It is quick and easy to check RAM on Windows 10, which can also help diagnose why your computer isn’t running properly. Understanding how much RAM you have and how it is being used greatly impacts your experience.
There are several different ways to check how much RAM you have and its usage on Windows 10, but the easiest is through the Windows task manager.
The Windows task manager is a Control Center that can help you see how various components of your computer are running. The most common use of the task manager is to shut down unresponsive programs. However, it is an invaluable tool that can help you understand how various programs impact the way the computer runs.
Step1: Go to Desktop
The first thing you need to do to check your RAM is to turn on your computer. You don’t need to close out any programs, but saving anything you’re working on is a good idea. Also, if you want to find out what program is using a lot of RAM, you can leave it open alongside the task manager to help diagnose the problem.
Step 2: Open Task Manager
The easiest way to open task manager is by pressing Ctrl, Shift, Esc. The task manager should automatically open. If your computer is unresponsive and it doesn’t open the task manager, you can also press Ctrl, Alt, Del, which will bring you to security options where there is a choice to open the task manager. You can also search for task manager in the start menu if you forget the keyboard shortcuts.
Step 3: Expand the Task Manager
The first time you use task manager, it will only show the programs you currently have open. You need to select More Details in the bottom left corner. Clicking it will open a detailed view of all the processes currently running on your computer.
Notice the Memory column, which indicates RAM usage. You can sort by clicking on the column label at the top. This is the best way to see which program is using RAM.
Step 4: Go to Performance
Now that you are in the task manager go to the Performance tab on the top bar. This will bring up a graph with a column of options to monitor various aspects of your computer in real-time. You need to look for Memory on the left side.
Underneath the word is your current usage and total RAM available. You can click it to open up a more detailed view of your RAM type and usage.
Alternative Method for Checking RAM
While the task manager will give you the most details about your RAM usage, if you don’t need to know about it, go to About Your PC. The easiest way to get to your computer’s information is by searching About Your PC in the start menu. Click on the application with the same name to open the About page.
The About page is the same as System Information on older Windows operating systems and allows you to check RAM. The system’s Ram will be listed as Installed RAM and will not list usage.
However, you can find plenty of information about the components of your computer. This is a great way to see your full system specifications if you bought a pre-built PC.
What is RAM Used for?
RAM, or Random Access Memory, is designed to hold information to be sent to the processor. It allows for faster processing of information by keeping certain data quickly accessible. Browsing the internet, playing a game, or using a program all require RAM in order to create a seamless experience for the user.
In contrast, storage memory, such as hard drives and solid-state drives, holds information for long-term storage. These are typically files or programs that the computer stores until the user needs them. Once a file is needed, the hard drive loads it into the RAM for faster access. Simply put, RAM aids your computer in operating quickly.
Moreso, RAM does not store any information long-term. When a program is in use, it is loaded into the RAM for quick access, and once closed, the information is dumped. This makes room to load the next task.
Problems arise when there is not enough RAM for what the user is trying to run. For instance, certain programs are very memory intensive, but multitasking can also be very demanding as well.
If you’ve noticed that your computer has gotten a bit sluggish, then it might be time to upgrade the RAM. Upgrading RAM is a great way to prolong the useful life of a computer. Unfortunately, it is common to buy a computer that meets your needs, and suddenly a new software or game comes out that requires more memory.
While many computer components cannot be replaced today, RAM remains easily replaceable in many machines. However, you should consult with your manufacturer’s instructions before making any changes. In addition, you should first check whether your computer is sealed or easily serviceable.
Many new computers are not designed to be disassembled by the consumer, and doing so could actually break it. Likewise, many manufacturers are opting to build components into the motherboard, effectively making them unserviceable.
However, many laptops and desktops can still have their RAM replaced, and the process of doing so should be explained in the service manual.
Checking RAM is a great way to see how your computer is running and what could be slowing it down. RAM is one of, if not the most critical, parts of any computer, as it can greatly impact efficiency. Fortunately, it is pretty easy to improve speeds by taking some minor steps, such as restarting your computer to clean out its cache.
Worst case scenario, RAM on most computers is easily upgradeable and can be done in only a few minutes. It is also pretty universal and affordable, so you can easily find the right kind at a local store without having to worry too much about compatibility.
Of course, if you don’t feel comfortable doing it yourself, you can always take it to a repair center to have the RAM installed by a professional.
Check out the video below for a quick walk through of both methods for checking the RAM on your PC.
The image featured at the top of this post is ©Wachiwit/Shutterstock.com.