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How much memory do you need?

When it comes to adding system memory, the general rule of thumb is the more, the better.

On average, doubling the amount of memory in your system will give you ample "space" to work and will make an obvious difference in overall speed. This is especially with today's memory-hungry applications such as office programs, multimedia editing packages, and graphics-intensive games. More memory allows you to run more programs at once, and your favorite programs will be easier to use.
If this is what you do: Here's how much memory you need:
Casual User
Internet browsing, e-mail and listening to music
512MB-1GB
Frequent User
Internet browsing, email, word processing, simple graphics programs and flash games, music and watching videos, multitasking.
1GB-2GB
Power User/Student
Internet browsing, email, word processing, photo editing, video editing, graphics programs and gaming, intensive multitasking.
2GB-4GB*
Professional User/Gamer/Graphic Designer
High performance gaming, multimedia editing, high-definition video, graphics design/3D modeling, intensive multitasking.
4GB-8GB*

 

Operating System Memory Recommendations
Operating System Minimum requirements Crucial recommendations*
Microsoft Windows® Vista™ 64-bit 2GB 4GB-8GB
Microsoft Windows® Vista 32-bit 1GB 4GB
Microsoft Windows® XP® Professional 512MB 2GB-4GB
Windows XP Home 512MB 1GB-3GB
Windows 2000 512MB 1GB-4GB
Mac® OS X 512MB 2GB-4GB

 

* When 4GB of memory is installed in a 32-bit Windows system, it only utilizes 3GB or 3.5GB. In this case, some of the addressable memory is reserved for use by page files or by some of the devices that you are using, such as a graphics card, PCI card, or integrated network connections.

 

Design Software Memory Recommendations
Software title Minimum requirements Crucial recommendations
Adobe® Acrobat® 6.0 Standard 64MB 128MB
Macromedia® Studio MX™ 2004 256MB 512MB
Microsoft FrontPage® 2003 128MB 512MB
Adobe Illustrator® CS 128MB 512MB
Pinnacle® Studio™ Version 9 128MB 1GB-1.5GB
Adobe Photoshop® CS 128MB 1GB-1.5GB
Adobe Premiere® Pro 256MB 1GB +
Adobe After Effects® 6.0 128MB 1GB-1.5GB

Newsflash

Your most dangerous possession? Your smartphone

Forget what's in your wallet -- beware your smartphone. It's becoming one of your most dangerous possessions.

If your phone was stolen a few years ago, the thief could make prank calls and read your text messages. Today, that person can destroy your social life -- you said what on Facebook?! -- and wreak havoc on your finances.

Now that smartphones double as wallets and bank accounts -- allowing users to manage their finances, transfer money, make payments, deposit checks and swipe their phones as credit cards -- they are very lucrative scores for thieves. And with 30% of phone subscribers owning iPhones, BlackBerrys and Droids, there are a lot of people at risk.

Read More