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Old 05-14-2013, 09:44 PM   #21
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

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I completely disagree with this.

I will agree that the majority of average users will never come close to maxing out 8Gb RAM but there is still a huge amount of people that like myself which may be running applications, Visual Studio, Photoshop, SQL Server and a couple of web browsers which all together can add up to quite a lot of memory.

The machine i'm on at the minute has 10Gb RAM and to be honest if im doing anything database intensive then 6Gb of that is gone straight away.
Yeah, I didn't take into account the users who run memory intensive applications. Then again, out of all the computer users out there, how many of them run things like SQL, Visual Studio, databases and a few hypervisors? It's really a small percentage.

And yes, I have 16GB which I can max out easily.
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Old 05-14-2013, 10:12 PM   #22
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

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And yes, I have 16GB which I can max out easily.
How do you know when your ram is maxed out?
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Old 05-14-2013, 10:57 PM   #23
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

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Yeah, I didn't take into account the users who run memory intensive applications. Then again, out of all the computer users out there, how many of them run things like SQL, Visual Studio, databases and a few hypervisors? It's really a small percentage.

And yes, I have 16GB which I can max out easily.
The only person who would be running these programs would be someone managing a website or server of some sort.
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:08 PM   #24
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The only person who would be running these programs would be someone managing a website or server of some sort.
Not true. That's a standard load for me as a developer
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:43 PM   #25
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

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Not true. That's a standard load for me as a developer
Right, I was only guessing as there would be a lot more possibly.
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Old 05-15-2013, 03:58 AM   #26
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

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Not true. That's a standard load for me as a developer
Agreed, this is almost a minimum as a developer.
and not out of the question for someone exploring developing at home.
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Old 05-15-2013, 09:15 AM   #27
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

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How do you know when your ram is maxed out?
I run a copy of my forum on WAMP on my 16gig system for development purposes. It has the CMS, Blog, and Forum using a MySQL database. On my laptop with 6 gigs it lags just a bit. But on the desk system with 16 gigs it runs very smoothly. And allows me to poke around other programs and the internet looking for add ons for the forum. When doing the backup the whole thing goes to poop for a couple of minutes.

That's one way to see when you max out. The other is to check the memory usage in windows. The big one is when it crashes. But that's unlikely with the swapper enabled.
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Old 05-15-2013, 09:32 AM   #28
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

"When doing the backup the whole thing goes to poop for a couple of minutes.

That's one way to see when you max out. The other is to check the memory usage in windows. The big one is when it crashes."


Okay, so stressing it until it squeals like a pig might be one way of testing to see if you had "maxed-out" your ram. Does that impaired performance necessarily point to the ram? Or could it just as well be some other limiting factor? Geeks want to know.
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Old 05-15-2013, 01:53 PM   #29
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

Lets go back to the title of this post:

RAM: Can we put it to bed?

The answer, quite simply, is no. There are just too many variables and too many different situations that there isn't a one-size-fits-all answer. We can barely agree on a one-size-fits-most answer (6-8GB of RAM).

A bit longer answer says that if you want to know the amount of RAM to put into a comptuer you first have to decide what that computer is going to be doing and who will be using it and what software will be running on it.
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Old 05-15-2013, 02:22 PM   #30
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

Ok then revised answer. I agree with JM. Way too many variables to say one size fits all.
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Old 05-15-2013, 02:32 PM   #31
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

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How do you know when your ram is maxed out?
A sure fire way to know if you have maxed out your RAM is if your system starts swapping out parts of memory to disk. This will result in a very laggy system with lots of disk activity.

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Originally Posted by jmacavali
... A bit longer answer says that if you want to know the amount of RAM to put into a comptuer you first have to decide what that computer is going to be doing and who will be using it and what software will be running on it.
Precisely, but this also is gated by the hardware/software capabilities of your system since they represent a hard limit.
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Old 05-15-2013, 03:04 PM   #32
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

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Precisely, but this also is gated by the hardware/software capabilities of your system since they represent a hard limit.
Not necessarily. If I know I'm building a computer (or shopping for one) that is just for word processing and internet browsing, then I pick hardware to match. If I know I'm building a server that will run a SQL database access by 100's of users, then I pick hardware to match.

Of course those are the two extremes and there is a lot in-between there. Most notable, what if I want to browse and word process, but also like to take pics and want to edit them. Should I get 4gig or 6gig or 8gig and the whole debate starts again.
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Old 05-15-2013, 03:53 PM   #33
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

If you ever could put this subject to bed, technology would advance and you'd have the same debate again in a year.

As of right at this moment...
If you're just a regular user that does nothing more than browse the internet on Windows 7, 4GB will never be maxed out. At this moment all I'm running is Chrome on Win7 with TeamViewer, Skype, and Security Essentials running in the background and I'm only using 1.31GB of RAM out of 4GB. I'm streaming a video on Chrome on my HTPC without Skype running (with the other two) and it's at 1.13GB.

If you're a gamer, run lots of programs at once, or do stuff that uses a lot of resources then 8GB should probably be plenty.

Servers that are used by a lot of people are really the only thing that needs more than 8GB of RAM.
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Old 05-15-2013, 04:48 PM   #34
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

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Not necessarily. If I know I'm building a computer (or shopping for one) that is just for word processing and internet browsing, then I pick hardware to match. If I know I'm building a server that will run a SQL database access by 100's of users, then I pick hardware to match. ...
Yes, necessarily. By the fact that you choose the correct hardware when building a server vs when building a machine for a lesser use, you acknowledge the hardware limitation is there and that it would limit you otherwise.
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Old 05-15-2013, 05:17 PM   #35
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

"Yes, necessarily. By the fact that you choose the correct hardware when building a server vs when building a machine for a lesser use, you acknowledge the hardware limitation is there and that it would limit you otherwise."

I came here for knowledge based in science. And the statement above sounds more logic-based than anything else offered to me. It seems to assert that no software or user habits will somehow change the size of the hole in the funnel. Any software or user needs would be limited by the WinVer combined with the motherboard stated max. If the userís needs were greater, he'd be confined by the ram prescribed by those two things and only those two things. I fully understand that ISP service, room temperature, a million other things will affect performance. I'm only interested in the calculation of maximum usable ram given prescribed hardware as mentioned. This shouldn't have anything to do with opinions.
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Old 05-16-2013, 04:21 AM   #36
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

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Originally Posted by Jesusfrk611 View Post
If you ever could put this subject to bed, technology would advance and you'd have the same debate again in a year.

As of right at this moment...
If you're just a regular user that does nothing more than browse the internet on Windows 7, 4GB will never be maxed out. At this moment all I'm running is Chrome on Win7 with TeamViewer, Skype, and Security Essentials running in the background and I'm only using 1.31GB of RAM out of 4GB. I'm streaming a video on Chrome on my HTPC without Skype running (with the other two) and it's at 1.13GB.

If you're a gamer, run lots of programs at once, or do stuff that uses a lot of resources then 8GB should probably be plenty.

Servers that are used by a lot of people are really the only thing that needs more than 8GB of RAM.
Wrong lol.

I know this thread is going in circles and seems like it will never end but that's because people are trying to sum it up and you can't really.

"If you're a gamer, run lots of programs at once, or do stuff that uses a lot of resources then 8GB should probably be plenty."

Your putting way too much into a "group" here, as I said there are many people that use programs that are resourceful (like me) which would be happier with 12 or even 16Gb RAM.

I've got 10Gb in my machine at the minute and while it is rather fast most of the time there are times where I think I could do with another 4GB or so of RAM.

Let's try summing it up by saying "You should install as much RAM as you will use in your machine" . . . . . .

You can't put a figure to it.
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Old 05-16-2013, 10:02 AM   #37
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

"Let's try summing it up by saying "You should install as much RAM as you will use in your machine" . . . . . .

You can't put a figure to it."


Well-- that does it for me. No more going in circles. No more tying to solve the unsolvable. You simply cannot quantify the maximum usable ram even when given the mobo and winVer limits. So, can we all agree that we've put it to bed?
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Old 05-16-2013, 10:57 AM   #38
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

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Yes, necessarily. By the fact that you choose the correct hardware when building a server vs when building a machine for a lesser use, you acknowledge the hardware limitation is there and that it would limit you otherwise.
Ok....so you look at it from that end and I look at it from the other end, but we both meet in the middle and end up at the same result.


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Old 05-16-2013, 11:53 AM   #39
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

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Originally Posted by ProDrawerCom View Post
"Yes, necessarily. By the fact that you choose the correct hardware when building a server vs when building a machine for a lesser use, you acknowledge the hardware limitation is there and that it would limit you otherwise."

I came here for knowledge based in science. And the statement above sounds more logic-based than anything else offered to me. It seems to assert that no software or user habits will somehow change the size of the hole in the funnel. Any software or user needs would be limited by the WinVer combined with the motherboard stated max. If the user’s needs were greater, he'd be confined by the ram prescribed by those two things and only those two things. I fully understand that ISP service, room temperature, a million other things will affect performance. I'm only interested in the calculation of maximum usable ram given prescribed hardware as mentioned. This shouldn't have anything to do with opinions.
Our opinions are based on experience. Lots of hours building and or working on systems. Lots of trial and error leading to a working solution.
Let me expand on what I said before. Let's assume you already have a system and it's lagging somewhat. Where to start?
What OS is it?
32 or 64?
What are the specs on the CPU?
Can you overclock it?
What are the specs on the motherboard?
What is the FSB speed?
How much ram is the bios rated to handle?
What performance adjustments can be made from the bios?
What type of data connection for the hard and optical drives?
What type of hard drives? Mechanical or SSD?
How many drives?
Are the graphics internal or a PCI card?
If internal how much ram is shared?
If PCI how fast is the data transfer speed?
Are the motherboard drivers installed?
Are they current?
Is there a newer version of the bios that fixes bugs you may have experienced? (Flashing is not recommended for rookies. Botched and you'll have an expensive door prop.)
What type of ram is installed?
Have you stress tested the ram for faulty memory locations?

And the list goes on and on. That's just a small sample.
So if you'll stop with the wanting a cut and dried answer or formula for figuring out how much ram to install and pay attention to what we're telling you, you'll understand there isn't one.
How do you think software engineers come up with recommended hardware specs? Because they tested the software out on different hardware configurations. They don't have some scientific formula they use. They have beta testers. Folks that tell them what works and what don't. And they do cruise computer forums looking for data.
Oh and don't let the blue smoke out of the case. It's the magic that makes it all work...
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Old 05-16-2013, 09:45 PM   #40
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Default Re: RAM: Can we put it to bed?

Ok, here's my attempt at putting this topic to bed although I feel like it will go on forever.

You should at least get enough RAM to support the things you want to do on your computer. There's a reason you don't see any graphic designers using rigs with 1GB of RAM.

The maximum amount of RAM is determined by two things.

1) How much your current hardware will support.
2) How much RAM you are willing to buy.

So your hardware will support 32GB but your OS will only address 16GB? Go ahead and buy 32GB, install 16GB and put the other 16GB on the shelf. Since RAM prices are rising, this makes financial sense. If you change your OS to one that addresses 32GB, install the rest. You're not going to hurt anything by having more RAM than you will use. An new game comes out that requires more RAM, you're not running to the store to get more.

Basically, you have a foundation that will be in place as your needs change. I'm pretty sure there's a word for that.


If you're looking for a scientific answer to the RAM question, there isn't one. What might be enough RAM for one user is inadequate for the next.
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