How to know when you need a memory upgrade

Since your computer uses memory to perform almost all of its operations, it's important to make sure it's equipped with enough memory. Here are several events that often require a memory upgrade, followed by a list of symptoms that indicate the need for a memory upgrade.

Upgrade your memory ...

  1. Before upgrading your operating system.
  2. Your computer's operating system (OS) has a significant impact on overall performance, and typically, a newer version of an OS demands more memory that its predecessor. Adding more memory when you upgrade your OS ensures a smoother transition, prevents potential problems, and optimizes the performance of your system.

  3. Before installing new software or hardware.
  4. New software often requires more memory than its predecessors, particularly productivity applications, photo-enhancing software, video editing programs, and the latest games. Similar to software, new hardware components, such as video cards or hard drives, require sufficient memory in order to deliver their promised level of performance. To make sure your system has enough memory, check all minimum hardware memory requirements, and consider adding more.

  5. Before networking a computer.
  6. To get the most from any distributed network model, each individual system should have the same amount of memory as other systems on the network. You can breathe new life into aging systems with a simple memory upgrade.

  7. After purchasing a new system.
  8. Many systems ship with minimal amounts of memory, which helps the manufacturer control costs. Before paying a higher price for a computer with more pre-installed RAM, check the price of a Crucial memory upgrade. We bet we'll be able to save you money!


Symptoms of memory deficiency

Similar to how certain events call for a memory upgrade, your computer's everyday performance will make any memory deficiencies apparent. Here are a few easy-to-recognize signs that your computer may be in need of a memory upgrade.

  • You try to boot your computer and it takes a long time to load.
  • You experience poor performance in everyday tasks. Programs either don't respond or take longer than usual to load.
  • You try to multitask and toggle between multiple programs, and your system slows to a crawl.
  • You receive notifications that say "low memory" or "out of memory."
  • You experience display problems. When you try to access a webpage, it either partially loads — if it loads at all. You occasionally see a blank space where data is supposed to be.
  • You try to load a program and your system freezes.
  • In some cases, your computer refuses to operate at all. When you try to open a file or program, your system doesn't respond.
  • You try to perform everyday tasks and your computer just isn't running quite the way it used to.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, we strongly recommend upgrading your system's memory. In just a few clicks, you can use our advanced System Scanner or Crucial Advisor™ tool to find compatible memory for your computer. With more than 250,000 upgrades available for over 50,000 systems, we'll identify compatible upgrades for your system.


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