How to Install RAM

How to Install RAM. If your computer slows down when you're working with large files or many programs at once, you might be able to improve performance by installing extra RAM (Random Access Memory - your computer's temporary operating memory). These instructions will work for the majority of machines built in the mid 1990s and later.

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Install RAM

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Determine what kind of RAM you need, and whether your computer has enough open slots to hold it. The new RAM should match the existing RAM's specifications and configuration.

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Shut down the computer and leave it plugged into the surge suppressor.

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Disconnect all peripheral devices, such as the monitor, from the computer.

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Remove the computer cover.

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Ground yourself to the computer with professional grounding equipment like an anti-static wristband or hold a metal part of the chassis.

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Remove any cards or internal components necessary to give yourself unobstructed access to RAM sockets.

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Pick up your SIMM (single in-line memory module) or DIMM (dual in-line memory module) by the ends without touching pins or chips.

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If adding a SIMM, find the notched end and turn the SIMM so that it is parallel to the existing RAM card(s). Insert the SIMM into the socket at a 30-degree angle. If adding a DIMM, insert the DIMM straight in so that it is perpendicular to the motherboard.

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Use slight pressure to keep a SIMM from backing out while rotating the module to an upright position perpendicular to the motherboard.

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Make sure the small holes on each side of a SIMM fit into holders.

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Feel or hear retaining clips lock a SIMM into the socket; close the side clips on a DIMM.

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Gently try to pull the module out to ensure it is locked in position.

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Replace all internal components.

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Leave the cover off and reconnect the monitor, keyboard and mouse.

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Turn on the computer.

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Check the amount of RAM by right-clicking the My Computer icon in Windows and choosing Properties. On a Mac, use the About this Macintosh command in the Apple menu.

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If you don't see the right amount of RAM, turn off the computer and try "reseating" the SIMM or DIMM (take it out and put is back in) and reboot. If that doesn't work, call a technician.

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Shut down the computer and disconnect the peripherals again.

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Replace the cover and reconnect all the peripherals.

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