How Do I Check My Laptops RAM/Memory (Windows or Mac)

When buying a laptop, one of the things that we often forget about is the specs. In most cases, as long as the laptop looks good and comes from a good brand, the laptop is already good enough for most people. RAM is an important component to consider because if you notice slowness or performance issues in your apps or laptop then its an important part to investigate. In case you don’t have the list of specs with you, how do you check a laptop’s RAM?

You can check your laptop’s RAM by using the task manager and going to the performance tab to see the available memory. But the best way to check your laptop’s memory along with its other specs is to go to Control Panel, System and Security, and then System, which should show your laptop’s RAM.

It might be true that the processor and other specs are important but you should also know that the RAM is just as important as well because of how it allows your laptop to function more fluidly. As such, you need to know what the purpose of the RAM is and how to check how much RAM your laptop has for you to have a better appreciation of the specs of your machine.

Check Windows Laptop RAM

There are two ways to check how much RAM your computer has. The Task manager method will show you how much RAM your computer has but it will also show you more information about your RAM such as amout used, amount available, speed and much more. The System Information route will only show how much RAM your laptop has.

Check RAM Through Task manager

Using the task manager can be a good way to check the RAM as well as how much RAM the laptop is using.

  1. Open your task manager by pressing CTRL, ALT, and ESC at the same time.
  2. A program called task manager will be opened. Click “More details” on the bottom.
  3. Click on the Performance tab.
  4. Press on the Performance tab and you will be able to see a graph of your laptop’s memory usage.
  5. Just opposite of the Memory, you will see a number that corresponds to how much RAM the laptop has.

Check RAM Through System information

Using your laptop’s System information is also a good way to check its RAM and its specs.

  1. Open the Start menu and select Control Panel.
  2. Once you are now in the Control Panel, choose System and Security.
  3. In the System and Security options, look for System. You will be taken to your laptop’s System information.
  4. On the System page, you will be able to see the laptop’s specs right near the bottom of the page. Look for Installed Memory (RAM) to see how much RAM your computer has.

Check Mac Laptop RAM

As such, if you are already more informed about your laptop’s specs, here are the simplest ways to check how much RAM your laptop has:

  1. Click on the Apple icon on the top right of your screen
  2. Click “About this Mac from the drop down” menu
  3. Look at the “Memory” on the about screen that pops up. The “Memory” is another name for the RAM

What’s the purpose of RAM?

When you’re out shopping for a laptop, it’s easy to get lost in the different brands and laptop models that the various laptop manufacturers sell. Laptop shopping is supposed to be easy and convenient because all you need to do is choose a laptop model that you like, pay for it, and then bring it home.

So, if you want to be a more informed laptop buyer, it is important to know more about what the different parts of a laptop do so that you will be able to understand whether or not a certain laptop is the right one for you. Of course, one of the specs that you need to understand is the RAM.

RAM stands for random access memory but it is also called memory. Now, because it’s a memory component of a computer, it kind of acts like a certain portion of a person’s brain in that this component is used to store information.

However, the difference between the RAM and the storage drive (HDD or SSD) is that the RAM is only temporary storage for apps and programs. For example, if you are opening your Google Chrome program, it will need to take up space in the RAM for it to function well.

Think of it as your brain’s short-term memory. The brain’s short-term memory acts as temporary storage for things that you will only be using temporarily. As you are reading some of the words in this article, they are kept in your brain’s short-term memory so that you will be able to understand the gist of the article and what we are trying to say. However, these words won’t be stored there for a long time as you will probably forget these exact words you are reading when you have already understood this article.

In the same way, when you are performing different tasks right now such as when you are reading this article but also watching a show on Netflix, your short-term memory would have to work more because of how more and more temporary information needs to be stored in your brain for you to understand what’s happening.

The RAM acts in a similar way in the sense that every information that an app or program needs takes up space in the RAM for the app or program to work. But these files will be lost the moment you close the apps and programs that make use of these temporary files that take up space in the RAM. Of course, the more apps or programs that are open, the more space is needed in the RAM.

As such, knowing how much RAM you have is important because having more RAM in your laptop means that you will be able to open more apps and programs all at the same time since your laptop’s memory can handle all of the temporary information.

How much RAM should a laptop have?

The minimum amount of RAM you want on a laptop can vary depending on the task you do. A laptop with 4 GB of RAM is a good option if you do not use too many apps at once and if the apps that you use aren’t very taxing on your computer like video editing or gaming. For someone who does more taxing task on their laptop, such as video editing or gaming, will want at least 8 GB of RAM.

In most cases, laptops that are used for simple business purposes and by people who only use them for opening word and excel files or for surfing the internet don’t even need a ton of RAM. That’s because simple functions like word processing and internet surfing don’t take up a ton of RAM space.

Meanwhile, for those who use laptops for intensive functions such as editing media files (videos and photos) or for gaming, that is when 8 GB of RAM should be the minimum. But there are those who might find 8 GB too low for their needs especially if they prefer to multitask and do a lot of different intensive tasks all at the same time. That’s why it isn’t rare for someone to want to use a laptop with about 16 GB of RAM.

To be on the safe side, the magic number should be 8 GB of RAM. This should be enough for your needs regardless of what you want to use your laptop for.

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