Learn RAM Memory
Computer RAM vs. ROM Memory
By David A Patterson, published
published UC Berkeley
RAM (random access memory) is where programs
that are being used currently by the processor
to run the program are held. This clears when
you lose power or shut down the computer.
ROM (read only memory) is where all programs on
your computer are stored until needed. This is
the hard drive; items stay stored here until
you remove them. So when explaining the basics
of how this works, I use this simple example.
Think of the hard drive (ROM) as a file
cabinet. It contains all the programs your
computer needs to operate. The (RAM) can be
described as a desktop. The processor is the
worker. So when you open a program, you want to
work on .It moves from the filing cabinet, to
the desk .This is where all the work is
organized and used buy the “worker”. When work
on that program is done and you close the
program, it’s placed back, into the file
cabinet. The same happens when you shut down
But if you have a system “crash” or a power
failure while working on something, it’s lost.
I say it’s like a windows open and a strong
breeze blows everything off the desk before you
can put it away.
By this example you can see how a couple old
computer adages make sense. You can never have
too much storage or too much RAM. i.e.; big
filing cabinet and large desk. The amount of
RAM is one of, if not THE most important parts
of your system. RAM in the last couple of years
as gotten very inexpensive. So it makes adding
more to an older system a very good option to
breathe new life into it. The speed that
programs operate from this simple change will
make you think you have a new system.
There are several different types of RAM and
setups on different motherboards. Far more
types than I will get into, as this is meant as
a “non-technical” overview of RAM. You can
check your manual and or the computer maker to
find out what type of RAM you have.Alot depends
on the age of the computer. RAM is fairly easy
to install, but if that makes you feel
uncomfortable, a friend might help. If not it
doesn’t cost much to have a tech do it. If your
system is two or three years old or newer,
adding RAM is a good move. If your system is
older than that then it may be time to look
into getting a new system. So much has been
improved the last couple years in overall
system performance that you’d gain from getting
a new one. If you have a fairly new system and
are doing new things with it, like photo and
video work, maybe games. Then adding RAM, will
greatly improve, whatever it is you are doing.The
more RAM memory you have, the less frequently
the computer has to access instructions and
data from the more slowly accessed hard disk
form of memory.
Signs of low memory include poor performance,
low memory or out of memory notifications, and
display problems. For example, if you try to
open a menu in a program when your computer is
low on memory, the program might respond slowly
Why do low memory problems occur?
Your computer has two types of memory, random
access memory (RAM) and virtual memory. All
programs use RAM, but when there is not enough
RAM for the program you're trying to run,
Windows temporarily moves information that
would normally be stored in RAM to a file on
your hard disk called a paging file. The amount
of information that is temporarily stored in a
paging file is also referred to as virtual
memory. Using virtual memory—in other words,
moving information to and from the paging
file—frees up enough RAM for programs to run
Low memory problems occur when your computer
runs out of RAM and becomes low on virtual
memory. This can happen when you run more
programs than the RAM installed on the computer
is designed to support. Low memory problems can
also occur when a program does not free up
memory that it no longer needs. This problem is
called memory overuse or a memory leak.
Running fewer programs at one time can prevent
low memory problems and information loss. It's
a good idea to observe which programs show
signs of low memory conditions and try not to
run them at the same time.
Install more RAM
If you see signs of low memory determine which
type of RAM is compatible with your computer,
and then install more RAM. use crucial.com for
are essential to the way computers process
information. Many computer programs contain
algorithms that specify the specific
instructions a computer should perform (in a
specific order) to carry out a specified task.
To Free Up More RAM
Sysinfo Startup List Information
Startup Applications List
Some information for experienced users who would like to know some terms and definitions of various stuff that could show up in Windows start up.
A brand new computer with Windows usually
has many if not all of the start up items on
the list checked. Lots of programs are
running and you may not need them set that
way. I mean do you use all or your programs
at once? Hmmm .. Many programs checked use
up a whole bunch of RAM which can really slow down your
computer or notebook.
Beginners 50+ and other, have an experienced
user help you.
/ System Tools / Find System
This tells you lots of information on how computer
is working. When something does not seem
normal with your machine, this is the place
to look. Obviously a qualified technician is
required here to understand this stuff.
Beginners 50+ and others use mouse and feel
free to "look around" however please do
not make any changes.
RAM says 1024 GB of memory which is fine for
basic use. But if you use lots of programs at
once , you might want to increase and buy more
crucial.com is a highly recommended
site where you can have them read what kind of
memory and the amount you currently have and
then will provide you with a list of options
as to adding more memory and the maximum
amount of memory you computer can have. Some
System Information, uh Information.
OS Name Microsoft Windows XP Professional
OS Manufacturer Microsoft Corporation
System Model OptiPlex
Processor x86 Family 15 Model 4 Stepping 3
GenuineIntel ~2992 Mhz
Processor x86 Family 15 Model 4 Stepping 3
GenuineIntel ~2992 Mhz
Windows Directory C:\WINDOWS
System Directory C:\WINDOWS\system32
Boot Device \Device\HarddiskVolume2
Locale United States
Hardware Abstraction Layer
Time Zone Eastern Daylight Time
Total Physical Memory 1,024.00 MB
Available Physical Memory 464.43 MB
Total Virtual Memory 2.00 GB
Available Virtual Memory 1.95 GB
Page File Space
The more RAM memory you have, the less
frequently the computer has to access
instructions and data from the more slowly
accessed hard disk form of memory.
Microsoft Improve Performance
Vista System Defender:
Start / Control Panel /
System and Maintenance / and click
Performance Information Tools. To disable
these programs from startup and improve
performance, use Windows Defender. For more
information, see Stop a program from running
automatically when Windows starts.
XP Manage Startup Programs:
Some programs start themselves automatically
when you start Windows. Too many of these
programs opening at the same time can slow
down your computer.
Start / Run / type msconfig uncheck all
unnecessary start up programs.
Accessories / System Tools / Find System
FYI - 50+ or other beginners will
probably need help on FYI stuff.
Lockups or Freezeups
Have you been on Windows and all of sudden
everything freezes? Sometimes programs might
not respond or maybe Windows is exhausted,
possibly because you are doing too many tasks
too quickly or other reasons. Happens to us
because we can be impatient or are using a
computer that has limited RAM.
Press Crtl + Alt
+ Del . A close program box appears.
Programs and background tasks in memory are
displayed. Programs or tasks that say (not
responding) after the listing have stopped
working. Click each one not responding and
another box shows up. Depending on Windows
version hit a button that says "Close Program"
or maybe reads "End Task." If there is more
than one, then repeat the same process for each