How much memory or RAM should my computer have?

Updated: 04/26/2017 by Computer Hope

Computer memory aka RAMThis question depends on the type of computer user you are, what programs you plan on running on the computer, and how many programs you have open at a given time. A method of determining how much RAM you should have is to look at the system requirements of the programs you run on your computer and double the memory requirements. However, below is the general recommendation for the amount of memory we suggest that today's computers have.

Minimum: 2 GB
Recommended: 4-6 GB
Excellent: 8 GB or more.

If you are using an older computer, with an older version of an operating system, the minimum memory requirements can be a lot less. For example, users who are still running Microsoft Windows 98 can get away with 64 MB of memory since its requirements are only 24 MB.

Note: Keep in mind that a 32-bit version of any Microsoft Windows operating system only detects a maximum of 4 GB of total system memory. Upgrading to a 64-bit processor and a 64-bit version of Windows will increase your memory requirements, but it also allows your computer to recognize more memory.

What happens if my computer has less than 2 GB?

As long as you are using an older operating system as mentioned above, you can still get away with 2 GB or less of memory. However, running an older operating system can pose a security threat because older operating systems are no longer updated. If you are running a newer computer with 2 GB or less of memory, having that low of an amount of memory can cause the computer to run slow.