General Thoughts

  My computer is slow but I don't know anything about computer.

  If you’re a woodworker your smart enough to replace your RAM in your computer.

I recently updated the RAM in my desk and laptop. The increase in speed was amazing. Since I really don’t know much about computers, I thought I’d take it to the locale store to have them install it. When I discovered they wanted hundreds of dollars, I thought I’d do some research online. It turns out it very easy to do and I mean easy.

The first thing I learned was the different between memory and RAM. When I was told I needed more RAM I didn't understand because my computer showed it had a lot of space available. I located the below analogy that easily explained why I needed to increase the RAM.

The analogy is about a desk, filing cabinet and you.

The worker (you) = The computer Processor
Nothing could be done with you to do the work. Everything else in your office is there to assist you. The same goes for your computer; without the processor, nothing gets done. All of the other components are worthless without the processor.

The Desktop = Computer RAM
Let’s assume that at the beginning of the day your desk is clean and clear of all paperwork. There is nothing on the desk at all. RAM is the same way. It is empty until you start to work on something. Now If your desk top is small it easy to work on one or two things but if you have a large project or you want to work on a bunch of different things at once you’re going to have a problem. Your desk is going to get cluttered and you won’t be able to find the items you need so your work will start to slow down. You computer works the same way. The larger the RAM the easier it will be for your computer to work on more things at once.

Filing Cabinet = Hard Drive
You store things in your filing cabinet. You don’t do the work in the filing cabinet instead you remove the item and put them on the desk. Your computer hard drive is the same way; it stores things until you need them. When you go to use something you remove it from the filing cabinet (hard drive) and use it on your desk (RAM).

So the information stored on a hard disk remains intact even when the computer is turned off. However, any data on the RAM memory is lost when the computer is turned off.
In the old days when you were told to save everything because your computer might go down and you would lose your information. When you store an item it will go to the hard drive. As you work on the item, you work with it on the RAM but the RAM doesn't store anything so anything you added to your item that wasn't saved to the hard drive will be lost when your computer crashed.

The amount of RAM is one of, if not THE most important parts of your system. RAM. So it makes adding more to an older system a very good option to breathe new life into it. The speed that programs operate from this simple change will make you think you have a new system.

The first step is to go to the website Their website has a Crucial System Scanner Tool. It will scan your computer and tell you how much RAM you currently have installed and the maximum amount of RAM your computer can handle. It will then tell you exactly, which RAM you need for what ever type of computer you have.

Note - RAM is installed differently on different computers but I have always been able to search the Internet and locate a video that shows me exactly how to install the RAM on the computer I'm looking for.  I've done this on several Dells, a Sony and HP.


  The last two things I wanted to mention are:  Disk Cleanup and Disk Defragmenter

These two items are usually listed under the System Tools

The Disk Defragmenter – Let say your in a hurry to get some work done so instead of filing everything neatly away you just toss it back, anywhere,  in the filing cabinet. This is how the hard drive works. As it stores files it simply places them wherever there's an open spot. If you did this, after awhile it would take longer and longer to find the file you want? The same is true for you computer.  So once in awhile it’s a good idea to straighten up the files and put them back where they belong. This is where the Disk Defragmenter comes in. The computer will do the work you only need to locate the Disk Defragmenter button.

Disk Cleanup – You can think of this as using post-it notes to help you work. The computer does the same thing except they are called temporary files. Once you’re done working on something, they are no longer needed and can be discarded to clear the area. Again this is a method of helping your computer clean and clear things up.


This certainly doesn't cover much about computer but I hope it help you feel a little less computer illiterate.