RAM updates - I have not noticed any improvement
Thread poster: Thierry LOTTE

Thierry LOTTE  Identity Verified
Local time: 20:51
Member (2001)
English to French
+ ...
Feb 25, 2004

Hi dear colleagues!

I have a Pentium IV and I use to work with 4 or 5 softwares (I mean that I have 5/6 websites opened at the same time and listening to some good music on another one).
Of course, with my 256 Ko RAM it was sometimes running slowly.

A few days ago, I spent a fortune to add some more 256 Ko to my RAM.

Unfortunately, I have not noticed any improvement since I have a 512 Ko RAM.

This updating having been effected by a trained technician and the 256 Ko added being of the same type than the “original” ones, I am wondering if I missed something…


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Jerzy Czopik  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 20:51
Member (2003)
Polish to German
+ ...
DDR RAM is not much expensive Feb 25, 2004

So I suppose you work with RAMBUS, which is a misdevelopment in terms of prices. Even if offering faster and better performance it delivers not such a plus on performance, as it is expensiver than other RAM types.
512 MB DDR-RAM FSB 400 from Infineon cost approx. 75 EURO today, and inserting such a module is as easy as putting the SIM card into your mobile...
So it depends on the kind of RAM you have - but 512 MB isn´t that much...
I would possibly consider a new motherboard to be fitted with DDR-RAM.

Kind regards
Jerzy


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Giovanni Guarnieri MITI, MIL  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 19:51
Member (2004)
English to Italian
RAM isn't everything... Feb 25, 2004

you should consider upgrading your graphics card as well.

Giovanni


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Endre Both  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 20:51
Member (2002)
English to German
No huge change from 256 to 512 Feb 25, 2004

Thierry,

The change you've made is not one you would immediately notice in terms of hugely improved performance. You need to open a _lot_ of programs to consume over 256M, and if you don't, the rest is only available as a "cache" for large file transfers for example.

To verify that the 512M are in place and work, right-click on "My Computer" (the computer symbol) on the desktop, and choose "Properties". In the window that opens, you should see the amount of RAM recognised and used by the system.

To follow your computer's consumption of RAM, you can do the following if you have NT, Win2000 or XP: Press Ctrl, Shift and Esc simultaneously. In the window that opens, the Tab "System performance" displays the total amount of RAM in use.

Endre
EB Communications

____
Update:
Sorry to disagree with Giovanni, but graphics card performance is only a bottleneck if you use 3D applications like games or CAD. For everything else, in particular office applications like browsing and MS Office, I haven't seen graphics card performance have any impact whatsoever.

That said, I was surprised to see the huge difference between individual cards in terms of image crispness on analogue screens. For us sitting in front of the computer most of the day, it does pay to upgrade to either a good-quality analogue graphics card (e.g. Matrox) or a flat screen (TFT) together with a DVI graphics card (one that sends digital data to the screen instead of converting them to voltage signals that are reconverted with considerable loss by the screen).

[Edited at 2004-02-25 09:40]


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Jerzy Czopik  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 20:51
Member (2003)
Polish to German
+ ...
Fully agree with Endre on graphics card Feb 25, 2004

What I encountered, is a major quality loss after "upgrading" from a Radeon 7200 SE to NVidia FX 5200. Even if the new card might be faster, the delivered picture quality is much worser.

Comming back to your RAM problem: for achieving optimum performance with given RAM this solution is quite good: FreeMem http://www.meikel.com/en/P398DF4F7-2560-47AF-BB76-0E9046FF00E2.php3
It doesn't cost much, buch works very good. As any application - first of all Windows itself and Word - cosume a huge amount of RAM, which is not allways given free after closing them. This is what Freemem does - freeing up defined amount of RAM every set period of time and giving free memory if memory lack is occuring. This works.

If your PC is slow, check your HDD for fragmented files. Use a good defragmentation software, ie Diskkeeper. Delete all temporary files from the HDD. Check memory settings in BIOS - sometimes a more agressive setting does a wonder. Check if the installed memory is set to the proper frequency. Running a CPU with FSB 400 and memory with FSB 333 or other different settings causes big lacks in performance. It is better to work in synchoneous mode.
Check if your HDD is running in the fastest possible mode. This should be at least UDMA5 as for todays HDDs.
There are so many factors influencing the sepeed of a PC, that it is impossible to perform telediagnostics from here...

Kind regards
Jerzy


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Giovanni Guarnieri MITI, MIL  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 19:51
Member (2004)
English to Italian
Thierry doesn't specify the software being used... Feb 25, 2004

Endre Both wrote:
Update:
Sorry to disagree with Giovanni, but graphics card performance is only a bottleneck if you use 3D applications like games or CAD. For everything else, in particular office applications like browsing and MS Office, I haven't seen graphics card performance have any impact whatsoever.


Thierry could be using CAD or software requesting intensive use of graphics... we don't know that. In this case, the graphics card could be a "bottleneck", slowing down the system. It was a suggestion based on the lack of information.

[Edited at 2004-02-25 12:29]


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Hynek Palatin  Identity Verified
Czech Republic
Local time: 20:51
English to Czech
+ ...
"640K should be enough for everyone" Feb 25, 2004

I think 512 MB should be really enough, if you only browse the web, play music or work in MS Office. It sounds strange that the upgrade was expensive, maybe the technician was not cheap.

There are many things that affect the speed of the computer - see Jerzy's advice. Maybe your harddisk is slow and you should buy a faster one.

The software configuration is also important. What OS do you use? How long has it been installed? What other software is running? Some people install many useless programs which are being run at startup (are there too many icons in your taskbar?). And so on... If you really think your computer is too slow, maybe you should ask someone experienced to have a look at it.


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