How much memory or RAM should my computer have?

Updated: 11/30/2020 by Computer Hope
Computer memory aka RAM

This question depends on what programs you run on the computer and how many windows and tabs are open at a time. A good idea is to look at the system requirements of the programs you run on your computer and double that number. However, below is the general recommendation for the amount of memory we suggest that today's (2019) computers have.

Minimum: 4 GB
Recommended: 8 GB
Excellent: 16 GB or more.

If you're using an older computer, with an older version of an operating system, the minimum memory requirements are 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.


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 increases 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.

Is having 32 GB or more of memory too much?

No. If the computer supports 32 GB or more of memory and it's in your budget add as much memory as you need.