Need advice on upgrading Desktop RAM from 3 GB to 8 GB

I need an advice on upgrading my Desktop RAM. Will it help to increase performance by upgrading RAM from 3 GB to 8 GB?

It's HP Pavilion Elite m9000t desktop.
Current configuration: Intel Core 2 Duo processor E6550 (2.33GHz), Vista Premium 32 bit (I will upgrade it to 64 bit to take advantage of added memory), 512MB NVIDIA GeForce 8500GT/GS video card.

There are 4 memory slots available. Memory type: 240 Pin  DDR2-667 PC2-5300  or DDR2-800 PC2-6400
So, if I buy 4 memories of 2 GB each i.e. 8 GB memory, it will cost me approx. $140 which is okay to me. I will upgrade to 64 bit Windows Vista/7 (It's free to me).
 But, the question is, is it going to help the desktop performance.
(I am software developer and I need to run few in-house applications for my own purpose and the desktop will act as a Server as well as Client. I am still developing those applications. So, I don't know how they will behave.)

Thank you in advance
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I'm a web app developer and in my experience added RAM always helps. As long as the machine and OS can support that much.
As I work with programmers myself memory and cpu are important especially for development.
The more you have of it the more you can multitask. Like you said you will need a 64 bit OS. Also remember your applications have to be written for 64 bit or they will not take use of the extra memory you have vested in. You also can run your 32 bit applications on a 64 bit bit system but it will not take use of the extra memory. Please keep this in mind in your investment.
egatwoIT AdminCommented:
It probably will help you because your first code tests will likely use more resources than necessary, and you will have them.  As you add more RAM, you get to a "sweet spot" where the returns of more RAM start diminishing.  Not sure where it will be with 64 bit 7 yet, but I am thinking it is going to be 4GB for a typical installation and a typical user..  With XP it is right about 512mb for most configurations and typical users. Going over that for most users while yielding better results doesn't usually result in as great a return as the last incrementall increase in RAM did, like in XP from 256 to 512, ffor instance.

But you are obviously not going to be a typical user.  Your first crack at the application you are wirting is likely to be less than perfect in its efficency.  I think because the RAM is cheap, 8 is good but not a whole lot better than what 4 will be, and you should optimize your code so it works well with as little as 2GB anyway.

So your specific scenario:  You will see more inrcrease in performance from the 4th Gb than you do from the 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th, probably put together, even. In other words, the increase in performance going to 4GB will be more noticeable than adding yet another 4 after that.
Gary CaseRetiredCommented:
There are two issues to keep in mind when doing this upgrade ...

(1)  With unbuffered RAM, installing more than two double-sided modules will put a significant load on the address and data buses;  and can result in unstable memory operation.    Most BIOS routines will automatically slow down the access speed;  add a cycle to the latency;  or both in an attempt to compensate for this added bus loading.      I'd recommend you first try installing two 2GB modules (total of 4GB) and see if you're happy with that level of performance.

(2)  Your system supports dual channel operation -- so you'll get the best memory performance if you install memory in matched pairs.    I'd install a single pair of 2GB modules (as I suggested above)  ==> this will give you 4GB operating in dual channel mode, which will be a very reliable memory subsystem and operate  in the optimal dual channel mode.

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Kent WSr. Network / Systems AdminCommented:
All your apps to NOT need to be written for 64 bit if you run 64 bit WinXX.  Your max RAM will be 4G unless you have a 64 bit Win OS, though.  Any 32 bit apps are installed in 32bit jail (x86)l, and you don't get full advantage of the 64 bit architecture, but they still run just fine.  I've been running 64 bit XP and Win7 with mostly 32 bit apps, I have yet to have an issue, and with a time frame measured in years (for XP, anyway, about a year with Win7)
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