7 Ways to Free RAM on Your PC for Boosted Performance

Computing

7 Ways to Free RAM on Your PC for Boosted Performance

Windows PCs increasingly require more RAM to run various applications and games. These apps and games demand more and more RAM everyday. There are many tips you can follow to optimise RAM usage and free up RAM for better performance. 

What is RAM? 

What is RAM?

For anyone not familiar with the definition of RAM, it stands for Random Access Memory. It is a storage unit used by the computer to run processes by storing data for faster access for short periods of time.

This memory is cleared once the application is closed or doesn't need this data to be accessed quickly anymore.  

RAMs are volatile, meaning they retain data only as long as there is a power supply connected. They are not used for typical storage like other storage units.

On the other hand, the PC uses the hard disk or SSD in place of RAM when the RAM is full. This leads to slower PC speed because these storage units won't have the same speed as that of the RAM. 

Ways to free RAM on your PC

Restarting your PC 

Restarting your PC to free RAM

One of the very basic tips to free RAM is to simply restart your PC. By just restarting the computer, the accumulated processes in the background will be cleaned and the RAM will be refreshed.

That's why you should be restarting your PC and not letting it work for long periods of time without a shutdown or a restart.

Checking RAM usage 

Free RAM Task Manager

Another great tip is to check how much RAM is being used before trying to free RAM on your PC. To check RAM usage on your windows PC, all you need to do is press CTRL + ALT + DEL buttons simultaneously and head to the well known Task Manager. 

From Task Manager, you can end any process in your PC or force close the program. You can also monitor the usage of your CPU, storage units, network and the RAM.

If you think there is an app eating up your RAM without you needing it,  then we will discuss what to do with it below. 

Uninstall unneeded software 

Uninstall unneeded software to speed up PC

After knowing what apps are mostly eating up your RAM, it is time to free RAM on your PC by disabling or uninstalling programs you think are not essential.

Think if you really use them and if they are worth slowing down your PC then make your decision. If there is an app you haven't already opened for months then it may be time to free RAM by removing it from your computer for now. 

All you need to do to remove applications from your computer is to head to Settings > Apps then uninstal any unneeded software. You can sort the list of apps in different ways so it's easier to find unnecessary apps.

Remove apps from startup 

Remove apps from startup in Task Manager

This option is for apps that you use frequently but not on a daily basis. You probably don't want to remove them. A great tip would be to remove them from the startup list.

This means the application will only launch when you run it. It won't eat up your RAM every time you open your PC. 

To remove an application from startup list, just head to Task Manager and to the Startup tab. You will find all the applications that are enabled and disabled at startup. You can disable any application you think you don't need upon PC startup.

Manage your usage 

Free up RAM to improve PC performance

If you use heavy programs that need a lot of RAM, it's important to know how to manage RAM usage. This will help you free RAM effectively.

Firstly, consider using lighter alternatives of your favourite apps. For example, if you think Chrome eats up a lot of RAM then you can consider other lighter web browsers. Alternatives include Microsoft Edge, Firefox, and Vivaldi.

The second tip to consider is to keep an eye on your RAM usage. Close the programs you are not using. Closing all browser tabs will help you free RAM. Consider adding important web pages to your bookmarks to return to them later instead of keeping the tabs open all the time.  

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Scan your PC for malware 

Scan your PC for malware

Before downloading free RAM cleaners, you need to consider that maybe the problem behind your slow PC is malware.

Scanning your PC for malware is a good practice. It will help you discover any malware that is stealing your resources. Malwarebytes can be a great trusted choice to scan your PC for malware.

Add virtual memory 

Add virtual memory paging file

When RAM is full, the computer uses Paging File to store processes. You can control the size of this Paging File to improve PC performance.

To change the size of the Paging File, type 'advanced system settings' in the search box. Head to 'Advanced' tab, then choose 'Settings and Performance'. Go to 'Advanced' and you will find that you can edit the size of Paging File.

Set the maximum size of Paging File to a higher value. This will enable your PC to put more processes outside of RAM. 

Consider adding more RAM

Consider adding more RAM

Changing the size of Paging File won't be an ultimately effective solution for your RAM problem. If you think it is good to invest in adding more RAM to your PC, then you should consider buying one. 

Adding RAM to desktops is easy. It's more complicated for laptops and sometimes not possible. Desktops often have more RAM slots. In this case, you need to buy a compatible RAM and install it.  

While RAM upgrades are important and effective, you need to make sure that your problem is with the RAM and not with something else.

All PC parts work together. So don't expect that by just upgrading the RAM you will get extraordinary performance and all your PC problems will be solved.

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Read more: How to choose the best RAM for your needs

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