There are times when we need to know how much RAM do we have on the computer. Whether to check if our computer will run a certain program or find out if it requires additional RAM to speed up the process.
A database program will need more memory than other programs. A spreadsheet with huge data also needs more RAM. A graphic design program will need more memory, main processor and GPU processor.
Without knowing current installed memory capacity we don’t know if it needs to upgrade or not.
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What is RAM?
RAM ( Random Access Memory) is a non-volatile (temporary) storage inside your computer. When a program running on a computer, mostly run in the RAM while the files still reside in the Harddrive.
When a computer turned off all information in the RAM is gone, while the information in the hard drive still exist and ready to be executed when the computer turned on later.
The common size of RAM in a computer today are 4GB, 8GB, 16GB, 32GB and so on. The bigger the RAM we have to more the more program we can run simultanously or teh process become faster.
When you running a program and it run slower than usual you may want to check the RAM size and its utilization in the system, it may need to be upgraded to a bigger RAM size to make the program run faster. When your computer need more memory (RAM) it will store part of the data to and from Hard drive ( which is slower).
I have 16GB memory but only detected less than 4GB RAM?
This is what happened with your system …On 32-bit Operating System version, the maximum detected RAM is 4GB, it cannot read more than that. So if you have more than 4GB RAM you need to use 64bit Operating System like Windows 10.
To check that you have more memory than reported by the system, first, you need to check the RAM size from BIOS, it runs before the operating system (Windows).
There are several ways you can find out how much memory installed in the computer. The one I like is using WMIC command.
1. Using task manager
Above is the screenshot of RAM utilization in my computer. To run above program, from Windows 10 you can right-click the taskbar, click Task Manager.
As you can see I have 6GB of RAM. Yes I have 4GB and 2GB or RAM. Most of the time my RAM utilization is 79%. So it seems that I need to buy more RAM for my memory, 16GB will be enough for me 🙂
The task manager also reporting 17% processor utilization, which is okay and 2% of HDD activity, this is also good.
2. Using WMIC commands
From command prompt type wmic memorychip get banklabel,devicelocator,capacity,speed
With this command, you can get very specific information like how many BANK used by your memory, how much the capacity and what speed the RAM is.
On the example above my laptop has 2 slots, 1 slot is filled by 4GB or RAM the speed is 1333Mhz.
The second slot is 2GB RAM with the same speed 1333Mhz.
If I want to upgrade it to 16GB then the composition could 1x 16 RAM on slot 1 or 2x 8GB RAM on slot 1 and slot 2.
3. Using System From Control Panel
This is the easiest way, you just need to open control panel (type control panel on serach bar) and click system. On the system you can see that I have 6GB of memory, it doesn’t give detail as with WMIC command above.
4. Using Systeminfo Command
Systeminfo can have 2 mode, GUI and command prompt. When you type Systeminfo and press Enter key from Serach bar, it will show up Systeminfo in GUI mode (Graphic mode).
When you type cmd on the search bar, then type Systeminfo from command prompt it will show up the information, you need to scroll down until find the Total Physical Memory line, that is the total memory detected by the Windows.
Systeminfo will give more than memory information, it will include OS, model, install date. However if you want to get only memory capacity but not other information use this command:
systeminfo | findstr /C:”Total Physical Memory
We have several ways to check how much RAM do we have:
1. Task Bar
2. Using WMIC command
3. System on control panel
4. Using Systeminfo command, graphics mode and text mode.
From above options my favourite is using WMIC command as it give mode details of RAM size, physical capacity of each RAM module, and Speed of the memory. This will give more clear specification without have to open the computer case.