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How to increase the RAM of a laptop

Not much in laptops is upgraded (or at least difficult), but increasing the amount of RAM is easy enough in many cases. This step-by-step instruction on how to increase the RAM of a laptop is aimed primarily at novice users. It can also be useful: is it possible to put different RAM on a laptop or computer.

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Some laptops of past years may have configurations that are not completely balanced by today’s standards, for example. Core i7 and 4 GB of RAM, although it is quite possible to increase it to 8, 16 or even 32 gigabytes for some laptops, which for a number of applications, games, work with video and graphics can speed up your work and are relatively inexpensive. It should be borne in mind that to work with a large amount of RAM, you will need to install 64-bit Windows on a laptop (provided that 32-bit is currently used), in more detail: Windows does not see RAM.

What RAM is needed for a laptop

Before buying memory sticks (RAM modules) to increase the RAM on a laptop, it would be nice to know how many RAM slots there are and how many of them are occupied, as well as what type of memory you need. If you have Windows 10 installed, then this can be done very simply: start the task manager (you can from the menu that appears by right-clicking on the Start button), if the task manager is presented in a compact form, click the “Details” button below, then go to the tab “Performance” and select “Memory”.

In Windows 7 and 8, there is no such information in the task manager, but the free CPU-Z program will help us here, showing in detail information about a computer or laptop. You can download the program from the developer’s official website at https://www.cpuid.com/softwares/cpu-z.html (I recommend downloading the ZIP archive to run CPU-Z without installing it on your computer, located in the Download column on the left).

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After downloading, run the program and pay attention to the following tabs, which will help us in the task of increasing the laptop’s RAM:

  • On the SPD tab, you can see the number of memory slots, its type, size and manufacturer.
  • If, when selecting one of the slots, all the fields turned out to be empty, this means that the slot is most likely empty (once I came across the fact that it was not so).
  • On the Memory tab, you can see details about the type, total memory size, timings.
  • On the Mainboard tab, you can view detailed information about the laptop motherboard, which allows you to find the specifications of this motherboard and chipset on the Internet and find out exactly what memory and in what volumes are supported.
  • In general, in most cases, it is enough to look only at the SPD tab, all the necessary information on the type, frequency and number of slots is there and from it you can deduce the answer to the question of whether it is possible to increase the laptop memory and what is needed for this.

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Note: in some cases, CPU-Z may show 4 memory slots for laptops, in which there are actually only 2 of them. Consider this, as well as the fact that almost all laptops have exactly 2 slots (except for some gaming and professional models).

laptop

For example, from the screenshots above, you can draw conclusions:

  • The laptop has two slots for RAM.
  • One is occupied by a 4 GB DDR3 PC3-12800 module.
  • The used chipset is HM77, the supported maximum amount of RAM is 16 GB (this is searched on the Internet by chipset, laptop model or motherboard).
  • Buy another 4GB RAM SO-DIMM (laptop memory) DDR3 PC12800 and increase the laptop memory to 8GB.
  • Buy two modules, but 8 GB each (4 will have to be removed) and increase the RAM to 16 GB.
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To work in dual-channel mode (and this is preferable, because the memory works faster, with twice the frequency), two modules of the same size are required (the manufacturer may be different, if, for example, we use the first option) in two slots. Also keep in mind that the maximum amount of supported memory is based on all slots: for example, the maximum memory is 16 GB and there are two slots, this means that you can install 88 GB, but not one 16 GB memory module.

In addition to these methods to determine what memory is needed, how many free slots there are and how much it can be increased to the maximum, you can use the following methods:

  • Look for information on the maximum amount of RAM specifically for your laptop on the Internet. Unfortunately, such data is not always available on official sites, but often on third-party sites. For example, if you enter the query “laptop_model max ram” in Google, usually one of the first results is a website from the memory manufacturer Crucial, which always has accurate data on the number of slots, the maximum amount and type of memory that can be used (example of information on screenshot below).
  • If this is not difficult for you. see visually what memory is already installed in the laptop, whether there is a free slot (sometimes, especially on cheap laptops, there may not be a free slot at all, and the existing memory strip is soldered to the motherboard).

How to install RAM in a laptop

In this example, we will consider the option of installing RAM in a laptop, when it was directly provided by the manufacturer. in this case, access to the memory slots is facilitated, as a rule, there is a separate cover for this. Previously, it was almost the standard for laptops, now, in the pursuit of compactness or for other reasons, separate technological covers for replacing components (eliminating the need to remove the entire lower part) are found only on some devices of the corporate segment, workstations and other laptops that go beyond consumer segment framework.

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Those. in ultrabooks and compact laptops, there is nothing like this: you need to unscrew and carefully remove the entire bottom panel, and the disassembly scheme may differ from model to model. over, for some laptops, such an upgrade will void the warranty, please take this into account.

Note: if you do not know how to install memory in your laptop, I recommend you go to YouTube and search for the keyword “laptop model ram upgrade”. most likely you will find a video where the whole process, including the correct removal of the cover, will be demonstrated visually. I quote exactly the English-language request for the reason that in Russian it is rarely possible to find a disassembly of a particular laptop and installation of memory.

  • Unplug the laptop, including from the outlet. It is also advisable to remove the battery (if it cannot be disconnected without opening the laptop, then disconnect the battery first after opening it).
  • Use a screwdriver to open the cover, you will see the memory modules installed in the slots. If you need to remove not a separate cover, but the entire rear panel, try to find instructions on how to do it correctly, as there is a risk of damage to the case.
  • RAM modules can be removed, or new ones added. When removing, please note that, as a rule, memory modules are fixed on the side with latches that you need to bend.
  • When you insert memory, do it tightly, until the latches snap into place (on most models). All this is relatively easy, you can’t make a mistake here.

When finished, replace the cover, install the battery, if necessary. connect to the mains, turn on the laptop and check if the BIOS and Windows “sees” the installed RAM.