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Will adding more RAM make my computer faster?

Answer: Probably. Adding RAM to your computer may improve its overall performance. It won't make the CPU run faster, but it can eliminate bottlenecks and help your computer run more efficiently. The result is a "faster" computer.

When your computer boots up, it loads the operating system into RAM (or system memory). Each time you open an application, the computer loads more data into RAM. When your RAM usage nears capacity, the operating system begins to limit how much RAM each program can use. It may also start "swapping" data from RAM to virtual memory. Both of these actions can negatively impact your computer's performance.

If you frequently use more than 50% of your computer's available RAM, adding more memory can make your computer run faster. It won't speed up the actual processing done by the CPU, but it will prevent memory swapping, which provides a noticeable performance boost. It also allows the OS and apps to be more liberal in their RAM usage, which can help them run faster.

Adding RAM to a laptop

For example, if your laptop has 16 GB of RAM and almost always uses more than 8 GB, memory constraints may be affecting its performance. If the laptop has a memory expansion slot, you can add another 16 GB (SO_DIMM|sodimm) to double your total memory to 32 GB.

▶ Doubling your memory provides more than twice as much free memory since the operating system always uses a certain amount.

If your PC rarely uses more than 50% of the available memory, adding more RAM will probably not provide a noticeable performance improvement.

Entered: August 21, 2021 – by Per Christensson

Category: Hardware

Answer from the PC Help Center