How to Check How Much Ram You Have?

How to Check How Much Ram You Have – Getting Started

RAM (Random Access Memory) is the physical working memory used by computers. All open files, apps, and data are stored here for quick access.

RAM is quite different from ROM (Read-only memory) or what’s called the hard disk, but there is a correlation.

When you launch, an app its automatically moved from the ROM to RAM. As a result, the more RAM that your PC has, the more apps you can open at the same time.

If your PC doesn’t have enough RAM, the OS (operating system) will start to slow down. This is because the OS has to move data in and out of the page file on your PC’s storage.

Your PC might even start showing a low memory error if there isn’t adequate RAM. The power of RAM plays an especially vital role when it comes to gaming as some games may require up to 32GB of RAM.

So it’s vital that you know how to check the amount of RAM on your computer to determine if it can execute several tasks at the same time.

For instance, adequate RAM allows you to quickly switch between browser tabs because your PC’s storage keeps all the data you’re using in close proximity.

But, of course, the amount of RAM you need on your computer depends on what you’re working on.

Maybe your PC has been a bit laggy of late, and you’re wondering whether you can increase the RAM?

Of course, you can, but before doing this, maybe try and check the amount of RAM and see if it’s adequate. You can do this in a couple of clicks regardless of the OS you’re using.

The Process of Checking How Much RAM You Have On Your PC Is as Follows:

Windows OS

How Do You Check The RAM Spec?

  1. Start by clicking on the search bar, which is on the bottom left corner of your screen, and then key in ‘System Information.’
  2. A rundown of search results will appear on your screen; click on ‘System Information.’
How to Check How Much Ram You Have?
How to Check How Much Ram You Have?
  1. On the ‘System Information’ tab, scroll down to ‘Installed Physical Memory (RAM)’ to see the total amount of RAM on your computer.
How to Check How Much Ram You Have?
How to Check How Much Ram You Have?

How Do You Check the Available RAM?

  1. Click on the search bar, which is on the bottom left corner of your screen, and key in ‘Task Manager’ in the search box.
  2. Next, click ‘Open.’
How to Check How Much Ram You Have?
How to Check How Much Ram You Have?
  1. Then click on the ‘Performance’ tab. This tab is at the very top of the pop-up window right next to ‘Processes.’
How to Check How Much Ram You Have?
How to Check How Much Ram You Have?
  1. At this point, you’ll see the available RAM in the top-right corner of your screen. You can also see how much memory you’re using at the bottom of the window.
How to Check How Much Ram You Have?
How to Check How Much Ram You Have?

How Can Check for RAM Errors On Windows?

Are you experiencing random freezes or crashes on your computer? Then maybe you should assess the RAM to rule out any chance of hardware failure.

Fortunately, in Windows 7 and above, there is a memory diagnostics tool that’s easy to use. So, how does it work?

  1. Start by clicking on the ‘Start’ button on your PC.
  2. Next, enter ‘Windows Memory Diagnostics. A search result will appear; look for the diagnostic option and click on it.
How to Check How Much Ram You Have?
How to Check How Much Ram You Have?
  1. When the diagnostics tool launches, click on ‘Restart Now’ to check for problems. Your PC will restart in diagnostics settings.
How to Check How Much Ram You Have
How to Check How Much Ram You Have
  1. When your PC restarts, it will display a message telling you that your RAM has been checked for errors. If the tool finds an issue, you’ll need to replace the RAM instantly.
How to Check How Much Ram You Have
How to Check How Much Ram You Have

Mac OS

How Do You Check The RAM Spec?

It’s even easier to find out the RAM spec on a Mac device. In fact, a quick RAM check will indicate the total RAM, the RAM type, and the RAM speeds all in one place. To do this:

  1. Click on the Apple icon in the upper-left corner of your screen.
How to Check How Much Ram You Have?
How to Check How Much Ram You Have on Mac
  1. Next, click on ‘About This Mac.’

  1. A pop-up window will appear, and next to the memory tab, you’ll see your total RAM usage and the RAM’s specifications.

How Do You Check the Available RAM?

  1. Start by launching a ‘Finder Window.’ To do this, click on the half grey, half blue face icon in the dock. Or you can click on any empty space on your screen and press Command + N keys at the same time on your keyboard.
How to Check How Much Ram You Have?
How to Check How Much Ram You Have?
  1. Next, go to the ‘Applications’ folder. The apps folder can be found by clicking on ‘Applications’ on the left side of the ‘Finder Window.’ Also, you can press Command + Shift + A at the same time on your keyboard.

  1. You can also press Command + Shift + U on your keyboard to open the ‘Utilities’ folder. Once you do this no need to use the previous step.

  1. Next, open the ‘Activity’ monitor.

  1. Then, click the ‘Memory’ tab. This tab is at the top of your screen next to the CPU.
  2. Finally, on the bottom-center of your screen, you can see how much RAM is on your Mac device next to ‘Physical Memory.’ You can also see how much RAM you’re currently using next to ‘Memory Used.’

Chrome OS

How Do You Check the RAM Spec & Available RAM?

Chrome OS quite fortunately, has an area where you can check how much RAM is installed on your PC and the apps that are filling the RAM up. To check this out:

  1. Start by clicking on the Chrome OS launcher.
  2. Next open ‘Files.’ At this point, a pop-up window with your files will appear.

  1. Then click on the three dots in the upper-right corner of your screen.
  2. The ‘three dots’ should reveal a drop-down menu with more options. From the options shown, there is one of them showing the amount of RAM left on your PC.

  1. Next, click on the storage, and your Chromebook’s ‘Settings’ app will launch and take you directly to the ‘Storage Management’ segment.
How to Check How Much Ram You Have?
How to Check How Much Ram You Have on Chromebook
  1. At this point, you’ll see a total breakdown of the apps and processes occupying your Chromebook’s RAM. From browser extensions and browsing data to downloaded files and apps. This section also shows how much RAM you have left.

Linux

How Do You Check the RAM Spec & Available RAM?

Check RAM using Free

The most popular command used to check RAM on Linux devices is the ‘$ Free’ command. To open the ‘Free’ command, Press Ctrl + Alt + t and type in the following: ‘$ free.’

How to Check How Much Ram You Have?
How to Check How Much Ram You Have on Linux

As you can see, the memory is apportioned into two sets: the memory (the actual RAM) the swap (also known as the virtual memory).

The terms used might be hard to understand, so here are the details of the columns shown:

  1. Total: This is the total amount of RAM that’s installed in your device in KBs (Kilobytes)
  2. Used: This is the amount of RAM currently occupied on your device in KBs.
  3. Shared: This is the amount of RAM used by ‘tmpfs.’ Tmpfs is a virtual file system that appears to be installed, but it’s part of the volatile memory.
  4. Buffers: This is the RAM occupied by kernel buffers.
  5. Cache: This is the amount of RAM used by page cache where information might be stored initially before being copied to disk memory.
  6. Available: This is the amount of RAM currently available in KBs.

You can also use the ‘Free’ option to check available RAM in a human-friendly format. To open the human-friendly ‘Free’ command, Press Ctrl + Alt + t and type in the following: ‘$ free -h.’

As you can see, the figures are rounded, making them easier to read.

Check RAM using VMSTAT

Another superb way to check the installed and available RAM on your Linux machine is using the ‘vmstat’ command. To open the ‘vmstat‘ command, Press Ctrl + Alt + t and type in the following:  ‘$ vmstat.’

The terms used might be hard to understand, so here are the details of the columns shown:

  1. R: This is the number of executable processes on your PC.
  2. B: This is the number of processes in uninterruptible sleep on your PC.
  3. Swpd: This is the amount of RAM currently occupied by the OS.
  4. Free: This is the amount of RAM currently available.
  5. Buff, cache: This is the RAM occupied by kernel buffers and page caches.
  6. Inactive: This is the amount of active and inactive RAM on your PC.
  7. Si: This is the swap occupied from the disk memory.
  8. So: This is the swap memory swapped to the disk memory.

How Much RAM Do You Need On Your PC?

Most operating systems need at least 2 GB of RAM to run basic apps such as Mozilla Firefox (browser) and Adobe Reader (PDF viewer).

However, you need to have at least 4 GB of RAM if you want to open more than two tabs in these apps and have a lag-free experience.

If you’re a multitasker who uses a lot of RAM-intensive apps such as video editors, you’ll need about 8-16 GB of RAM.

Depending on the computer you’re using, you can increase or replace the RAM sticks when you feel like it.

However, the RAM is just one part of the equation; the rest of the hardware components in your computer and the operating system as well are built to handle a certain amount of RAM. So your computer’s speed doesn’t only depend on the RAM.

To get the best speeds from your PC, you need to get RAM sticks that match your computer’s specs.

In addition, the RAM sticks should be from the same manufacturer if your PC is to run without issues. Most PCs nowadays have dual-channel memory slots that allow you to have two or more RAM sticks installed at the same time.

How Can You Get More RAM On Your Computer?

After checking the RAM spec, were you shocked to find that you have insufficient RAM? Or maybe your work is using up almost all of the available RAM? In order to get more RAM on your PC and avoid disk usage problems, here are a couple of things you can try:

  1. Deactivate or uninstall some apps: if you have any apps, you don’t use, just know that they occupy your RAM. So deactivating or uninstalling them is a good and easy way to free up RAM. You can go to settings to deactivate or uninstall apps on your PC.
  2. Get new RAM sticks: Buying new RAM sticks isn’t the cheapest option but perhaps the most effective. Ensure the RAM sticks you buy match your PC’s spec sheet. Also, after you install the RAM, try stress-testing your PC to assess the stability of these modules.
  3. Disable startup items and background processes: Did you know that most apps on your PC launch upon startup and in the background even if you’re not using them? Disabling these apps from running in the background can help free up considerable RAM.
  4. Clean up your disk storage: disk storage and RAM storage are two diverse things. But, if your PC’s RAM is low at any given point, the operating system can’t hold all the active processes in the RAM, and it will be forced to move some of them to the disk storage.
  5. Schedule a PC maintenance: You can do away with RAM, and hard disk draining apps as well as optimize your PC with a PC cleaning tool. This can make a massive difference with regard to the amount of RAM available, thereby boosting performance.

Final Thought

To sum it all up, knowing how to check the amount of RAM in your PC, both available and usable, will come in handy if your computer has begun slowing down or experiencing errors.

Luckily, we have provided step-by-step processes on how to do this on all major operating systems. As you can see, we have also illustrated what you can do to get more RAM on your computer.

So follow the steps and check your RAM and then figure out how to move forward.

See Also

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