools we are providing to everyone as a way of saying thank you for being a part of the community.

Question has a verified solution.

If you are experiencing a similar issue, please ask a related question

How can this article save you time AND money?  In just a few minutes you may discover something you didn't know existed that is easy enough for you to fix yourself!
I use more than 1 computer in my office for various reasons. Multiple keyboards and mice take up more than just extra space, they make working a little more complicated. Using one mouse and keyboard for all of my computers makes life easier. This co…
Finding and deleting duplicate (picture) files can be a time consuming task. My wife and I, our three kids and their families all share one dilemma: Managing our pictures. Between desktops, laptops, phones, tablets, and cameras; over the last decade…
Want to learn how to record your desktop screen without having to use an outside camera. Click on this video and learn how to use the cool google extension called "Screencastify"! Step 1: Open a new google tab Step 2: Go to the left hand upper corn…
Suggested Courses

809 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question