A computer's speed and performance highly depends on the available computer memory. If you are using a lot of software and are saving a lot of files on your hard disk, some of the processes may slow down. You may either upgrade your RAM (random access memory) or add more memory if your hardware allows for an additional memory chip. The procedures for installing memory are generally the same for desktops and laptops, but the memory chip is different for desktop memory and laptop memory.
- Before you buy a memory chip, find out which kind of memory module is compatible with your desktop or laptop. The most frequently used types of memory in the market are the DDR or DDR2. It is best to choose a memory module or chip that is manufactured by the same company as that of your existing memory chip. Having different manufactured memory modules may pose some problems later on.
- Check your computer to see if it has an extra memory slot, and for laptops, if the notebook memory can be upgraded at all. You can find out by opening your CPU, or your laptop. If there is an extra memory slot, you can purchase another memory module and install this in your desktop or laptop. If all the memory slots are filled, you can replace the existing computer memory with new ones that have higher capacity.
- Also check how much capacity your desktop or laptop computer can accommodate. There is a limit for different models of desktops and laptops. You cannot install more than its maximum capacity, for example, a 512 MB notebook cannot accommodate a 1 GB memory module.
- When replacing memory chips, take out the one with a smaller capacity and replace it with your new module. Before replacing the modules, make sure you have backed up all your existing files.
- When upgrading your computer memory, take safety precautions. Make sure the computer is turned off before disconnecting all the cables and opening the CPU. It is good to wear an anti-static wrist strap to avoid experiencing grounding.
- Once the CPU is opened, you will be able to locate the memory slot. Install the new memory chip, making sure that it is in the right orientation.
- Once installed, turn on the computer. It will automatically detect how much memory is installed, so you can verify if it is correct. If the computer does not turn on, or there is an unusual beeping sound, or the amount of memory is not correct, then disconnect the computer from the power source, and open up the CPU again. Check if the memory chips were placed correctly.
- If the computer works properly after installing the new memory modules, replace the CPU cover, then you can start using your computer and enjoy faster performance.
Procedures for replacing or adding memory chips for laptops is similar, but the opening for the memory slot is at the back of the laptop.