Your computer uses RAM (random-access memory) for quick, short-term storage. Programs store their instructions in RAM when they run, so RAM determines how many programs you can open at once, the size of the files you can open in programs, and, to some extent, how fast a program executes its instructions. It takes very little time to figure out how much RAM you have in your computer.
- Skill level:
Things you need
Start your computer and locate the My Computer icon.
Right-click the My Computer icon, and select Properties from the menu that appears.
Look under the General tab where it gives you information about the size of the hard drive and what operating system you use to find the amount of RAM in megabytes (MB) or Gigabytes (GB).
Tips and warnings
- Depending on how the manufacturer of your computer has customized Windows, you might be able to read the amount of RAM your machine has as Windows loads.
- You might need more RAM if you can't open a program because of insufficient memory or if it runs very slowly; if you can't open as many programs at once as you want; if programs refuse to open very large files (such as graphics or video files) or slow down with large files; or if programs slow down when you have many of them open. Check the specifications that came with your PC to see if and how RAM can be added.