How Much Memory Do I Need?
By +Rod Bland
When it comes to deciding how much computer memory you need, the general rule of thumb is the more, the better. With more memory, you can keep more files and programs open at once without slowing down your computer.
On average, doubling the amount of memory in your system will make an obvious difference to overall speed and performance.
This is especially true with todays memory-hungry applications such as office programs, video, photo and music editing packages, computer games, and increasingly sophisticated anti-virus software. More memory allows you to run more applications at once, and makes using your favorite programs much more enjoyable.
Recommendations based on typical usage
|Typical Usage||Recommended Memory|
Internet browsing, e-mail, FaceBook and other social media
Internet browsing, email, FaceBook, word processing, watching movies, some music management, using multiple applications at once (multi-tasking).
Internet browsing, email, FaceBook, documents and spreadsheets, photo editing, video editing, graphics programs and gaming, music collection management, intensive multitasking.
Professional User/Gamer/Graphic Designer/Software Developer
High performance gaming, multimedia editing, high-definition video, software development, graphic design/3D modeling, intensive multitasking.
Note for Server Machines
Machines operating in a server environment have memory requirements that vary with both the application being hosted and the number of users consuming that application. This includes mail servers, web servers, file servers, and servers hosting multiple virtual machines on a platform like ESX Server.
For recommended system memory requirements, you should see the documentation provided by your application vendor.
Recommendations based on your Operating System
|Operating System||Minimum requirements||RamCity recommends..|
|Mac® OSX Leopard||1GB||2GB-4GB|
|Mac® OSX Snow Leopard||1GB||2GB-4GB|
|Mac® OSX Lion||2GB||8GB|
|Mac® OSX Mountain Lion||2GB||8GB|
|Microsoft Windows® 8 64-bit||2GB||4GB-8GB|
|Microsoft Windows® 8 32-bit||1GB||4GB|
|Microsoft Windows® 7 64-bit||2GB||4GB-8GB|
|Microsoft Windows® 7 32-bit||1GB||4GB|
|Microsoft Windows® Vista™ 64-bit||2GB||4GB-8GB|
|Microsoft Windows® Vista 32-bit||1GB||4GB|
|Microsoft Windows® XP® Professional||512MB||2GB-4GB|
|Windows XP Home||512MB||1GB-3GB|